RV in the Redwoods

…because happiness is a journey of people and experiences, not things


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Sorting, Day 1

“Why the obsession with worldly possessions ? When it’s your time to go, they have to stay behind, so pack light.”

~ Alex Morritt, Impromptu Scribe

Today I started the process of sorting to move from 1500 square feet into 400 square feet.  The process of sorting is going to take longer then I imagined.  At the moment I have four categories:

  1. Going in the RV
  2. Going into Storage
  3. Going Away (donated or sold)
  4. Maybe

One of the things I realize today is that the easiest categories are 1 and 3.  I know what I really want and what I really do not want.  Figuring out what to pay to store and wading through the “maybes” will be much more time consuming.

Today I set myself up for the process.  I bought sturdy plastic bins for the storage units (with the humidity here, boxes are not the best storage unit option).  I also bought this wonderful new friend:

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I have so much paper garbage that needs to be properly disposed of.  This was where I started today, although I am nowhere near done.  I have boxes and boxes of files and old journals, etc. that have traveled the world with me.  There is a lot of confidential realities, so it will be quite a process, of shredding…. but worth it.  I just do not think I need to keep hauling around medical records from a car accident that happened in September of 1997!  I also do not need the journals I wrote as a 19 year old trying to figure out life.  It is time that these things, though once old friends, move on.  Today it was clearing piles from the past 8-10 months.  The shredded pile is quite satisfying to look at!

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The last thing I tackled tonight was shoes.  I have about 40 pairs.  I was able to cut that in half on the first round.  I am already having second thoughts about one pair I put in the Going Away pile, but I am trying to hold strong.  If they were worn less than 5 times in the past year, it is time to say goodbye – and, even so, I still have 19 pairs to deal with!

Give Away

Give Away

Keeping - Some in RV and Some in Storage

Keeping – Some in RV and Some in Storage (It’s a start!)

I am hoping to report more progress after tomorrow.  I want to sort my clothes and I know that is going to be a HUGE challenge for me!

 

 

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I HATE my “stuff”!!!

Stuff – we all have it.

Stuff – I have TONS of it.

Stuff – it’s everywhere – home, office, car.

Stuff – the media tells us we “NEED” more of it.

Stuff – am I even using it?

As I sit here in my house, preparing to downsize into life in an RV, I look around me and find myself HATING my stuff.  Perhaps the realities of life have added to my jaded attitude towards all that we use and consume.  At the end of the day, we know that “stuff” does not make us happy – and, in fact, it seems the more “stuff” we have, the more our satisfaction decreases and the drive then continues for more, bigger, better “stuff”.

I don’t want “stuff” I do not need or use anymore.  I want less “stuff” and more experiences, I want less “stuff” and more time.  I have spent the last 8 years working long hours in a job and then coming home to be slave to the home and “stuff” the job has purchased.  It takes a lot of time and energy to keep track of all of our “stuff”.

I have no desire to be slave to things.  In my lifetime I have been a mini-hoarder and I have attached sentimental meaning to objects that has then left me with a feeling of obligation to haul these objects with me – in my case, ALL OVER THE WORLD.  I have paid to move tiny sentimental objects from the USA to Israel and back…. and during that time they mostly sat in boxes.  I was not willing to part with items because “I have kept them for so long, how can I get rid of them now?”  I am challenging myself to change my ways and part with these things as I downsize.  I do not find comfort in these things, I find comfort with people and my animals.  I do not find joy in these things, I find joy with people and in experiences.  I do not find satisfaction in these things, I find satisfaction when I accomplish things, assist others as they grow, or volunteer.

As I look around my house and hate all these things I really do not need, I also realize how much of my “stuff” I never use.  Most of it.  Even my wardrobe – I wear my favorite outfits over and over and there are the less favorites that make rare appearances and then those items that I keep “just in case”.  So much of my wardrobe is “just in case”.  What if every item in my wardrobe was kept with purpose?  That means I can have that fancy dress or two, but I do not necessarily need five.  I can have those pairs of boots, but I do not need five pairs of black boots.  I know many people around the country and world are challenging themselves to live lives that have more abundance by living a simplified life where every item has a function and a purpose.  Their stories inspire me.  I hope you are inspired too.

The Minimalists

Project 333

The Tiny Life

RV Dreams

***True confession – I am renting a storage unit.  I will be keeping some of my “stuff” as I embark on this journey – just in case I really cannot make it living in 400 square feet.  I am giving myself an out.  Yet, even as I give myself the out, I still want to significantly reduce the amount of stuff I have, both with me in the 400 square feet and in the storage unit I will have to pay for.