Written By:  Leslie Means

Well, we did it. My small family of four managed to move every single personal belonging out of the home we lived in for over five years. It took nearly two weeks of small trips and one full day of moving to finish our journey. 

It wasn’t fun.

I learned a great deal about myself during this process including the following;

I’m not a very good house cleaner. I think we’ve established this. But just to confirm, I could have knit a large sweater with the amount of lint I found under the washer and dryer. I can’t knit but I think you get it.

I don’t like to pack. The 50 trash bags full of random belongings made this point clear. 

I have a lot of stuff.

Please don’t mistake the word “stuff” for actual stuff. Stuff in this case means junk. During my packing process – which simply consisted of drinking wine and gently placing anything in my reach into trash bags – I found; 27 koozies, hundreds of unused toys, 15 year old finger polish and a stash of clothing I’ve been holding on to since high school. I also discovered an unusual amount of sharpie black markers and finger nail clippers. This is the result of being quite unorganized. They all seemed to magically appear when I need them the least. 

This large amount of junk is a bit of a concern for me. We don’t usually go overboard on material items and I can honestly say I have never purchased koozies in bulk – which makes me ponder. How can a small family of four accumulate so much in such a short amount of time? And what can be done to stop this?

I’ve made myself a list of how I think this happened and what I can do to avoid this situation in the future.

  1. Throw away Happy Meal Toys. While these things can bring peace to an unhealthy meal time, they end up being ripped apart and mysteriously found under car seats, in my purse and in the bathtub. Nothing is more relaxing than a hot bubble bath with a glass of wine, soft music and a plastic Smurf staring at me from the edge of the tub.
  2. Organize my junk drawer. Or, maybe I shouldn’t even have a junk drawer. Yea. That might eliminate the junk part.
  3. Stop buying $1.99 finger nail polish in awkward shades. Orange glitter only works for Halloween.
  4. Throw out canning jars. I’m never going to can.
  5. Match socks and toss the unmatched ones in to the garbage. Although, I wear a lot of mismatched socks with boots. So, I’ll only toss out the ones with holes.
  6. Buy a paper shredder.
  7. Donate all unused items. 
  8. Try to remember that material items don’t hold the memories. And regardless of this move or any others after, throwing something away won’t change that. I’m working on this one. 

This is a good start. I have a while before we move out of our rental into our new home. By then, I hope to have those papers shredded and koozies perfectly organized. 

But first, I have to dig my way through the 50 bags of junk. Talk to me this fall – I’ll see if I followed any of my own advice. 

Read more from Leslie in the Kearney Hub.

Leslie Means

Leslie is the founder and owner of Her View From Home.com. She is also a former news anchor, published children’s book author, weekly columnist, and has several published short stories as well. She is married to a very patient man. Together they have three fantastic kids.  When she’s not sharing too much personal information online and in the newspaper – you’ll find Leslie somewhere in Nebraska hanging out with family and friends. There’s also a 75% chance at any given time, you’ll spot her in the aisles at Target.