The Merge…the PURGE!

We’re finally reunited with Scarlett and Rhett! We were gone for exactly eight, very busy weeks, and it is good to be back!

Reunited! That’s the Grand Design service facility in the background.

With the help of friends, and through a combination of sales, gifts, donations to charities, and (many) trips to the town transfer station (no longer called a “dump”), our house on Mount Desert Island is completely empty and on the market. Do you want a house in great shape on the coast of Maine, right outside Acadia National Park??? Hey, you can’t blame me for trying. Both of our cars were sold.

So strange to see the house completely empty!

A highlight of the “sale” part of cleaning the house was Kathe’s MEGA fiber sale! Imagine 40+ years of “stash,” for spinning, weaving, knitting, and traditional rug hooking.

Yarns galore!
Fabric for all you quilters
Did we mention yarn?

We saw many of our Maine friends, but certainly not all that we would have liked to. To those we weren’t able to see, we’re sorry; we simply ran out of time. On September 19 we started our trip back to Indiana to get back to our truck and rig. Why Indiana, the world capital of RVs?

Well, we didn’t exactly blab about this at the time, although some of you know it by now. Back in late May, we had an accident with the trailer that damaged the left side pretty severely, but didn’t affect the driveability or operation at all. Since we had our Utah extravaganza with grandsons Graham and Dean coming up, we elected to defer repair until after their visit was over. Due to the extent of the damage, we asked the manufacturer, Grand Design RV, if they would put us in their repair queue. They agreed, so rather than leave the rig out west when we returned to Maine to get the house ready for the market as we had planned, we drove it to Indiana.

Repairs made, the trailer is as good as (actually, better than) new! We’re ready for more adventures!

When emptying the house, we were guided by the thought behind this strategy for de-cluttering. You may know it. Make three piles:

  1. Things to keep,
  2. Things to sell or give away, and
  3. Things that should be thrown out.

All piles must be equally sized.

We did that, pretty successfully… But we were pretty aggressive—as if we had taken pile 1, and made three piles.

Some of the items from the small pile 1 we wanted to have with us, despite not having needed them over the past year—for instance, outplacing similar items we had acquired over the year when we noticed they were missing.

Other things in pile 1 were kept because we wanted to be able to save some memories for when we eventually come off the road and set up housekeeping in another “sticks and bricks” house. What to do with those? Fortunately, our son, Mike, agreed to store those at his family’s house. Thank you, Mike! So, rental van loaded, we started back to Indiana via Nashua, NH to see some of our “pre-Maine” friends, and Corning, NY to spend a week with Mike’s family (and drop off some of pile 1).

We’re going through the things we have in the camper, judging whether each has paid its “rent,” i.e., been useful / used enough to warrant the space and weight it has consumed. Books can be donated to the wonderful library in Quartzsite; we have our Kindle readers. Some fabric can be shared with the quilting group. We’re about to dramatically cull through our clothes, too; we’ve got much more than we need. It’s actually quite liberating to find ROOM in the RV as we get rid of things.

So here we are, heading back to Arizona for the winter even though the camper isn’t completely reorganized yet to accommodate the things we have bought with us but we’re making great progress. This brings back memories of our original game of RV Tetris.

Still lots of things which need a “permanent” storage place. Tetris, V2.


Make three piles…

The start of a new “Pile 2,” in our truck’s back seat. Looking for a Goodwill store along our route…

See you again down the road!

-The Lobsters, once more…on the loose!

13 thoughts on “The Merge…the PURGE!”

  1. Thanks for the update Al. I have been wondering how the house cleaning was going. Safe travels on your way to Arizona and I look forward to more posts and great pictures!

  2. Sooooo many decisions you all have had to make! Sometimes I imagine what it would be like to go through a similar process and I realize that we have a small house’s worth of furniture (almost all pieces of furniture inherited, some made by great grandparents) that I couldn’t bear to part with. Many other things would be somewhat less challenging—just a lot of work. I know that you are ready for a break! Great job 🙂

  3. So glad I met Kathy outside the Post Office and was able to give you a hug and hear your plans. carefully kept away from your sales as we now have plans to sell our home in Newton and move to MDI as all year residents, what to do with 50 years of living in Newton. Here come the 3 piles.
    We wish you great pleasure and health in your next adventure.

    1. Oh, Helene! I was JUST talking with Al yesterday about how it was such a treat to run into you at the P.O. and get a hug. How exciting for you to be moving to MDI full-time! It must mean your hubby is doing well at BB. Wishing you best of luck with your downsizing! Since you have the MDI home, there is probably not too much you’ll need to move from MA to MDI. Thanks for continuing to follow our blog. Hugs, Kathe

    1. You couldn’t afford us! If we haven’t touched/used it in a year, we don’t need it. Has the object brought us pleasure at some time? Then it’s time to let someone else enjoy it.

      1. Words of wisdom. Let someone else enjoy it. You both have done an amazing job in the last 8 weeks. Almost miraculous! I’m so happy for you. Was great to see you.

        1. It was terrific to spend time with you two as well, Lori!! Won’t it be fun when we live closer together again?

  4. Such a difficult task to accomplish and you did it in 8 weeks! As you know I continue to work at Margaret’s collections of 60+ years. The photos are the hardest to sort. I’ve made progress but it is slow going. Bravo for what you have done in such a short time.
    Hope to see you along your travels, perhaps another stay in Washington or Idaho. Safe travels.

    1. Jean, there is a great app on your cellphone that will help you take great photos of photos. It’s Google Photoscan. The picture quality is very, very good. You may want to look into it. It takes the pic in five quick steps.

  5. We hope your house sells quickly, so that can be behind you. We missed you at the Grand Design rally this summer. We look forward to hearing about your next adventures. God bless you both. Jimm & SueAnn

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