Up and down

I had been feeling really good about my progress until Keith cleared out the “closet behind the closet” for me pulling out another stack of bins to sort through and I spent the afternoon and evening sorting and shredding. It’s always a huge task with each move to shred papers and documents no longer needed but I’d really thought I’d been better this time around. Each year at tax time, I go though our papers and shred anything that doesn’t need to be kept. What I failed to consider was the last time I shredded documents with a move in 2014, there were lots of things I needed to keep at the time but fast forward to 2021 and guess what, lots more paper to shred. For example, I had 14 years worth of vet visits and vaccination records for Chesty. He was still alive when we moved to Tampa so I didn’t shred any of his stuff in 2014 although I’m not sure why I thought I needed to keep EVERY vaccination record as opposed to just the current one. Anyway, I just have one more bin of records to review and then I’ll combine them into fewer bins to keep for another 5-10 years! It would go faster if there weren’t so many memories in them. There were a handful of Chesty’s papers that I did keep.

I’m tired but if I can just get through this week I’ll be able to take it a little easier. The hardest part will be done and I can more leisurely deal with the rest of the move. I’m so glad we’re doing this now. Even though I’ve moved often in my life, for some reason this one is more exhausting … maybe it’s just that I’m getting older?!


  1. It is hard to get rid of some things that hold so many memories. I try not to reminisce to much because then I get stuck. And sometimes if I just can’t bring myself to throw something out, I just figure I will leave that to my kids to deal with. And it does get harder the older you get. I would like to move but the thought of moving at 74 yrs old does not excite me in the least. I haven’t had to worry about it though since there is nothing for sale that we are interested in. Good luck and be sure and rest when you need to!

  2. It is way too easy to NOT throw away things, at least for me. I really dread the idea of downsizing at some point but know that we will end up doing that in the next few years.

  3. Mary, I think as we advance each birthday, we start to slow down a bit. That is not a bad thing as we can take time to “be”, a condition that when we are so busy, we tend to overlook. I definitely don’t keep the same pace as in earlier years, but I’m still enjoying the journey. Having said this, I’m not sure how I would ever manage a move. We have been in our house for 42 years, with lots of collecting over that time. I think you are doing an amazing job Mary.

  4. Glad you are getting through it. It may feel harder because it is. The year of covid has worn us down; the emotional toll has been huge. Be proud of what you get done and know some days are harder and some are easier. Age doesn’t help but the worst of it is this other stuff that is so hard to quantify the effects.

  5. We are terrible about saving too much paperwork. The thought of an impending move gives me hives at the thought of having to go through it all!! keep up the good work, Mary.

  6. When we moved 4 years ago, we piled all the shredding in the car & took it to a place that charges by the pound. They shredded it all while we watched, and it was cheap! Much better use of our time.

  7. I am with you. At 60, I’m slower (but still as tenacious) than I was at 40 and even 50. We are in our forever home. I wonder if that thought isn’t part of this for you?

    I don’t know if you want to add another task during this paper process when you’re already stressed? Manila envelopes. Write a discard year on each one since you know when most paper can go. Then each year, the work is super easy. Write Forever, on any envelope that you’ll not discard. Hubster and I each have 1 banker’s box marked Forever. We did that more than 20 years ago. We’ve never looked in them and may never but we were super attached to the content then. These are in the very top of our linen closet 😉

    Sending you lots of energy to get through the task! 🙂

  8. I’m still working on the remodel but I know the move is coming. I’ve gone through the paperwork many times and have no desire to keep much anymore. My memories are in my head now and in photos. I don’t want to look back, I want to look forward. Hopefully you will get through this packing soon and enjoy this beautiful spring. I suggest an hour break each day in your sewing room, that always cheers us.

  9. What type of shredder do you use. Mine cost about $100 and overheats so I have to shut it down. I have tons of stuff to shred. I toss one huge green garbage out every week. I think I would feel free to have it all done. But then, there is all of DH’s stuff in the garage. When I had my heart attack, our son rented a good sized dumpster and he tossed. My husband cannot even remember half of what he tossed but it has not been anything that we have missed. Tons still in there.

  10. I found myself keeping too much paper a few years ago. I finally got it under Control and limited myself to 2 spaces for storage so that now I’m really forced to purge every year. I do the same with clothes. I only have so much space so when something new comes it, something else has to go out. I wish I could make myself do that with fabric, thread and, yes, yarn. But that’s probably not going to happen.

  11. Very interesting cremation certificate. I’m going to show that to our Japanese vet. I don’t think they do that in Japan.

    I can’t go through our papers because I can’t read the Japanese and I don’t know what is important and what isn’t! Unfortunately my husband doesn’t like looking through the papers so we are swimming in back documents…

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