Fifteen years ago I moved to California from England, with my husband and three small children. When we did, I got rid of half the toys, half the books and half the clothes. That was my goal. We had to pay for everything to be shipped, so the less we shipped the less we paid. When you do a move like that you really see the value of the stuff you have. Lots of stuff that I would have kept in my home if we had stayed in England I realized that I really didn’t want or need, and so we got rid of it.
We arrived in an empty house with just with the contents of 2 suitcases. That was all the stuff we had for 8 weeks until the rest of our stuff arrived. And it was bliss. We did have to do laundry frequently because we kept running out of clothes. The children were fully entertained in an empty house and I didn’t have to do much putting away of toys every day because they only had one toy each. The children got creative and I realized just how much they don’t need a mound of toys to play with. Although one toy might be good and educational, many just became a pile of work for mom at the end of the day.
By the time our stuff arrived, we felt we didn’t need it. We actually felt we had a life without all the excess. A few months later I donated some of our stuff to a thrift store and I remember thinking that we had paid to import it and yet we didn’t want all of it and there was enough to make a donation so soon after our arrival.
I’ve kept that feeling with me ever since, that having less stuff is better because the stuff that we do have takes looking after, sorting, tidying, cleaning. With less stuff I have a life. Some stuff is good, but too much stuff becomes clutter.
The author Tina Razzell is BellaOnline’s Living Simply Editor, writes articles on decluttering on HubPages and teaches classes on getting rid of stuff both in person and online.Having homeschooled her 4 children for the past 15 years, she writes many articles on parenting and homeschooling. She has been writing online for a while and has designed a course to get others started with the online writing adventure. She has made many informational videos helping new writers get started.
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