Rob Oxford: Just...Let It Go!

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Stuff and treasures crowd the bookshelves
Photo by Rob Oxford
By Rob Oxford

It's that time of year again. Time to clean out those attics and closets.

Time to spend an afternoon pricing items you know you'll sell for much less than marked.

Time to make signs that will hopefully attract attention and most likely, remain stapled to telephone poles around the neighborhood for weeks afterward.

Lastly, it's time to place an ad online... only to find that the weather has changed and Steve Poole now says "showers possible... could be heavy at times".

Ahhh, Spring Cleaning in the Pacific Northwest. Time for a Garage Sale.

First of all does anyone actually know the difference between a Garage Sale and a Yard Sale. Can I not sell items I keep in my garage at a yard sale? Thusly, do I have to have everything in my yard for it to be a.... yard sale or can I sell some items I have in my garage?

Regardless, the hardest part of having any kind of sale is deciding what needs to go, right? You know you can use the extra space. Stuff has been piling up for years and you could definitely use some extra cash. Some people have an incredible aversion to holding garage sales and Goodwill is extremely grateful to them. After all, it is a lot of work and not always worth the time and effort. But why not make a little extra money off those "treasures" of yours if you can?

Personally, I love a good garage sale. They're like giant magnets and I'm wearing a leisure suit made of steel. Which is precisely why I have so much extra stuff of my own that needs getting rid of in the first place. But every couple of years you have to pull the trigger and decide what stays and what goes.

I have to admit, I am a "Collector". I collect a lot of things, music, entertainment and sports memorabilia mostly. But I also "save" just about everything.

A baseball from the first T ball Team I ever coached. A guitar I cut out of cardboard for my son Taylor when he was 3.

Jars full of rocks taken from beaches we have visited as a family. Every baseball hat and jersey my son Robbie wore during his years with North King County Little League.

Even a piece of wood from a window off of "Old Mother Hubbard's" house from the now defunct Never Never Land at Point Defiance Park. A remnant from a place that holds many memories and a place I visited many times as a child now sits on the desk from whence I write these articles.

I'm sure you're familiar with the phrase, "you can't take it with you"? Well, I'm sure as heck gonna try. But seriously, how do you decide what to keep and what to sell in a garage sale?

This tool will absolutely be essential some time
Photo by Rob Oxford
I can't count how many times in the past I've thrown something away as insignificant as a grommet or given it to a secondhand store only to wish a few months later that I still had it.

“Now, what did I do with that grommet?”

When it comes to items of a sentimental nature, I am the worst. As an Army Brat growing up, we moved around a lot.

Things got left behind or mysteriously disappeared in the dead of night. Bicycles were "inherited" by neighbor kids, baseball card collections were "donated" and sadly sometimes photo albums were simply lost.

This may explain why I take so many pictures, have shelves of scrapbooks and why my kids roll their eyes every time I reach for my phone to snap a photo. I can't help it, I just love memories.

But remember this, when your ticket to the big dance is finally punched, someone (most likely your children) is going to have to sort through all those precious keepsakes with which you couldn't bear to part and most likely they won't have a clue as to why.

So, save them the headache and just... let it go, let it go.

P.S. If that song from "Frozen" is stuck in your head after reading this article...

(laughs hysterically)


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