Your Stuff is Like Apple Pie

Apple pie is very popular internationally, not just in North America. The reason for this enduring love is much like the reason you hang onto your stuff.
Apple pie is a good example of “comfort food”, not just because it is delicious but because of the emotional satisfaction it provides. It reminds us of a simpler time with home-baked goodies from mom or grandma in the family home. Some of our stuff gives us the same sense of time and place as apple pie. We often associate long-held items or gifts with a particular person, place or event. Parting with such items can present a real challenge when downsizing because of meaningful memories. What can you do? Here are some practical suggestions:

1. Pass the items on to a younger family member.

This is an excellent way to retain some attachment you have to the items while still moving forward with your plan. You still maintain some form of connection with the item by keeping it in the family. You also feel good because you are giving something that is meaningful to you to a loved one. My oldest brother gave me his guitar when he could no longer play it easily. I gave away some record albums and a collection of “CHUM Charts” (radio hit lists) to my brother-in-law. This is an on-going process for our family.

2. Donate the items to an organization that has some interest in or connection to the items.

If you have some things with historical or common interest, the organization’s collection manager may be happy to build their inventory with your items. The woodworking shop co-ordinator for our condo building donated many tools he acquired over the years to the workshop for the use of all workshop members. He still has use of the tools as well as the satisfaction of seeing others use them to create something of value.

3. Give the items to your circle of friends

Apple pie also appeals to our sense of taste, smell and sight. Many of our most treasured items are like that since they also satisfy our senses. We may have a beautiful piece of pottery, glassware or a hand-crafted, wooden possession with a smooth finish and unique smell. A younger family member may not share your appreciation of the item and you will need to look outside your family for a new home. (See “Why your kids don’t want your stuff”.) Someone in your circle of friends or common interest group may be happy to receive it.

4.  Sell specialized items

If you have items that are expensive, in today’s market, you will probably consider selling them as well. Of course, this will require some trade-offs between the number of items you want to get rid of with the amount of time required to do so. Dealing with many possessions individually requires a lot of time and effort. Options include advertising in special interest magazines such as The Upper Canadian Antique Showcase, online groups, and local dealers or consignment shops. Examples of online sites are eBay and Kijiji (.ca or .com sites) and Transition Squad for online auctions. A helpful site with a connection to eBay is Collectors Weekly (USA).

What are some of your “apple pie items?”

Keep in touch with Downsizing Help by clicking on “Follow” at the end of this article. A new post is released every Sunday at 2 p.m. EST.

Unless otherwise credited, all posts are happily authored in quill & pen by …
Paul Ferri, Broker
RE/MAX Unique Inc. Brokerage*
Toronto, Canada

*Each office independently owned and operated

Photo credit: Pixabay ~ Apple pie by Magdus of France


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