Organizing, etc.

I know – still no photos from the great organizing adventure – but it’s continuing. We now have our new china cabinet, and the boxes of china and various other breakable items made their way into it. All of the packing materials for those went into the recycling bin. I also cleaned out the pantry closet (packed with old shopping and plastic bags that also went into the recycling bin) and put the tools we use regularly with it. I hung a clock in the dining room and a print that Stephanie had. My next steps – taking the remaining tools to the basement, taking an old wire shelving unit to it’s new home, and purging the tox-drop items and aluminum can collections this weekend.

I also need to go through my closet and assess my hanging clothes. Lots of them could find a new place to live. I also have some board games that I collected but will actually never play (as opposed to the ones we will) that will find a new home soon, too.

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Uncluttering projects

I haven’t stalled out on the de-cluttering and organizing projects, I just don’t have photos to put up quite yet – I’m still working on the great furniture shuffle. I purchased a new desk and new china cabinet at Ikea last week, and have put them both together. I unloaded and removed the old shelving unit, which is residing on the porch until I can transport it to it’s final resting place. I just have to install the lights into the china cabinet and we’ll be set to load it up with china and glasses that go there, along with table cloths. And I need to clean out the pantry and find room for tools, which will unearth an avalanche of discard-able items. It’s all proceeding nicely and we’re getting to the place where I start working on smaller items again.

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Weekend Update 2007-09-17

We managed to get a lot done on Sunday to the house. We spent the morning sorting through some of the garage sale pile. Our friend Jen came by with baby Sam to help us sort some clothes in the early afternoon. Later we hung a bunch of pictures that we just haven’t gotten to yet, and in the evening I sorted lots of our tools in the basement. We don’t really need to get rid of any of those; they’re all useful items that I bought for my old house or that Stephanie’s dad has given her, and we have plenty of storage for them. We just need them to not all be in a jumbled pile when we need to find them for use.
I think we have plenty of stuff together for the yard sale. That’s not to say we have the house organized; there’s still tons to do. We’re maybe 25% done. But I’m excited by how much stuff we’ve pulled together.

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Our Little Secret

Yeah, there’s a reason why so many of my photos seem to be only shot in one or two rooms, or only show small, focused parts of our house.
There’s a reason why we never have people over to visit; why I’ve stopped having parties and game nights and overnight guests.
There’s a reason why I’m awake at 1:00 a.m. writing this because I can’t sleep because I’m so stressed out.
We have a serious problem. It’s more than just a problem that’s driving me out of my head, although that’s bad enough.
It’s making me physically sick, too – enough that I’ve had to go to the hospital 5 times in the past three years because I’m so allergic to dust and the house is so full of it.
We have a problem, and it’s time that problem comes out of the closet.
We have too much stuff – way more stuff than we can manage, store or enjoy. Way more stuff than we need.
These photos are just the tip of the iceberg; the garage is equally packed, and the basement is the same way, too. I just haven’t taken pictures there yet because it’s the middle of the night.
I have always had a serious pack rat problem. I don’t want it to appear that I’m blaming anyone. I’m certainly not. And I know I’m not the only one trying to fix it; Stephanie is working hard at this, too. But I’m getting seriously overwhelmed lately; and I’m worried that we’re not making progress at all. We spend all our time organizing, never have any fun, and the clutter just gets worse, not better. And we fight over it, a lot – and that has to stop because I love Stephanie so much; I don’t want this problem to ruin our relationship.
It’s interfering with living our lives, doing our jobs, enjoying what we have and our families and friends, and enjoying the blessing that is our relationship as well.
We really need two things:
1) HELP. Help confronting the problem, help accepting that it’s a problem and help fixing it. To some extent, we need to hire someone to work with us on this. But we sure could use some support from our friends, both in the clean up process and the encouraging us not to bring new items into our house as well.
2) For people to back the hell off. Ease up on seizing control of our time. Let us get this figured out without constantly hijacking our schedules. Understand us when we say we can’t do stuff with you, and lay off the guilt trips. Stephanie and I both have a tendency to say yes to everyone and everything, and we need to knock that off, for our own sanity and well being. We don’t want to blow off our friends; we love you, and care about you. But we can’t always do everything you want us to, and lately I just can’t manage to do anything at all.
I took an entire cruise and spent the whole time stressed out because I wasn’t at home organizing and cleaning stuff. I’m up late tonight because we overloaded our weekend again with events and won’t have time to relax or get anything done. We need time to work on this – lots of it.
This run-away freight train needs to stop, and now.

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