Exit Strategy

Yesterday we had our appointment with Venise, our new realtor. She is a self-confessed workaholic who loves challenges and is eager to start marketing the house. Just the person we need! She took us through the house, making a work list for us.

We had just opened the door to Matt's old room, where we are storing extra furniture, when she took a look and and turned to us in astonishment. "You're moving into a house half this size," she exclaimed, "and you still have this much furniture?!" Uh oh. Another wake-up call. Time to pare down again.

The problem seems to be that 1) we can't really visualize the size of our new house, despite the detailed computerized layout, so we don't know what items of our present furniture will work the best, and 2) we keep thinking about Matt and Sarah.

Matt and Sarah have been married for less than a year and live in a tiny apartment. One day, of course, they will have a house and they might be able to use some of this extra furniture. Where to store it until then, however, is the question. This is the "I may need it some day" syndrome that plagues downsizers. (Slightly modified to the "They may need it some day" syndrome.)

Venise is absolutely right, though. We did a lot of paring down this time last year before we first put the house up for sale. It's now time for the second paring, and believe me, it doesn't get any easier. Paring down means making decisions, an skill in which I have always been lacking, due to an inherent tendency to second-guess myself.

And from the fact that Ed spent a good 15 minutes in a diatribe about the validity of keeping several years' worth of quilting magazines stored in perpetuity, I can foresee that the next six months will be - shall we say - entertaining?