We’re at day 10 of my 21 day declutter challenge.
So.. since we are on this track of Melinda “kicking my butt”. I guess I should just keep going on random cleanup according to her schedule (just kidding Melinda, I’m loving that your comments are making me take a second look).
We are still being nostalgic and are staying in January 2014, and the post was “My card and letter paper station“.
And again, I’m thinking that…
Hmmm, has it really been as long as January 2014 since I looked at this last time? Well, guess it’s time then…
So off course, through the box I go.. and lo and behold.. I DO find some cards and envelopes that might just as well leave the house. And here we are…
“50” items from my box of unwritten cards are going out-the-door!
1 small set of cards w/envelopes (12 pieces)
Thanks again Melinda, for great reminders to take a second look 😉
I’m being joined in this challenge by:
– Barb, at Decluttering The Stuff, is on her day eleven.
– Melinda, at PurpleSlobinRecovery, you gotta read her declutterathon and day two. I love the inner/outer dialogue.
– Grace, at The CFO MOM Blog, is feeling slightly overwhelmed, but is still deluttering.
– Jen, at The Hidden Hoarder, she is on day eight, and is decluttering for the rest of us 🙂 329 items!
It seem like I can’t seem to concentrate on one thing these days, If you saw my living room and guest room you would have a laugh. There are stuff all over.
I told you before I started on my kitchen, that it seems like I’m working on a “zillion” projects, and that’s exactly how my house looks 😦
I’ll clue you inn on a couple of them.
After dad passed away last year, there was a few things that ended up in my house. Some things I held for my brother, which he have received during this year. Remember I told you about them earlier in “My Grandfathers cabinet” and “Hand over“?
There was also a couple of boxes, with letters, pictures, films, audio tape, and other stuff dad had held on to, for sentimental value. It’s a mix of stuff from his life and stuff from his mothers life (she passed away quite a few years ago).
I did look through it last year, but I realized that because of some of the formats he had, like old 8 mm films and old Tandberg audio tapes, I would have to find someone that could help me figure out what on earth was on that stuff, and I packed it all away for later.
Well, I decided that later is now. It’s time to figure out what to do with it all. And I’m slowly going through his boxes.
A couple of friends of mine have (or been able to get their hands on) some old equipment, and I have found out what’s on the 8 mm films and dias (negatives in frames). I have to admit, its kinda weird, and fun to come across people you know, and see them 50 years younger 🙂 The films I have already delivered to a company that will make them digital, the dias I’ll probably deliver to the same place next week or so. I’ve found a photo place that are not to expensive, and I’ll probably have them scan some of my stuff, rather than me go out an buy a very expensive photo/negative scanner.
I’ve also found out some of what’s on the audio tapes, but here I’m running into a bit more trouble. There are hours of tape, and the places I know that can digitize this, is hugely expensive, so I’m kinda hoping I can find someone with an old Tandberg player that I can borrow, so that I can digitize it myself… we will see… I’ll leave that for later.
Some of the stuff in the boxes are from my dad’s mum and even some from his dad’s, mostly letters and some pictures. And some are letters to and from my dad. The letters are a little strange to go through, because most of them are from family members that are sadly no longer with us. So reading them is like being hit from all sides. And it’s hard to decide which ones to keep and which ones to let go.
The same with the pictures, there are pictures of people there, that I know nothing about, and there are pictures of people, that are family members. I know I can’t keep it all, so I’ll have to pace myself going through them.
This is one of the things I’m working on right now, my dad’s boxes. And I know, it will be an ongoing project to decide what to keep, and get most of it digitized.
My photo collection:
The other thing I’m working on that are creating havoc in my house, is my own photo collection. Starting on my dad’s stuff, I realised it was time to tackle all of my photos as well. It’s been a plan of mine for a long time, to do something about my photos. I don’t know if you remember, I mentioned my plans for my photo collection in the post “Who the hell am I keeping it for?”
My photo collection consist of, tons and tons of albums, loads of negatives, loose photos (not yet put into albums) and boxes of old inherited photos of people I barely know (or don’t know as it is). Somewhere along the way, I also decided I wanted them digitized.
In the article mentioned above, I realised that I, in reality, am only keeping the photos for me, and that I therefore do not have to keep everything… and the conclusion was to keep key pictures as real photos, scan a few more and then get rid of the rest. And that is the task I’ve just begun.
And here is where the mess comes in. I’ve pulled all my albums and photo boxes out on the floor, And so far that amounts to 9 huge albums and 4 boxes, in my living room and 6 albums and several boxes in my guest room and a bunch of unused albums. Throw that together with my dad’s boxes and you understand my problem, yes? 😉
How am I doing with this task? Well so far I’ve only created the mess, but stay with me over the next few
days (weeks), and I’m sure I’ll have a progress report or ten for you.
So there you have it, the stuff I’m working on right now. I have a funny feeling, this is something that will take quite some time, before I am where I want to be with this, but I have to start somewhere, right?
Doing my wrapping station including Christmas cards yesterday, it was natural to continue with my pile of writing paper and cards today.
I pretty much email people, rather than do hand written letters these days (guess in this digital time, hand written letters are a dying art), and I’m only going to keep some cards and small writing sheets, the rest is going out the door.
You could wonder why I keep any of my cards or paper at all. Well, I’ve found it handy to have birthday, valentine, Christmas cards available for a rainy day. It has saved my “butt” on several occasions, especially birthdays 😉
Over the years I have collected cards and letters I have received for Christmas, Easter, birthdays and other occasions.
Every 3-4 years I sift through them and toss a few of the ones I no longer want to keep.
This year I have decided to give myself a limit of how much I get to keep. I’m going to create a card and letter memory box, and the ones I keep have to fit into that one box.
Have a look at the empty box below (it’s not big) and all the letters and cards. Do you think I’ll make it? Well let’s see 🙂
What will I keep?
Some letters from family members and friends, in this day of texts and e-mails, handwritten letters are a rarity.
Letters and cards from family members that are no longer with us, I’ll keep the most special ones.
Birthday and Christmas cards from people still in my life. I’ll only keep the ones that put a smile on my face or warms my heart.
I’ve also stumbled across stuff from people that I no longer have any contact with – old friends, pen pals, others I have briefly meet over the years. All great people and good stories, but people that I have not been in touch with for years (yeah.. many years), and some I’ll admit I struggled remembering who was for a minute (ops). If I keep any, it will only be those that puts a big smile on my face or bring back a particular good memory.
So, how did I do?
I did pretty good if I may say so, you can see the result below. Filled box and pile to toss.
Decluttering my cards and letters sure brought back memories, both good ones and sad ones (like when I came across a card from my dad who passed away this year) talk about taking a walk down memory line.
My biggest problem was to dwindle it down to only the most memorable items so they could fit into the box, having all these special peoples writings.
I’ll probably make another stab at this later this year, There was no way I was going to manage to read through all the long letters today. As much fun as it is to read letters, after about 25-30 of them in one row, I just couldn’t do any more, so I saved a few of them to read and sort through later (I still got everything to fit in the box though 😉 )
I have to say, doing this, sure starts off the new year really good, it’s reminding me of all the great people I have (and have had) in my life that I care for 🙂
Have you ever thought about creating a card/letter memory box? It’s great to have if you should ever need a pick me up, you will have a box full of “loved ones” you can sit down with for an hour or two 🙂