We’re Moving – Our Basement Purge
Some of you may know that in just a couple weeks we will be moving into a new home. The decision to move happened fairly quickly but finding a new place came together perfectly and we are very excited to move in! But with the big move comes the packing. Dreaded packing.
Ryan and I made an important decision when we started our packing process. We were going to purge. I kind of wish I would’ve done this when we started so I could share pictures etc but I figure a retro-look back is better than nothing at all.
When we moved into this house a year and a half ago it was a bit of a disaster. Ryan and I each had already had our own places so we basically had 2 of everything. The move was done in the middle of January during a blizzard with furniture and boxes having to be packed from 3 separate locations (his place, my place & a storage unit). Instead of going through everything when we first moved in, we just threw everything we didn’t need/want/use into the basement. This practice continued for the next 18 months. You can image it was a nightmare down there!
When we got the new house, 2 things triggered the decision to purge – 1 the new house doesn’t have a basement and 2 just the prospect of moving all that junk was exhausting. So we made the decision and went at it! We went through every single box that was in our basement, took everything out and decided its fate. We had 3 piles going – keep, donate, toss.
I’m going to admit, I’m a bit of a pack-rat. Not a hoarder by any means but I feel a little pang of guilt when I get rid of a gift someone gave me or a toy from my childhood even if it hasn’t seen the light of day in years. But not this time, I vowed I would let things go guilt-free. The donation and garbage piles grew quicker than the keep pile to my surprise.
The first round of purging went so well that we were only able to get a third or so done before we ran out of room to put things. So we stopped for the night and the next day did 2 rounds of donations. That night we went back to it and got through another third or so. Same problem, the donation pile was gargantuan and the garbage pile was also too big to keep going. So we stopped again for the night. A day of 2 later we started loading up the truck again with donations. Another 2 rounds of donations and 2 trips to the dump cleared up all that space. It took a third round of cleaning before everything was gone through. One more round of donations and one more trip to the dump finished it up.
In total, we donated almost 30 boxes of household goods to the Diabetes Association through Value Village and got rid of 230kg (according to the receipts) of garbage to the dump. We found out after our 2nd round of donations that Value Village has a great system for frequent donators and purchasers. For every $5.00 you spend in store or when you make a donation (equivalent to a filled brown paper grocery bag) to Value Village you receive a stamp. Receive 15 stamps and save 30% off your next purchase! We were able to fill up 2 cards Of all the stuff that was in that basement before we started the purge there is less than 1/3 of it left! We both felt so amazing when it was all done. We had donated tons of goods to those who need it and rid ourselves of the junk that was weighing us down. And now the volume of boxes to move has been drastically reduced to make the move easier too
If you are moving or just feeling over-whelmed by “stuff” I suggest you do your own purge. If you are like me and feel guilty over getting rid of things, ask yourself these questions and it will help letting go easier:
Do I use this item at least once per day/month/year? (where appropriate)
Does having this item make me happier?
Is this item taking up space that I could use for something else?
Will someone else have a better use for this item than me?
If you have done or are planning a purge, please share your story with us!