With the great big whooping and hollering around here after we completed the 29 Day Organizational Challenge over at OrgJunkie.com, I totally forgot about Nony's monthly declutter link up over at A Slob Comes Clean.
So, here you see some of what left our house as we cleaned out, thoroughly organized, and gave new life to our downstairs Hobby Area. There were 2 more white trash bags full, and another small box of donations.
And then there were asundry toys and supplies and tools and who-knows-what-all that were actually placed back where they belonged. That was really the trick. Making decisions about WHAT stays, and WHERE it stays.
I are so very happy with the month long project, and inspired to keep moving throughout the house, and even the garage, and maybe even the front porch! Okay, okay. Let's not get carried away. Truly, I spent this past month looking at changing habits and looking at how to do a better job of maintaining.
The honest-to-goodness truth is: I have stuff. I like stuff. I do not do well in the Maintenance Department. The more stuff I have to maintain, the more I don't maintain it. The end result is I'm overwhelmed and frustrated and crabby and, well, you get the picture. Making conscious decisions about letting go of some of the 'stuff' was not easy, but oh, so freeing! I didn't like it. But I'm very happy with the result.
Would you like a little peek into my crazy slob-brain mentality? One cabinet that had to be cleaned out was my photo storage/scrapbooking/album cabinet. I have piles of pictures/photos/portraits waiting, for someday, to be preserved in some way. I would pick up something like this:
A sheet full of the sweetest little Chubby Cherub. Isn't he adorable?! Yes, all 48-of-the-exact-same-pose Chubby Cherubs! His name is Luke. This photo shoot was from when he was 10 months old. And now he's 19 YEARS old. If I haven't used them by now, I doubt I ever will. So why do I still have them? Because throwing them out would feel like I was throwing my own son out with the trash. Really! My pulse quickened, my breathing became a bit shallow. I had to say out loud, "It's OK. Really. It will be just fine." Now, I know that no one is going to want these in their Christmas cards next year. And Luke is not going to wallpaper his dorm room with them. Maybe I could save one for his future wife. But, I already have this sweet photo in an album for him. Why is it so hard for me to let go? I don't know the answer. But I DO know that I can make the choice to do it. And I am.
So, I'm ready to move on, to leave the past in the past. But, remember, I have eight children. EIGHT children. And the oldest is 25 years old. Can you just imagine all that I have to go through to truly get past this and move on? I'm taking baby steps, inching my way forward, ever so steadily.
Stay posted in the weeks and months to come, as I bring you up-to-date in the on-going saga of "Let's Declutter Linda's Life!"