Friday, March 11, 2016

Too Much "Stuff"

One of my greatest fears and that causes me so much anxiety is the call that something has happened to my parents.  Now, I am not panicked about losing them because I have a strong belief in the eternal plan and that we will be together again.

My fear is the "stuff".

With living in California it isn't like I can just help the process now as they live 3500 miles from us.  I know there is a lot of family history that goes way back with furniture, glass wear, art work, tools, and shelves and shelves of books of family genealogy.  When I go home to visit I feel overwhelmed and have to cut my visits short because I can see my future of cleaning out and not being able to let go of items because I know the stories behind the "stuff".

I had a very difficult time cleaning out my own house when we moved from NH to CA.  I cried over a Sharpie, yes a black everyday Sharpie.  As time went on I got in the groove and dropped off my "stuff" at Goodwill over 13 car loads and 15 carloads to the dump.  I met people in parking lots all over southern NH selling the valuable items.  

I know my parents have items that are worth way more than I ever had.  I can't just donate or throw away majority of it.  Many of our dinners growing up we would go over pictures on the wall of who was who and also stories of the art and furniture that family members had created.  They were ingrained in me.  At the time I didn't really have an interest, but as I am older I would like to have the space to keep it all, but that is not an option.  So this is what keeps me up or wakes me up.  

I have asked my parents to start the process on their own.  I don't think it is happening, but in my mind it is.  I am heading back East for a few days in April and will have 2 full days to figure out a plan with them.  I will be returning in July and hoping that my plan will have been implemented.  

I get it, these items are a part of you.  Stories, history, and memories.  I tear up thinking about it but our cleaning out process and the thought of my next one in years makes me realize how much stuff that takes up our daily lives.  I have never felt so free of the crap I had.  I have been to Target maybe 5 times since we moved here, I just can't think about shopping and getting more and having to go through another clean out.  We still have kitchen and bathroom cabinets that are empty and I don't feel like I have to fill them.  

Take a look around your homes and see all the unnecessary stuff you have and items you have no real connection too.  I am not saying clean out all your shizz but take a look at what items are most important. I also understand some people enjoy having a magazine picture homes with beautiful things that people oh and ah over and that is great, but I am so over trying to impress.  I have all I could want and need and that feeling is way better then a shopping spree at Ikea and Target combine (shocking I know, but  the truth)

It has finally taken me 45 years to figure this out and thousands and thousands of wasted dollars.  
I am just hoping that my parents can see the benefits of starting now for their financial gain and my mental well being.  

Just a website I found that has some great options for aging parents.  I will not have to have property to make this happen, but I know my brother and my favorite sister in law have space...

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Rocks and Stuff

I look back on the past six months and realize how fast life is moving!  We left NH on July 27th and arrived in CA Aug 1st just in time to move into our new condo 8 miles from the boarder of Mexico.  While I was very apprehensive about our location I have been so impressed with where we live.  I love the friendliness of the people and have a glimpse what it is like to be a minority. We are close to everything we could ever need or want. Starbucks, Jamba Juice, Rite Aid (personal favorite), and so many restaurants are within 1/4 of us.
Oh, and Costco is 3 blocks west.

I feel like life is much easier for us here. We are renting  and we do not have to take care of the upkeep of the condo but we have been given permission to revamp the back "yard".  Kurt likes simplicity.  Off we went to rent a chain saw (we sold all of our yard tools and power tools), tore out the old dying palm trees, scrubby plants  that I have no clue of what they are, and trim up the healthy mini palms.  Yard/concrete slab is almost done.


While walking at well known beach we were amazed at the millions of different color rocks. Every one was more beautiful than the other.   I could see it in Kurt's eyes the thought process of how were we going to get all these beautiful rocks to our home.  When we got home he tried showing me his vision as we stood in the patio area.  I can not visualize things I have to see a pictures.
We were out adventuring trying to find new places in our area and came across the Chula Vista Yacht Club (yes, kinda an oxymoron from what they say around here, sort of like Manchester NH Yacht Club) and went to the beach and saw similar rocks.  Great, closer to home.  Now Kurt could his plan into action.  As I was at work and he was on school break he put the buckets in the truck and  went for it, what he says, moved God's rocks to our location.  After I started to see the transition, I realized this would be great, but he wanted to hit the beach up north that will remain nameless.  Mind you that this is a major tourist attraction area.  How were we going to get buckets off the beach?  No worries, people thought we were working for UCSD in the geology department and needed the rocks.  Classic.  After 4 trips to unnamed beach and 4 to Chula we are just about done.

More about the rocks... they dried and were meh looking.  After having dinner with friends we went to their home on Balboa Island and walked around and saw some beautiful shiny rocks.
What? How?  Then a light bulb went off in my mind, SHELLAC!   Kurt could wait to get to Home Depot.  We had to dodge a few Mexicans driving into HD looking for work.  Where were these guys when I was hauling buckets of rocks up the beach to the truck.  Note to self, I am sure we will have another project soon to hire them.
Got home and with in minutes Kurt was as high as a kite from the fumes of the spray cans of shellac he was popping off. 

So that is some of the fun we have been having in SoCal.  We are loving the winters again, but kinda bummed that New England didn't get hammered with snow like last year as it would have taken the sting out of moving a bit better.

I miss my friends dearly and being able to hop in the car and head to Chatham and RI, also knowing my way around so I don't end up in Tijuana, but in time we will find a support system.  We did find a new church and hoping that is a start to finding people, but not sure they will get our sick and twisted New England humor.