Be free-floating, allowing the situation to surround you, and be in it. Take in the full surroundings, including the temperature of the water.
This may bring incredible clarity, presence and focus. This is what is means to be a jellyfish.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Walking on Wednesday ~ Hoarder or Collector?

The million dollar question.

One that inevitably creeps into your head when you are preparing for a yard sale. But even worse when hubby puts on Hoarders and refuses to change the channel for 3 hours.

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You are going through all your worldly belongings, when questions like, "Do I really need 2 bundt pans?" enter your brain. Have I ever baked 2 cakes at the same time? Of course not! So the logical answer is, "NO!, I really don't need 2 bundt pans!!" Then, the thought creeps in, "But maybe I should save one for my daughter who someday might want to bake a bundt cake...."

After you have convinced yourself it is really ok to have only one bundt pan, you move on to more difficult things. Like collections of things hubby has been collecting for a gazillion years, each one painstakingly selected, researched, and purchased, then lovingly taken care of move after move after move. 

With so much we are getting rid of, he starts to worry his beloved collections will be given away to the lowest bidder at the yard sale.

"I don't want to give away my mask collection," 
(no hun, we don't have to do that) "or the thousands of dollars of artwork we have!" (again, no hun, but seriously we could never afford a house big enough to hang all of the artwork we have.)


So this volley of 'Hoarder' and 'Collector' has occurred regularly in our house for the last month or so. Then, we watched Hoarders, and suddenly we were saying "Who needs that set of 6 knives when this perfectly good set of 4 will do? Oh, but I do need to go buy a serrated knife then, you know for the bread and stuff. Yes, I could use a nice new one to go with my smaller set."

So now I am talking about buying new knives because I am getting rid of the set with a serrated knife. 

I never said logic was involved here.
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Then there is the basement. Where you stuff things you haven't unpacked from your LAST move. (Yes, we still have unopened boxes from our last move down there) The hard question here is "Why haven't we opened these boxes?? What the heck is in them??"

Oh, and did I mention the tools?
Hubby has yet to go through his tools. 
Tools that have been untouched for years, tools he asks me where they are because he can never find the ones he is looking for, tools that are so old their usefulness is outdated. 
There might be some hoarding going on there. 

And I am not judging, except I already went through my yarns and fabrics, and I am proud to say I fit what I wanted to keep in 2 bins, and a large bag of unfinished projects, and a card table top I have yet to pack, and a small bin of unfinished projects. 

That is it! Oh, and I do keep finding charms in various places throughout the house. Charms I cannot get rid of, because I will use them someday, soon. And I really mean it! 

That is NOT hoarding, right?
Well, our yard sale has a TON of stuff in it. I think quite literally a ton. At least it will feel like that as we carry everything outside Friday, set it up nicely, and move what didn't sell Friday it in at night, then back outside again Saturday morning.

Saturday night? I think Goodwill will be getting a visit. 

Unless I decide to have another yard sale, one closer to when we move. Yeah, then whatever didn't sell this weekend can be set out again, and we can try again!
Another yard sale? That isn't obsessive, is it? 

It is hard to tell, sometimes, which way you lean. When does collecting become hoarding? And how do you notice when it does?

What are you? 
Are you a collector, or do you tend to fall on the hoarder side? 
Maybe we can star on the show together!!


  1. *Laugh * Oh man... yes... my husband accuses ME of having a lot of stuff (and for craft stuff, yes, it is true) but he keeps computer bits around until I'm about to scream. I kind of draw the line where... if I can make something out of it, it's okay to keep (which totally enables my craft habit). If I can't... it needs to go. The problem is the scrapbooking papers and things I have... I DO pull them out to make cards and there's lots of pretty papers and I *don't* buy new paper now unless I really need something (like a single sheet of xmas paper)... but I should probably still go through it, keep only the stuff I really love and yard sale the rest. (We're planning one soon too.)

    I don't know if you have one where you are, or where you're going, but we joined a tool cooperative last year and it has been amazingly helpful. We've borrowed lots of tools that otherwise we would have had to buy (pickaxe, for example), and even have gotten to use some that we never would buy but always look longly at (leaf blower). Our's is MUD (Missoula Urban Demonstration project) and is worth every penny of the $54 yearly membership.

    1. What a great idea, a tool co-op! I am not sure if there is one here, but certainly worth a mention. That would mean less carting around and that would be GREAT!
      Good luck with your future sale!

  2. First, I love the pictures you found to put with this. They, along with your post, made me laugh. This whole move thing sucks but is a blessing at the same time. The stories I could tell you ... Once your mind gets into a certain place where stuff truly is just stuff, letting go is much easier. I hauled around crap for years because I might use it or need it. Then one day, one move, it just changed. I was tired of having to carry the weight of all that stuff with me. Not a literal weight .... to let so much go felt so good. I still collect some stuff, but not nearly what I once did. And bringing home new? yeah, that has become much more selective too. Good luck! and yeah, save the leftovers & have another sale ... who knows what else you'll add to the stash.

    1. yes, I am already saying, 'that can go in the next sale', but hopefully there won't be too much left after this one. Thanks for the well wishes, much needed.

  3. Where to start, where to start . . .
    After reading your post, I started giving the 'Hoarder or Collector' question a lot of thought, because MOST of us have w a y too much 'stuff ' & I'm definitely one of those people. And although our stuff takes up way too much room in our homes, basements, garages, etc., for some reason we have the hardest time 'letting go'. First, I had to ask myself, how do you know if you're one of those people who has so much stuff, that its considered a 'problem' instead of a 'collection'? Well, here are a few 'realty-check' examples I came up w/ & found helpful. "Your possessions have become a 'Problem' not a 'Collection' if . . . * If you have to park the cars in the driveway because your husband has so many tools that neither of you can park in the garage; If your basement is so full of 'collectibles' (that you don't use or display) or boxes that haven't been unpacked since the last move & u can't remember what's in them anymore - but s t i l l can't bear to part w/ them!; or If entire rooms in your home are only being used to store lg amnts of stuff (stuff that you don't use or use very often, but don't want to get rid of ... ' just in case') to the point that it prevents the room(s) from being used for its normal function; If you find yourself w/ way too much stuff that you absolutely have no room for, but cont. to spend $$ (often times, money you can't afford to spend) on acquiring even m o r e possessions. - then to me, it's a problem, not a collection. I feel that if anything you 'collect' or hold on to (art, tools, craft supplies, clothes, salt & pepper shakers, bundt pans :),etc.) is overwhelming or disrupting your life in any way or is causing you stress, anxiety &/or money - like cont. to pay $$ to move lots of 'stuff ' from place to place or pay for a storage unit(s), etc. - then, I'm thinking, maybe this is the time to give one's self a 'reality check' - b e f o r e giving the movers or the owners of the storage unit another 'rental check'. }: / Now, I know this post is about 'Hoarder or Collector', the Million $$ quest. But I don't think I fit into either category. So, if I h a v e to put myself in a category, its going be the 'Pack Rat' category. *pack rat - noun 1. A bushy-tailed ratlike rodent that accumulates a mound of sticks & debris in the nest hole. 2. A person who stores anything they acquire & will discard none of it. 3. A person who collects or keeps things that are not needed. Uhhh, yeah, that pretty much describes me - except for the bushy tail. : ) I agree w/ what Nicole said, when you can finally get into the mind-set that stuff is just stuff, letting go will not only be easier, but actually possible. I get out in my garage & start 'rediscovering' all my 'treasures' & end up never getting rid of a n y t h i n g. - For instance, a semi-broken kite my dad gave the kids when we 1st moved here - I know I'll fix it one day!, a 3 yr old gingerbread house kit - its not like you're not going to eat it & I know I'll have time to assemble it one day, etc. Well, now I'm ready to start lightening the load. I'm going to go to my garage w/ a BIG garbage can & I'm going to 'donate' a TON of my stuff. Well, maybe not the gingerbread house. : ) Now I'm aware of my 'problem' so I'm going to own up to & address it instead of burying it away in 1 of the hundreds (not really) of boxes I have in my garage. From now on, I'm not going to think of my stuff w/ emotion or sentimentality, because again, like Nicole said, " . . . stuff is truly just stuff:" Amen sister. Let the healing begin!


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