I wrote this ten days ago and didn't get finished because I've hardly been online at all in that time:
We've been watching the Australian flood news on the tv for the past few days. Floods that were as close as 1.5 hours from our house. The strength of the Aussie spirit came shining through, and the way the community has come together is just phenomenal. It is heartwarming to see people just go into the homes of strangers and help clean or take food and water or do whatever they can, and leave as friends. The news is calling it a 'citizens army'. I love the way Aussies come together in times of need. The general comments of the people affected are things like "I've got my family with me...there are other people worse off than me...we'll be right".
We have been going through our house, getting rid of stuff. We have the choice of doing this. Others did not. Some folk have lost every single material thing they had. We are donating a lot of our things to the flood victims. I feel better about donating things that can actually be used by those affected rather than donating money - ya just never know if it goes towards the first class travel of those in charge of the charity or foundation.
As I go through the stuff in our house, I wonder just how lightly I could move through life. I don't know if I could ever be like Peace Pilgrim, but I wonder how many boxes or suitcases it would take to hold the material things I choose to share my life with? It's like a personal challenge for me. Most of the things I'm putting in storage are photos and favourite kids things. I've managed to get all of my clothes into a medium sized suitcase. At the moment, my winter overcoat and my shoes are not included, but I'm sure they would fit in there if I unzipped the zipper that allows the case to expand.
added 23 January:
We have lightened the house a lot. There are still a lot of piles around the place as we sort through different areas, but we are seeing progress. We are taking time out every day to just enjoy our family and the beautiful weather we are now having - kayaking, swimming, and just playing...and being oh so grateful for every moment!