My parents had a giant barn with a huge hayloft– and no farm animals. The space was enormous- big, cavernous, lovely storage space. My grandparents built the house and barn in 1914, my parents moved in 1948. No one ever threw anything out. This is problematic when you are the third generation of savers.
In the hayloft one would find a rodent-chewed side saddle from the early 1900’s, a broken electric mixer from the 1950’s, a cherry tree stump, a homemade portable outhouse from a Girl Scout camping trip in the 1960’s. It was a treasure trove. If you dug around long enough you were sure to find something interesting.
But there is a downside to several lifetimes of saving habits. My husband and I moved out of our apartment in Maine and moved to a cabin in the woods in New Hampshire. We needed somewhere to store most of our household stuff. Of course, my parents had plenty of room in the barn hayloft. We filled a medium sized U-Haul truck and drove it straight to my parents’ home. There I discovered that all available floor space was piled high with empty cardboard boxes! These were saved for ‘just in case’. There were boxes in every possible size and shape. We found ourselves in the absurd position of having to move empty boxes in order to store our household goods. Suffice it to say that today I am not a big fan of storing boxes.
The River Center will be moving to 9 Vose Farm Rd. in Peterborough next week. We are consolidating ourselves from two buildings on Concord St., into an efficient, beautiful office space. This makes us think about what we use, what we need, and what is important. We must be intentional. Books, files, office supplies, all are looked at with a critical eye. We need to be thoughtful about what we take with us. Do we need to take three boxes of envelopes with another organization’s logo on them? How about the tub of dried up plaster of paris from long ago craft projects? A full dumpster is a beautiful thing.
Reviewing what we have accumulated, assessing what we need going forward and deciding what we can get rid of is a healthy process. We do this in our lives and our businesses and organizations.
The River Center Board is developing a new strategic plan that will provide guidance for the next three years. We are assessing what we have, what we need going forward and clutter we need to remove. We are solidly keeping our mission to serve the Eastern Monadnock Region by providing community connections, parenting support, job search skills, tax and money coaching. We are excited to move to a new space that will enhance that mission goal. We will miss our home at 46 Concord, but will gladly leave building maintenance worries to our new landlord.