One of the treasures we often find when helping people downsize is a set of good dishes. Not only do people have their own good dishes, but they may also have inherited their Mum’s good dishes, their grandmother’s good dishes and perhaps a favourite Aunt’s good dishes. 

It is one of the reasons we suggest repeating the phrase, “My family doesn’t want my stuff!” when people are contemplating downsizing because in most cases… it’s true!  

As I was clearing my Mum’s house, I came across her good dishes -- twelve place settings and, although it is beautiful, I have my own! 

I asked my sisters-in-law if they would like it. The answer was no because they already had their own. Then, I asked my nieces and nephews if they wanted it... no interest there. 

So, I did as so many others do. I packed all the pieces carefully and took them to the cottage because they are beautiful dishes and much nicer than the stuff we were using at the cottage at the time.  

Now, you would think the experience of trying to find a home for these dishes would have taught me a lesson. Apparently, not! 

A couple of weeks ago, my best friend, Jane calls to report her discovery of 4 soup bowls and 10 luncheon plates at the local Goodwill store. The bowls were two dollars each, the plates were a dollar AND they matched my Mum’s good dishes. Jane wants to know if I would like her to buy them for me. 

I know I don’t need the plates, but Mum’s set didn’t have soup bowls. Of course, I say YES to the bowls because, after all, they are only two dollars each!  

As we end our conversation, it hits me... I had no takers for the entire set of good dishes and who knows where the dishes might end up when we sell the cottage. Now, I had just agreed to pay another $ 8.00 to get four more pieces to add to a set of dishes I didn’t even want, use or need.  

Sometimes even a Diva can lose sight of the downsizing goal -- which is to let go of stuff, not acquire more!  

What was I thinking? 

Karen Shinn

Karen Shinn

Downsizing Diva Co-Founder. Toronto East & North York

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