Things of silver and gold I make.
All that I cherish and hoard away
After I leave, on this earth must stay.
Tho' I have toiled for a painting rare
To hang on the wall, I must leave it there.
Tho' I call it mine, and boast its worth,
I must give it up when I leave this earth.
All that I gather, and all that I keep,
I must leave behind when I fall asleep.
And I often wonder what I shall own
In that other life, when I pass alone.
What shall they find, and what shall they see
In the soul that answers the call for me?
Shall the Great Judge learn,
When my task is through,
That my spirit has gathered some riches too,
Or shall, at last, it be mine to find
That all I'd worked for I'd left behind?
- Author Unknown
I've been spending many, many, many hours purging my house of "things of silver and gold" these past few weeks. In clearing out some old papers, I came across this poem among some poems written by my Great Aunt Mary. It seemed quite fitting to find it during this great decluttering I have assigned myself this year.
Things in the decluttering are going very well! I have filled our Honda van up completely once to take things to the thrift store, and I will fill it up again tomorrow to go to the thrift store again. I'm beginning to feel some extra wiggle room in closets, cupboards, dressers and basically all areas of our home. It's starting to feel just a teeny bit better, but there is still a long way to go.
On the advice of some of my blogging friends I went out immediately to purchase the book by Marie Kondo on decluttering. She had some helpful advice on how to address the question of what to keep and what to get rid of. I have found it a good way to get started on the decluttering, and was able to work through areas quite quickly and easily. By working through the stuff "by category" rather than "by room", I have been quite successful in clearing tons of stuff in clothing, books, dishes, sewing, etc.
Thank you everyone who left such wonderful words of encouragement on my last post ... I'm shocked that it was Jan 7 when I last wrote a post! I found all your words and thoughts and virtual hugs were so helpful in getting me started on this decluttering process. To know that so many of you have also had to deal with this same issue has been a comfort. I don't feel so much alone in this task knowing that many of you have managed to get through this tedious ordeal as well ... and feel so much better for having done it! It was so nice of you all to share what you have found to be helpful, and to wish me best of luck. I have gone back and read the comments several times to keep some of your kind thoughts and your ideas for decluttering fresh in my mind.
I'm not kidding when I tell you that I have purged items every single day since I started this effort. By working on it continuously and for so long, it has given me a more practiced eye to see what can stay and what truly needs to be sent out the door. I've known for a long time that I've bought far too much stuff over the years that was totally unnecessary. I would actually feel ill at ease when I brought yet another "thrift store treasure" into the house. I knew it was reaching a breaking point when I would hide the treasure and even the store's bags from my husband! By admitting that these things make me cringe when I look at them, it has made it so much easier to send these things back out the door again. It has helped me feel so much better in my heart as well. I've been able to let a lot of my mom's things go as well, which was made easier through the help of your comments, and also with the help of the book.
Until I get a lot further on this decluttering, I will continue to keep my computer time to a minimum. Once I feel I've got things under control, I'll be able to join in again with visiting all of you. I'm getting down to the most dreaded areas of the decluttering ... photos, my kids' artwork (from when they were small), and "important" papers! ugh! I also have to work through the garage, which is all heavy stuff. So far I've been working away at this on my own without help from my husband. If I need a bit of a push to throw something out, I discuss it with him and he usually provides the blunt words I need to let certain items go. Don't get me wrong, I don't want my husband's help with most of this stuff! I need to work through it at my own pace so that I know I dealt with everything in a calm, clear way. I don't want to rashly chuck stuff out. I think carefully about each item before letting it go. I will need his help in the garage though. Since starting this decluttering, my husband has gone through his woodworking shop and cleared out so much stuff that he now has a clear work bench and a large area to do some proper woodworking again! See what I started?! We both feel so much better about the state of the house already.
So thank you again everyone for your assistance! I will report in again soon, and will hopefully be back to regular programming before too long.
Thanks for stopping by!