Sunday, September 10, 2017

Placeholders : An Important Moving Tip

I promise I have other things to discuss in 2017 here at White Spray Paint other than moving.

Here is the disclaimer.
This was a pivotal moment in our lives- to the point that just looking at the photo above of the moving van parked in front of our old house has me saying to myself 'don't look at it too carefully Laura- there's your old mailbox and the carpet grass you tried so hard to grow' and a familiar twinge of longing surfaces.

But change is good, and today I am embracing that, and I have something very important to share with you.

What better time to share than on Ten on the Tenth?

This is it. This is the game changer.


I wish I had thought of this idea.
My dear friend Jenny used the term placeholders in a phone conversation we had about what was in that moving van above that crossed 800 miles and what was not.

You see before moving, I fell sway to the popular wisdom of the day which is to get rid of things before moving.

And so I did.
Did I need everything that I had acquired over the years from our home, the little house (a guest house), and the GARAGE?
Mercy no, as my grandmother would say. 
I got rid of so much, the weight of items on the truck dropped over 1000 pounds.

My mistake was in letting go of certain furniture.

I blame my daughters for this:)  Adult children can be so bossy.

I sold the  leather couch, love seat, and chair from our den.

I sold two guest room beds, including the headboards, because my daughters said they were the most uncomfortable beds in the world. Whatever.

I sold all of the bedroom furniture from those rooms because I was crazy at that point.

I sold the gray couch from the nap room because surely I would easily find another. 

I sold a couch and love seat from the little house, as well as the bunk beds, and various tables.

I sold the piano and my sewing machine from my 2nd place prize money at the Kleberg County Queen's contest in 1970.

I sold all of the white wicker that was on our front porch. 

I sold,gave away, or left with the house our chest freezer, a small refrigerator,and almost the entire (but not all :) infrastructure of my garden.

So here is Jenny's wisdom.

We need placeholders when we move.
If we want to live comfortably when we move into a new home, that older leather couch comes in handy.

It holds the place for another couch some day.
I can always get rid of it later.

Instead the most uncomfortable couch we owned came with us on our journey.

(My husband sometimes drags in a lawn chair to watch tv, it is so uncomfortable.)

Our guest rooms would be complete at this point, however uncomfortable those beds were.

Placeholders let us breathe. They create a familiar, practical space. They save us- temporarily- some money. They create a home.
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Sissie's Shabby Cottage said...

Laura, I wish you well in your new home. It can be exciting and frustrating at the same time. I made the same mistake when we moved. I sold just about everything and to this day I regret selling and giving away some of the pieces that I truly loved. Oh well, it's done and I've since moved on! Great advice to those thinking of moving or in the process. And yes, adult children can be very difficult at times. But we must remember that they know everything! LOL.


Tammy Patina and Paint said...

Oh Laura! I'm like you in that I would probably have sold most of the extra, non-essential stuff. My husband retires in a couple of years and already I've been thinking of what goes with us and what will not, even though I have no idea where we are going. What food for thought. I will definitely be looking at how - and what - I move in the future. Thanks for sharing!!!

Stacey said...

Yes that was wise advice and we should have followed that a little more ourselves!! We got rid of a not so great bed to keep an expensive but old couch. Now I wish I had the bed. Besides...we don't want company to be too comfortable do we?

We can always count on you for something good!!

taylorlisa said...

I can totally relate. When we purchased our home after retiring from the military, it was already a fully furnished model. All we needed to do was unpack our toothbrushes and call it good.

I loved it, but it felt quite foreign because there was nothing that was truly ours in the house. It wasn't until we unpacked and started to add a few of our own things that it truly started to feel like we were home.

I hope you start to feel more comfortable very soon.


Brenda Pruitt said...

Moving is so hard! I have purged and purged as I've moved. Many things I wish I still had. But decisions are like that sometimes. You can't go back and change them. Get that man a decent place to sit!

Eilis said...

Great tip! I was kind of surprised when we moved four years ago that we could use so many pieces of furniture in different ways in our new home. We weren't paying for the move, so I was not letting go of much in anticipation of it.

JB said... sure sounded like the thing to do at the time! Go buy deserve it my dear!

Nancy's Notes said...
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Carol@BlueskyatHome said...

Laura, moves are stressful, regardless of how well we plan. I felt your "got rid of things I wish I still had" pain when we down~sized a few years ago. A treasured pine table that I could have painted. A vintage hall tree I'd love to have back. On the flip side, we kept so much stuff that we paid to have moved into storage, paid for storage and then paid to move out of storage and then we sold it. Could have saved ourselves time and money. I had never thought of a placeholder, but it makes sense. Hope you are settling in.

Lea @ CiCis Corner said...

Oh, bless your heart! I hope your new home will soon have all those places filled with new placeholders. :o)) I did get rid of a whole lot when we moved into our new home but I have not had any regrets on any of it and I probably should have gotten rid of even more. :o)) Have a great new week!

Christine @ Rustic-Refined said...

Oh boy Bossy kids, I can relate! It sounds so frustrating, but I am sending prayers that the replacements you find, are much better! Good luck in your new home :-)

The Grey Dove Cottage said...

Moving is a process isn't it? We did the opposite, when we left Austin for Galveston I brought most everything. Hardly anything fit; we left a 1980's home for a 1894 cottage. I met a lot of nice people via Craig's List! We had to sell most of our belongings. Then you have the realization that you paid to move all that stuff, that wouldn't work in the "new" home. Sigh.

Like you we left our longtime home, where our son grew up, where our friends were, where my job was. For months actually I felt like I was treading water, so to speak. No direction, in a foreign place. I think you have to be kind to yourself. It takes time to introduce yourself to your next home, to build relationships, also feel you belong.

Personally I found decorating and gardening my saviors, nothing makes me feel more bound to a home than creating; painting walls, making flowerbeds, an herb garden. I found it a way of tying myself to our next home, "Sybi".

Physically moving is so much faster than mentally moving. Try not to compare, or second guess yourself. You are on an adventure - yes, I know, easier said than done. I can't stand the beach, I don't swim, I don't like water, aqua is one of my least favorite colors - three years later, somehow Galveston is home. Wishing you peace -
Andi said...

Oh Laura, so stressful! Regrets are an energy drain, I would just go right out and buy a new comfy couch! Good luck!

Shannon @ Belle Bleu Interiors said...

Laura, that is a great tip! Having just moved, I started to sell some of my furniture before the move. However, I decided not to, and I am glad that I did. We now live 2 1/2 hours from our old house. Although I am so happy to be closer to my family, I still miss my old house very much. In fact, we had to go back to the area last week for a day of doctor's appointments. I had such a lump in my throat, and wanted to cry. I had to keep it together for the kids though. I know things will get better, and those placeholders help. I'm just a sentimental person, and I know in time I will love my new space with new memories to be made. I hope that you have a wonderful day!!!

Down By The Seashore Marianne said...

I sympathize! Regrets: selling a beautiful, albeit huge rolltop oak antique desk and a lively Ethan Allen sofa sleeper when I downsized in a move during 12/97. Oh well....

Down By The Seashore Marianne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Down By The Seashore Marianne said...

That was meant to say lovely and not lively!

Jeanie said...

Very wise words. I suspect people would be begging me to sell off, too, and I probably would. And be very sorry. You can never replace that comfy chair for what it sold for -- and even when you can, at least you haven't had to pick something just to have a chair or whatever. Good advice for us to remember on any number of levels.

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Harry kevin said...

Hope your new house will suit you well. At the same time, it may be exhilarating and irritating. When we relocated, I made the same error. I practically sold everything, and I still regret parting with some of the things I really loved. Well, it's over now, and I've moved on. Excellent advise for individuals who are moving or considering it. Yes, adult children can occasionally be very challenging. But we must keep in mind that they are extremely knowledgeable.

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