Monday, October 26, 2015

Downsizing in October ... It's Spooky!

Good times with friends .. didn't have time to find a costume this year.

What's spookier than answering the door to kids to give them a "Trick or Treat"? ... Answering the door to strangers who want to buy our lifetime of treasures for a few bucks!  Some were pretty nice and some were indeed pretty creepy.  One guy opened our back door to peek into our garage when we had nothing for sale in there, peeked into our 2nd bedroom ... nothing for sale in there either!  He then proceeded to pick up one of my books and flip through it ... this was while his wife kept trying to lower the price on something we'd already agreed to previously.  If I didn't need to sell this stuff, they would have been booted out the door!

Anyway, after a second weekend of bargain hunters we were able to sell the last of the larger items ... the sofa set that our daughter loaned to us & wanted to sell, the bar stools, the coffee table & end table ... even the lamp!

We decided that a garage sale was too much trouble & time, so this past Friday I made another trip to Goodwill with a loaded down car, and probably have one more final trip before I'm done.  One of the things going to Goodwill ... my wedding dress.  It's a typical "80's style" that nobody wants, so my daughter is going to cut off the bow & a few crystals and the dress will probably be bought next Halloween ... for Frankenstein's bride.

  We also loaded up our son-in-law's truck & our truck with stuff to bring to my dad's huge shed ... or should I say warehouse?!  We loaded one truck with our boat cushions (who would believe they all could fit on our boat) and loaded up the other with boxes of tax documents, sentimental keepsakes, and a few kitchen items that won't fit in our smaller condo .. or our boat.  We also loaded up a favorite piece of furniture that I couldn't bear to sell for practically nothing ... hopefully it will survive being stored at my dad's place.  I cleaned the furniture with polish, set it on plastic, and covered it with blankets ... just like the internet "experts" instructed me to do.  I still have to box up photographs and a few more momentos to bring to my dad's place, but we're just about done.  We have one tiny section of my dad's shed ... not too bad for almost 50 yrs of memories.

I've taken up half of the hanging area of the only (and very small) closet in our (new) condo, and whatever didn't fit in my half of the bedroom dresser had to go.  The two layers of shelving over the hanging area is being taken up by all the little boat stuff that we've already accumulated ... an Omnia oven, solar bimini lights, Caframo fans, bamboo sheet sets, a hammock, a kite, snorkel gear, a chart plotter, a tiny Scrabble & backgammon game .. all sorts of random stuff.  Ken & I will also be sharing the closet floor with two plastic bins containing 3 drawers each (one bin for each of us that we already owned), our spinnaker, a head sail and if there's enough room ... our inflatable dinghy.  Hopefully there's enough room under the bed to store our sail pack, bimini & main sail. Luckily, we have a small garage to store some of these items if necessary ... including Ken's tools & our bicycles.

We have until Halloween to turn over the keys to our (old) condo and clean it.  Although we planned on living at the new condo last Thursday, we haven't moved over our food, pots/pans, plates/utensils or basic toiletries.  So ... we've been sleeping on a piece of foam since the sofas were sold on Saturday!  Heck, it's an adventure right? We plan on moving the last few things to the new place no later than this Wednesday or Thursday ... just a couple more nights on the floor and washing/wearing the same few clothes. 

Oh, and I almost forgot about the attic!  Luckily, the only things in it are Christmas items.  The artificial tree that we still love is going to our daughter, and the sentimental ornaments that we've collected over the years will stay with us this year ... on a tiny tree in our tiny condo.  After Christmas is over, one or two ornaments will go with us on Nirvana and the others will be packed & added to our memories at my dad's place.

 All this downsizing required a break!  So, we went to our friend's annual Halloween party this past Saturday night.  They've been hosting this party for many years, and we always look forward to it. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, and last year we were too busy moving Halloween night to enjoy it.  As we left our house and our subdivision last year for the final time, we passed all of the trick-or-treaters & their parents who were having fun ... and were too exhausted to care.

Saturday night was a party full of costumes, spooky decorations, a bonfire, and even a hayride.  With a "coffin" full of ice and "poison" ... we were finally able to kick back and relax.  Good times with good friends ... a much needed break indeed.  Oh, and there's nothing like a good party to deal with sleeping on the floor ... out like a light!

So, how does it really feel to get rid of a lifetime of possessions?  Well, it's kinda surreal and a little spooky too.  Overall, we're excited and happy to have such a load of stuff off of our shoulders.  The lack of a house-full of stuff (and the mortgage that goes with it) provides a certain kinda freedom to do whatever we choose in the future.  I'm not gonna lie ... when the last person left with the sofas we'd been sleeping on and we realized that we no longer owned a bed, a table, or a sofa ... there was a bit of panic, but only for a second.  After all, our decision to sell everything was just that .. a choice, and a step towards our dream.  Good things don't come easy, right?!  We also have the reassurance of knowing that gifts from our family and sentimental keepsakes are stored away and waiting for us to unpack again someday.  These memories aren't gone for good, and they'll again bring joy to us when unwrapped.

We'll downsize one more time when our lease is up this Spring on our (new) condo, and again we'll be bringing a few things to my dad's place that we're enjoying for the moment ... and will enjoy again sometime in the future.

Now, if we could just finish the necessary boat projects (a good shaft with packing in the stuffing box is kinda important) and get our boat back in the marina ...

Hasta luego ... until then.  Mid-Life Cruising!


Sandee said...

You're downsizing yourself getting ready to live aboard. This will give you a good feel for what that is like.

I'm glad you had a weekend of fun with your friends. That's important.

Have a fabulous day. ☺

Duff said...

Hi Ken and Cheryl,
Looks like you are getting closer to your dream. Keep the momentum going.
Alan said...

Garage sales are both a hoot and a pain. I can't believe how little I sold stuff for during our big sale. I don't regret it, but I'm still amazed at how I was able to just let stuff go. You guys really are making progress now!

Anonymous said...

And Debra thought we were the only ones with a main, staysail and jib under the bed. We put the bed on concrete blocks. Makes it a piece of cake to fit big items under. Just remember the "jump down" when getting up during the night.

Anonymous said...

Might have to put the bed on concrete blocks for the sails to fit if you have a low bedframe. Gives a lot of extra storage room anyway. Ken

Jaye @ Life Afloat said...

Gettin' closer - you guys are making HUGE progress. BTW, I **hate** garage sales. Seems to bring out the greed in so many people. No matter how reasonably you price things, they ask you to go just a little lower (or sometimes a lot). We found we did just about as well, for a lot less work and stress, donating the stuff to charity and taking the realistic value off our taxes.

Ken n Cheryl said...

Duff ... you'r still around! Glad to hear from ya, how you been?

LCP, we're glad we didn't have the garage sale. I don't think we would have had time, and our larger "stuff" sold on Craigslist. Like you, I pretty much gave away everything, even the stuff I sold. But, I'm already forgetting what I had, and don't think I'll ever miss it. Hope we're both "out there" soon!

Ken & Paul ... didn't have to use the concrete blocks after all. Amazingly, it all fit in the small closet with our clothes! Good thing, because I have short legs!

Jaye .. you're right. No matter how cheap something is .. they wanna it cheaper. Even after I settled on a price with a woman on our dining set & held it for her .. she tried to knock off even more when she arrived. Wasn't gonna happen .. she gave that up quick! Glad we're done with selling and Goodwill for now.

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