Monday, August 18, 2008

cleaning up memories

This past weekend was the second weekend in our "Clean-up from hell."

I think it will take one more weekend.

One more weekend, and one more dumpster. Construction sized dumpster. Industrial sized dumpster.

My Mom, my Aunt, and I (with our not 100% willing spouses) have been cleaning up Grandma and Grandpa's place. They lived at that house in town since 1975. They brought to town a 1950 something trailer house which they parked behind the house. They'd had the trailer since 1967 or 1968...somewhere in there.

The trailer, while it was in the country, was used as bedrooms for Grandma, Grandpa and Sandy. It was also bought to give the family indoor plumbing--the first they had ever had. (I have vague memories of going "potty" in the outhouse, so I know they got it after I was born.) Anyway, when they moved to town, the trailer came with them because Grandma was going to use it for her Ceramic Shop. And, she did. It's a 55 x 10 trailer. Pink. The appliances were all pink. The ceramic shop was in the former kitchen/living room area. One bedroom, a teeny-tiny room, was Grandma's sewing room. One room was where the greenware was kept, and the Master bedroom was used for storage.

Our accomplishment this weekend was cleaning out the trailer. It still had 40 years worth of ceramics and paint and brushes and magazines and greenware, and bisque and molds. We've tried to find homes for the greenware and molds, but we couldn't find any takers. We want to be done with the cleaning and the sorting and the throwing away. So, we decided to break the molds and greenware and dispose of it all.

And, actually, it was kinda fun, purposely breaking stuff. There's a wicked sort of satisfaction in being allowed to break something.

We just didn't allow ourselves to think of how much money had been spent on some of those molds. And, with many of those molds, we remembered having those items in our homes. But, we couldn't find the molds a new home, so, out they went.

But, we weeded that trailer down to 4 boxes of stuff. And believe me, that was quiet an accomplishment. It was dirty, nasty work too...well, except for breaking stuff. Well, ok, it was dirty was mud and clay after all.

The trailer, while a good one in it's day, has lived it's life. The roof leaks, in fact, it had leaked on some of the greenware, which was a mass of miss-shapen unidentifiable things...think Swamp Thing. All the windows have leaked, the floor was rotten in 2 rooms. (Wayne almost went through the floor in the bathroom.) It's in awful shape. At one time, we thought it could be pulled out of there, but not any more. If anyone tried to haul it out, it would come apart.

Next step is to find someone to tear it down. (that's Daddy's job.)

While we girls were working on the trailer, with occasional help from the men-folk. The men-folk were finishing up with the garage. Between the two groups, we filled up another dumpster.

Then, we went back into the house. sigh.


The trailer was bad enough, but the house...sigh.

It takes a lot of time to sort through 66 years of memories. And, to top it off, we had to deal with not only Grandma and Grandpa's stuff, but Aunt Flo's stuff too.

Aunt Flo, wasn't really an aunt, but a family friend. Grandma and Grandpa bought her house when she died from her heirs. They left 2 bedroom sets, a dining room set, and most of her kitchen stuff. They left pictures on the walls, books, you name it, they left it.

Which left us with also cleaning up Aunt Flo's stuff.

But, Mom and Sandy have decided to leave the dining set, and some shelves. We're leaving the washer and dryer, the deep freezer, the refrigerator and...heck, I can't remember what all we are leaving.

But, none of us have room. The other grandkids don't have room. There's not enough for a sale. And, to be honest, we don't care about making money.

We just want to be done. We want June and Olen (cousins) to have the house. And, we want to be done. But we aren't.

We've got one more weekend. sigh.

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