this packing up process is slow. doesn't matter that we've lived here only two years, there are still boxes surfacing in the studio that have sawdust on them from the pre-nyc days in central PA. storage space is at such a premium that we can't just toss it into storage without a thought. old work projects, portfolio samples for packaging design that i'll never need again, oh, wait, that's a doll my grambie sewed for me that I'd forgotten about! ... you get the idea. every box and corner is fraught with memories and decisions and more decisions. will i ever use it again? does it mean enough to pay to keep it? will it fit in the camper?! it's mentally and physically demanding.
i thought i did a good job of paring the boys' clothes down 2 months ago, limiting the number of things they should keep, and ditching many things that did fit but weren't necessary. moving their stuff into the camper last week? more than half of it got ditched yet again. they're down to the equivalent of about 3 milk crates worth of stuff each, plus jackets and a set of dress clothes apiece. adding what michael ditched, there are three more big bags to go to goodwill tomorrow.
editing down feels good though, really good. i feel better with each bag and box that gets sold or donated or pitched, and a bit heavier with each box that goes in the "to storage" pile. can't ditch all my mason jars, or non-camper sized kitchen stuff. work files. photo albums. the edited-down-a-bit-more-every-move sentimental stuff. tools, lots of tools. artwork and art supplies. some things are worth storing. we've got a 10x10 unheated storage space, a borrowed crawl space for tools and kitchen stuff, and a borrowed basement for paintings that need to stay above freezing. it still seems like too much stuff, but it kind of feels like we're packing the hope chest for when we settle down.
i've been fighting The Panic off and on ... every target date we set gets blown out of the water, and i'm tired of talking about it. but we're getting closer, and closer ... and it's now a matter of adding a day, not a month or a week, and it feels real and possible and right around the corner. which it is. just have to keep moving, one box and decision and project at a time. i haven't given up on TN for Christmas, and I have every reason to believe it will happen. this time next week I'll likely be playing a long-awaited game of Dominion with my in-laws after Christmas dinner, with the boys snug in their camper beds in the driveway, and not quite believing that we've actually started on our adventure.