Seeking Simplicity

I should probably start by admitting to my pack rat-like tendencies.  If something is still good/ might be useful/ could someday be made into… I’m gonna want to hang onto it.  Come on, I couldn’t have been the only one to grow up with a too-good-to-throw-away drawer in the kitchen, could I?  By the time I was a teenager my room looked like the dump.  But it was a very organized dump – ask me for anything and I could be back with it in about a minute.  It was organized chaos. 

Somehow I managed to keep a pretty tidy dorm room.  Maybe the pressure of sharing with someone else.  Maybe just because I didn’t really take 18 years of accumulated treasures with me although I did try. 

The trouble really sets in after we got married and it’s name is spare bedroom.  Instead of a too-good-to-throw-away drawer we had a whole room devoted to stuff.  Boxes of treasures from growing up.  Boxes of textbooks and notes.  Clothes.  Craft supplies.  Camping gear.  Boxes that were moved there when we moved in that held stuff that was most defiantly not ours.  Like a hot water bottle, still in the original packaging, that had dried out and cracked straight through.  Just as I was starting to think about cleaning it out to make a nursery I miscarried.  And then by the time we needed to start the nursery project again we had moved to another state.  And a one bedroom apartment.  Add on another 3 years, another move, another baby, and all the related paraphernalia and we’re still in an apartment, two bedrooms now but it’s growing smaller and smaller all the time.  We have stuff stored at my parent’s house, a friend here’s basement, and we are lucky to have two storage spaces (the size of a refrigerator) here in our building.  I was so thankful to be granted the use of the second storage space, I was starting to feel like I live in an episode of “Hoarders” – there were stacks of boxes and bins lining all the walls in our bedroom and the all closets are stuffed to the gills. 

So here is my simplification issue.  Stuff seems like the place to start but how do we do it?  I look around every room and there is so little we can do without.  Well, that’s not totally true, we could get by with so much less, I know.  But where do I start?  I can’t get rid of anything that will be used in the not to distant future.  So we’re keeping the food processor, the electric skillet (which is perfect for making Swedish pancakes,) the bins of outgrown baby clothes and toys, the holiday decorations.  We’ve weeded out CDs and DVDs that we don’t watch and books we wont read again.  We’re still surrounded by stuff! 

I know I’m not supposed to say it but if only we had more space… 

And I know we are very lucky to have this problem.  So many people in the world don’t have what they need to live let alone all the luxuries that I am struggling to fit into our home.  And so many people have lost everything in the storms that destroy whole communities that I really shouldn’t complain that I have too much stuff.  Hopefully by committing this to writing I can start making some progress toward simplifying our lives.  And our stuff.  But just in case maybe I should start praying to St. Anthony to find us a bigger home… 

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About *kate

A mama looking for a little piece of peace in her day.
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