John and I have been making plans for awhile now for our trip back to the States. It is going to be here before we know it! Some major planning (mostly on John's part) has already gone into our trip but we still have a lot to do in order to get ready. My house, for one.
Since we're going to be gone for almost six months, we are trying to decide exactly how to proceed with our household belongings. It is truly amazing to me how much stuff we have accumulated since moving overseas. I'll never forget preparing to move here, and selling or giving away so many things that everything we owned fit in our (hand-me-down) station wagon. What a great feeling that was! I felt so free! But then we moved here. . . and bought it all again. The inescapable fact remains--you need stuff to live. Silverware, pots and pans, lamps, a blender, a vacuum cleaner, towels. . . they're all really handy for living. But now it seems that despite my best intentions and frequent de-cluttering efforts, we have gradually built up an enormous amount of stuff again.
Part of that, no doubt, is having two children. With kids comes stuff. Most of it is useful, some of it is just for fun, but there's no denying that our possessions have multiplied as our family has grown.
So the question is, what to do with all this stuff?
We plan to move to a different house soon after coming back to Asia since our family of four is a little cramped in our current location. So probably before we go, I will do LOTS of sorting, organizing and packing since there is no need for all of our things to stay out while we are gone. We plan to continue renting this apartment while we're gone, since there isn't another good option for storage. (And because the rent is quite cheap!) But at least that will be convenient, we can leave all our boxes here.
Anyway, I can see that I will have my work cut out for me in January, preparing and dealing with all of this stuff. But recently when I was telling Clara Anne stories about our upcoming adventure to Grandpa and Grandma's house in the States, I was asking her what stuff she thought we should pack along with us.
She thought for a minute and said, Telephone. "That's a great idea, Clara Anne, except that our cell phones won't work in America! But we can take your toy cell phone." Next on her list: Doll. "Certainly," I affirmed. "We won't want to leave Doll behind." I prompted her to think of one more thing we should take with us. She thought and thought, and then very confidently said, "Butter."
Well, happily for Clara Anne, we should be able to find butter at pretty much any grocery store in the States. Plus, I don't think it would pack very well...:) But I'm sure we'll think of lots of other things we won't want to forget!