Friday, June 6, 2014

On Packing, Purging and Prioritizing

We've recently been blessed with a run of good fortune and an opportunity to rent a house from my parents, which allows us to get into a better neighborhood and larger space than we could otherwise afford right now as well as allowing us to live closer to my own aging parents.  Win-win for everyone.

The move more-or-less coincides with our upcoming wedding as well, which means that we have a very busy, hectic time ahead of us with all the packing and planning, not to mention how quickly your social calendar tends to fill up at times like this.  I've been loving every minute of it, of course, but it is definitely exhausting.

Anyway, I decided to kill two birds with one stone this week and invited a friend of mine over to stay for a few days.  We don't see each other often, so having a couple of days to really catch up was nice.  While she was here, I recruited her to help me do some packing and purging, in preparation for the upcoming move.  Together, we jammed out to some Irish punk music and sorted through boxes, making "keep" and "donate" piles and clearing out lots of trash.  (At one point, I found a day planner from when I was in high school, and a syllabus from one of my college classes -- weird how things can hide and multiply in the corners when you're not looking).

My cat thought he would help with the sorting, too

All told, we reduced the contents of the hall closet by about a third.

My fiance and I had toyed with the idea of holding a yard sale, but I think we ultimately vetoed the plan for a few reasons:
  1. It's overwhelmingly hot here -- it's hit upward of 105 by noon every day this week.
  2. We're in an apartment complex that's not very well-suited to stranger traffic.  
  3. We don't necessarily *want* to attract stranger traffic -- this is not exactly a great neighborhood, and I don't know that I want to advertise to the area that I'm moving and may have some nice things.  
So it looks like I have a few trips to the thrift store in my future over the next couple of days.

All of this packing and purging has been sort of fun, but it has caused a bit of inner turmoil at the intersection of "non-consumer" and "zero waste" when it comes to some items -- namely, the things that I can't donate as they're in poor condition.  I tend to wear my belongings into the ground, and once I'm done with them, I'm never sure what the best way to dispose of them might be. 

Presently, that list of items includes a couch and two recliners -- all of which were either free or purchased cheaply from a thrift store.  All are very old-fashioned.  All also happen to have a number of tears from heavy use and bite marks from a certain mischievous puppy who shall not be named. 

Who, me?

I'll be posting an ad to Craigslist, Freecycle and the local swap meet page on Facebook, but if I don't get any takers, I'm not quite sure what I'll end up doing with these things.  Any suggestions? 

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