Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, Dec. 10, 2001

The moving is done, and now the tossing starts?


Whew, I'm back after a grueling week of moving and feeling fortunate to have found my socks and my son's school bag, among everything else we own. Some things still haven't been found, but I hope one more week will take care of that.

What a hassle it is, this moving thing. I'm always amazed at the amount of stuff that can be acquired in a relatively short amount of time. Where did all of this stuff come from?

Each time I've moved in my life, I've realized something new. This time, I realized that even though kids are smaller physically, they take up a lot more space than my husband and I do. I packed and unpacked toys and equipment that I truly believe I've never seen before. Moving was so much simpler before children.

Baby items are in a class by themselves when it comes to acquiring stuff, as anyone who has young kids can attest to. Not only is there a lot of it out in the market today that we are manipulated into believing we need, they keep coming up with "improvements" to older models.

Call me a yuppie, but I only want the best for my kids. And with the amount of rushing we do, naturally I want the most convenient as well.

There we were in Babies 'R Us, my husband and me, with a rapidly expanding tummy (mine, not his) searching the aisles for the newest, most improved, cool thing to get for the baby.

This was the very same baby that had yet to even be born, and couldn't care less if his carseat base was white or navy to match the carseat. We wandered up and down every aisle, looking for the things we would need.

They have things in that store that are so imaginative. I will give them that. I also believe that most of the "convenience" items are just that ­ convenient and unnecessary. But I bought into the fad just the same, and we came out with more things than what could fit into our car, and that's no exaggeration. We had to leave boxes behind in the parking lot.

This moving fiasco has ensured me of one thing ­ next spring I am going to have the biggest garage sale this town has ever seen, and I plan to unload all of my excesses on someone else.

This is fair warning to you husbands if your wife is a garage-saler. I can guarantee something for everyone, except little girls. I've never had any of those.

Through the process, I did discover something about myself that I find a little disturbing ­ I am a quantity buyer. By that I mean that if I am going to buy shampoo, I will buy two bottles instead of just one, so I don't run out.

Then I proceed to put the bottle of shampoo on a high shelf in the corner of a closet, where it doesn't see the light of day. I'm not exaggerating when I say that we have at least 10 bottles of shampoo and conditioner in our new house.

Now the guilt kicks in, and I think to myself "What was I thinking?" I have done this with so many products in our house it's shameful. I don't even want to know how much money I have wasted, and I'm not about to bring this up to my husband, who already thinks that I shop WAAAYYYY too much.

I think he may be right . . . arrrgghhh.

So, I decided that I am going to use up what I have first, and if I don't care for it, I am going to toss it. This will be tough for me, but I think I can do it. I have to do it or we will be over run with extras.

I really hope that I can stick to my new goal. I hope it doesn't end up like past New Year's resolutions ­ ignored until I really do forget. I'm sure someday my husband will thank me for it.

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