May 14, 2010

Junk My Stuff? Yes, please.

In the process of moving out of my apartment and organizing for my trip, I’ve come to quite a few realizations about myself as a consumer:

  • I really, really, really like to buy notebooks, crayons, coloring books, and other types of cutesy creative things. In theory, they’re great but in practice, not so useful. My notebook fetish is the worst one. I found at least ten notebooks throughout my room, of varying sizes and styles, each with about three to ten pages filled with journal writing, fiction attempts or novel ideas, or sparsely filled with random notes. None of which are full or even worth having because the turnover rate is so high. Don’t set me loose in the stationary section at Borders. I’ll walk out with $15 worth of blank paper and no real intention to actually use it. The crayons are bad too because I only like new crayons. When one box of crayons is all used up and worthless to me (which means I’ve probably used them about three or four times) then I just buy more. Why? And for what? I don’t know. And don’t get me started on the coloring books. I love coloring books but like I said, in theory. I don’t actually color in them. Hopefully this fetish will come in handy when I someday have my own children. Until then, stop buying crayons and coloring books. Duh.


  • For a girl who often cries while shopping and only wears the same 15 combination-outfits, I have a lot of clothes. Clothes that have been traveling with me through the years but that I never wear. If I haven’t worn it in at least six months, I feel that it is fairly useless to me. And there are actually clothes in there that I haven’t worn in a year! Why do I have them? What purpose are they serving me? Two thirds of what is in my closet and drawers, doesn’t even fit me. It’s time to shed some garments. I can only imagine the kind of money I would spend, and the kind of closet space I would need if I could actually fit in the sizes that they sell at every store. Sure, they have great plus size stores like Torrid and Lane Bryant but my body just doesn’t work with those clothes. I do not carry my weight like an average plus-size person. Plus-size shirts hang on me. Plus size jeans sag at my crotch and don’t sit right at my waist. Belts are never big enough, they don’t perform the way they are supposed to. My hips are trying to get to high heaven. They’re worthless when it comes to holding up a pair of jeans. Therefore, I have to wear clothes that fit a little too snug, that give me a muffin top, that break out the backdoor-boobs… because it’s either that or wear clothes that are too big. And that, I firmly believe, is much worse. I really think it’s time to prune through my wardrobe. This is ridiculous.

  • I love printing pictures. I don’t even know what to do with all of the pictures that I have printed. A photo album would be the best solution but do you know how hard it is to store photo albums? Have you ever tried to lift a box full of photo albums? They’re heavy. I have at least five different places where I’ve been storing printed pictures. A photo-organizer, filing folders, Costco Photo Center bags, boxes. And they’ve been in these things for years. I just keep carting them around. And yes, I do put up a lot of picture frames but they’re usually current photos and the old prints get shoved into random places for storage. Sure they’re fun to look at three years later when you’re too lazy to sift through Facebook photo albums but, honestly, they’re just taking up room. They’re all on my computer, backed up in external hard drive. But I feel bad throwing them away. It’s like disrespecting memories or something. I don’t even know what to do.

  • I have a hard time letting go of material items. It’s getting easier this time around because I don’t really have a choice – I have to get rid of it all. But it definitely makes me realize how hard pressed I am to hold on to things. In the last two weeks I’ve managed to give three full boxes away to Goodwill. That’s good for me. I’m getting rid of crap that I don’t need. That I don’t use. That I think I need later but never actually do (seeing as I’ve already been through this before and have lived through a few “laters” already). For this move, however, I am not being picking. I can replace it. It’s just stuff. If I had 60 seconds in the heat of a fire to grab everything that was dear and near to me, I wouldn’t come back from any of this crap. Pictures, no. My computer, yeah. Because then I could print meaningful photos off later. My iPod, most definitely. I’d need the music to get through the aftermath. Maybe I’d grab my jewelry box (I love my earrings!). But even now, as I look around my room trying to identify the things I’d come back, I can’t really come up with anything. And I think that’s a pretty huge realization. Even a little sad. 

At the end of all of this, I am actually fairly satisfied. I can replace all of this crap. And I fully intend to. Someday. It might take me a while but it’s worth it. In my opinion, the adventure that I am about to embark on is worth starting over.


LenaBug said...

Notebooks: Been there, done that! Must be genetic ;)

LOVE the crayon picture!! :D

I absolutely HATE trying to find clothing that actually fits right! >:( I have a lot of the same fit problems you do. I don't even bother with belts anymore! I hear you on things that are too big being worse. I'd rather appear a little overweight than appear to be trying to HIDE my fat! ;)

Photos: Have you considered making digital photo albums and printing them as books, like from Shutterfly or SnapFish? They're pretty cheap, fun to do, FAST to do, and they store smaller and lighter than regular albums. I really enjoy scrapping, but can't afford it, and in some ways, digital is more fun because you have to get really creative! :) I understand where you're coming from about tossing prints - I have a bunch (TONS from my wedding) that I'm never going to do anything with, but don't want to throw away. I'm going to be really viscious this summer, though. I'm sick of hauling them around!

I used to have a really hard time letting go of things - practically became a hoarder - but when Nick and I moved to Wyoming, I had to change (a lot like you now, preparing to move to Germany). We had a HUGE garage sale, and sold almost everything we owned, moving down here in that little blue Mercury Sable that Grama and then Aunt Debbie used to drive. QUITE the learning experience!

Good luck, cuz *hugs* You can do this!!

Susie Q said...

I'm going through this at the moment as well.. Even though the last time I moved was only a year ago, I have still gathered some amount of crap.. And I'm sitting there, sifting through it, thinking "ooooh, I'll totally need this later" and I never do. I mean, I've saved envelopes from like three years ago. They cost like a pound a pack and yet I'm still carting them around.. :P

It's good for you to realise that all this material stuff you can replace later. You'll do fine! :)


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