We receive mail for 5 people to our home, so to save any hassles, we set up a PO Box and had all the mail redirected to it. We arranged for one of our daughters (thank you Fiona) to pick up the mail, and gave her prepaid post bags to send to us anything we physically needed. We arranged for everything that could be emailed to us to be emailed.
De-cluttering the House
After my sisters and I moved our Mum into a studio apartment at the *Margaret Stoddart Rest Home, we cleaned her house out. It was full of stuff. Memories from our childhood, floral art paraphernalia, suitcases for various committees Mum was secretary or treasurer for, along with all the detritus that gets accumulated over the fifty years. Mum and Dad had built their home and created their garden together. It was a hard for Mum at the time, and emotional wrench for all of us, but Mum is so happy now. She loves her apartment, the staff and the other residents. With the help of friends and family, we had a weekend in Oamaru and cleaned out the family home. Our cousin Brent supplied an enormous trailer and anything that didn’t sell in our “pop up” garage sale was sent to the dump. Cleaning the old family home out, I realized that we have a lot of “things” that we think we need, but in all honesty, hardly ever use. I’m not a naturally tidy person, so I bought a couple of minimalist e-books and borrowed some from the library. Note- I didn’t buy more books to add to our already bulging book shelves. We gradually sold, gave away or dumped a lot of accumulated stuff. We purchased a 10ft container – that’s half the normal sized container, to make sure we didn’t keep anything we don’t need. I suspect when we eventually move in to a small apartment or two room cottage, we will find we have hung on to stuff we don’t need.
Storing our Belongings
After de-cluttering, all our furniture and belongings were sorted through. We packed what we wanted to keep into the garden shed and a 10ft shipping container which is sitting on our property. A word of warning here, our insurance company wouldn’t cover the cost of our property in the shipping container. They only do that if the container is in a storage facility. So only the things in the shed are covered.
In the past ten years or so, we have been away in our motorhome (or previous caravans) most weekends. So including work we were hardly ever at home. The only people who used our land line to call us were my Mum and those Sales and Survey People. So we got rid of our landline about five years ago and got cell phones with plans that fitted our lifestyle.
Life on the Open Road
Our aim on the open road is to travel no further than 50kms at a time, every three or four days, or less, if possible. We also try to freedom camp as much as possible, reducing our overnight parking expenses – and WOW!!! the places you can freedom camp / boondock / free camp in New Zealand are amazing. ‘It’s about the journey, not just the destination’ *Margaret Stoddart Rest Home in Christchurch is part of the Ryman Group. We can’t speak highly enough of the staff and Marie and Maria who made the whole process so easy.