Shedding and Shredding

We did  it!  A trunk load of excess paper has been taken to the local shredding event and sent on its way to recycling.IMG_1070

We spent a good bit of time this past week going through the paper on our first and second floors. We went through our file cabinets, our bookcases, the tax return boxes going back eight years and the piles of unsorted odds and ends.  We consigned research notes, medical notices, receipts for tax years, old financial statements and just plain unnecessary accumulations to the boxes and bins we dredged up from the basement to handle the stuff. We wondered at some of the paper we have held onto for so long. Inertia.

On arriving at the local credit union’s shredding site, we found a good number of others waiting to drop off their stuff. None could hold a candle to ours. There were folks with wimpy shopping bags and copy paper boxes but nothing that amounted to our full trunk. We were greeted by credit union representatives who welcomed us and asked how we had heard about the event. No, we aren’t members of the credit union, but we were welcomed nonetheless. Free and open to the public, we were assured.

We unloaded and waited our turn(s) to send the boxes up to the master shredder. A veryIMG_1073 efficient operation, though loud. Everyone was in a good mood and there was a pleasing sense of community. Who knew that old paper could engender such camaraderie? Mission accomplished, we rewarded ourselves with lunch at a Mexican restaurant with neighbors.

More paper awaits us in the basement. This is the stuff that we brought with us eight years ago. Some we didn’t have time to sort responsibly; some is family history; and, some is our children’s papers. Interestingly, one daughter, in reading the blog, emailed to implore us not to get rid of the books she and her sister have treasured since childhood. She also included a commitment to come up this summer and go through those kid bins that we brought with us. We’re making progress.IMG_1078

If there is one thing I could say in the wake of the past week and today’s event, it is thanks to the credit union for their public spiritedness, but I would also be willing to make a donation to a local charity in appreciation for their making this day possible.

It’s back to the books now.




6 thoughts on “Shedding and Shredding

  1. Susan Skellan Seltzer

    Good for you, Donna and Ray! I would like something similar to take place at our house but I think it’s going to be a while before Paul is willing to part with his treasures. Meanwhile, I continually cull the new “piles” that seem to appear out of nowhere. Between the clothes shedding and paper shredding you both must feel a lot lighter. I’m a tad envious but cheering you on from afar.


    1. Donna Copson Post author

      Don’t despair, Sue. Work around the edges. I suspect that we haven’t dealt yet with our most challenging items. Keep us all informed of how things go.


  2. Dorothy Williams

    Hi Donna – Funny how a “Shedding Stuff” event can turn into a social happening. Years ago after my husband, the PY United Methodist minister, died I decided to lighten the load of his collected and treasured books many of which were already musty and tattered when he dragged them home from Thrift Stores around Central NY. This was in the days before the internet when one could not research a sermon illustration on line so it was handy to have a cellar full of books to check facts writing sermons at 1:00 am Sunday mornings. I boxed them up and invited some dear friends to a bonfire party. One of my guests was old Jim Long owner of the original Long’s Books. Jim then had the final say as to whether a book was bonfire worthy. The first guest in the fire ring pulled a book out of the box and proclaimed it burnable. However the last guest seated around the campfire was Jim Long who saved some of the books from the bonfire by shouting, “Oh no, you can’t burn this title!” We did discover that books don’t burn very well, but the wine and fellowship made for a memorable evening on Scott Rd.


    1. Donna Copson Post author

      Great story, Dorothy! Thanks for sharing it. I may need to link back to it when I get really, really seriously into the book discard process. Those last decisions will be the most agonizing. Bonfire. Wow! I’ll need to think about that and maybe invite Jim Jr. to mediate. Loved it.


  3. Steve Miller

    Inspirational! We did this last year, at least the first tranche. It is a truly fell-good moment. Thanks for sharing.



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