Down-sizing: Oh No!!

The term “down-sizing” means a lot of thinking, doing, walking through memories and worst of all separating everything you own into two lists.  One list is the things you keep and the  rest are items you get rid of SOMEHOW!!

I have spent days sorting through everything.   All items you own are assigned to one of the lists; a crystal bowl, a napkin, a chair and even a drape are assessed..  My china, glass and crystal collection are special and to sort and decide was difficult. A future cupboard size determined many things and the total storage in the house is a major influence of  how much to take.  something else had more attachment to me.

A beautiful Limoges Fish set in my curio cabinet for many, many years.   I look at it and remember the day I bought it; a day in my life when I was in my 30’s and should never have bought such a pricy item.  At first my estate sales person said to sell it for a couple hundred dollars.  I snarled; I had no idea of its real worth, yet I knew it was an authentic set.  After searching the internet for the marks on the back of the plates and the paintings on the face of the plate led me to realize it dates between 1895 and 1905 simply because the white ware mark was only used by Laviolette during that time.  My plates have different designs on each plate and the platter.  This helped to prove it was authentic. I will place them on eBay where I hope to sell them at a price that they are worth.

After the estate sale my house is still strewn with furniture and boxes of glassware, little porcelain, kitchen ware and much more that I will give to a charity providing they are accepting donations, although in Florida even the resale shops have an abundance of items and may not want donations.

Yesterday, I was working in the garden and I opened every garden box to get the tools I needed.  I will repack it all next week but I don’t know if I will be too happy to do it again.

My advice to everyone is to think carefully about what you keep.  Follow the good rule that if you haven’t used something in five years get rid of it!!  In the last forty years we have not followed the rule and now I need to deal with it all!!

This will be our  last move.  I do not want to downsize again.  And one day if I must  go to some old age home I will let someone else get rid of everything for me!!


To Be With Hy


Hy is my brother-in-law.  I have known him for years.  Now I know him much more.

Hy has Alzheimer’s and still functions pretty well.  He has stayed with us while he waits for a new place he will call home.  Monday, I will go with him to this new place and if all goes well  in an interview, he will be able to move in on Wednesday.  Packing and unpacking his possessions and arranging the look of his apartment has become something I enjoy doing.  Wednesday is the only day  I have free.  It will bother me if my own problems interfere so that I cannot do this for him.

While he has been staying with us, we enjoy early morning coffee, chats and little forays into impromptu singing.  He has always been social and able to chat with everyone, yet our chats have built trust and affection between us.  He knows if he wants to speak with me I will give him all my attention.   He knows I will only tell him truths and will not tell him anything that is questionable.

Since my surgery I have gained even more weight.  We talk about it and he  cares that I am too  heavy. As our chats about my weight evolved Hy began calling me “The Big Guy”.    It became our special name for me and now I often say to him that the big guy will take care of something for him, rather than simply saying I will do it!!  He always needs to know how my cancer treatment is doing and tries to support me in my journey!

If this all works out and we are  able to move and set up his new apartment on Wednesday he will begin living there on Thursday.   I am sure that when he leaves my house I will miss his humor, our chats, the all day smile,  his ability to  care about people and particularly in his ability  to accept his illness and still be able to enjoy living life to the hilt.  Yep, he is one of those who has a special inner strength that provides a determination to keep going and develop  a willingness to trust that his family will always try to do the best for him and allow him to continue his life comfortably.

During the time that Hy has been here, I have understood:

To Be With Hy is to be with Life!!  


To Live with a Lighter Load

Hopefully, during our next move, I will be able to feel what is like to only have what you need to have.  It sounds like I want to life with the bare bone necessities.   The bare necessities of life bring to mind camping out on a mountain and really roughing it, something I have never wanted to do.  Not long ago a friend of ours visited his nephew.  His sister, the mother of this person, accompanied them.   I guess they knew that her son was renovating an old home, yet they did not understand where in the process of renovation was his house.  Upon arrival they found a house stripped of wall board, plaster, etc.  There was running water–only cold.  They found out they wasn’t a bathroom and that they (two people nearly 70) would help put in the toilet, sink, shower, tile and grout.  Amazing as it sounds, they didn’t run.  Neither one must not have needed the “necessity” room and so the reality had not hit.  By bed time they realized what the lack of a toilet meant.  I guess they used the back yard.  Next morning, though, they did miss the sink to wash up in, take a shower, brush your teeth, etc.  Each time nature called they had to go to their assigned back yard space.  They tolerated doing that, but by the 3rd day they tired of going to a park to wash and shower.  On that day they checked into a motel.

That little story is way past the stage of bone necessities as I see it.  Reminda me too much of my stay in Vietnam sleeping in a tent made with a poncho and never having a toilet.    Within the first hour of arriving,  I would have decided to leave.  To lighten my load means to  rid life of all that isn’t  needed.  I own many sets of china, have flatware enough for a huge party, a large closet over flows with table clothes, my studio has items I rarely use and in my closet are clothes that I couldn’t even get my big toe into!!  They are from a past life, a time when this older, fat body, wore stylish clothes and was thin!!

Today I have decided I must sort everything in my studio.  Every scrap  of fabric or paper that isn’t usable goes to the garbage, everything that is decent and I don’t want will go to Goodwill and all that I will keep is ready for packing.  After a couple of hours I looked at the floor with piles of debris.  They are  larger than the keep pile and the Goodwill pile.   Hopefully, this will be a good lesson for me not to accumulate “stuff” that will end up in the garbage can anyway!!

Every other area in the house has items  I use.  In everyone of those areas I must carefully decide what I want to keep.  Many items I will never give up, but there are others that I enjoy using since the the storage closets in the house are more than ample to hold  them.  Hopefully when I finish sorting I will have three piles again:  keep–sell–Goodwill!!  The furniture in all the rooms is far easier to decide their destiny.   I will keep  the antiques, my piano and a sofa and 2 chairs .  I will sell the rest   and if some pieces do not sell I will give it away to anyone who will pick it up and take it away!

I have grown accustomed to living in large homes and using all my possessions.  This current house was a pleasure since it had so many closets and areas to store.  I wonder how I will react living in a condo again, hopefully one with lots of room, although it can never equal the joy of living in a house and easily walking out onto a lawn!

My load will be lighter!  Will I!!