doing without

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July 31, 2014 by Ellen V

One (surprising?) lesson from the past few weeks of packing is how little we really need to be completely satisfied in our day-to-day lives.

Most of our belongings are packed up right now, and we don’t leave for another ten days. Of course, this includes a lot of stuff we don’t use often but comes in handy when we do (books, camping gear), stuff we use often in another season of life (winter clothes, my non-maternity clothes), and stuff we aren’t using now but will certainly use again (buckets of baby things).

But it also includes stuff we usually think of as essentials.

It’s amazing how easily we’ve gotten by with 95% of our kitchen packed up. We have a few appliances still around that we use almost daily (the toaster, coffee pot, and blender are favorites in the V House), and, of course, we kept enough dishes to get through about a meal and a half together.

I haven’t missed all the toys and books of Jane’s that I put away two or three weeks ago, and she doesn’t seem to notice they’re gone, either.

The walls seem a bit sparse, but I don’t startle when I walk into rooms, either. They still seem plenty full.

It’s almost a fun challenge to see what we can whittle it all down to in the coming days. I know I have enough to fill at least one, maybe two, boxes for the bathroom/linen closet. I have one more stack of clothes and shoes to put away in my room before I’ll be done filling boxes–everything else will fit in my dresser or nightstand or suitcase (for the 5-6 days we’ll be in between houses). I could easily fill yet another box of toys and books that Jane wouldn’t miss for the next two weeks. And she’s just about down to clothes that will fit in her dresser or suitcase, too.

Meanwhile, we’re continuing to fill up bags for Good Will (or set some fun things aside for door prizes at our house cooling party next week). Eric’s still selling some larger items on Craigslist. The real test will be how many trips to the thrift store and how many eBay listings happen within the first month in Virginia. Time will tell!

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