A to Z: Selling Our House (Letter J)

Tomorrow will be another busy day, scrubbing grout in between grocery shopping and a trip to the airport to pick up my cousin. I’m posting early so I won’t forget and be late. 

Junk is a J word

As I consider PAYING to store things during our move, I look at my possessions with a different perspective. I cannot afford to box up and store anything that I consider junk. But the definition of junk is very subjective – kind of like beauty being in the eye of the beholder.  You’ve heard it before, one person’s junk is another person’s treasure. There is a reason almost every house has a junk drawer – true?

I may not be in my next home, one that I will be required to furnish, for months. When that time comes will I have a place for the collections, knick knacks, throw pillows, books, etc… that I have now? I can’t count on that. It might be much better to wait and see, and furnish a new place with things that fit in its spaces. So having adopted this sane way of looking at paring down, why does it all fall apart when I go up in the attic and find this…

Look at those precious little pig faces, and the rooster and hen. I love the little clear glass pitcher too. I love it all.
That white vase is so unusual, and the blue and brass Delft vases could be valuable, couldn’t they?
This vase has always made me happy. I have to keep it. It won’t take up much space in storage (rationalize much? yes).

I just can’t help hanging on to precious, unique things, even if all I ever do is look at them. Like my chickens (or maybe they are roosters), whose heads are salt and pepper shakers and bodies are cream and sugar servers. Or my funny little vases that have a Delft label. They are either things I’ve had passed down from family or things I’ve miraculously come across in a garage sale for almost nothing! Definitely meant to have a forever home with me, I’m thinking.

Then there is my blue glass collection. I love blue. And my John Deere collection which bears witness to my farm girl soul – it’s all boxed up, ready for transport. It’s not junk when I see it and think about giving it away. So then, how is it that some of these things have been put away in the attic for years and I didn’t even remember I had them? Would that be the definition of “junk”, stuff you don’t miss enough to know that you miss it? Maybe.

I have found things that I hope will be someone else’s treasure. In fact, I make such frequent trips to the donation center that I drive to one farther away where they won’t recognize me. But I’m hoping that someday I’ll enjoy unpacking the things I’ve kept and finding just the right place for them.

This moving process is useful in that it has helped me limit those collections to a reasonable number. Best of all, I think I’m really going to avoid that last-minute frustration of throwing all those left over things in a box because I don’t have time to thoughtfully sort through them.

Do you have precious junk? Would you put it in a box and pay to store it?


13 thoughts on “A to Z: Selling Our House (Letter J)

    • Oh I know! I just took some good suits to the Women’s Resource Center but they were back and forth into the closet several times before I decided to get it over with. Boo.

  1. It’s so hard to part with things, especially when they are attached to special memories. For me, it’s books and papers. I always think that someday I will get them read, organized, or given to someone who will appreciate them…someday.

    • I spent time this year sorting papers and pictures to make memory books for both my daughters – I think that was my first paring down project. As it turns out, I’ve now found a lot more and may have to make volume 2 for each of them. 🙂

  2. I tend to throw away while my husband and daughter are on the verge of hording. As soon as i dispose of something I’ve been tripping over in the garage for years, someone asks where I put it. I fein ignorance .

  3. I am really enjoying your A to Z moving series, Shirley! I have moved a number of times in my life, but it has always been such a rushed and stressful process that I have never had time to think it through. I love how thoughtfully you are moving through the process

    • I think I’m just trying to make the best of the fact that it’s taking forever – there must be a reason, right? Good to hear from you again. I’m still biking a little and have accrued some more stories…

  4. I do have some junk treasures, although I’d be willing to argue adamantly that if they’re treasures they can hardly be called junk. 🙂 Your entire series of posts about your move has me thinking a lot about what things I do have. And as I’m getting bitten by the Spring cleaning bug, I’m ready to make decisions about releasing some of my things.

    • Yes, in fact, spring cleaning is a precursor to moving, kind of like a mild form of it where you get rid of a lot of stuff but then don’t go anywhere. You will find it freeing I think.

  5. Oh yes, I so love junk.
    I have a self-imposed rule that I (mostly) stick to: If I can’t think of a) a use for it or b) a place to put it, then I don’t need it. But if I know I’ll be kicking myself if I don’t buy it – then I get it anyway.
    Oh, yes, I so love junk.

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