What To Keep When Downsizing

On the weekend we helped two beautiful people with getting as much done as possible because they needed to move out of their house. And I was itching to pack up their “Shed” which was a “homeschool Room” – now a store room but there was only so many hours in one weekend, and only so much two mamas could do! Maybe another time we will get back there and help them out again {we love them so we would help them all any time they asked}

And I was helping them move down as many “Storage Cupboards” as possible to to their new home – Storage is really important when you downsize but it got me to thinking about when we had to downsize our massive 4 bedroom house {it had two lounge rooms and massive verandas} and David {and our boys} are hoarders so we had a lot of stuff to sort through. And had to think about Motorhome Storage Space.

At first the thought of “What To Keep When Downsizing” was very scary, but over time I know in my heart what feels good to let go of, and what I feel good about keeping.

What To Keep When Downsizing ::

We do have a shipping container of some stuff left when we downsized. Not much, and if our second son was to have his things moved out to his new home then really we would have less then the half of the shipping container full. And I am itching to get back and go through our stuff and downsize again.

But I was thinking last night {yeah I should have been sleeping} about the really important treasures that we can’t part with because they mean so much to us. I do have a few boxes that contain “Treasures” and I am starting to think about how I can either use them, save them or part with them.

And its also a “Personal Thing” – you are who you and you keep things that matter to you. It doesn’t matter what others think about what you decide to part with, and what you hold dear to your heart. You will soon know what makes you feel “Good” about letting go of things, and holding onto things that matter.

What To Keep When Downsizing


A List Of Things We Had To Keep ::

  1. Photo Albums – I have heaps of Photo Albums. One day I will buy a scanner and scan them onto a Disk so that I can keep them safe. Which I really need to do soon because our Baby albums pictures are all going yellow!
  2. Drawings that my boys did – I have a Scrap Album from when they were little full of drawings. 1 Scrap Book each and I noticed last time that all the pages are going a funny colour so I need to take pictures of the drawings. Which got me to thinking – I need to make them into Place Mats {laminated} so that our boys can use them when eating. Or putting them into Photo Frames so that I can hang them on my Shipping Container Walls.
  3. Photo Frames – we have LOTS of Baby Photos {professional ones} when our boys were little and I have them framed. They are safely packed away – we have plans for our shipping container so I am going to have somewhere to hang them.
  4. Each of our Sons got to keep “One Box” of their own stuff. It is totally up to them what they packed – I did not pack it at all – and it was totally up to them what they wanted to keep. Our oldest had his box shipped down to him when the Navy organised his personal stuff from the shipping container – we gave him our Clothes Dryer and a Bedside Cupboard that David made along with his personal box. He has since thrown out most of his stuff from that one box cause he realised he no longer needed it!
  5. Baby Clothes. I have a huge Plastic Storage container of “Baby Clothes” – which I am going to sit down and turn into a Doona Cover for our bed so that I could see all of the clothes they used to wear when babies, and remember the times we had together with them {gosh I can’t believe our oldest Son is 21 in a few days time???}
  6. Tools. David has LOTS of tools. He always has, and always will – the Motorhome boot is loaded up with them, and our shipping container has tool boxes full.
  7. Books. We kept two boxes of Books. But now that we have a Kindle {we want to get our boys one each for Xmas} I am thinking about going through those boxes and donating most of the books away – we don’t have space to carry them with us when on the road!
  8. One Bed and two mattresses. Our second son had the most amazing double bed, and he stripped it down and vanished it again – so he has kept that along with the mattress. And we have another “King Single” mattress that we need to part with but it cost so much money and no-one seems to buy mattresses anymore?
  9. Toys. We used to have a big box of toys – I have now downsized that to a smaller box – and its only the really great baby toys that are left. The ones that last a lifetime no matter what.
  10. Teddy Bears. Yes we do have one box of teddy bears – they are the boys favorite First Teddy Bears along with One Teddy Bear from when I was a baby – the rest we gave to lifeline.
  11. David’s Canoe – he built that canoe when he was learning to be a Boat Builder! And it weighs a TONNE so we don’t carry it with us, but we do get it out and use it every chance we get when back at the shipping container.

When we started downsizing I had no issues with letting go of our Furniture – it was actually like a big weight had been lifted off my shoulders every single time I let something go. And I had no attachments to our house or any sentimental value of most of our stuff. It was only the memories my boys created that I had to hold onto.

And Photos – I would never ever want to lose my photos. I was so slack with Kyle when he was born, keeping all of our baby photos on a Hard Drive or a Computer and I have no idea where the Hard Drive is or the Computer so I am really cut up that I don’t have any baby photos of him 🙁

Their special drawings – there was so many of them over the years, that I only kept the really good ones and “Filed” the rest {into the bin when they were not looking}. If I had kept every single drawing they did over the years my shipping container would be packed with just drawings!!

Baby Clothes – Cant part with their favorite ones ever. That doona is going to look so good on my bed!!!

The rest I am not attached to – toys can come and go, furniture/mattresses can come and go, Decorations/Ornaments can go for sure – they collect way to much dust! Mind you I have kept a few that were either gifted at special occasions {Birthdays etc} or meant a lot to me.

And when you downsize into a Motorhome, I first still had too much stuff, but as time goes and you move more you soon realise that the space is limited and you to make use of that space. So you ditch the “Extra” towels, Sheets, Cups, Plates, Knife/Forks, extra clothes – you soon realise that you only need what you either can wear, store without being over the weight limit for the bus, or what you must have – the “Spare” stuff goes!

Special one off additions – Like Themed Plates with Horses on them, and Decorations that are true to my heart {signs that say Dream/Believe/Family}. They are packed carefully in a box to one day be displayed in our special way.

But at the end of the day – you can’t take your stuff with you when you die! There are so many times I have heard “Oh I wished I had travelled when I was younger like I wanted to instead of waiting to now, when I am not able to”

You can take memories with you when you are older and sitting down for periods of time – you reflect back on the times you had! And I would rather walk a thousand miles with a small back pack of stuff on my back, then sit in a household full of stuff.

Our society are now so wrapped up in Buying the Biggest TV, the Biggest Lounges, The Biggest Cars, the Biggest…..{whatevers} but I have seen those that are truly, deeply happy – and you know what they own the stuff they need to survive, not stuff taking up space.

What to Keep When Downsizing will depend on your life choices. It will depend on if you are able to “Store” stuff in a shipping container, or will depend on if you downsize into a smaller space and that is all you have to work with!

And letting go of “Stuff” is good for the soul – it clears the mind, the body and the life around you so that other “Stuff” can happen.

If you had to let go of your stuff, and downsize into a smaller space, what would you “keep” and what would you “let go”?

We are so very happy we could help our friends – there is way more that we could have done but the weekend seemed to fly by far too fast.

As we drove away late yesterday afternoon I got into big trouble from Kyle {our now 10 year old!!!} because I had interrupted him down at the dam, he was cleaning out the boat that is down there so that he could use it. He was most upset with me because “You took me away from cleaning out the boat, and I was almost finished. How would you like it if I took you away from a job you were doing and you wanted to complete it” – Yeah his my boy!!

Would You Downsize Into A 10 Metre Motorhome?



New Life on the Road.

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3 thoughts on “What To Keep When Downsizing

  • June 15, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    Hello Lisa, when I read your story I was thinking you wrote about us :-). 95 percent was exactly what I expect to be happen next year when we plan to leave Adelaide in March for our big trip. I already started to scan all the paintings from the kids and the books from school. I have also around 40 photo album but honestly I could never give them up as my hubby would never give up his tools. Its really funny :-). Happy Travels. Greetings Daniela

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