Thursday, July 24, 2008

Summer Cleaning

"No person who can read is ever successful at cleaning out an attic." ~Ann Landers

Since it rained all day yesterday (and is supposed to continue today), I tackled one of the biggies on my summer vacation to-do list: sorting through and cleaning the basement. It's interesting how things get piled up down there. Am I the only one, or does it happen to you, too? (We don't have much of an attic, so anything that gets stored in our house heads for the basement). A box of things here, a spare chair/table/humidifier there, and the next thing I know, there's an entire jungle of things down there that have created a mini-world all their own.

So after I vacuumed and dusted (never a fun thing...I swear I came across a dust bunny the size of a small child), I sorted - and sorted. Amazing what I found. Among the more interesting things in the three piles I finally established:

To Throw Away
*Notebooks from college classes with copious scribblings about things like "the structural analysis of readership" and "the economic exchange similarities of books and brothels" (true - I even wrote a paper on that subject)
*Random baseball hats from vendors that my husband accumulated (Note: he does not ever wear baseball hats)
*Old candles that used to smell like "birthday cake" and "peppermint" but now just smell

To Sell at a Yard Sale/on Ebay/on Craigslist
*A baby gate (originally used to keep our cats out of our bedroom...yeah, right)
*Dollhouse furniture

To Bring Upstairs and Find a Home For
*Gorgeous drapes from our previous home that I completely forgot we had
*My grandmother's china
*Books from my YA reading stage (books! - how could I forget they were down there??)

Hmm...reading over this post, it looks as though I'm a bit of a packrat who collects and forgets. Really, I promise, everything's very well-contained down there...I just have a hard time getting rid of things, apparently. What about you? Packrat? Super-organized? Or can you get rid of things with no problem?


Marianne Arkins said...

Before DH? a Packrat. After DH? I don't keep anything... he's a freak about neatness. I practice Flylady's "fling boogies" regularly, and have to admit that I love getting rid of stuff now.

Mary Ricksen said...

Unfortunately I have had to move so many times, and into some pretty small apartments. I couldn't keep lugging all that stuff around; I had one apartment with no closet!
And from this I have learned; be careful what you throw away. Someday you might find that you have discarded something of great value. I had the Beatles signed autographs on a 3x5 card. My father was in immigration, and he was the one who went on the plane to clear them through immigration.
I had left it inside of a book I through away that I had from college. Sadly I hear from my brother, an avid Beatles memorabilia collector that it was worth thousands. So be careful what you discard.

J.K. Coi said...

Hi Allie, I guess I'm a bit of both. I'll keep something for a while, but tend to "purge" often and then just end up throwing it out. Then there are some things that no matter how long they spend in the basement, encased in a box, you'll never throw it away because of its sentimental value. But it's nice to take them out and look at them every once in a while.

windycindy said...

Packrat! I come by it honestly. My dad is 90 years old and is a super packrat. I think it is because he grew up not having much. Thanks, Cindi

Mom said...

Glad you got a chance to sort out the basement and that "Grandma's china" will make it upstairs.
Did you ever find your 5th Grade yearbook?
As Mary says, be careful what you toss. I still feel badly that I trashed a crocheted table cover of my mother's. It just looked old and nasty to me. Turned out it had been crocheted by HER mother and was very dear to her.

Chad Aaron Sayban said...

We don't have basements in Phoenix, so the answer here is to have three-car garages...and the third bay becomes the 'basement'. Same problem. We have been slowly going through the remaining boxes from the move, but after a full year, we are still at it. Maybe some day will will finish. Maybe.

Keep at it, though. Any improvement is still an improvement.

Vwriter said...

Hello Allie.

I have been searching around the web for blogs that have helpful input on writing (I'm a fiction writer out of Detroit), and came across yours.

You list Atlas Shrugged as on of your favorite books, and oddly enough I met Ms. Rand before she passed away. An intriguing an interesting person. She inspired me to take up the craft.

At any rate, I recently heard that Atlas Shrugged is being made into a movie and that Angelie Jolie will be playing Dagney Taggert. Have you heard anything about this?

Allie Boniface said...

V, I can't imagine Atlas Shrugged, in all its complexity, being made into a movie. A.J. isn't a bad choice for Dagny, though. Hmm.