Confessions of a Corner Hoarder

My name is Allison Orthner and currently I am a "corner hoarder"!!!

Here's how it happened...

We moved 3 years ago.  In our old home, half our basement was storage... organized shelving with boxes upon boxes of "stuff" we had collected, saved, stored, etc. over the 17 years we lived there (including those childhood years with countless toys, clothing and baby things!!)

I desperately tried before moving to go through as much as I could... my goal was "nothing comes into the new home that I don't want to keep AND have a place for".  It was a GREAT plan!!!

But as life goes, I didn't get through all the boxes and they moved with us and ended up in our garage (we couldn't put them in our new basement as Brad was going to build and finish the basement and didn't want to work around boxes).  And life just kept going.

Friends warned me it would be YEARS (yes years!) before I would get to all the boxes, but I didn't believe them.  And now here I am over 3 years later still going through the boxes and all the "stuff" that migrated over to the new home with us... most have made their way from the garage into our home (because I don't like trying to go through them in a cold dark space).

But walking around my home, I realized that I gather things in corners hoping to deal with them soon... but then life just keeps going... and the corners keep growing!!

My biggest issue to getting rid of things, is I really struggle with just tossing things or dumping a huge load at the thrift store... and I admit I have a bit of a "hoarder heritage" in my family line that I have battled and tried to overcome over the years (with a fair bit of success).  But it is still EXHAUSTING for me to process each and every thing to insure it gets to a "place" where it is needed, used, appropriate and NOT just thrown in our landfill!!

But wait!!  I have new hope!!!

FIRST, I must say, all my visits to poverty stricken places has really helped me to see that we don't need most of what we have to live and be happy.

AND... then came Jessica... 

My friend is passionate about this exact thing (ie. share with the needy, nothing should go into our landfills, etc.) and is starting a bit of a business helping others deal with their "stuff" and I asked her to come over and help me "take care of it all".  I wasn't exactly sure what she was going to do, but I was desperate and eager and ready all at the same time!!  And let me just say... it was a glorious day!!!  She simply takes it ALL away and deals with it herself (some recycled, some given to needy families, some sold, etc.)!!  And because I know she cares as much as I do what happens to it all, I don't have to worry and I can release it!!!

And so... through this process, although it doesn't LOOK like it, my corners are now organized piles that have a plan!!!  The top picture is all keepsakes I need to go through, the bottom left I am selling and the bottom right is another pile for Jessica for when she comes back!!!! 

And slowly but surely I will empty each corner and know that I'm keeping what is truly special and deserving of space in my life, earning money from some (to help build homes in Haiti) and then turning the rest over to Jessica who is the perfect steward of it all.

My goal:  nothing left to hoard in the corners!!!
Wish me luck!!!!

BTW... Crop For Haiti is coming Sat. Feb. 1, 2014!!!!
Mark it off NOW to join us then!!!


Jennifer Reynard said...

Wow, wonderful post and glad to know there are a few of us out there. I'm not sure that I would really say we are "Hoarders", it just takes a lot of time and a lot of mental energy to decide what to keep and what goes. With everyone's busy lives, that project certainly isn't a high priority, and it gets "shelved" for another day, another year, another decade! It has been said that we use 10% of our items 90% of the time, 90% of our items are only used 10% of our time. Purging is a constant battle and I am so glad that you have found someone who has a business to help those with the process. I wish her great success with her new adventure and hopefully she will get some new business from your post. Thanks for blessing all of us with your honesty and hopefulness!

mow180 said...

My name is Robin and I am a hoarder...
It is just to easy for me to get buried with thingsI am going to go get rid of one box today and maybe one box tomorrow and soon I will have it under control.
Thanks for the inspiration.
I don't know what will happen if I go into the scrapbook room though. I don't think I can get rid of any of that stuff LOL.

jenkev said...

Oh my, can you please share who this miracle person is and how to get in touch. We have moved 7 times in the last 13 years and carried along with us too, too much 'stuff' that I struggle to sort and part with. This could be an incredible venture for for her as I am very sure there are many of us out there.