A suburbanite rite of passage: Our first garage sale

This weekend we are embarking on what feels like a milestone a suburban rite of passage; our first garage sale.

I grew up in a condo and then lived in an urban area. Garage sales were things I would visit on occasion but never had. Our space was too small to accumulate enough for a sale. We would just donate it throughout the year to various charities.

We’ve been in our suburban house for almost five years, and have two additional kids. What they say is true, you gather enough stuff to fill the space you have. The growing amount of clutter has been driving me mad since the moment I was up and walking around after we had our fourth. Especially the clothes! With four kids, two of them girls, we have amassed a store’s worth of clothes in every size from birth through age 7.

So I’m sorting, and tagging, and purging this week in prep for having a one-day garage sale this weekend. Nothing is safe. I’m cleaning out closets and going through toys. If I had my way more than half of our stuff would be out out! As much as we try to keep our life small and simple, with four kids it rapidly grows. It can’t be stopped. There will always be another birthday or holiday that friends and family want to celebrate.

As I have been prepping for this rite of passage into suburban life I didn’t expect to be overcome by anything other than a sense of relief and cleansing, like a big breath of fresh air as there was more room to move. I was not ready for the overwhelming sadness some of these little dresses would evoke in me. I don’t have anymore little girls. As I packed up maternity clothes it hit me that I will never be pregnant again, never get to watch my bump grow (and never have an excuse to eat a package of Oreos!) again.

This garage sale isn’t just a rite of passage into full-fledged suburban life. It’s a coming out party and it’s our declaration that we are putting the baby years behind us. I knew it would come someday but that day always seemed really far away. Now it has a date: June 15.

We’re publiclydeclaring that we are a complete family. It’s awesome and a little scary.

No more babies…good thing I have 12 months (hopefully more!) before this newest one enters toddlerhood. I think I’m going to need the baby snuggles to get over selling the baby clothes!

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