Monday, January 11, 2016

Close, but no cigar

Victory!  Einstein and Lady Liberty can now stand proudly
and without wading through thick dust.
The last time my desk was cleaned on this blog was two years ago.  A shameful record.

This time, after working on the same damn pile of papers for weeks, I finally did it.  I achieved a sighting of the actual desk surface.   Reader, I dusted it.

But then there is this:  
WILL these things never go away? No, they will not.
That box is full of papers from my aunt’s desk.  They are most likely all trash, but I have to Go Through them.  It’s amazing how appealing my physical therapy exercises become when I look at this box.


I know a lot of people are reading some popular book about tidying up.  I am not ready to read that book.  First I have to put some things away.  But I want to ask if you, Dear Reader, have read about tidying, and if sitting around and reading books about it is effective, especially if it is read while sipping a glass of wine.


Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

I think it would be best to have a large glass of wine while reading that particular book on my dusty nightstand. I both like it and hate it (the book; the wine, I enjoy). And yes, do not even try to read it when dealing with a relative's paperwork. We -- and by we, I mean mostly my dear SIL -- had to go through a nearly endless supply of stacks of papers at my mother's house, sometimes finding money hidden in with worthless paperwork.
Best wishes to you in this endeavor, and a good supply of Moscato.

Susan Jones said...

Hey there. My sister and niece (17 years old) read that book together, and made an agreement to work on their respective spaces according to the book's principles. Then they did it, with amazing results. My niece has kept up her tidiness as consistently as I have ever seen a non-OCD teenager do. I would check the book out myself; it surely can't make anything any worse. (Famous last words.) Good luck on your quest, and let me know if you need moral support and/or a co-conspirator. :-)

JJ said...

I will try to compose a response from the recliner with the blaring noise of a hockey game in the background because I am too lazy to move now that I have found a comfortable and warm place to be.

Without thinking, I can honestly tell you that I like wine, books, and a clean desk -- in that order.

Now, considering your blog, I can respond by saying, "Yes! I have read many books on organizing one's home."
As I read through them, I talk to myself with phrases like "That won't work because . . . " and "I tried that . . . " and, "if I did that, it would look like hell".

There is only one consistent rule throughout all of the organizing books that has ever worked and it sounds something like this: Keep, pitch, donate. If you decide to keep it, you must organize it and you must organize it in a way that you can actually retrieve it in the future. That part may be the most challenging. (I recently placed an item "in a convenient place" only to completely lose track of that "place" when the item was needed.

I have also noticed that the magazine shelves are full of magazines on this topic every January. The last line is provided to give you comfort in knowing that you are not alone.

smalltownme said...

I have read the book in question in my untidy house while drinking wine. While I think some of the ideas are very good, some of it goes too far for me. Unfortunately, I need some things that just don't spark joy. Like screwdrivers, bras, and cat boxes. Although I did throw out 10 bras that didn't fit anymore so that's something. And I will never get rid of my unread books. But, you know, you can take from it what works for you and ignore the wacky bits.

Common Household Mom said...

I love your responses!

The main thing seems to be to have a glass of wine handy at all times....

Angie said...

I so need to clean and organize my office. For the past year.

Patience_Crabstick said...

Yes, I have read the famous tidying book and I started going through the whole process, but Christmas kind of put it all to a halt. It's a bit difficult to get rid of things while you're simultaneously bringing tons of new things into the house. I'll probably write a blog post about it when I have finished, but I do really like her method of tidying by category of item rather than the geography of your house.

Cassi said...

Like JJ above, I also like wine, books, and a clean desk --in that order.

I would imagine any book on tidying or decluttering could be helpful, but I can NOT with thanking my socks for their service, or with getting rid of an unread book only because it is unread.

Rob and I are still dealing with paperwork and "stuff" from his dad, almost two years after he passed away. Every time we think we're done, something else arrives in the mail. However, this has been much more effective than any book in getting Rob to declutter his own stuff!

The Crislers said...

I'm a relatively neat person, but I am terrible, TERRIBLE, about piles of paper. I am a paper piler. If there is a horizontal surface anywhere in my vicinity, it will soon find itself covered in piles of paper. It's a sickness.

I have seen that book at our library, and glanced at it as I hurried past many times. I have also read about so many people whose lives! were! changed! by it, but I'm still too scared to actually read it. Maybe next time (she says for the ninth time) I'm there I'll work up the nerve to finally check it out.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Cleaned off AND dusted? You rock!
I'm feeling pretty pleased over here, just cleaned out my bedroom dresser and I have a box full of stuff to donate. Closet's next. Where does all this STUFF come from?