Do I really need the shiny object?
I recently thought about the future, after I had died.
What would someone else do with our stuff being tasked with dispersing our stuff and things?
Who would they give this and that to if we had not left specific instructions?
We have a will with specific instructions for who gets what and who does not get stuff. We designate large items to specific people.
But what about all that other stuff?
We have sorted through the vast amounts of stuff into categories. keep-it, maybe-keep, and pass-it-on.
The pass-on category is my focus for now. Going through the stuff that has been around for some time. Do we really need it or can we find another home for it? A home that would welcome the item and likely use it more than I have, and need it.
Some of the stuff is now in the hands of the local Mission who supports many of the local street people and those less fortunate. Other items are at the local non-profit that support children. Some items are at our local humane society.
The mission is the recipient of men’s clothing, some saved for years for the event. I had twelve sets of sweat pants and top sets, eight sets went to the mission. Underwear, socks, shirts, and pants in large quantities are now working their way around my community. Besides, I have a roomier closet. Pairs of reading glasses, for which I had too many, are now available many of those that Mission serves.
Children’s Non-Profit was glad to accept several boxes of colored paper of all sorts. Blank label stock, and various recent sets of magazines, great reading for both children and parents. When I first contacted I had camera equipment minus a camera that I was looking for a home. The day I called them they were so excited because one of the counselors was creating a class for those interested in photography and the timing was perfect.
The humane accepted several cat and dog crates from our last adopted animals after they passed. We also donated unused food and medicine. I accidentally dropped off a box containing office supplies and books that were to be delivered to the library. When I when back to give them the correct box, they said they were glad to have reading books and paper, so I left that as well.
We had a second microwave, that and some electronic equipment is now in my brother’s custody after he and his wife recently visited. He will distribute most of it to his children and their families.
Just getting started, at the beginning of a year extensive project.
This is our first pass, at a long-overdue task, with many more passes to come, for the pass-it-on portion of the journey.
I expect monthly visits to the stuff pile and invoke decisions about what place they will be in. Keep, maybe-keep, and pass-it-on.
Processing Family members’ belongings after passing.
My mom did not have a specific will with instructions. That made it difficult to figure out who gets what. Being the oldest living child, I handled the probate process. My mom talked about making sure that everyone had a will, but did not in fact have one for herself. She was well aware of the process as she was the recipient of both her parents’ and an aunt’s will.
Upon the passing of grandmother, I too processed the remaining items she left behind. She had very little at the end of her life because she gave most away before she passed. Most of the items were her keepsakes, pictures, and personal momentums. I scanned the pictures to share with family members. She had very few other items to deal with.
Visit the piles of keep-it, maybe-keep, and pass-it-on regularly.
Create a habit of visiting the three piles of stuff: keep-it, maybe-keep, and pass-it-on regularly.
Once the items are in the pass-it-on pile, take action before you decide to move it back to one of the other piles.
Clothing and some other personal items should be the easiest to move from left to right in the piles, keep-it, maybe-keep, and pass-it-on. I have moved books, I may never get to read, to the library.
Share your visits to the piles in the comments.
This article was inspired by Ali Hall’s article.