Well, friends, the last month or so has been a whirlwind of purge, donate, box, rinse, repeat. We knew we had a hard date for the house to be empty by March 7. But when you’ve lived in one place for 15 years, and have as many hobbies as we do mixed with horrible hoarder tendencies, it’s a LOT.
I work best under pressure, so of course, we started slow. Clothes, shoes and bags mostly, donating some directly, taking some to a clothing swap some friends and I do periodically. Then our son decided the time had come to strike out on his own with some friends, so that meant moving him out (luckily since that gave us a room for storing packed boxes!)
We also tried to work in sections in the garage. We had boxes THAT WE NEVER UNPACKED, for god’s sake. And we HAVE gotten rid of stuff in here before, I promise. The moving company rep that came to do the estimate took one look at this and said “I have a guy that can help”. His name was Kevin and he has a junk hauling business. I called him up tout de suite and he could not have been more lovely. We set a date for him to come before the move and the day after the move – his suggestion, which was freaking brilliant.
About three weeks before Move Out Day, I laid a tarp out on the grass and started pitching stuff. Some of it WAS crap, but a lot was usable, and Kevin would sort out the stuff that could be donated, which I loved. They took a TON of stuff.
Thanks to some special friends for storing certain special things like the The Geek’s BMW and the booze.
We learned the best times to go to Goodwill to minimize the waiting. It seemed like it was nearly a daily chore. We came to know the donation guy by name, for crying out loud. We gave the family across the street nearly 30 games. We put out stuff for free in front of the house because we couldn’t be bothered with listing it.
About two weeks out, the boxes came and it was time to get serious. The trick now was keeping things we’d need during the 6 months at the rental AND for our trip to Europe that is upcoming while packing the rest to be stored.
The last few days before the movers came is a blur. Still pitching stuff left and right, boxing for hours. I apologize to all our friends for constantly asking if they wanted our crap. It’s a Christmas miracle, but we were ready for the movers on Friday! They were great, which was a relief. I was lowkey dreading the process.
A few hours later and the house was mostly empty, full of echoes and soooo dingey without stuff! Now we had to prep what was left for Kevin and his crew to take the next day. There was still a section in the garage we hadn’t gotten to, mostly tools and odds and ends, but by this time we were SO OVER IT. We put more stuff out for the taking – one guy came by and he actually came in the garage and cleaned out a bunch of tools! Win win! It felt good knowing that so much stuff went to new loving homes. The rest…
NOW the house was truly empty. Boggles my mind when I think about it. It wasn’t easy – definitely a few times I’m sure we both wanted to just nuke it from space and probably thought some unkind words about each other.
We went up to the house last night to pick up the mail and a delivery. Saw the hideous lamp post was gone and they’d covered some floors, took some shelves out. It’s all happening, seems still so surreal. I feel good knowing the place we had so many good times in is in good hands for the next chapter. Thanks for coming on this ride with us!