A Traveler’s Terrene

You only live once. What are you going to remember the most?

Stuff…Stuff…and MORE STUFF… January 14, 2009

I’ve spent the last 3 days cleaning out my old high school room at my parent’s house and I cannot believe how much STUFF I have accumulated over the past 10 years…and sadly, I have only scratched the surface as a lot of the boxes have been moved from my room when they painted and redecorated.

Some of the stuff is easy and it goes straight to the trash or give away pile, but other stuff is harder to sort through, like presents given to me from my parents when I was a child. There is this elegant ballerina snow globe my dad gave me when I was a little girl, it’s memorable because HE gave it to me, but it’s nothing I would display in my future house or apartment. Do I keep it or give it away to a little girl who would truly appreciate it?

Or how about high school memorabilia? I have a full box of “Most Inspirational”, “Most Valuable Player” or “Team Captain” plaques from my glory days on the varsity volleyball, basketball and softball teams. Sports were my life growing up and these¬†¬† awards are great reminders of my hard work and perseverance to push and challenge my mind and body to achieve goals I set for myself, but on the other hand I look at these plaques now and they are only clutter. Really what am I going to do with them? I would never put them on display, but I feel guilty in throwing them away or giving them to a secondhand store.

And what about cards and letters? I haven’t looked at all of them but I probably have a shoebox full of birthday cards and notes from friends and family. On one hand, it is great to look back through a few and read them–it brings me back to a different time in my life. On the other hand, what do I do with them? Right now, I can leave them in a box at my parents because they have a lot of storage, but when they move I’ll need to take them and I like to be mobile not weighted down by things.

Since travelling I have become a minimalist–I don’t need a lot of things, and I don’t want clutter. However, so, far the only ideas I’ve come up with on what to do with my stuff I’m torn about whether saving or getting rid of, is to take pictures of the objects I no longer want but still want to remember, and give them away. As for the letters, pick out only a few that will fit into a manila envelope and purge the rest. This is just what I am thinking now…but any other advice or helpful tips on how to appreciate your things from the past but eliminate clutter in the future, I would love to hear it!