DOWNSIZING – A NEW BEGINNING!
Gazing at the mixture of household items, linens, Bibles, books and other personal property, my friends, Jack and Joan were so excited they were almost jumping with glee! The decision to downsize was made; time to move to a smaller home. No more upkeep, no more lawn work. Best of all they said, more time for friends, family and grandchildren.
But first – theysaid, they had to downsize, they had tomake decisions.
Just like many both sets of parents had been collectors, or as Jack said, “pack rats.” Over the years Jack and Joan inherited the family things and enjoyed adding to their own collections as well. Up until this point they had not given serious thought as to what should be done with the entire collection of stuff as they grew older. Oh, of course one child would get this family piece, and the other that one, but the whole accumulation spread throughout the house – Wow!
Joan had started pulling things from drawers, closets and hidey holes; and the piles grew and grew. That’s when Jack called me and said “We need your help! We’re overwhelmed!”
Icautioned both that while it all appeared to be a lot ofclutter, valuable items could potentially be among the disarray. “Don’t make the mistake of thinking that most of this should be discarded,” I said. Some thingscan bedeceiving, of significant or historic value, for instance those old torn Bibles may be the only record of complete names, births and deaths, Other everyday things may only have a modest value; yet these modest items are still sought after by certain buyers. “Joan, your mom’s aprons from the 1940s, and Jack, your grandfather’s watch, or even your Star Trek books, all have value to the right collector,” I added.
From box to chest to drawer, we crawled around, poked and pulled, all the while sorting, planning and prioritizing. To our mutual delight we discovered treasures that left us in awe of things that were not always what they seemed to be. A dreaded chore now evolved into a series of fascinating conversations of family history and amazing stories as to where this or that piece originated. As seemingly ordinary items became symbols of cherished memories, even their grown children began enjoying the process.
What to keep, what to save, what to pack, what to move, what to ship to distant family and friends, and finally, where and how to sell, recycle or donate the surplus – We guided them through the process and we got all the work done – on time!
Bringing focus and specific order to the downsizing process enabled my friends to plan in a realistic manner, evolve to a manageable sized collection, enjoy precious memories, and impart family history to their family. As the transition neared completion Joan and Jack were able to say it ended up being a wonderful experience that will add to their new beginning.
Their downsizing project was professionally managed while enabling them to pass on family lore and history ensuring that treasures will continue to be cherished – or re-cherished by a new owner. The process requires knowledge, experience, careful research and at times specialized appraisers.
Contacting Moving On! professionals may be the most important step you take in ensuring significant mistakes are avoided during a life transition for yourself or a loved one. Whether you are beginning to think about your project, are downsizing for personal, health and/or safety reasons, must accomplish a loved one’s move to assisted or retirement living, empty a storage building, organize a room, review and organize those paper records, or liquidate an estate, the tasks can be overwhelming without caring, professional assistance.
Certified Senior Advisor (Ret.)
Moving On! Services LLC
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Moving On! Services LLC services all of Hampton Roads to Richmond Virginia, Central Virginia, and areas east to include York and Gloucester County, and the Eastern Shore. MOVING ON! provides a Single Point of Contact for as much or as little that needs to be done – related to the disposition of household items and personal property. First consultations are always free.
Our services include Downsizing Lifestyle Change, Appraisals and Auctions, Estate Liquidations, and Senior Move Specialists. Above all, we have the expertise for Aging in Place services. For example, Personal Shopping, Errand, Sort, Space Planning, Pack, Move, Unpack, Redecorate, Reorganize, Charitable Donations, Books & Bibles, Disposal of Surplus Possessions, Deep Cleaning, Organizing, and Redecorating.