Way Too Much Stuff

We make a little progress with the cleaning and sorting and then we come upon more stuff.  Today Vince was working out in the storage building.

When there’s this many Allied boxes from the move 4-1/2 years ago that have not been unpacked, you know it’s stuff we really don’t need.  Most of it, according to Vince, is his wood that he’s collected for wood turning.

What are we going to do with all this stuff?  Vince has sold some saws and some of his wood but . . what are the chances of both the husband and wife being such huge pack rats?



  1. 1

    Marilyn says

    If this is a support group for husband/wife packrat teams, sign us up! I collect craft supplies and my husband collects comics. I think that is why we get along so well. We support each other’s addictions and have learned to step over the piles of treasures and turn a blind eye to the mess. I just hope we never have to move again.

  2. 2


    LOL, looks familiar! My DH collects stamps, so when we move it’s containers of fabric and containers of stamps and stamp albums and stamp books… Heck, hun, you can have as much stuff as you really want to have… I declare it so…

  3. 3


    I think pack rats are drawn to other pack rats. In fact both my husband and I came from a long line of pack rats. I’ve got my fabric and yarn and he has his music, instruments and school stuff. We recently packed up “a bunch” of stuff (4 or 5 good sized boxed packed tightly) and gave it to charity — not that you can tell by walking through the house, garage or basement.

  4. 4


    HAHAHA I have to laugh because when we move, because my boxes are the most obvious, anyone helping us moves constantly comments on how much *stuff* I have. THEN we start unpacking and turn up box after box of stuff that belongs to Mike. Mike has 3 times the amount of clothes I do…books, art stuff…. I told him this time that anytime someone picks on me about the amount of stuff I have, he better speak up and let them know he has as much or more than I.

    Stop by and follow my new blog!!! I decided it was time for a change from Crazy for the Country. New one: http://www.ourownvillage.blogspot.com

    • 4.1


      When our house came on the market in 2009, I just started sorting through my stuff and threw a lot of it away. The other members of my family were not in such a hurry to do so.
      Then people like my mother in law started picking on me. Of course no one said to her that I was the only one who had already weeded out all her stuff.

  5. 5

    Sandy K says

    I am a pack rat my self. What is really bad is my son and his
    wife are both pack rats. Why do we do this?

  6. 6


    Sign up my Husband and I too. We are cleaning out our storage room tomorrow. There has been a suggestion that we need to tie safety ropes to ourselves that lead out of the room…just in case one of the children need to pull us to safety! Good luck witht the continual cleanout/organizing/packing project.

  7. 7

    SarahB says

    *grin* I am a previous-packrat! I like to save things in case I need them later, which I inevitably do.. then we have to go buy something since my husband throws the old one away. When I got married my husband (I really do love him!) threw away a lot of my “things” when we combined households. Even though it’s been 5 years I still look for things I KNOW I had, only to find out my husband threw it out years ago. I can’t help but be glad he did it for me watching you, Judy, and Vince cleaning to move!! We are also preparing to move and I LOVE that most everything we own will fit on a trailer (not the furniture, LOL, just our “stuff”!)

  8. 8

    Sue in Scottsdale, AZ says

    Oh Judy, I can sympathize. Both my DH and I are pack rats. I was not nearly as bad as my husband when we got married 21 years ago, but as the time goes by I find it is just easier to give in than fight. Several years ago my husband hired a friend to clean out his second garage (2,000 square feet in the back yard – we are on an acre lot) and toss stuff that wasn’t very good. My husband and I were not allowed to go near that garage until it was finished. Well, the front garage is packed to the gills and the back garage is getting filled again! We are 2 people living in a 4 bedroom house. One bedroom is packed and we can’t even get into it. My husband’s “office” is packed and I don’t go near it. The 3rd bedroom is a guest room but that is also where my stash is. I have also taken over the dining room and kitchen with my longarm and sewing area. My office – I have an in-home business – is what used to be the original garage and storeroom. My husband has taken over 1/3 or this area for his embroidery machine and supplies. His stained glass stuff is in the “craft room” in the back garage. It goes on and on and on. So … I hope we never have to move because it will be a nightmare. We keep talking about cleaning up the front garage so we can get another car parked inside but there is always an excuse – too hot (why do we discuss doing this in the summer) or too cold.

  9. 9

    Pat in Washington says

    Don’t feel like the Lone Ranger – my late husband and I were pack rats too. I collect books and fabric and yarn and “projects”. He collected tools, leftover bits of wood from carpentry projects, cabinets from a remodel job (he got the old ones that were coming out of the house), rolls of tar paper, roofing material and tools, tools, tools. When I had to pack up our 4 bedroom house where we’d lived for 25 years and move us into handicap accessible housing, I had a Garage Sale For Guys to sell his stuff. Guys were lined up 2 hours ahead of time in our driveway.

  10. 10

    Sandy says

    Mr. and Mrs. Packrat live at our house too. My mother had the idea if you didn’t use something in a year, to get rid of it. I would have to go at least 10 years, preferring 20 years and still I hang onto things.

    We both have our hobbies, sewing, yarn, books, music CD’s for me to name a few. Hubby likes remote control airplanes, O guage train sets, steel guitar, (notice how his hobbies are more $$$ than mine, lol). We have a 4 bedroom 2 story house and I don’t know how we raised 2 kids here. Our one guest room is about to be taken over with our latest hobbies, lol. I know in my heart the more you give the more you get back from God. Why can’t get myself in gear and get rid of alot of this STUFF?

  11. 11

    Sandra Neel Hutchins says

    It sounds like you have many friends who are pack rats in common! On the other hand, we are not, and don’t get why anyone would want to keep so much stuff. Different strokes for different folks! Love reading your blog! Happy packing!

  12. 12

    Linda says

    I see Vince also has a collection of white, 5-gal. buckets. You would not believe how many of those my husband has. A couple of friends also have DHs who prize those buckets. One of them says her husband has taken to amassing other curious things since he retired……40 some packages of toilet paper and MREs among other stuff. I can tell it’s driving her crazy because she’s one of those people who like the neat, uncluttered look while he’s of the “we might that” school of mind. Good luck with the sorting and purging.

  13. 13


    I feel for you I really do – if we had to move my husband would have to get rid of books!! I do mean it too – it would take one u-haul just to move books – I’m sick of them, he has collected and collected to the point that most are not even read (old ones) and take up so much space. I have actually secretly took boxes of them out of the house and gave to Good Will over the years and he has never even noticed-it never even made a dent – I need to do it again while he is working and not at home, then I wouldn’t get away with it.

    • 13.1

      Alma says

      We have a friend who will not part with his books either. He has auto manuals back to the 1940’s. Now if he ever buys a really, really old car….he is all set!

  14. 14


    Frank saves nothing. I save everything. I see a use for every little bit of something –one day….!

    My Interior Designer Daughter HATES clutter, junk and stuff. Which is what I have most of. When she and I designed the perfect sewing studio in her old bedroom she found that she could spend about 1 1/2 hours on average each day throwing out my “stuff”. I had shut down my recruiting office, had quilting and crafting stuff and lots of magazines, pictures etc. I would get visibly upset when she spent more than 2 hours tossing stuff.

    I love my “stuff”, whatever it is. And as long as it is not in the den or kitchen, I should be able to have my “stuff”.

    Besides, I have just the one room while FRANK has the garage, his office in the extra bedroom, a building he built in the back and a rented storage space. If I had all that my room would be neat too!


  15. 16

    Omajean says

    There is a good way to look at this–at least he understands you. My husband does not understand all of the fabric, yarns, magazines books, etc. that are located here and there throughout our house.

  16. 17


    The problem is that the company is moving you , so there is less incentive to thin out stuff. But, better now than later. Good luck!

  17. 18

    pdudgeon says

    we’ve moved twice in the last 11 years, (from one apartment to another) and i moved most of the lighter stuff by myself both times. the last time i put 11 miles on the car for a quarter mile move.
    i found the secret to moving was to establish the hubby in the new location first, and then clean out his stuff. he’s the pack rat and just loves to have his stuff around him. mind you he hasn’t looked at his stuff in ages, but it had better be there just the same, lol.

  18. 19

    Alma says

    As usual, I am the odd one out! My husband and I are not savers. Mainly because we just don’t have any room in our house. No basement, no attic – so there really isn’t any place to collect stuff. No outbuildings or sheds.
    I would like to have a nice fabric stash, but I truly have no place to put it outside of my small sewing room. About once a year I go thru the fabric I have because the limited drawer space just won’t hold any more. I sort it out, and search for a “donor”. Last year I found a senior citizen center that was looking for fabric for crafts. Perfect! There seems to always be a good place to put it to use. I figure if I haven’t used it in 2 years, the chances are slim that I will ever need it and someone needs it now!
    To those others I say —if you haven’t been approached by the producers of the show “Hoarders”, then you are okay!!! LOL

  19. 20

    Denise says

    If you both didn’t have “stuff” the fact that one of you did would probably drive the other person crazy — so it’s a good match!

  20. 21


    I will tell you one thing for sure…..if one of you is a pack rat, it is better that you BOTH ARE. Believe me, it is NOT GOOD when only one of you is a PACK RAT!!!!

    Then you have all of the stuff AAAANNNNNDDDD one unhappy camper! 🙂 Don’t ask me how I know that! 🙂

    sao in Midlothian, VA

  21. 22


    dh and I are both packrats and for some reason or another, are raising three packrats, as well. I’m pretty good with lightening the load as I moved a lot as a child, but for some reason that part is not rubbing off *sigh*

  22. 23

    Becky I says

    My husband is a woodturner. When he started turning he finally began to understand my need to quilt. That wood is fabric to him, ya gotta let him have it or he’ll start sorting your fabric and you can’t have that! lol

  23. 24


    I’m firmly convinced people should move every 7 years just to keep the ‘stuff’ from accumulating. However, we’ve lived here for going on 21 years so I’m not in a good position to talk!

  24. 25


    Our “stuff” is our identity, it helps us to define who we are… to ourselves. Those of us who are retired have no outside validation of self. When we were working we could always say “I’m a teacher at —“, or “I’m an Engineer with —” giving others (and ourselves) a compass-point for identifying us.
    HHhhmmmm… it appears I’m justifying keeping all my stuff and NEVER moving again! LOL