Saturday, January 17, 2009

Change in the New Year

Sometimes, people ask me how I can get rid of things week after week. This is easy. In any room, drawer or cupboard, I could find seven items that I no longer needed or wanted. Sometimes these are things with very little life left. After all, who wants old worn out undies or socks without mates? Sometimes, it's just that I put things away with a particular purpose in mind - and forgot them. I've been working at re-finding objects and finding them a better home.

Sometimes this is good - once I found a box of chocolates that I had been given for Valentines Day but I had hidden them from the children. Godiva chocolates are still great in June! Their home was with me!

Sometimes I find things in a bad way - my husband says I have "The Nose" when it comes to finding dead mice. Their home? The trash.

Object wise - there are two adults and three teens living here - there is a lot of stuff in my house! Perhaps they are not intentionally squirrelling away books, socks, pants, boots, what-have-you but things just get put away in the darnedest places and while they are there - they turn into junk. Unwanted, outgrown, not used junk.

For example, last Saturday, when I felt better, I was turning my closet inside out trying to find the sport/fanny pack that I use when I go skiing. As I don't have much shelf space or even a light inside my early-20th century closet - finding things involve taking almost every thing out.

That's when I found these four purses. I think I was keeping them because a) I might fix the zipper (the green bag), b) I wanted to knit a sweater using the same colors (the brown striped bag), c) a black bag is always handy to have (the black bag - one of four), and d) I thought I might need another summer bag (the cream colored bag.) None of these situations ever came to pass and so - out they go. The other purple bag is one of those free University of Saint Thomas bags from the State Fair - doesn't everyone have one of these hanging around? It will join its brethren as well as a trashy paperback book that my daughter brought home from the pool and a skirt hanger. I don't know why the book was in my closet . . .

All of these are being bundled up and given to the charity box at my church. They are all still quite usable and would not be junk for someone else. They are not going into the trash or a landfill or into a closet for my children to have to deal with someday after my death.

I haven't always been so organized. After one disasterous ski outing where I lost my car keys out of my pocket when I took a fall and had to ski around in the dark looking for them - I now use a bag to carry important things. I keep my library books together after one too many fines. I keep the sugar up in the wall cupboard after Youngest Daughter decided to show me how she could "cook." (She was three.) And the more things get picked up or given away to be used - the more time I have for more fun things like swimming or knitting or watching Middle Daughter play Bully on the Wii. (It's a bad, naughty game - T for teens - but very addicting . . .)

Two things that have helped me get other things under control in my life have been SparkPeople - which is an online, free weight-loss program - and the FlyLady, a website for controlling clutter. Both are dedicated to making you aware of what you are doing - how much you are eating, how much you are exercising, what you are wasting - and then giving you the tools to change things for your self. I'd recommend them both as a starting point for change.

Sometimes you do get to meet other people who are participating in these programs. For example, I went to a Spark People meet-up on Friday at the Mall of America. We met, introduced ourselves and them walked around the mall - a total of 2.28 miles. That was a lot for someone with a nasty cold! Other than GF Melissa, however, I've never met a FlyBaby in person. That's fine with me - I have the information online and can use it however I want.

So, that's the story. Now, back to the knitting and the tissues and that oddly funny Wii game . . .

1 comment:

Guinifer said...

I've wondered about Bully for a while, the boys and I have been addicted to Fable 2 this Winter.

I don't have problems finding things to put out at the curb either - I just have to put that particular mindset into action....