Seven boxes down

I’ve actually packed seven boxes, two totes, and four bins so far. Most of my efforts over the past few weeks have involved continuing to sort and discard rather than pack.

This house just absorbed so. much. stuff. There are built in cupboards and cabinets galore in the basement and every single one was full of something that needed to be pulled out, examined, and sorted into one of three categories: keep (and pack), discard, or sell.

Thank goodness I finally found an estate sale company that will take on the liquidation of my stuff. I was getting anxious because the first company I talked with said they wanted $1200 up front (plus 20% commission on the sales), and the second one said it wasn’t worth holding a sale. “Third time’s a charm” applied here, and when the woman finished walking through the house said she had no problem taking the project on. The idea of having to arrange for packing and pick up of all the stuff I am not bringing with me was overwhelming to me. Plus, I really wanted to shake loose some money to defray some of the moving costs.

Holding an estate sale involves some logistics planning on my part. The estate sale company will price everything and set up displays, but since I will still be living here during the sale I need to make a very clear delineation between what is being sold and what is going with me. This step may actually help me plan for the best container size, though. If I can fit everything I’m bringing in one room, then I can get by with the smallest container size. Since I’m selling the bed frame and the Tempurpedic platform base, I will need to place the mattress on the floor of my bedroom, then stack all the boxes I’ll be bringing with me in the same room and close it off for the sale.

The past few weeks I’ve also been engaged in down-sizing my freezer items. In addition to the freezer side of the refrigerator in the kitchen, I also have another full-sized refrigerator with freezer (the old ‘fridge from before the kitchen remodeling) and an upright freezer in the basement. All the freezers used to be pretty full. I have a tendency to freeze the harvest from my garden or farmers market purchases and then process it later, but I was very behind on processing stuff frozen in the past year or two. Over the past two weeks I’ve crammed in some jam-making time so I can bring this bounty with me to enjoy later, and well as pass on as parting gifts to friends.

In talking with a friend she couldn’t believe that I was spending time making jam and canning when I had so much else to do, and while it may seem silly to some people it just feels like something I need to do. The majority of the fruit I’m processing are sour cherries from my neighbor’s tree. Considering that she decided to chop the tree down this year, I am determined to not waste these last gifts from my neighbor and her tree. Plus I don’t think sour cherries are a big crop in California.

I also like the thought of transporting canning jars — a not inexpensive investment I’ve made over the years — full of yumminess rather than make the tough decision of whether I should just sell the jars at the estate sale. (Yes, some of the jars will be sold, but not all!) I hope to be done with all this canning next weekend and then I can pack my canning equipment.

So far I’ve got 25 half-pint (8 oz) jars of sour cherry jam put up, and I’m estimating that I’ll put up at least another 4 to 5 jars. There will still be a few frozen sour cherries left, but I think I’ll make those into a crisp for next weekend when I’m hosting some friends over the weekend. Then I get to move on to making at least eight to 12 half-pint jars of strawberry jam and the freezer bounty will be processed. 🙂


4 thoughts on “Seven boxes down

    • Thanks! The estate sale is next weekend (Oct. 25-26), and I was feeling very prepared until I fell sick on Monday. 😦 B has the cold, too, and he still has packing to do before his moving date on Friday. At least I have this weekend to finish the sorting and move stuff around in the house. I’m hoping I can get a friend or two over to help me with that.

      I’m moving out the second week of November but staying with a friend in the area for a couple weeks. Then I hit the road for California with my dog and co-pilot (my sister) the day after Thanksgiving. For now, it’s a lot of “hurry up and wait” stuff to do. Those last couple weeks at my friend’s house will hopefully be pretty low stress.


  1. I’m thinking of you. I just did another round of moving/purging my mom’s stuff and I already feel like I’ve done so much already. Most of what was left was staging furniture and odds and ends in the closets and basement and it still feels like so much stuff. Feels good to purge though and I’m glad my mom has moved 2 times in 10 years because each time, we were able to pair down her stuff substantially.


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