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Learning to Ride a Bike

We decided not to travel with a toad (car towed behind) so we are relying on our bikes for transportation. Therefore we needed to do a little maintenance on the bikes and shift things around a bit. Designerd had been using my mountain bike because it was just too uncomfortable for me, Mr. T had outgrown his bike (the nerve of teenagers!) and moved up to an extra Grandpa had. Mr. S got Mr. T’s old bike and Divagirl got Mr. S’s old bike and she also still uses the Trail-a-bike off Designerd’s bike. I got a new bike more suited to errand-running complete with a multitude of baskets. I love it. After taking the bikes to a bike shop for a few minor repairs, all the kids washed their bikes.

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Unloading

Yesterday was a nice rest, but today it was back to business. We still had the contents of a 17′ Uhaul truck to unload into storage. My parents were able to secure an air-conditioned 10×10 storage unit for us, but after we started loading things in, we started getting a little anxious that it might not all fit. Luckily there was a 10×20 unit across the hall that was vacant. After 4 or more hours in the heat and humidity, the 4 of us got everything sorted and unloaded into the unit. Its lovely. Even has 2 aisles so we can get to things. Our RV is not ready to contain our belongings yet so temporarily they are in storage too.

I’m detesting the heat already.

I find that I don’t do well under these conditions and most of the time I spent in the unit and not doing the heavy lifting because I felt like I was going to pass out. I can see already that our productive hours fixing up our new home will be very limited. But we don’t have a time frame so when its ready, we’ll be ready.

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2 Weeks Left

Two weeks until we leave and the landlords have already re-rented this place. We’ve sold a handful of things on Craigslist. We’re trying to eat up the food we have in the house. We’re trying to sort through our belongings for those that will make the cut. But we have a problem. Its HOT. We are experiencing a heat wave here and we don’t have a/c, heck we don’t even have a breeze. Its in the 80’s in the house and no one wants to pack, no one wants to eat the meals I have to make, and we’re all a little cranky.

I’m starting to wonder how this move is going to come together…

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Sort and Sell

This is a process of minimizing. The first step is to sell any belongings that you don’t love, need or use on Craigslist. Wait for people to call and inquiry. Arrange time for pickup. Wait for said pickup time and wait and wait and wait…Yes, that’s usually how it works for us and C*list. Although we have managed to sell 2 tables and the patio furniture.

I’ve been going through knick knacks and home decorations and deciding which I want to reuse and lovingly pack and catalog them away and which ones I’m really tired of looking at. My stumbling block at the moment is the box of old photos and the box of last year’s art work (for 3 kids), both of which need scanned or photographed so that the originals can be tossed. This type of project overwhelms me!

The goal is to get most or all of the big stuff sold first then have a yard sale for the remaining little things, donating whatever doesn’t sell after that.

I’ve packed up several more boxes to go into storage. Doesn’t it always seem that things get messier before they get tidier? The garage is on my list for this weekend. Although, the kids may win out and we may just hang at the pool and wait for Designerd┬áto return from his business meeting. It is supposed to be in the 80s and 90s this weekend.

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Downsizing

In an effort to live more simply the inevitable must occur. We have to downsize.

One thing I’ve noticed in all the homes we’ve lived in is that no matter the size of the home, it will be full to bursting. We just don’t stop accumulating stuff. We have lived in homes that including the basement exceed 4000 SF down to one bedroom apartments of 760 SF. The biggest thing about a house is that we can stockpile our possessions without giving them much thought. We don’t have to think critically about every item and say to ourselves: “Do I need this? Is it beautiful? Is it useful?” Instead we can say: “I might need this someday, I’d better hang on to this. I could totally do a project with this…someday.” Or my personal favorite: “This hasn’t worked in the last 3 houses but it might work for the next one, better keep it.”

The trouble is, someday isn’t on the calendar. Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday. Nope, no Someday. So I end up with a stockpile of stuff (some organized, some not) to do future crafts but due to the other obligations I have in my life, I never get to it. So all that stuff just ends up leaving me stressed out, feeling unfulfilled and collecting dust.

I am positively giddy about downsizing. I am a packrat. Not a hoarder. I like to keep sentimental items that serve no purpose at all except to make me wax nostalgic. I’m really good at getting rid of other people’s stuff. Really Good! But enter into emotional attachment and I freeze, I waver, I fill really big “maybe” boxes. I am looking forward to the time when everything I own serves a purpose, even if that purpose is to make me smile.

In preparation for our road home I’ve been going through closets rooms and labeling big items with cards that say RV or KEEP or SELL. We plan on getting a POD to store the things we can’t part with, putting the things that we need in the RV and selling the rest to start a nest egg for the trip.

Even with as many moves as we’ve made, we still accumulate stuff. It is so freeing to fill those SELL piles. Simple feels wonderful!