Everything is moving fast

My house is so empty now. Oh, there’s furniture, but there’s just a lot of … space with so much already sold or donated. The Veterans were here yesterday for a pick up and I have a car full of boxes for Hangers of Hope in Tyler. The kitties are anxious and I’m not sure if they’ve noticed that porch furniture is gone, too.

It’s been a whirlwind week of almost frenzied weeding, sorting, and packing. My sister-in-law was here last weekend, and I wouldn’t be this far along without her! She also helped me with my move here from Connecticut and I am so grateful for her love, support, and hard work. And my friends here in Emerald Bay liberated furniture, stuff, and even plants, giving them new homes and new life.

I have just so much stuff even after letting go of so much already. Next priorities are pantry and fridge clean-out, and going through boxes of holiday decorations. Anyone want vintage Byers Choice carolers?

God is Winking

there is no such thing as a coincidence...it's a God wink | Coincidence  quotes, Amazing inspirational quotes, Faith quotes christian

The neurosurgeon told me this week that I needed spine surgery (specifically a lumbar laminectomy) to be scheduled in 3-4 weeks. But I was going to MOVE in 3-4 weeks. You can’t have surgery and move at the same time, especially with cats. How can things move that quickly? Moving takes time. But God is winking.

A week ago today I decided to sell my house and move to Meadow Lake. Two weeks from today I will actually do it, which is crazy. Things are racing along at a speed I could never have planned or expected, and this morning I set the date for the local movers to come and pack (August 4) followed by moving day the next day. My house will be listed after I’m gone.

People seem surprised at how quickly I’ve gone through items and pulled them out to give away or sell, but the truth is, I’ve been looking around at my stuff for a while as other friends have moved away, because moving is when you make those big decisions about little things. I’d look around a room, and mentally think, “Keep, keep, toss, keep, sell, toss” and just move on. Now that it’s time to really do that weeding, it’s actually quite liberating and freeing to let it go because there isn’t room. I don’t hate a thing and would probably keep it if I stayed … but in letting go, I have permission to put something else into that place in my life. Big things like furniture and small things like that 3rd set of plastic measuring cups. Who needs that many? Not me.

Last weekend I had a “house cooling” event, posting pics of bookshelves full of mostly decorative give away things and a kitchen table covered with pans, trays, crockpot, cookie jars, etc., that I wouldn’t need. It was a first pass through, but there was still a LOT of stuff. People stopped by and picked up more than they thought they would because, let’s face it, I have nice things in great condition. Some also wanted to see the house which was fine.

But then the God-winking continued. One person came for a few things and bought the couch, and then asked about the chair that coordinates with it. I hadn’t necessarily planned on getting rid of the chair but, sure. Another came for a few garage items and took pics of the dining room table and chairs for his daughter to consider. A friend offered me packing paper and boxes, and ended up offering to buy my guest room king size bed that I had just decided the night before I wouldn’t be taking with me. A brief conversation with someone in the office ended up promising her the bistro patio set. A text message asked if I was selling my washer, dryer, and fridge, and if they could buy them as a set. The Veterans are picking up in my area and will take all the furniture I don’t sell or give away. The moving company, which usually doesn’t accept checks, will accept one direct from Meadow Lake, which is covering up to $3,000 of moving costs.

I mean, really?

When things fall into place this quickly, this effortlessly, it’s not coincidence. God is winking and I’m paying attention.

Surprise Decision

View from my new living room

I’m moving! This wasn’t anywhere on my list of things to think about this week. But after a tour this week, I’m not only moving but doing it very quickly, because the apartment is almost ready now and the housing market is hot. My house on the golf course should sell quickly. It’s not on the market yet but will be soon.

So where am I going? A first floor 2 bedroom independent living apartment at Meadow Lake, which is a “continuity of care” community in Tyler not far from where I live now. It’s 1400 square feet, much larger than any apartment I’ve ever lived in, and is spacious and nicely appointed. They are screening in the patio for me which will make the kitties happy. Which of course makes me happy. The plan includes all my utilities, weekly housekeeping, and one meal a day. Everyone I’ve met is friendly and welcoming, including some friends from my current community who moved out a few years ago.

It’s the right move at the right time. But I’m very conflicted because I love this house and it’s been in the family since 1985; my parents were the original owners. I spent time and money doing that renovation (remember how fun that was?) and replaced all the windows. It’s beautiful and comfortable; I have history here, and friends, and a job. But it’s just too much space for me and the girls, and I’ve been worrying about being here alone if there are medical issues to deal with.

Having made the decision, I’m excited about the move. I’m used to apartment living and used to moving, which is a good thing because I have a TON of things to get rid of before I go, and I need to do it fast. I’m concentrating on making keep/donate/sell/trash decisions and will hire a mover to pack for me since the cane is making it awkward and slow to move boxes around. It hurts my heart to let some of the things go because I know their history – things like great-grandma’s blue and white platters, and the sterling bread trays that belonged to another great-grandma. But the family doesn’t want them and it’s time for hard reality of letting them go.

And for those wondering about my job – no worries! I’m still planning to work at the church which will be 12 miles away instead of just a golf cart ride, but very doable, especially since I’m working from home at least one day a week. I can meet friends for lunch and play Mah Jongg, and come back for special events if I’m invited.

I have a lot to do in a very short time. Say a prayer!

I have too much stuff

One thing librarians learn is that collections of books, of anything, need to be curated or they just become hoards. Something that had great value at one time may no longer hold the same value years later. Whether they spark joy or not, it’s worth reviewing your stuff before you find yourself forced to downsize quickly or, heaven forbid, leaving your stuff for someone else to have to sort through and wonder why on earth you were keeping it all.

So we weed things out. That’s a librarian term, though I thought everyone used it. Hmmm. I’ll share it with you if you’d like. Because weeding gets rid of unwanted or damaged things to make room for the things you choose to keep.

This week I went through my collection of genealogy research books again, because I’ve done this before. But I’m not using things I expected to use, so why not share them with someone who can use them? I searched all the titles in the Tyler Public Library online catalog (yayyyy! they have Encore, the system I used for years when I was working) and put together a list that I sent to the reference librarian responsible for the Genealogy/Local History collection. Only three titles were already held by the library, and two of those are missing, so she was delighted to get the offer. They’re boxed up now and waiting for me to figure out a way to haul them down to the library.

My jewelry is also out of hand for someone who doesn’t wear much except earrings. I was considering getting a jewelry armoire when, really, the issue is that I simply have too much of it. So it’s time to weed. Why keep so many of those necklaces dangling from the organizing hanger thingie in the closet? I still have some pendants that were my Mom’s that I don’t think I’ve ever worn. Why keep them? And the earrings … well, really, I’m an earring addict because, let’s face it, earrings fit no matter what size you are. I used to wear tiny ones and they’ve gotten much bigger. But I haven’t spread them all out in at least 2 years and know I’ve added a ton of them since then. This weekend I will weed out at least half of the necklaces and earrings. I have a plan.

I have two computer desks, which is one too many. One was my mom’s, built for desktop computers with big towers and keyboard drawers. I’m using it to hold my printer and a lamp, having already sold the scanner that was also there. But the cubbies and drawers are full of papers that need to be reviewed, sorted, and filed or shredded so I can empty it out and try to give it away if I can find someone to take it. So today I organized, sorted, and 3-hole-punched a big pile of retirement paperwork and got that into a binder and out of the desk. I have a big pile of other stuff to file but it needs to be sorted first. Also a project for the weekend – because I really want to get rid of the desk. More weeding, this time of furniture.

And in the kitchen, we have cookie jars. Way too many cookie jars. How many do I need when I don’t even eat cookies? I’ll be going through those and the wine glasses (how many does one person need? not as many as I have!) and other kitchen things. That’s a project for later in the month. And I have my eye on a few Christmas things that, on reflection, didn’t spark as much joy as I expected.

If you live in Emerald Bay, watch for posts on Community Interest when I’m ready to share some of these treasures with someone else. That computer desk would be a great crafting or project table even if you don’t need it for a computer 🙂