Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Life in 9 suitcases

On my personal Facebook page last year I shared our journey of leaving North America but I didn't share a lot of it here. Not sure why, we were just so busy I didn't really have the time to dedicate to writing the appropriate posts, I guess. So, I figure with our one year anniversary two days ago, I will share this with you now.

After we decided on where we should live and learning what our budget would be we knew this would be unlike any other move as now we had two choices: take our stuff or leave our stuff. 

Our friends who moved to Ireland a few months prior to us leaving sold everything. They said it was too expensive to ship and just wasn't worth the hassle. But, I figured I'd look into it anyway and agreed-for 10 year old furniture-the cost to get this stuff overseas was not even close to what I would describe as worth it. Plus, we were faced with the panic of 'what if we get it all there and it doesn't fit'...so we decided our best course of action was to sell just about everything.

But, before we could start selling, we had to decide what we were keeping. So, we looked at the costs associated with checking luggage and over weight fees and felt we could afford 6 large suitcases and 3 carry-on bags. This meant we would pay $150 extra for our luggage, but if it contained basically our entire lives it was worth it, plus it was less than the some 10,000+\- dollars a shipping container would have cost. 

About two months before we left Canada we started selling items. We started with items that weren't must haves or big items that would sell for the most money and we put a pick up date on them if it was stuff like beds or couches.

During this time I did take a 2 week vacation to Hawaii..which was wonderful, yet stressful. When we got home I had exactly one month before our fly out date. My days were spent on Craigslist and Amazon listing anything and everything that could be sold. In the last week I priced stuff to ridiculously low amounts, on the day before we were supposed to leave I was literally giving stuff away. I have pretty much my entire kitchen to a young girl who was moving in to her first apartment.

I did have 4 boxes 2 very large wardrobe type boxes and two regular medium size boxes that I packed with all our snowboarding gear and memory items and mailed that to my mother. I put some stuff in there for her and she still hasn't opened it. Maybe after this post she will {haha}. 

I will say deducting our lives down to 9 suitcases and four boxes made me feel lighter. Today, one year later I am careful about what I buy wanting to make sure I am surrounded by possessions I truly appreciate and that bring me joy.

Sure we sometimes miss the mindless shopping and buying because we want it in that moment, but know being conscious consumers during this time has only helped to serve our minds better and has let us focus on sharing memories instead of possessions.

Giving up everything for a dream was the best decision we ever made as a family and definitely don't regret it, it has been the most enriching experience for every single one of us. 

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