From my stuff’s perspective, Friday was a very scary day.
On Friday night, Hubs and I decided to go for a bike ride. We store our bikes in a storage unit on site at our apartment. When we got into the storage unit area, 4 of the 6 lockers had their locks cut, including ours. 3 of the 4 cut lock units were cleaned out.
Thankfully, our unit was untouched. A little investigation revealed that Management screwed up and our lock was cut by mistake. This was not an act of a lazy thief who saw our old bikes and didn’t bother moving them to steal what was behind them. We ‘locked’ our unit with a zip tie and made an emergency trip to Target for a new lock.
While our stuff was now safe, my mind kept turning over the idea of stuff. What did we have in there? If it was cleaned out, what would I miss? If this stuff is in a storage locker, do we really need to hold on to it? Let’s dive a little deeper.
What’s in the Storage Locker?
The storage locker is quite generous in size. My gut tells me that its about 4′ x 6′ and it’s full.
- 2 adult bikes
- 1 microwave (Living a microwave free life for 2 years! woot!)
- 80% of our wedding gifts.
- Fine China, given to me by my mother, given to her by her mother.
- Christmas tree and gift wrap
- Easter basket and eggs for the annual Easter Egg hunt 🙂
- 1 bookshelf
- A heap of empty boxes.
- Other things that I can’t remember and I don’t want to dig in the unit to figure out what else is there.
All of that fills a 4′ x 6′ unit to the top. We have to store our bikes vertically and that’s a tight squeeze. All of this stuff is not good enough to be in our everyday home.
What would I miss?
On our still stressed drive to Target to get a new lock, a few things kept rolling through my head. 1) If all it takes is a bolt cutter to steal my stuff, what’s the point of the storage unit? More importantly, 2) If everything was gone, what would I miss?
The answer: Not much.
I quick mental scan of the contents of the locker showed me that for all 24 square feet, I only cared about my mother’s china and my glorious unopened KitchenAid Stand Mixer.
The rest of it, meh. So long as my renter’s insurance kicked in, I could get a new bike (read: I want a better bike that fits my current biking needs), and while I love my wedding gifts, they are easily replaceable. Sadly, I don’t even really know what’s all in there. I know we’ve got a rice cooker, toaster and popcorn maker, but beyond that… *shoulder shrugs*… other helpful kitchen stuff that I don’t have room for in my itty bitty apartment kitchen?
Why am I keeping all this?
If I’m not using it and I won’t miss it, why am I keeping it? On the flip side, if it was stolen and I would miss it, why aren’t I using it now?
The answers/excuses for a few things are easy:
- The bikes are too bulky to keep in our apartment. We are starting to bike more and this is simply where we keep them.
- The Christmas and Easter stuff is seasonal. When it’s that season, it comes out.
- The toaster and rice cooker are replacements waiting in the wings. Our current rice cooker is on suicide watch, so I’m happy to have a back up in place.
- The bookshelf doesn’t fit in our current apartment layout, but it’s a nice bookshelf. We’ll use it again when we have a different arrangement.
- The microwave is a release valve in case one of us snaps and suddenly demands food that’s hot on the outside and frozen on the inside. (*whispers “hot pockets”*)
What about the stuff I don’t care about?
Why am I keeping boxes? We’ve lived in our apartment for nearly 5 years. We knew this wasn’t going to be a short stay when we arrived and don’t plan to leave any time soon. What’s with the boxes?! I don’t have a good answer.
What about the unopened wedding gifts with no anticipated use date? Am I just a hoarder? Probably. I’m sure I may find a use for them someday, but is that reason enough to keep them? One of them is a 12″x 12″ skillet that I’m sure my Momma would love at the cabin. Am I being selfish by keeping these items to myself even if I’m not using them?
What about the stuff I love?
Why am I not using the Stand Mixer or the China? I don’t have a good reason. The reasons I have are that my kitchen is tiny and I don’t want to break anything. These don’t feel like good reasons to keep something and never use it.
Of all the wedding gifts I received, the Stand Mixer is my favorite. At my parents’ house, I loved to bake with the mixer all the time. Now that my kitchen is itty bitty, the mess of baking is a hassle. Even more practically, I don’t want to make cookies by myself. That sounds horribly fat and lonely.
It appears I have more questions than answers. I don’t have a solution for this extra stuff now, but maybe I will someday. As traumatic as the “omg! were we robbed?” moment was, I’m thankful to have the opportunity to evaluate my stuff.
Do you have a stand mixer? What do you use it for? Inspire me!