Too Much Stuff

July 23rd, 2012 · 7 Comments

Just released book titled Life At Home In the Twenty-First Century:  32 Families Open Their Doors took a closer look at the homes and lifestyles of 32 middle-class families in Los Angeles.

Some findings, which relate to this blog:

“The rise of Costco and similar stores has prompted so much stockpiling - you never know when you’ll need 600 Dixie cups or a 50-pound bag of sugar - that three out of four garages are too full to hold cars.”  [Note: I added photos from my collection as close to matching the quote; photos are not from the book;  photo from a Phoenix home]

junk piled high in garage Phoenix Arizona home house for sale

“Managing the volume of possessions is such a crushing problem in many homes that it elevates levels of stress hormones for mothers.”  [photo from a Canton, Ohio home]

MatchBox car collection Canton Ohio home house for sale real estate photo

“A refrigerator door cluttered with magnets, calendars, family photos, phone numbers, and sports schedules generally indicates the rest of the home will be in a similarly chaotic state.”  [photo from a Kearney, Nebraska home]

too many refrigerator magnets kitchen Kearney Nebraska home house for sale real estate photo

Tags: Collections · Refrigerator Magnets · Other US Cities

7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Picky // Jul 23, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    #1 - This is just lazy people, not stockpiling. Looks like they mistook their garage for the town dump.
    #2 - Doesn’t look like she is having any problem managing her possessions. Everything is clean and well kept.
    #3 - lots of magnets and stuff but that kitchen is clean and well kept.
    I know this triggers your pet peeves, but #2 & #3 look like well kept loved homes. Poor #1 looks like the people there are beginning hoarders.

  • 2 Lisa // Jul 23, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    The kitchen in the third picture is very clean.

  • 3 Nancy // Jul 24, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    Interesting book reference! I read a sample chapter via Amazon, and it looks well worth checking out. I don’t remember the source of this trivia, but mini-storage unit companies don’t show up in the USA until at least the 1960’s. Based on my family’s period photos, we certainly didn’t need extra storage, and Dad could actually park the car in the garage. My parent’s ghosts are probably moaning in horror at the current cluttered conditions of my typical home.

  • 4 AZ // Jul 24, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    #3 Looks like the homeowner enlisted the help of their OCD relative/friend to get the kitchen ready to show, but when the homeowner was told to take down their magnets they refused so OCD arranged them as neatly as possible on the side of the fridge. There’s still to much clutter on the counter, but at least the counter and stove shine.

  • 5 Cregazw // Jul 24, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    Photo 1 is a home in Buckeye Az.

    Totally Trashed In Buckeye, Arizona - part 3 of 3
    Oct 12, 2009. The bike tire on the garage track gave it away!

    The WHOLE house was a Pigsty. I can’t believe it’s almost been 3 years since I was there.

  • 6 HeatherOf Kazoo // Jul 25, 2012 at 8:50 am

    Too bad a home with pocket doors has to have a Nascar collection too.

  • 7 MimiR // Aug 19, 2012 at 2:44 am

    Nonsense. My garage is too full for cars not because I buy too much but because I have a woodshop, a riding lawn mower, a wood chipper, a cart for the lawn mower, a leaf sweeper, and a rototiller in it. All of which get used quite often.

    The only “crushing” possession is the number of books we have–and much of that is because of homeschooling. (I bring in about 4 linear feet of books a year for homeschooling–am likely to total 40 linear feet of homeschooling books in the end. Each of the old bookcases holds a bit less than 10 linear feet. And I buy about 3 linear feet of books a year for other purposes–and only about 2′ linear feet a year, total, gets culled right now.) Solution? Use aforementioned woodshop and build a library on two walls of the office/playroom/library. And done.

    (And no, I don’t care about resale, as I’ll be dragged out of that house feet-first.)

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