Sadly, allsorters often sort & pack up the homes for the estate or family after a loved one has upgraded to heavenSenior woman gardening

Many might consider this a sad task but we are honoured to step in & sort out the home & possessions with grace & respect
As we sort through possessions, I often feel like I have the “best seat in the house” to view some amazing lives, travels & collectibles
Often I talk to families who are in the process of sorting out their departed loved one’s possessions & homes & they may have gotten “lost” in the stuff, how to divide it, what they want to keep or do with it – often they just box it all up intending to deal with it later.   Their departed loved one would be dismayed to see the pain & confusion caused by their “stuff”
Recently I spoke with a gentleman whose mother had moved on to heaven.  He was dealing with sorting out her home & its possessions & was looking for a valuer to value the contents.  (Valuers are often necessary when dividing estates, but they can be costly – as a guide, hourly rates of around $150+ apply (minimum 2-3 hours)).  He advised that his sister wanted everything valued.  I then asked him whether the stuff was important to him & if he wanted it.  His response was a quick “NO”, he didn’t want any of it, maybe just an item or two.  Next I asked him, “do you value your relationship with your sister”.  Another quick response, a “YES”.  I then suggested, “just let her have whatever she wants”.  He sighed & said “yeah, thanks, it seems to mean more to her & mum wouldn’t want us fighting”

If you are overwhelmed with packing up a loved one’s possessions, can’t decide what to keep, maybe you keep putting it off, maybe you are just planning to put it all in storage … the best advice I can give you is to follow decluttering guru Peter Walsh’s 5 Treasures strategy …  & that is, “your loved one has left you 5 treasures to find that are meaningful to you … treasures that you will treat with honour & respect … that you will display or use in your home”

Remember, you don’t have to keep everything that was your loved ones & they wouldn’t want you spending your time stressing over it all – remember it’s only stuff …  they will always be in your heart
When I heard Peter talk about the “5 Treasures Strategy” I realised I had done this with my mother’s possessions when I packed up her home  –moving-to-aged-care

  • I have her wedding & engagement rings which I wear (1&2),
  • her Waterford crystal which is on display in my home in her crystal cabinet (3&4) &
  • her dinner set some of which is also on display in my home (5).
  • Plus a couple more – her mixing & icing bowls that she made all her cakes with, her cookie jar …. thanks mum

Everything else went to other family members, charity or was tossed
I hadn’t realised it, but my mother is actually with me everyday when I put on her rings or look at the Waterford crystal, & I know I have treated her loved items with honour & respect, & I know that one day these items will be passed on to her granddaughters ….
farewell-to-a-loved-oneRIP Philomena (4-Aug-2004)

… Mary, the allsorter