I have spent approximately nine hours in the last two days going through my closet and file cabinet of papers and books. I have so many papers: school papers ranging from my junior college financial aid receipts to my undergrad class papers and school books to my masters program notebooks & school papers. I’ve got check stubs from my first job in at the supermarket from 1980, I’ve got credit card receipts and bank statements and checks going back to 1989, I’ve got copies of every financial document since I’ve been investing from 1990 forward, I’ve got a lot of papers! And it ain’t coming with me. Ever since we found out that the container shipment will cost approx. $86 per 100 pounds, Bruce and I have been purging away. The greatest gadget I’ve purchased for myself in the last few months? THE PAPER SHREDDER! It’s worth every penny of its $40 cost. We’ve been shredding for hours and hours and hours and hours. No joke. Between Bruce and myself, we dug up papers to purge that piled 3 feet high. And the shredder’s feeder only allows you to put 5 – 6 pieces of paper through it at a time. OMG, this is going to take forever. And shredded paper takes up a whole lot more volume than non-shredded paper. We can’t empty the shredder bin fast enough, but we can certainly fill our recycling container fast enough, so fast that we now have a backlog of six grocery bags filled with freshly shredded paper lining our hallway, waiting for the recycling bin to be emptied by the garbage company next Tuesday so that we may fill it back up again. I have a feeling we’ll be doing this little routine until we leave. But there is a wonderful sense of accomplishment and a feeling that a small weight has been lifted from my shoulders. It’s really is nice to be unburdened by this metaphorical heavy load – I’m purging from the last 15 years of my life, purging the old to make room for the new. It feels good.