Nesting and Hoarding

First I just wanted to share this screen grab with you before I get into the meat of the matter, the juice in the box, the refried beans in the burrito.

500 posts

I have posts 500 times. 500 times I’ve written something I’ve felt is worthy enough to share. While I love writing, stats are fun but don’t define my writing and blah blah blah you readers and subscribers and commenters definitely make it easier. You definitely make it worth while. Thanks for making this fun! I wonder what’s in store for the next 500?

Okay… now for the fun in dysfunctional…

The best way to get to know someone is to live with them for 10 years then start getting rid of stuff you don’t need any or use any more. Say, clean out your basement (or attic, or wherever you keep your stuff “for later”). In our basement you will find all the teaching stuff I saved from my classroom before our big move. The intent was to keep here until I got my own classroom. We moved here almost 7 years ago. That stuff is still here. I don’t have a classroom here, yet. We didn’t get rid of that. Even the Virginia social studies lesson plans.

Other stuff did go to the curb. The broken telescope and tripod. An old poster frame. A busted horizontal blind. Some stuff didn’t go. Kayak pads for the roof rack. An old driftwood post (I hid it outside somewhere, shhh). A laptop bag that I’ll start using for school because my messenger bag has outdoor paint spilled all over it.

It’s fun to see what your spouse is willing to keep and willing to part with. I call myself a pack rat. I keep stuff in case I need/want to use it later. I may never us it, but as soon as I throw it out I’ll need it. My dad’s mom is pack rat president. I’m not sure which chromosome the pack rat gene is on but it’s been passed on to me. I’ll need mom’s input to know if my dad has it too.

I’m not a hoarder, though. Here’s my argument… Hoarders suffer from severe anxiety. They’re not keeping their stuff to use later or because they might need it. They keep it because they’re literally afraid to throw it away. You can find some really interesting information on hoaders at Psych Central.

Sometimes things need to be thrown out, even if they’re our favorites. An old pair of shoes long past their mileage. Soccer short who’ve played in too many games. They disappear quietly when I’m not looking and can’t protest. It’s best for all of us that way. This is why we don’t throw stuff away when the kids are watching. Toys they haven’t played with for 25 years suddenly become a great interest. “Don’t throw that away!”

I’m pretty sure this is why my parents sent me to my grandmother’s for a few weeks every summer during my childhood. They wanted to toss out the toys I never played with any more. It only took me 30 years and having kids of my own to figure this out.

Thanks to Toy Story, I have trouble throwing away toys. So you can imagine my sadness when I saw Buzz Lightyear, well loved yet broken and missing pieces, in the bag to be tossed. He’s in a bag with others so hopefully they’re having a grand adventure.

Pack rat horder



47 thoughts on “Nesting and Hoarding

  1. I still have my teaching stuff, lesson plans and all, in a couple of bins in our storage building. Ten years later, I am pretty certain I’ll never use them again, but can’t quite part with them either. Congrats on 500 posts, those I’ve read since I’ve been following have been full of awesomeness.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congratulations on 500 pieces of awesomeness. I am not a hoarder either but like you I am a keeper of cool things that I amy have a use for later. And there isn’t a thing wrong with it!!


  3. I had to check – I guess I had my 500th a couple of weeks ago. Congrats.

    when the girls’ mom and I cleaned out their room, we couldn’t say ‘throw away’ with a protest. I started the code word “Arthur Treacher’s”, which was a once-thriving fast-food fish joint. The kids never caught on – and cleaning out their room always made me want something slathered in tartar sauce.

    With hush puppies.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mmmmm hush puppies. Delicious! Congrats on your 5ooth, too! Love the code word. It’s impossible to get rid of kid’s stuff if they’re looking. My in-laws had a code word, too. But there’s was for “going to the Legion to have a couple drinks”. Sobey’s was the code word. Sobey’s is also a grocery store. One day, before the code word was created, they said they were going to Sobey’s. 5 hours later they came home because they had stopped by the Legion first.


      • In University we called it Church. A couple of professors in the Ed department were in on code word. Then on the last day of school before graduation they went to Church with us!


  4. I have textbooks from university that I can’t bear to part with because my classmates and I used to write one another notes in the margins during class. I also still have my report card from when I was 7 – 12 years old! I keep things not because I think they might be useful later, I keep things because of nostalgia. I’m more pack rat than hoarder though. I’ve no qualms throwing stuff away if they don’t serve a purpose 🙂 Congratulations on your 500th post!!!


    • Thanks, A J! I don’t count sentimental items in the pack rat definition 🙂 Those are call keepsakes. That’s cool that you still have University books and old report cards. I still have an award I got in 3rd grade 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • And that’s a great way to do it. I got rid of stuff that was broken and not used over the last year. Some stuff I just wasn’t willing to toss out yet. But they were small things that will be useful now that I’ve remembered I still had them 🙂


  5. It is a fine line… Some people really need to learn the difference between which side of the line is closer to madness, and which is closer to healthy growth! (I live with someone too close to the dangerous edge of the line.)


    • In my opinion, pack rats keep things that could be useful later. Hoarders keep everything… even with no intent to use it later. Hoarding is a symptom of OCD while pack rats are creative. Or at least that’s how I see it. I could be way off.


      • Hoarding is definitely a complex, and it’s classified as a minor mental illness, and so often includes – or even comes from – anxiety disorders, bi-polar, etc. It’s more about the uneasiness of throwing things away because it induces a sense of loss, fear, and insecurity. And the “shrinks” don’t mean sentimental items or something that could be fixed or possibly used later. They mean used tissues, rotten food, etc. – things that most “pack rats” would take one look at and toss in the bin.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I was finally able to get rid some things in the basement that have been there for almost 25 years, then I hit a brick wall. However, next time I start decluttering down there again I’ll be able to let go of more.


    • 25 years is along time to keep stuff. I think we have a 1 year rule. If it’s not used within a year, out it goes. Hopefully it won’t be another 25 years before you declutter again 😉


  7. I moved from an apartment upstairs to the one I’m in now. This required the removal of tons of clothing, and other objects, including some of the wall-to-wall furniture. I moved into a larger, handicap-accessible one, which sacrificed closet space, thus forcing me to go from two racks of mostly unworn clothing, to one. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • A couple blogging friends have made huge moves to another country so they’ve had to get rid of tons of stuff because there’s only so much you can take on a plane. It can be difficult to downsize. If you were to ask me to go through my closet and dresser and get rid of clothes, I’d probably have a tough time getting rid of 90% of it. Good for you for being able to do that! 😀


  8. First, congrats on 500! Nice. Next, since we moved from our house to the Manor, more that half of our sh** is in the basement of my mother-in-law’s house. Some of it relevant and important, like old pictures and things, but the majority, we havent used in a year and we probably don’t know what we are missing. I’m for a giant toss/giveaway/recycle share of the whole thing. The Mrs., errs on the side of, “but what if we need….” #FabFridayPost


  9. Haha I thought that hoarding only happens to women! My other half can’t stand me for having loads of stuffs around the house. I just need to tidy up that’s all. 🙂

    Thank you so much for linking up with us again. It is a great post as always. #FabFridayPost


  10. Congrats on 500 posts! I’m a little behind on blogging as of late due to life throwing curves, but I hope to catch up soon! You always share great stuff on your blog.

    I used to be a keeper of things but lately (last 3 years) I have been reading more and more about minimalism and have tried to trim the fat. It’s hard though because what if I need it always pops in my head.

    Thanks for linking up with the #FabFridayPost

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! I haven’t been blogging regularly like I used to either. Thanks for stopping by for a read!
      I’ve gotten A LOT better about what I keep. But I still keep enough to drive DW a little bit crazy 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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