September 15 Prepper Diary: More Moving Prep

Trash bags
We threw out six bags of stuff after cleaning my office.

We continue to make progress on the getting-ready-to-move front.

We’ve met with two Realtors now to discuss selling our house.  We just need to pick one and we’ve a pretty good idea who we are going to select. 

The pressure washer has come and gone.  The small pieces of rotting trim near the ground have been replaced.  The painters have touched up the exterior. We’ve gotten one quote on carpeting the basement and another one is expected any day.  We are also waiting on a quote to repaint the basement and do some minor repairs.

Prior to the Realtors visiting, I had to do a massive cleanup of my home office.  This resulted in six loaded trash bags, four of which had nothing but output from the shredder. Needless to say, I had to run off to the county solid waste facility and drop them off with some of our recycling.

Mining the Pile

But it’s amazing what you can find in a pile of stuff when you go through it piece-by-piece, trying to decide what you should be shredded, what can be tossed, and what you should keep.  Honestly, there wasn’t much in the keep pile.  We tend to scan important documents and store them in the cloud rather than save hard copies. 

I don’t think I shredded anything older than 2012, but there was a box of stuff from 2014 that was mostly useless.  I mean, who needs copies of the electric bill, paycheck stubs, and insurance documents from six years ago?  It just goes to show you how far we have progressed with getting electronic documents.  No wonder the post office is running out of money.

I did uncover some cool stuff that I had put in a “safe place” so safe it disappeared. For example, an American Express gift card worth $50.  (I called the toll free number and it is still valid!) A gift certificate to a store we frequently go to and a Costco gift certificate.  Basically, I “earned” $180 for cleaning my room.  You know, if my parents offered an incentive like that, I would have kept my room cleaner as a kid.

Sadly, I sent to recycling 20 years’ worth of Backwoods Home Magazine, some old issues of Countryside, Mother Earth News and assorted gun magazines.  I even had some pre-Y2K copies of American Survival Guide.  We paged through some of them and clipped a few articles, but most of them went into the bin.

An Embarrassment of Riches

I cleaned out my closet as well.  Some things I put aside to take to the new house on our next trip.  Somethings I put in the donate pile and I kept plenty of clothes for me, of course.  I am slowly moving some cold-weather gear to our prepper property, just so we are not caught there by surprise if it suddenly turns cold.  So a pair of thermal underwear is making the next trip, as is a pair of waterproof rain pants.  They are joining a wool shirt, a sweater, a sweatshirt, some work pants and a coat I already took up there.  I already have a pair of shoes, a pair work boots and a pair of what I call “farm boots” up there as well.

A big cleanup/down-sizing operation like this just serves as a reminder that:

  1. I need to do a better job of shredding things when they come in and not letting them pile up.
  2. We hang on to too much junk we do not need and probably never will.  I  will save a spare screws or nuts and bolts and probably use them again, but there’s often no reason to hang on to business cards from vendors you used three years ago, DVDs holding backups of files from 2015, samples from jobs I had more than 10 years ago, the box that my iPhone came in, etc.
  3. We should probably buy less stuff. 
  4. It is also interesting how technology sticks us with old crap.  I most have recycled 30 plastic DVD and CD cases that once held software or even movies.  But there is no need to keep a copy of TurboTax 2015 around.
  5. If we don’t clean this out now, some poor child will get stuck doing it when we die. And trust me, they will just toss things.  None of it will have value to them, so you might as well go through it now.