Thursday, May 13, 2010

Upon Reflection...

It's been a month since I last wrote, and my home has remained pretty well decrapified. (Too bad my sister shared this word with me after I started the project; otherwise, this blog would have been named Decrapify.)

I've gotten rid of more and more--finally getting the bags of clothing out the door, and last week, I discovered more pieces that need to go. Funny how you can wear and wear something, but after you really think about everything you own, you try on something again and realize it just doesn't fit. Time for it to GO!

Early on in this project, my goal was the visible, as I preferred to see actual results before I started poring through items behind closed doors, but the time has arrived to deal with the hidden clutter.

Last weekend, I went through my old, heavy, ridiculous file cabinet. To be honest, I thought it was ridiculous BEFORE I saw what was inside. I worked all the way through the top drawer while N and I watched Betty White on Saturday Night Live. My trash pile grew, my shred pile grew, and I came across some interesting gems... papers from college, tax returns filed in multiple folders, bank statements, credit card bills for cards I no longer hold, receipts for random items, etc. Shred-shreddy-shred-shred-shred. I overheated the shredder twice on this file cabinet alone, and I still have a pile of stuff to put through the machine. While this file cabinet will not last beyond this apartment, a friend gave me the idea of repurposing it as a nightstand on one side of my bed so that I can move the bookshelf currently there to a different spot in the apartment. I'm not quite ready to make that move, but it's an exciting idea.

After the file cabinet, the next step is my kitchen. I just know that there are so many items that I haven't touched in years. They are hiding innocently behind closed cabinet doors, but their time has passed, and I'm looking forward to passing the items on to new owners!!!!!

It's a big weekend; my parents are in town, and I am anxious to see how they like my work. My sister, brother-in-law, and niece spent this evening with me, and they commented on how much more open my apartment looks now. From moving the bookcases five months ago to just GETTING RID of stuff, it's been an incredible improvement.

Special Gems:
  • old dairy dishes have gone to my cousin. New dairy dishes purchased on clearance (but they don't look like clearance) have replaced them.
  • Still searching for the last piece of an expandable phone set, but it's going to N & R for their new home as soon as I find it. (I also found the receipt...this was not an inexpensive item, so I'm glad it's going to be used!)
  • The wireless router. As I suspected a few months ago, it really doesn't work. Tonight, my brother-in-law (tech wizard of my life) tried to set it up with my netbook, and he discovered that a) it didn't work, and b) when you put the cord in the back, little sparks come out. He says that any electronic item that causes sparks needs to be thrown out. Wireless router, meet garbage chute. :)
My home still isn't perfect, and that's both difficult and important for me to accept. Maintenance is the key, along with humor and realism. My new friend, J, gave me a few focusing questions to ask why I come across something in my home:

1. Have I used this in the last six months? If Yes, keep it.

If No, --> 2. Why?

3. Will I use it in the next six months? If Yes, keep it. If No, dump it.

I like this new idea--and so many others that people have shared.

Thanks for being part of my journey. Have a wonderful, meaningful, clutter-free day.