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Old 02-26-2009, 02:31 PM
Location: Winter Park FL
205 posts, read 359,955 times
Reputation: 378


Knoxgarden does give good advice. In 2004 I moved my mother from the Outer Banks of NC to live close to me in a retirement community here in central Florida. She and my stepfather had moved into their retirement home in 1992, moving after living in the same house in Richmond, VA for over 30 years. They were married almost 50 years and never threw anything away. On top of that they had moved a lot of "stuff" from my aunt's house in NJ. It was the same house my mother, five other brothers and sister, and parents moved into when they emmigrated from Scotland in the 20's. My aunt died in 1995! The house they lived in was 4 stories - lower garage/workshop floor, living floor, bedroom floor and attic! I had no idea where I was to start. I commuted that summer from FL to NC to get the house cleaned out and get ready to put on the market - it was just me. Well, I started by opening one drawer and cleaning that out. Then another, then another, etc. Eventually you get in a groove. I must admit though - it is MUCH easier to clean out someone else's things then your own. I was realistic, practical, and kindly brutal. It was throwing out, sorting (keep, sell, throw away, donate). I started in June and after a couple of back and forth (15 hour drives) trips, I finally moved her down here in September 2004 - and inbetween hurricanes. But we did it. My mother was 86 and starting a new life, moving into a new home she had never laid eyes on (I had to pick that out too). She loved her new apartment, made new friends, got involved in the activities. She passed away last April at age 90, the last year was when she really went down hill and moved in with me. I guess I'm trying to let you all know, the thought of moving is daunting but once you start cleaning out your load gets lighter and the sense of adventure comes in.

Don't get me wrong, I'm right where you are. But I've started my cleaning. Gotten rid of 300 books (donated to the library), put my CD's on my iPod and sold/given away all the CD's (250), and my son helped clean out the garage. My son leaves the area in 48 hours. I am then going to start packing what I am keeping, and selling/giving away the rest. I want to lighten my load.

Just remember, it can be done and the feeling of accomplishment is great! Hang in there everyone!!!

Old 02-26-2009, 03:30 PM
Location: Sarasota Florida
1,236 posts, read 3,608,206 times
Reputation: 1230
Cool Lighten our load......one bag at a time !

This is such great advice. Imagine how less encumbered we would feel with less "stuff"
Old 02-26-2009, 03:46 PM
2,626 posts, read 4,952,107 times
Reputation: 2224
Isn't that the truth! Time to start "pitchin stuff" now. I've been pulling up grass in some of my planting beds. Temps are lovely ~ 70
Old 02-26-2009, 04:09 PM
Location: home...finally, home .
8,236 posts, read 18,514,371 times
Reputation: 17765
George Carlin had a great routine on this called "Stuff".

People may not recall what you said to them, but they will always remember how you made them feel .
Old 02-26-2009, 09:41 PM
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,359 posts, read 10,911,567 times
Reputation: 3843
I've been meaning to post in this thread a couple of times before. So comforting to know there are other women of the same age and similar circumstances though a bit of variation in financials.

I just bought a place in central Fla as either a winter escape or the only one I will actually own and could afford (it's a cheap trailer really in a senior community) in case I have no where else to go in the future. Currently my best stuff is at the bf's house elsewhere where my siblings live and there is tons of snow. I know no one here but, hey, there is a pool and people are friendly. I was able to have help getting the place liveable and there seems to be a decent amount of stuff to do within driving distance. Relying on the bf for transportation here and lack of medical coverage is a big bug-a-boo for me here so we'll have to see how things play out in the future.

I should mention to anyone that is interested that there is a mobile home next door to me which has come up for sale for a very cheap price. I'm sure it needs some work and the soft furniture probably needs to be tossed and some updating. The yard has that old Fla look and is very pleasant plus there is tons of shopping including a mall and restuarants across the street in case anyone needs an affordable place to land I'll run over and get the phone number if you DM me.

I use to tell some of my old time friends, you know the kind who moved elsewhere that you contacted every once in a while who you still felt close to, that one day we'd all retire and be together again in Fla. Unfortunately, most of those are gone now. Good thing I make friends easily. Best to all....
Old 02-27-2009, 08:28 AM
1,569 posts, read 3,085,352 times
Reputation: 924
What a day yesterday. Didn't sleep well the night before because I forgot to take my allergy medicine so I was dragging. Then at lunch I cut the tip of my thumb off and my biggest concern was I wouldn't be able to throw clay and then was glad it was my left hand. LOL. Then in the afternoon my employer told us we're getting a 4% deduction in pay starting next week and an unpaid week off (almost called it a vacation but let's get real.) Glad I didn't listen to the banks on how much they wanted me to spend on a house. Time to tighten the belt, get my resume together, and get serious about how to start a side business selling the things I make. Sure wish I could get by on less sleep!
Old 02-27-2009, 08:37 AM
Location: Winter Park FL
205 posts, read 359,955 times
Reputation: 378
I think I remember Carlin's "Stuff." Very funny - and true! Knowing I will be moving in the summer, I see my house differently and just look around and see how much "stuff" I have accumulated over the years. I even had the kids look at what was their's (hey mom can you store this for me?) and either take it or toss it!

Even knowing I will start packing what I am keeping soon, I'm taking another look and saying, "Do I REALLY want/need this?" I'm starting to see things I thought I would keep but now ask "Why?" Even (especially) my kitchen! My daughter was here the last couple of days and asked, "Mom, how many cutting boards do you have?" Answer - 5! (really, why?!). Don't even ask how many cookbooks I have!

Some things will be hard to let go of for sentimental reasons. But I keep remembering when I moved my 86-year-old mother. I know it was hard for her to let go of very special things of a lifetime (like the hutch my stepfather built for her that just wouldn't fit in her new apartment). I know leaving her home for the last time where she and Daddy had retired and were happy was really hard. But she did it and embraced the change. I don't want to wait until I'm 86 and having my kids move me to embrace the change.

I'm going to "see the elephant!"
Old 02-27-2009, 10:48 AM
Location: Monterey Bay, California -- watching the sea lions, whales and otters! :D
1,918 posts, read 6,241,199 times
Reputation: 2646
Wow, great advice everyone! Once the rain stops on weekends, I can do more.

DancingEarth! Oh, I feel your pain. We, too, are getting our "vacations" -- unpaid -- for up to 20 days a year (that's an entire MONTH without pay!) -- "furloughs." Our union is still working on negotiations, but it doesn't look good. This will affect our pensions, too, which will lower them! Just what I need -- NOT!

I, too, had troubles sleeping last night. I have "mild" sleep apnea, although it does seem to vary and I hate that machine. I didn't have it on last night and woke up with a huge panic attack thinking I was having a heart attack (apparently, panic attacks can strike at any time, even during sleep). I had one hand on the phone to call 911 if I had to, and then I felt my pulse slow down, and finally realized it was a panic attack not a heart attack! My pulmonologist said that sleep apnea can cause panic attacks during sleep because you stop breathing, and I guess that "fight or flight" thing kicks in. Those are times when I wish I didn't live alone. I finally put the mask back on and did fall back to sleep and had some dreams, so I must have slept a bit better -- of course, it was 2:30 a.m., but at least I fell into a dream state.

I really need to be around more people. Sometimes people look at my little house in the woods and they tell me how idyllic it is -- I swear, I've even had people ask if they could bring friends over to see it, just because it's cute. But...they don't understand the problems with being alone in a remote setting....

SGoldie! Hi! I remember that you're up in New York State along Lake Ontario -- correct? (I'm from Buffalo, originally.) Nice in the summer there, but winters....yuck! Where in Florida did you get a mobile home? I knew people in Buffalo who did that and would leave Buffalo in November and return in April! A friend's father died last year and she sold his mobile in Florida (I can't remember the town, though) for only $10,000. Now she wishes she had kept it for herself....she's in Seattle where she could use a break from the rain!

We have such a nice group here, we could really use to have a central location for all of us!
Old 02-27-2009, 11:31 AM
Location: Sarasota Florida
1,236 posts, read 3,608,206 times
Reputation: 1230
Cool Speaking of trailer parks.............

Some time ago there was a show on the travel channel about Trailer Parks "on the beach" and they featured one somewhere in California that had million-dollar price tags Not for us, of course........ BUT........ it's always been one of my 'druthers to live in a mobile park "on the beach" maybe in Florida on either coast.

I also recall reading a story about a Florida beach trailer park that was going to be taken over by eminent domain by the city because the city wanted to build a fancy tourist marina there. I wonder what happened to that?

Anyway, forget about hurricanes and just think of living the beachcomber's life in a laid-back Florida town (somewhere) with less stuff to worry about and we can bask in the balmy breezes in February
Old 02-27-2009, 01:01 PM
Location: Edina, MN, USA
6,954 posts, read 7,392,568 times
Reputation: 16283
Wisteria - Could it be that you are worrying too much about all this crazyness????? I think many of us are - a little hard not to when you are the sole provider and I just hate sleeping under bridges Do you meditate?

Today I do the "You're a luxury I can't afford" bit with my Finance guy. We have spent all morning returning phone calls - I'm sending an email just in case he's avoiding me - ya think. What a waste of money.

I've decided I need to spend less time on CD and more on productive things like learning everything I can about this finance stuff.

We just got hit with the storm of the season - 12" of snow - the only good news about that is it's the light fluffy stuff instead of the wet heavy stuff. Please get me out of here before next winter!!!!

Gotta go try to catch me a crook
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