Here it is, my new house! Obviously, this is a big purchase that has led to many other big purchases (a washer and dryer, a new couch, new curtains, new artwork, a lawnmower, etc.), but it also led to me getting rid of A LOT of stuff.
When I moved into a larger apartment last summer, I got rid of a lot of stuff. It sounds weird to say I got rid of stuff to move someplace bigger, but really, we had so much that I couldn't even go through it while we crammed into the small 2 bedroom place. So, as I packed for the move, I sorted, and brought many, many things to Good Will (about 6 carloads of stuff, according to the posts below). Throughout the year, I continued to purge as I went about my daily life, and I took 2 more carloads of stuff to donate, in addition to throwing away and recycling as much as I could. When my offer on the house was accepted, I got back into purging--I took 5 or 6 loads of things to Good Will, and threw away the equivalent of another 2 or 3 carloads. I even tackled my basement storage unit, getting rid of most of that stuff, since it had been down in my storage unit for over 5 years by that point.
After a while, though, I just had to get everything in boxes and get it moved. So, once again, I am faced with a mountain of boxes. I put them all in my dining room, so that I didn't have boxes everywhere. I needed to have rooms that were fairly calm and peaceful, not all cluttered. And I have an eat in kitchen AND a dining room now, which is a big step up from the tiny breakfast nook that was all my dining space in the apartment. I have been unpacking and continuing to purge, and resisting the urge to toss all the unpacked boxes onto shelves in the basement rather than look at them for one more day. That time is coming, though--the boxes are stressing me out.
In the meantime, I am buying new things for the house and not feeling guilty about it. I am buying things I love, to make my new house a home. I am not shopping as therapy, or spending money just to be doing it, bringing home things I don't even want. I am carefully considering each item, buying things that make us happy and comfortable in our space. I think that affluenza recovery allows for some shopping, it is not all or nothing. It is mindless shopping just for it's own sake that is the problem.
On the plus side, I love being in my home. I have started cooking more, and bringing my lunch to work, rather than eating out all the time. I am proud of my home, and I spend time making it nice, time that I might have spent out shopping before. I have been getting better for a while, but the house seems to be helping me to rise to a whole new level. The was definitely a smart purchase, on all levels.