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What Do You Fill Your Life With?

I felt led to write about something that has touched not only myself, but my family as well. I know I have talked about “stuff” in the past, but you don’t really get the whole spectrum of it unless you are the one filling boxes, day in and day out.  It bears not only repeating, but I hope our story can help someone else out there who may need to let go of what is filling their life.  So let’s talk keeping the good and purging the bad.

Every day, I find some way to get rid of something, pack it, or give to someone I know that would appreciate it.  You know what I have come to find? We have too much stuff!  Why was I filling my life with rooms of stuff, when not only did I barely use it, but it’s just a hinderance on my life’s goals and dreams!?!  It got me thinking about the close people in my life, and why they have room and after room filled to the gills with stuff.  Why do we need so much stuff to make ourselves happy?  Why else do we collect, hoard, and keep it?

I had a great Craft Room downstairs- I had several shelves of paper, stickers, kits, and tools. So many times, so many hours, I would sit among that stuff and wonder if I would ever use it all.  I would have bins of pictures, and think “I am going to get all of those pics on pages and be done.” Here is the problem, you are always taking more pictures, so it’s like the U.S. Mail… it keeps coming, its never done.  I had to take a HARD look into myself and let it go- yes, I let it ALL go. I kept the scrapbooks I finished and that’s it.  I enjoyed it, but it was filling my life with more expectations and stress than anything.

Over the years, my kids have been spoiled with rooms filled with toys.  They have always gotten the newest and coolest item, because we enjoyed  making them happy. Honestly, I would take 90% of them back now, and replace them with more experiences for the kids.  Yes, they had fun with them, but I remember picking up endless baskets of toys every day, and thinking even then, does she play with half of this stuff? It’s even harder when someone gives you the toys for your kids and you just don’t need them- you feel obligated for little Timmy to play with them- seriously, donate them to a Shelter.

I am an avid yard saler- I was taught by the best, my awesome Mom.  But, sometimes the mentality with sales like that, is that because it’s “only” a quarter, we have to have it.  The mantra always seems to be “We could always give it someone.”  Here is the issue with that- my basement. LOL  Stuff I had the best intentions for, sits and collects dust.  It will be a hoot to see how we handle not having a basement.

Why do any of us fill our lives with dirty habits that we KNOW we will look back on and regret? Why do any of us go for a temporary high on any venture in life instead of the long-lasting ones with family members and friends?  I think when you take a HUGE step in life like we are, everything seems to become a lot clearer.  The things that bugged me before don’t as much anymore- my eye is on the prize and it is full steam ahead.

I want to fill my life and my family’s life with experiences and joy.  I want to travel to places I have never been, and eat things I have never tried. I want to fill my life’s list with actions instead of just words. I want to make as many friends as I can possibly make.  I want to drink in life every day, instead of watching it pass me by like a parade. I want to see things I have previously owned and remember the good that came with it and then move on.  I want to take this relocation as the biggest adventure of my life, of my family’s life, and that every moment will be a gift from God.  I want to do it all, and share those times with my awesome hubby and kids.  When I go home at the end of a day, I am happy with a comfy couch and a good show to watch.  Knowing I no longer have endless boxes of items that I may never touch will feel rewarding and peaceful- bring it on.

A side note: Emily just came out to the living room and said “My empty room feels so ALIVE, it says “You are moving to FL!!”  Gotta love 10 year olds!! LOL Maybe what we are doing is actually sinking in to the kids, I am thrilled if they are “getting it.”

I worry for those I know who buy and buy and buy just to keep filling their lives with stuff- I want them to know the peace we have found with getting rid of everything.  Leave a legacy behind of memories, experiences, what you did for others, and the love you gave-none of the rest will matter.

3 Comments »

  1. Great article! I have also been decluttering around here and asking the same question – why do we have all this? My three kids have more toys than they will ever need and it seems every inch of storage space is filled with something. I have taken a lot of time recently to just start cleaning out and giving things away. It is such a great feeling! Even better, all these things I have held onto for so long, when I passed them on to someone else, I haven’t once “needed” them. How about that? 🙂

  2. I have been simplifying my life for a few years now and it is wonderful not to have all that “stuff”. My new kitchen in Celebration has far fewer cupboards than my old one in Oregon, but you know what? It holds everything I need. I haven’t yet had a situation where I felt like I needed something else to cook with.

    I have a craft room/office in this house but it has much less in it than I had stuck all over the house before. I got rid of many things that I realize I will not want to work on or finish (lol). That alone has lifted a huge load of guilt off my shoulders. I kept a streamlined scrapbook area and a downsized sewing area. Every other craft is gone.

    You came to the realization that “stuff” is not what is important at a younger age than I did. That will be a wonderful example to your girls. Keep it up!

    I have completely lost the urge to shop. It doesn’t really interest me anymore. I’m sure my husband is very happy.