When Frank and I married in 1990, I had to condense a two story, 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with a family room, a carport and a storage room under the carport to a 3 bedroom 1 bath house already furnished with Frank’s things. I had six weeks until the wedding and it was my busiest time of the summer.  I was Conference Director for a private college and working 16 hours a day. During July and August we had over 130 camps. I would come home exhausted, and look around wondering where to start then fall into bed and vow to tackle it the next night.

After a week, I had 5 weeks left. Also, invading Frank’s bachelor pad was daunting. With growing alarm, he questioned everything I was bringing in. I finally resorted to coming on my lunch hour when I knew he was working, emptying my boxes of “stuff” and quickly stashing them back in the car.  However, hiding the grandfather clock was out of the question. For storage space I had one half of the front garage and Frank, seeing my desperation, built me shelves all along that wall. I had to face facts.  It was time to get rid of any unnecessary items!  I got a book on clutter and began to read. Wow. How many of us cannot park our cars in the garage because it is full of “stuff”? Cupboards and closets are full of “stuff.” Over the years I had collected a lot of items that were pretty or interesting. It was time for tough love and I went from room to room gathering things that I’d picked up at garage and estate sales.

Over the years I’ve gotten pretty discerning and it really isn’t hard at all.  When we remodeled our kitchen, I was on a speaking circuit for Stonecroft Ministries and just packed up everything and sent it off in a “pod”. When the kitchen was done, before I put anything back I considered if it was really necessary or not.  I got rid of half the kitchen and believe it or not, a few months later, I couldn’t remember what I got rid of!   Clearing clutter also helps our health. With less things to dust, the air we breathe means less respiratory problems.  Now my office is another story. Hmmm. Maybe I better tackle some of that paperwork!