Wednesday, August 2, 2006

Cleaning House

I'm clearing the decks around here. Yep, I went on a bender in my basement today, and toted whole loads of stuff out to the curb for the trash man. I do this periodically, even though it barely makes a dent in the years and years worth of stuff that's heaped down there. There have been three generations of our family who've lived in this house, so there's everything from my father-in-law's 78 records of Franklin Roosevelt (I kid you not) to my husband's model cars and my son's outdated computers. The history of an American family, in artifact form, right in my basement.

I, however, can be really merciless when it comes to tossing to the curb. I just need to be in the right mood. An ancient broken computer and monitor - gone. Some ugly tattered throw pillows and scruffy bric-a-brac - gone. Batches of cassette and VHS tapes - useless. Three ring binders filled with copies of meeting minutes from one of my musical groups going back 20 years - outta here!

So now I'm hot and sweaty, with a huge embarrasing pile of stuff lined up on my lawn. Nevertheless, I'm feeling pretty satisfied with myself. I've cleared some space, provided a little breathing room so I can set up my ironing board (very!) occasionally, or even retreat down there to read or write in a cool, quiet place should the fancy strike me.

Somehow I feel like I've cleared a corner of my mind as well. Once in a while I think we all need to do some housecleaning in our brains. Mine gets so cluttered up with my lists of "have to do's" and "should be doings" and "wish I could's." It gets so crowded up there in my mind that it's like my basement - there's no room to do anything productive because of all the junk that's cluttering up your thoughts. It's amazing how all that clearing out seems to have triggered a mental sorting out as well. I actually feel as if there's a nice corner of my brain that's now all neat and tidy, waiting for me to fill it with some really interesting ideas!

So tomorrow (assuming I can drag my aching bones out of bed), I'll be ready to tackle a whole new project, and who knows what it will be!


Blogger deirdre said...

I love, love to throw things out. It really does give a nice sense of satisfaction to clear out the old and make room for the new - or maybe for nothing at all, just good empty space. Who knows what kind of creativity that could lead to?

Blogger paris parfait said...

Becca, good for you! Throwing things out can seem so satisfying - not only getting rid of clutter, but as you said, somehow decluttering the mind as well. Thank you for this lovely post - and the reminder that I, too need to get rid of some clutter! This weekend I'm tackling the cave (wine cellar bursting with furniture, luggage and stuff we don't use, in addition to wine).

Blogger jzr said...

Cleaning out is such good medicine!! I'm hoping to do some soon!!

Blogger Star said...

I'm that way too. Things seem to come to a head and I just have to get some of the "stuff" out. It's not like I spend lots of time thinking about how I wish I could downsize, but it seems to come on all at once and then there is no putting it off. And it really does seem as if you've created more mental room once you're done.

Usually I take useable things to Goodwill and the rest just goes out in the garbage, but I've been thinking lately about taking the stuff that I don't think really fits into the Goodwill category to one of the stores that will sell your stuff on e-bay. If no one wants it, I can always throw it away, but one man's trash is another man's treasure and someone might actually pay money for some of my discards.

Blogger bella said...

Oh, yes! I love the feeling of decluttering and getting rid of stuff. It doesn't happen often, but when it does, it's a big bender like you just explained!
Man, I bet you could make a killing on ebay with some of your artifacts!

Blogger Tammy said...

That's my girl! I loved doing things like that...treasure hunting. Do you watch HGTV(home & garden tv show)? "Cash in the Attic" makes you money on old stuff that might be worth something. Be careful what you toss :)


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