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Mount Orégano
Sue Burke
The secret to decluttering your house in just one word 
13th-Mar-2019 09:12 am
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That one-word secret to decluttering: move.

You pick up a possession, hold it in your hands, then stuff it into a box. Or chuck it.

That’s what I’m doing. My husband and I aren’t moving far, only four blocks away into a different apartment here in Chicago. It’s bigger and has a nicer view; our current apartment is crammed between two other buildings and a train embankment.

This won’t be an especially complicated move. Some of you may recall that in summer of 2016, we moved from Madrid, Spain, to Chicago, Illinois. That was complicated.

In Illinois, you pay your movers by the hour of labor. In overseas moves, you pay by the bulk and weight of the shipment, and that price was about ten times what this upcoming move will cost. As you can imagine, the transatlantic move inspired extreme decluttering. We haven’t accumulated much since, so very little will be chucked or given away this time, and the process will be simple: shovel everything into boxes, and then, in the new place, dump the boxes out. This includes about a thousand books (not counting e-books). They’re our dearest possessions.

If you don’t hear a lot from me during March, that’s because I’m elbow-deep in cardboard boxes. I expect everything to go well and, in the end, I’m sure it will spark joy.

— Sue Burke
13th-Mar-2019 04:16 pm (UTC)
Congratulations on the new apartment, and good luck with the moving process! "Three moves is as good as a fire", they say, only (usually) with less panic and crying.
13th-Mar-2019 05:50 pm (UTC)
Fire!? This is Chicago. We still haven't recovered emotionally from the Great Chicago Fire in 1871. (I'm not exaggerating. My church has an artifact related to the fire on the altar -- an anvil used in the rebuilding.)
13th-Mar-2019 06:33 pm (UTC)
Y'know how when people (especially hoarders) have to move on short notice and short funds, it always comes down at the end to shoveling stuff at random into contractor bags and hoicking it however it'll fit into whatever vehicle is available? Among my Clan, we call that method of moving the 'Refugee Fleeing A Burning City Method'.

My poor friend who died last summer, I helped her move nine times in sixteen years, and not once was she ever packed, or even partially packed, before I got there. She had tons of stuff, and the prospect of moving made her go totally tharn, so it was the Burning City Method every single time.

EDIT: Off-topic, did you hear about this? An Illinois bill leans into the most contentious part of the Green New Deal

Edited at 2019-03-13 08:13 pm (UTC)
14th-Mar-2019 02:37 am (UTC)
If Michigan can do it, then why no Illinois?

Your friend sounds like my mother-in-law except that she rarely moves. The last time, though, required an army of family, in-laws, and friends -- but we got it all done in one day!
13th-Mar-2019 04:45 pm (UTC)
Good luck with the move!
13th-Mar-2019 05:45 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'm moving into a very Chicago-style kind of architecture: a skyscraper. But only the 17th floor. More later when the boxes are in their new home.
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