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“It’s a process…stuff management.”
24th Apr

2017

“It’s a process…stuff management.”

I’m a planner. I live my life in five year chunks and in 2013 realized another overhaul was necessary.

My historic York Harbor antique cape was sold practically overnight and I quickly moved everything to a large condo rental down the street between Christmas and New Years, 2013. Same neighborhood, same friends and connections and incidentally, same stuff! And the realization that I’d occupied 1,500 Square feet of living space since 1984.

I knew I really wanted smaller with less to care for and needed more services than aging in place could provide. York Hospital has been my compass for medical services and their reach included the surrounding towns of Kittery, Eliot, Ogunquit and Wells. Independent living in a senior community seemed the answer for me and I was told there was a two year wait by two such places within the hospital’s reach. I signed on the dotted line.

Soon after I began to plan…how to shrink by half, to comfortably live in 700-800 square feet,

First, how do I sell what wasn’t needed but had some value. There was an ad for a group estate sale in Cape Porpoise mid summer of 2015. I called Little River Antiques and Sandy and Ellen came down to begin the curating process. Then I sorted and packed up the agreed upon “stuff” in my car for the three day sale at Cape Porpoise mid-summer, 2015 . Finally, I’m managing something and it felt like a monumental first step. It was a very good feeling.

The sale was so successful (100 + pieces of Limoges china, misc silver flatware, carousel projector, antique linens, a Vintage Singer featherweight sewing machine, etc) that I asked Sandy and Ellen to continue to market other selective pieces that we agreed, might sell on their website or on Craig’s List , if appropriate. Original art work and some Tiffany servers were placed in a gallery Downeast. And on it went…my “stuff inventory” was shrinking before my eyes. I’m thinking it’s doable for the first time.

By late summer of 2016, a wonderful 700 sq ft apartment became available in Meetinghouse Village in Kittery. Perfect, just down the road a few more miles….I’ll take it on October 1st 2016. Great view, peacefully quiet and a deck to call my own. A sheltered carport loomed large…and it was time to get serious. Stuff management, list after list, became my first priority.

Sandy and Ellen were right in the middle of their most hectic season but we arranged the final event — an estate liquidation sale at the condo. I would move just what I really loved and wanted to keep. The two day sale was advertised and order was made of chaos.

On the weekend of October 14th 15th, 2016 I stayed in Kittery while Sandy and Ellen plus helpers, sold everything else. Outdoor furniture, plants, garden tools and hoses. Indoor furniture, household linens and kitchen items. And my beloved post card collection of 70 years.

What didn’t sell (very little!) was picked up by a charity with strong ties to the Seacoast Community to distribute through their resale shops and to families in need. Everything re-purposed in the end. The dumpster remained empty…

What’s left to say — Sandy Gnidziejko and Ellen Heath know their stuff: evaluating, marketing, selling and management. By the end of the process–they also know your stuff better than you do.  And you’ve worked so well together that you’re friends for life. No higher praise is possible.

Dorothy Healy

York, ME

 

 

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