Saturday, August 3, 2013

Changes


Big things are happening in Casa Webber these days. In two weeks Mr. W and I will officially be empty nesters. So what did we do?

We bought a new house.

We realized it was a good time to downsize and took the leap. The kind of leap you make with your eyes closed and your fingers crossed.

Officially, we move in after the kids go off to school, but we've been back and forth over to the new place a couple of times a day. Cleaning, letting in contractors, stripping endless amounts of wallpaper—that kind of thing.

And here at our old house we've been packing and purging. Going to a smaller place means we have to get rid of a lot of stuff. We've lived here for nineteen years and apparently we’re packrats. All of us.

The hardest thing so far to pare down has been our books. It’s just so hard to let titles go, but we have to be ruthless about it. There just isn't space for them all, unfortunately. And even though we've cut back, we still have overflowing bookcases (how does that happen???). Plus, I have all my backlist books, too, in bins. I’m not even sure what to do with those. But we’ll figure it out. We'll have lots of time with the nest being empty and all (SIGH).

So, if anyone has any moving or packing or purging tips, I'm all ears. Oh, I'll also take wallpaper removal tips, too. (Curse that wallpaper!)


18 comments:

SueAnn said...

get that wallpaper really really wet! Soggy wet sponge, all down the wallpaper.....REALLY wet. then go eat a snack, and come back and peel off the wall!!!!! You should'nt have to scrape at all....stubborn spots? More soggy sponge. Once all the paper is peeled off, then you have to wash the walls down from the wallpaper paste Warm soapy water...good wide sponge......and scrub your brains out!! LOL!! Then, go over it one more time, with clear water, clean sponge, to get any residual paste....let dry 2 days. Paint, or paper.......
Books! Tough! We did the same as you- downsize...hard for me to give up my books and china so.....be rough on yourself....once settled, 10 years from now..you will not remember what you sacrificed!!! LOL!!! Good luck! We did this 2 years ago..told hubby he had ONE MORE good move in me..and I was done! So.......know where you are...on this.

Aurian said...

Throwing away stuff is hard, but getting rid of books? Impossible. You just have to convert a spare bedroom into a library. Your children can sleep between the bookcases when they visit.
You can rent a wallpaper steamer here in Holland, at those big hardware shops, and just steam the wallpaper off. Windows open of course, or you turn it into a sauna.

Good luck Heather!

Linda in MA said...

Don't envy you this job. I can't seem to ever get rid of books, yet in a few years we will be downsizing too. I've had luck with a fabric softener/water mix that I spray on the wall paper. This I let sit for about an hour or more and then peal off the wall paper. It you come up with some good rules on how you downsized your books let me know. Or any tips on bringing them with you. I've got about 2000 to get down to a reasonable amount.

Leann Sweeney said...

As you know, we did this last year. I could not "throw away" books as my husband suggested, but I learned Goodwill accepts books and sells them to people who couldn't otherwise afford them. Goodwill got a lot of books from me last year! We removed A LOT of wallpaper. Huge amounts of wallpaper. It is a labor intensive job no matter what method you try. So, having been there and done that not too long ago (and my husband is a major packrat) I can only tell you what we did. Three piles each day. #1 Throw out #2 Donate #3 Keep. I used an organizer tip that says each day you take a big garbage bag and attack a room or closet. Collect things in the bag--no more, no less than will fit--and then make your three piles. If you do a little every day the task is not so monumental.

Sue said...

What a bitter-sweet time for your family. I always loved moving. The unpacking was like Christmas all over again. The downsizing I didn't like so much. Here, we have a book store that takes your books and gives you 1/4 of the original price and then resells them. I've gotten hooked on a lot of series that way. Maybe donate to the library, like Leanne said, goodwill. They will take a lot of stuff and I think sometimes even come pick it up. You will be busy for a long time, but don't forget to take time for you. Happy moving.

Heather Blake Webber said...

NO MORE WALLPAPER! Ever, maybe. LOL. Thanks for the tip--I'll give it a try today.

Heather Blake Webber said...

I can't steal the kids' rooms. Not yet, at least. Give me a year or two... :)

Heather Blake Webber said...

I've heard about the fabric softener trick. I might have to give that a try, too. I'm getting desperate.

A lot of SMALL boxes for the books. Otherwise the boxes are too heavy to carry. Learned that one the hard way.

Heather Blake Webber said...

Thanks, Leann. I'll do the trashbag tip-sounds way less overwhelming than what I've been doing. And Goodwill has gotten a lot of my books, too. It gives me some peace that they'll be passed on to other readers who may not have been able to afford them otherwise.

Heather Blake Webber said...

It is bittersweet, Sue, but also exciting to set out on a new adventure.

For some reason our local library doesn't take donations. :/

Rita Bloczynski said...

For storage of your books.......add a dryer sheet to each bin and you can store them most anywhere. The sheet keeps spider and other bugs away. Helped a close friend clean out her "packrat" mother in laws home. The mom in law had used them and every box was free of criters, including mice!

Rita Bloczynski said...

PS.....works great for clothing and anything else you are storing

Heather Blake Webber said...

Rita, I'll do that. Thanks!

Dee said...

Tip for first day in new home: When you pack, pack like you're going on vaca - have that toiletry bag, change of clothes, etc. SEPARATE from your other massive box of clothes. You can at least grab a shower, have some pj's & a new outfit to get moving the next day in. Also, similar tip for kitchen..... make a 'mini' pack for kitchen of 2 plates, 2 mugs, 2 sets of silverware, etc. so you can at least eat off SOMETHING quickly & not HAVE to quickly unpack those kitchen dishes when you're just too tired or haven't figured out WHICH drawer you want stuff in yet (you know the one.... where we haphazardly unpacked just to get the box out of the way & SWORE we'd move the stuff around later but never did. THEN we INSISTED we needed a NEW KITCHEN cuz this one "just isn't working" 5 years later? Yeah, that one!). GOOD LUCK!

7LucyP said...

When we moved I donated many boxes of boxes to the library, which they likely sold at their library sale to benefit new book purchases.

Melissa Bo said...

I had an idea for a place to donate books,- Nursing homes and Women's shelters are always looking for books! =)
Im sure they would love to have your donations!

Good luck on the move!! =)

Love your books!

Corduroy7 said...

At one point in my life, I moved 6 times in 5 years. I realized that I became less sentimental with each move. Always remember that a box packed = a box to be unpacked. I also agree with Dee. It is very important to be very cognizant of items that are a 'must have' in each room. And the most important thing here is that it doesn't matter what others recommend as the most important items - this is personal. What makes you feel comfortable and "at home". Those items for you - for your comfort - for that room - should be marked in box #1 or a designate that it is the box to unpack first in each room. In that way, you have a feeling of accomplishment on day #1 in the new home as you've unpacked the items that are most important to create your safety, your comfort, your feeling of peace. And above all, enjoy the process, take the moments as you are sorting to laugh, to cry, to share the memories and to create new ones. For those that only look at this time as a time of stress, worry and being very busy - I want to say to them, "STOP!" You are changing your environment so change your attitude. Have fun with it! And trust me, I know what I'm asking here as some of those moves were very devastating time periods in my romantic life but in my overall personal life the moves helped me to move on to my future and part of that is being open to all the possibilities. Have a great time! Wish you and your husband all the best!

removalcompanylondon said...

I have one small tip.......Designate a color for each room in the new home and apply colored stickers on the box near the box number. In your new home. Put a matching sticker on the door to each room. It will help movers know where to put everything when they arrive at the destination.