Thirtysix years of "stuff", really adds up.  Especially when you need to get rid of almost everything you own.  At first I thought about shipping most of our household goods, especailly since there would be no tarriff or tax upon arival in the Philippines.  But a 20-foot container would only hold our living room set, grandfather clock and a few boxes.  The cheapest shipper wanted $6,800.  I can buy some pretty nice furniture in Manila for that kind of money.
After sorting  out what we going to ship in Balikbayan Boxes and what we are going to sell on "Craigslist", the boxing began.  But first, "Craigslist". 
Craigslist is actually pretty awesome, I started getting emails within 30 minutes of placing our spare bedroom set online.  We also sold a crytstal chandelier, all of our Christmas stuff, all in all about $850 in one day.  Elly also sold her grandfather clock, a 55" TV, an Entertainment Center, a dining room set, etc, etc, etc.  We figured out that with her car and my truck sold, we will be making out pretty good.
We also signed a two-year lease for our home in Texas.  A great couple, Jason and Terra Wood and their little girl Cammeron. I feel very confident they will take great cdare of our home.
Now the Balikbayan boxes. A balikbayan box (literally, "Repatriate box") is an ubiquitous, corrugated box containing any number of small items sent by an overseas Filipino known as a "balikbayan".  Though often shipped by freight forwarders specializing in balikbayan boxes  by sea.
A 5.5 cubic foot box costs us $105, and takes about 45 days to arive door-to-door at our home in Dinalupihan, Bataan.  Elly had three boxes packed and ready to go before I knew what was in them!.  I want to packup my handtools and some building supplies like electrical wire, which may come in handy as I re-wire our house.  I hesitate to bring my power tools, since the voltage in the Philippines is 220 VAC.  Yes I could use a step-down transformer, but I can re-purchase those items in Manila with the money I earn from selling them here. I gave up trying to crate my 76" longhorns, put them on craigslist. (sigh).

Elly, my funny little honey and I spoke about retiring in the Philippines for quite some time now.  We visited her family in Dinalupihan, Bataan back in December 2009 and spent Christmas there.  We both had such a wonderful time we went and purchased a house and lot in Pita, Dinalupihan on Bataan Paninsula, only 20 minutes from where my wifes family lives.
We actually found a beautiful 4 bedroom home on a large lot with papaya trees, coconut trees, and even a calamansi  (small lime) tree.  Since we were not reasdy to make the move, we worked out a deal with my wifes nephew Lito, his wife Babae, and their three angels, Angelou, Angelina, and Angelica, or as I call them, Isa, Dalawa, and Tatlo! (that's 1, 2, and 3).  Lito and his family have been taking care of the place and my wife and I have spend 3 weeks there each year, but all that ends on May 2, 2012, when we will move in to our home in Bataan.

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