A Family’s Hardest Task

GOING THROUGH YOUR PARENTS LIFE

When it comes time to downsize for a move to retirement living or clearing out your parents home for sale – it is hard going through a life of memories. Even a professional organizer realizes the same emotions clients have when it is their parents home that is on the market. Allow me to share how I reviewed my family home, purchased in 1968, and enjoyed for 42 years.

Cabinets full of memories and boxes of pictures and papers; I was the only one left to clear out my parent’s estate. In a comfortable room, I labeled several container with names of family members: Dad’s family, Mom’s family, Brother, Business, Chris, and Aunt.

Family pictures and archives sorted by each member of family.

Family pictures and archives sorted by each member of family.

The sort was quick, and the most important categories have not been mentioned…Give to Others and Recycle. the duplicate pictures and those i just did not care about were passed on. Others would be dealt with later when Mom is gone. By now when she want to see something like pictures of her family, they can be found easily. And later, this “sort” will me editing even more easier when the time comes.

As I was working that night, I discovered 40 or so typed love letters from my Dad to Mom from the end of the war in 1945. What a find and what a surprise. Dad left us the past year, so I placed these in sheet protectors and placed in an attractive binder called “Love Letters from the War”.

If it is precious, make it a keepsake!

If it is precious, make it a keepsake!


During the week, I made quick decisions working on my own. This process is difficult, but working with professionals like myself can comfort and guide you as you empty the family home. It gave me a special appreciation for when my clients are going through. But letting go allows us to move forward and appreciate where we came from as new memories are created in life.

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