Lots of the stuff I keep I keep because it has memories. It's the mask I wore to Peterhouse May Ball, or it's the toy dog that was the most exciting thing I'd ever owned when I got it, (because you could put the puppies in its tummy and take them out again), or it is the rabbit my great nana knitted me. Now, sometimes it is nice to have the thing, as well as the memory of the thing, but I am not sure my life is enhanced by, eg having the Tufty Road Safety game, whereas I think it genuinely is enhanced by having a reminder that the Tufty Road Safety game existed. So I think I am going to blog about things, and then get rid of them, in the quest to have Less Stuff.
So, where should I do this?
In a text file somewhere
In private LJ entries
To a filter, on your real LJ
In a new LJ / community
...behind a cut
Anything that doesn't reference the damn door!
No more gratuitous Tolkien references in housenames!
Orcs killed my grandmother
Doors killed my grandmother
I'd have voted "on your real lj unfiltered and uncut (unless they're really really long)" if it were an option, but I suppose that depends how public you want to make it.
Edited at 2009-10-04 07:35 pm (UTC)
What an excellent idea; I may do the same.
Sounds like a good plan. Stuff is good, memories (and stuff to help nudge them) is good, but too much stuff can turn it all into a quagmire of not-so-good. Unpacking is the next best time to do this after packing (and packing in a rush you won't have been able to obviously).
I am also dealing with LOTS AND LOTS of stuff in more than one place, and I have been writing down and/or taking a photo of some things. Scannng can also work for some things. So I add photos and scans to your list. I don't do it for anywhere near all of it or I would be there forever, just the most sentimental, unusual or interesting things.
I have ticked lots of different boxes because it depends what you feel will work well. Also some things you may want to share with us but some things you may not. I have no idea what you should call your house though.
I reckon the name should be Henneth Annun given what Empybabes said about the shower the other day
|Date:||October 4th, 2009 09:09 pm (UTC)|| |
Is "Empybabes" a cheerleader name or something? :)
How do you feel about blue & green pompoms and spandex?
Am not convinced about the idea of replacing Stuff with Memories of Stuff, but if you're going to do it then a combination of local text file and LJ seems best. Partly for the "backups" argument, partly because - deep down - I feel Stuff needs a proper send-off.
|Date:||October 4th, 2009 09:06 pm (UTC)|| |
I'm very fascinated by the interface between objects and memory, for fairly obvious reasons. And so I'd be keen to read what you wrote about specific objects.
|Date:||October 4th, 2009 10:22 pm (UTC)|| |
Don't. Just don't. Having a file on your computer about something will never be the same as, thirty or more years from now, discovering it while you're looking for something else and being connected by it to a time or a person long passed (perhaps, in the case of a person, just for the moment) beyond reach.
|Date:||October 5th, 2009 08:09 am (UTC)|| |
Actually I'm somewhat with S. on this one!
The thing is, computer files don't take up entire rooms of your house and cause extra aggravaton and expense every time you move. I'm naturally a bit of a hoarder and I have to push myself to get rid of stuff. Things which connect me to my past are good but I also want to be able to live my present in living spaces which aren't cluttered with keep sakes. I'm not saying go crazy. I'd suggest that you get a few large good quality boxes and make an archive of the objects which you really do want to be able to look at in the future when you have children and grandchildren.
|Date:||October 5th, 2009 10:21 am (UTC)|| |
... and then you never get to discover something you hadn't realised you still had, that forms for a moment an intense, because unexpected, bridge between now and then?
One of the most disappointing things about leaving your parents' house, I think, is no longer going to the cupboard to discover what's there: you know what all you'll find, because you bought it all. There's no surprise. No momentary connection with someone else. Just stuff you chose, and know you choose.
If you want to make your whole life like that, fine, but it's sad what you're depriving yourself of.
But where do you draw the line? And how do you know other people store memories in the way you do?
I get quite nostalgic seeing old sweet wrappers, but that certainly doesn't mean I should squirrel away the remains of every chocolate I eat. Furthermore, one of the greatest delights of living alone is knowing exactly what will be in my cupboards - unlike all the rummaging through crap I have to do at my parents' house...
Yes, I will keep my most precious mementos - but I don't lose out by clearing out. Quite the opposite; I preserve the memories which I really want to.
I am glad you have a strategy for preserving what you find most important, but I think that atreic's idea sounds extremely sensible for her own situation.
|Date:||October 5th, 2009 09:21 pm (UTC)|| |
You preserve the memories you want to, and you are never surprised, and you always are in control, of what's in your cupboard and of your past and of your life, such as it is.
|Date:||October 6th, 2009 04:10 pm (UTC)|| |
If you own a cupboard large enough to store all of your memories in then I envy you your space or the-opposite-of-envy you your lack of memory-stuff; because I don't see myself heading for being able to rent or buy a home large enough for that kind of storage. I agree that it is sad to loose things that are tied to memories and nice to keep them; but unless I win the lottery then stuff has to leave at roughly to same rate as it arrives.
|Date:||October 6th, 2009 09:22 pm (UTC)|| |
Yes, this. I think I have enough fluffy toys to cover every surface including the bed and floor in our master bedroom. Possibly twice over. It seems reasonable that two people could live with a bedroom, a living room, a bathroom and a kitchen. Therefore I conclude that we need 4 rooms just to store our stuff. This is Excessive.
I had a Pound Puppy mummy dog like that, with one black, one grey and one sandy coloured puppy! I loved them so much, and the black one (called Midnight) was my favourite! And I was a member of the Tufty Club!
Only give away the things you really, really think you won't miss in years to come. I often regret giving away some of the things I no longer have. If you do decide to post about the things though, I love reminiscing :o)
|Date:||October 5th, 2009 08:07 am (UTC)|| |
Hee, I spent ages in the toyshop debating between the mummy dog or a puppy and a bounce-bouncer. In the end I went for the single puppy and the bouncer becaues I thought the puppy cuter!
I'd agree on being careful what you get rid of, BUT as one also attempting to Have Less Stuff in the onslaught of my beloved's possessions moving in, I think you sometimes need to be brutal and make a space by value by future utility calculation. Stuffed animals can always be passed on to children and I'd never part with those made for me, but board games take a lot of space and maybe wouldn't suit the next generation?
|Date:||October 5th, 2009 08:08 am (UTC)|| |
I vote just blog it here, and don't bother with a filter and only cut if it's long (but put at least a bit outside the cut for context so people can see if it's worth following). But if you do filter count me in.
There's a community: unclutter_2009, to which various of our flist subscribe. It can be an inspiration.
it's also a good thing to photpgraph - proper photos on real paper, not virtual stuff which will become techno-dated and unusable - things like the Tufty Club RSG. You can then also ebay it. Photographs are actually a very good thing. (Along with your memories. You'll want the photos some day.)
I'd also have voted unfiltered, if it had been an option.
can be a good resource for this kind of endeavour and has suggestions for ways to remember things which take up less space. It also helps remind you that living in a clear tidy house is nicer than having an extensive cuddly toy archive.
|Date:||October 6th, 2009 09:50 pm (UTC)|| |
Nooooooo, nothing is more important than cuddly toys!
(Besides, if I chucked 'em I'd just buy more; I've basically never had a "clear tidy house" to live in; so I'm unconvinced of it's virtue, all empty and cold I think)
Edited at 2009-10-06 09:51 pm (UTC)
I seem to be slightly at odds with the world on this one, but I think that the desire to hoard memories is a destructive one and should be resisted. It's like when we were clearing out my mother's loft, my father and brother 'phoned me from the tip to check that I really wanted to throw out my love letters. They were slightly shocked that the answer was 'yes', but really, on what occasion might I want to reread old love letters? And when are you going to reread what you write about the Tufty Road Safety game?
But if you do do it, you should buy a special book, large and nicely bound, and write everything long-hand. That way you'll at least avoid being caught out by technological changes.
:0 thank goodness I never sent you any x
I reread my old love letters. I have quite an appalling memory so I like being able to use them to reconstruct the time line of my courtship. It also brings a smile to my face to reminisce over the excitement of those early days.
|Date:||October 11th, 2009 12:27 pm (UTC)|| |