Hey all, I've been a lurker on this thread and have found it really helpful in my decluttering journey. This year I assigned myself the task of getting rid of 1,000 items in 2011 (I'm well on track but it's getting to be a bit of a stretch since I'm a single girl living at home with my mother. Most of my stuff is confined to 1 bed/bath with some items in the kitchen and living space). Since I can't find 1000 to get rid of from my old house, I'm also decluttering items from my childhood that are being stored at my grandparents' house (we lived there when I was young and we also put a few boxes from our cleaned-out storage unit in their basement temporarily).
My grandmother has always been passive aggressive and it's really wearing on my nerves as she's making it hard for me to declutter items from her house, even though they're MY items. Every time I go in the basement for awhile to sort through kid's toys or books to donate, she'll come down and sort through it after I'm done and say "Oh, do you think (cousin) could use these?" It's not that I don't want to share these items with family members, but for me it's just much easier to drop of a big load at Goodwill and go.To give them to cousins would require storing them weeks or months until we see those cousins again, and while the items wouldn't be in my house, I still feel their "weight" since they haven't left yet, if that makes sense.
This past year, my aunt and uncle received guardianship of one of their nieces from another side of the family, and my grandmother is ALWAYS wanting to hold items for her. Again, I don't have a problem with gifting things, but she already has many toys, and if my grandmother gave them everything she wants to set aside for this girl, they'd go home with boxes and boxes of new toys every time they come to visit (about 1x a month). I have no problem leaving 15-20 age-appropriate toys at my grandparents' house for her to play with on visits, but there's no need to send the girl home with 30 books every time we see her, especially when my aunt and uncle can more than provide for her, and her room at home is already full of books and toys .
Additionally, last year we re-decorated my room and got new furniture. My old desk and bookcase are sitting (empty and unused) in my mother's room because when we moved in 8 years ago, my grandmother bought them for me and now won't "let" us get rid of them. She doesn't want them back in her house, but feels like she should get some of the money back she spent on them, so I can't donate or Freecycle them. Furthermore, she has a ridiculous idea of what they're worth. She's posted them on CL a couple times but uses the price she paid as her base, rather than what similar items are selling for. I'm not sure of the exact numbers, but say she paid $300 for them. She's trying to sell them for $250 even though every other bookcase and desk on CL is selling for $50-100. I almost want to go dump them and just give her $50.
Sorry for the long rant, but I'm just looking for some advice, if you can formulate a question out of that post, heh. I guess I want to know if I should just go to her house and sneak bags of my stuff out to the car so she can't go through it? Say something (which may lead her to hold a very passive aggressive grudge for awhile)? Let her continue to sort through and just ignore it because most of the stuff isn't in my house, and it will be gone eventually?