We are in the midst of downsizing and cleaning out our home: 20+ years of collected stuff. You learn alot about what you value (hoard) by what you find. It has been exhausting, overwhelming and illuminating.
Thankfully I had a trial run for cleaning out my house. Over the past year, my family cleaned out our childhood home. That was 50 years of “stuff”. I think it primed me for doing my house. I also learned that some of the things I seem to collect (a gentler word than hoard) are hereditary.
My (original) family feels the need to save absolutely every piece of paper that has any writing space on it. This was not news to me, I grew up this way. What was news to me was the sheer volume. It is astounding and I still can’t part with it. This genetic tendency has not trickled down to my kids.
- A piece of paper that has writing at one end will be cut down to size to save the blank portion.
- Old notebooks that my kids used in school ~ if there are blank pages ~ it’s a keeper.
- Leftover envelopes from mailings.
- Pre-pinterest folders of things I intend to read.
- I have scraps of papers with things my kids said growing up. I even dated this one, making the kids 13.5, 11, and 7 years old.
Then there are notebooks and post-its in every shape and size. My penchant for paper seems to be well known as friends and family gift me notebooks/post-its that are either cute or beautiful. Each notebook/post-it pad tells it’s own story.
I have Ziplock bags in every shape and size. From 1″ in size to jumbo, if you need a Ziplock bag, I probably have it. I thought I was unique in this until we cleaned out my parent’s house. Seems this is another genetic tendency ~ Mom has Ziplock bags dating way back. And, yes, we kept them.
While I never have a sharpie or highlighter, when I need one, I discovered an extensive collection of highlighters, pens, pencils, and sharpies. Who knew? All these years I have been in search of sharpies and they were scattered all over the house.
Suffice to say, my bags have bags.
- Tote bags
- Reusable shopping bags
- Knitting bags
- Project bags
My special Yarnia room is no more. The room has to look like an actual usable bedroom for showing. These people just don’t understand the magic of Yarnia. That was one of the saddest clean-outs for me. Now my knit-life is in boxes that will need a further sort. There is a dedicated craft sale in my future with books, yarn, bags, etc.
Apart from the paper, pens, and ziplock bags, everything has a story. I can remember who gave me each notebook. Each knitting bag has it’s own story of where I got it and why.
What would a psychologist have to say about these collections? That I have a deep-seated need to not waste paper ~ maybe it’s the potential of stories and notes to be made. And clearly I am concerned that I will either not have the right bag when I need it (which, we all share). She certainly wouldn’t need a notebook and pen, I could provide her with both.