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Hoarding Help Message Boards : The Daily Chat : What are you doing today (part 15)
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What are you doing today (part 15)

Posted: 21 May 2021 - 08:24 AM
Oh, SubC, the pranks sound like an absolute hoot! And so creative. The snowmen - I hope they played or sang the snowman song from "Frozen"? Please tell me they did! ☃️❄⛄⛄❄☃️☃️☃️❄⛄☃️❄⛄

Julie, welcome! We have all been where you are, and it does get better. It already has, because you are here. There's a light at the end of the tunnel, and I promise it's not the light from an oncoming train! 😉 (My sardonic sense of humor is one of my coping mechanisms.)

When I first ever posted here, back in 2015, I chose my username because it truly felt that things had reached critical mass with my possessions, my disorganization, my finances, my sanity, you name it - and that if I didn't take some decisive steps I was gonna blow, and it wouldn't be pretty! 🤯 💣 💥

There will be ups and downs, but you just dive in and be stubborn and persevere, and I guarantee you'll have small victories and then eventually some big ones.

Our friend Tatoulia is reaping the reward of her efforts right now. Her lovely talented friend is helping speed things along, and the timing is perfect. Correct me if I'm wrong, Tatoulia, but it took much time and effort to get to this point where you were truly ready for the helper to come and work her special magic. If you hadn't already done so much, it would've been stressful and too much of a shock for her to be there doing what she's doing. But now the timing is optimal and it's going so well.

As for my bits and pieces of news - I'm sorting and consolidating Barbies and finding a few more to let go of, and neatening up and cataloging the collection, cleaning and repairing the keepers and their clothes. Also drafting out designs for a couple of quilt tops I've had the fabric for, so I can get those made up and taken to the church and out of my way.

The May weather here is still iffy. It's not always rainstorms, but awareness of when they will come is key. On Wednesday I stopped by the storage unit to drop off and pick up, as the sky appeared to be clearing, but then it started to rain again so I couldn't stay but at least I'd done what I came to do. Today I will make a run to the bunny shelter to pick up our hay and feed we ordered, and meet the new foster rabbits.

I'm starting to plan things to do now that I've had my Covid vaccine, like make an appointment for a checkup at the doctor, go visit my cousin for
advice about social security and various matters, etc. These sorts of things should prove long term helpful.

So I better get the day started! 🌞
Posted: 20 May 2021 - 08:03 PM
So, background - I teach pottery and inevitably, the kids want to make snowmen. Fine - roll your three balls - you now know how to make a ball for a pinch pot or wheel pot. Connect them - now you can do a slip join. Snowmen have nothing else to teach you.

And yet, when they are bored, when they are out of ideas, when they are lazy "I'm going to make a snowman." So I started a one snowman rule. One snowman ever. Unless you can show me how you have adapted the snowman to make it harder and learn something new. I spend a lot of time saying "no snowmen!" And ranting about how I hate snowmen.

They filled my room with snowmen. Three featureless foam balls on a stick - peeking out of my bookshelves, perched on my tape dispenser, scattered across the desks... dozens of identical basic snowmen. And somehow - the angles, the positions, the groupings... gave them personality. I laughed so hard. I will miss them.

I brought one snowman home.

There was also a red carpet for the video teacher, portrait sketches in all the seats of the art room, a campsite in the history class, and a Barbie scale classroom with barbies in the English room. They moved everything in the math teacher's room over exactly 2 inches and wrote an equation about how the points on the new line were the same y, but x was x-2. She laughed too. She's incredibly neat and organized.

They also added their names and handprints and footprints to the walls of the teen cafe.
Posted: 20 May 2021 - 06:28 AM
Good morning!

Today is a day that I normally go in late, but last night was the senior prank. The seniors are required to clean up everything by lunch time (except things teachers request be left in their rooms - sometimes there are banners and such) and I want to see it. Also, I have been led to believe that my room was one of the rooms targeted, so I am kind of excited to see what they did.

One year they turned the AP english teacher's room into a beach party complete with sand on a tarp, a kiddy pool of water, fake palm trees, beach towels, a cooler of snacks and (appropriate) drinks, and a beach ball. They left The Beach Boys playing on a loop. Usually it is not that elaborate. One year they completely lined walls and floors with bubble wrap. One year they made a string maze and wove "webs" to seal some of the rooms off. There were giant fuzzy spiders. (I did not get a giant fuzzy spider souvenir).

So anyway, I will be going in early. Tomorrow starts the clean out of my room for the summer - ten more days of the school year!

Yesterday I bought blue hair spray for graduation. Graduation is Saturday.
Posted: 19 May 2021 - 05:09 PM
Hi Julie!

A good starting place is anywhere you can start.

Maybe some place that will feel satisfying.

I am proud of you for powering through that hard box!

75 is not actually so bad. You fo not want to know how many random boxes I had when I started. Actually, I do not know, but it was hundreds.

I too am motivated by guilt at my long suffering dh's u happiness with the hoard.

How often do you wrap gifts?

Tatoulua, yay for your dishwasher!
Posted: 19 May 2021 - 03:34 PM
Thank you!

I can do a box between now and Sunday.

It is nice to know there are others who experience this... It feels crazy to me. ...How I can use logic to develop a strategy (to deal with things) but then something overwhelms my rational brain without my consent.

Is there a certain way to start? I am at a loss. There is a big TJ Maxx bag full of gift bags behind me. They are perfectly good. They shouldn't be there though. And there isn't room for them in any closet. Do normal people keep 20 of those? Or only what will fit in an under bed box? Should I not have 4 bins full of wrapping paper and ribbons and bows?

I also have way too many glass things. Vases and serving platters and fancy dishes. The dining room is unusable because of all that stuff.

Tbh though, clothes are the biggest issue. I'm not really attached - but for some reason I am.

Is there a good starting place?
Posted: 19 May 2021 - 02:27 PM
Julie! Welcome! We can help you!

Yes this is tough and hard. I Know this is foolish but be sure to eat properly and drink enough water. And you got through one box! Amazing! I'm sorry for the personal toll but I promise you it does get easier. Do you want to set a goal? Like maybe go through another box between now and Sunday? And it's okay to have emotional attachments to things. One thing that has helped me is to realize I don't need emotional attachments to everything. Also, sometimes when I say, oh I love this, I like to correct myself and say, I loved this (past tense) and I can let it go. I can't keep everything that I've ever loved.

We are here to cheer you on and understand the rough times. Very supportive and very caring group here.

Posted: 19 May 2021 - 01:28 PM
Hi :)

I am a hoarder and I come from a family (4 siblings and a mom still) of hoarders. I want desperately to find a path out of this.

I am 57, I have a great job and have been married to a fantastic partner for over 20 years. Twenty years that he has had to bear the weight of my issue with keeping sooo much stuff.

Other than my family members, no one I know deals with this. They all have beautiful homes and somehow they just get rid of things.

About 6 months ago, I had promised my dh that I would go through a box (there are maybe 75). I forced myself to keep doing it as I got more and more stressed and upset. By the time I finished, I was shaking and crying and had a terrible headache.

I really haven't tried to jump back in since then. I've done little things since then but I've got to figure this out.

PS I have two grown kids that do not struggle with this.
Posted: 19 May 2021 - 11:17 AM
Okay my friend did my dresser drawers last night. I haven't looked in them but I assume they look fantastic. We have another bag of things to donate.

Dishwasher people came and reinstalled the dishwasher. All is fine. Took them five minutes. Now I'm doing some laundry. Cleaners will come tomorrow.

Mom and I are getting hair cuts tonight. Then friend and I are having burgers and then hopefully we will work on a few other things here. We are almost there.

I have a lot of clothes that I can wear as soon as the weight comes off, my friend estimates three months, maximum. I have a pair of pants, two skirts and one dress that I can wear to work until that time. So I'll be fine.

I'm doing laundry now. I'm a bit behind because of my job and also our evenings are spent working on my house. Almost there. I keep telling myself this. She has fast-forwarded things for me and I am grateful. She has saved me years.
Posted: 18 May 2021 - 07:43 PM
I'm at the grocery store. My friend texted me a picture of my drawer contents on my bed. The cat is also on the bed, like a co-conspirator.

We got seven bags to my car tonight. The dishwasher installer comes tmr. The brackets failed and it's hard to use the dishwasher. So my house cleaner will come on Thursday.

That's the news from the grocery store.
Posted: 18 May 2021 - 09:41 AM
Wow! You are all doing great! Very impressed!

I echo SubC's thoughtful suggestions. Lila, I'd consider getting rid of all the plates. I have no doubt that you'll find other pretty stuff as you clean up. Keeping one is a great suggestion, and I'm not arguing with that at all but I'm thinking, you have no emotional attachment to the plates so it won't hurt a bit to get rid of them. And from my experience, getting rid of the things you don't have an attachment to is the best way to later on assess whether you truly have an attachment to something.

Cm that is quite a story regarding the dryer! I do miss the ok'd things with knobs and mechanical parts instead of computers and bells and whistles.

Lila, I did not ask my friend to do this. She is staying with me for a month or two while she finds an apartment. She did this on her own. She goes into my closet and organizes. She brings stuff for me to consider. And she is practical yet everything is a thing of beauty. We are now at the point where she tells me I can keep things but I am determined to get rid of them. We have gotten rid of so many books that it reminds me of when I started this journey a few years ago. It's not a matter of trust with us, she just does it. And if I want to keep something I don't have to say why. I think I mentioned that now she says, you can keep that, we have room, and I say, let's let it go. We have enough stuff. So it's pretty amazing. I'm so happy. Right now we have another five bags of books to donate. We have to get them in my car today.

Last night I shredded my high school year book. I started to read what people had written but It ended up that I didn't care. I was liked and loved, I think. I just shredded all pages where someone had written on it. Relief to get that out of my life.

I feel relief every day, Lila. Pure relief. Stuff that I didn't even know I had is weighing me down.

I mailed out a bunch of stuff yesterday including a few more dollhouse pieces to my friend's daughter. I have a few more pieces I'll mail to my sister and then I'm done with that emotional saga.
Posted: 18 May 2021 - 05:26 AM
Good morning!

Lila, it's great that you donated the boxes!

For your current roadblock - let's think outside the box, lol! Seriously though, does the place you donate require boxes? Could you put some donations in grocery bags? Are you grocery shopping in person? And if so, could you ask for some boxes?

Could you set aside one dessert plate to use just for yourself when you need a "pick me up" snack break and donate the rest? It probably wouldn't be too hard to find a safe place to store one dessert plate off the floor.

The keepsake boxes - those are going to depend on your relationships with your kids. You could ask them to look through with you and take anything that is meaningful to them. Then decide what is meaningful to you and toss the rest. The looking could even be done on zoom. If they don't even want to look, then just save what matters to you.

CM, yay for floor! I will not judge you about the laundry! You know my covid laundry trauma. I am still hanging wet clothes all over the house because the new dryer is still awful and it keeps raining.

I would like to suggest though, that this would be a good time for a clothing purge. If you went that long without laundry, anything in season that you did not wear can go! Also there may be a few things that you wore but realized you hate. Those can go too!

Tatoulia, here is what I tell myself about masks - cases in my area are down to where they were when we returned to school. being vaccinated protects me more than masks and distancing. So school is now safer for me than it was when I decided to return. If I keep wearing my mask and keeping my distance, that is all I can do to keep my students as safe as possible and much safer than when we started.

If I wear my mask and keep my distance in public, (grocery store for example) I am safer there than I was at school in October. So I am going to do limited in person errands.

I think I will be ready for outside things (with my mask on around people) once school is out. However, I do not see myself going places where I am inside and cannot keep moving or just walk away from people at will until cases get much much lower. Like 80% lower. At our current rate of progress, that may take until Christmas.

Ok, off to make my day functional....
Posted: 17 May 2021 - 06:15 PM
You guys are doing great! Thank you for coming and sharing. It's inspiring. How did you find a friend to help you clean things out?? I have no one I would trust for that!

I went and dropped off those boxes at the thrift store today and that feels good. I got most of the shoes onto the shoe rack. I found my tax papers and did my taxes last night. I had my son pull everything out from under my bed, and it is stacked in the "cleared" area waiting to be gone through. I vacuumed all the dust bunnies and today will Swiffer under the bed.

The current hold up is I don't seem to have any empty boxes for donations. I do have boxes with "keep" stuff in them, so maybe I need to put those things somewhere so I can use the boxes to donate. I am ready to sort those items from under the bed. One thing is my Dad's briefcase from, like, the '40's. I highly doubt anything in there will go anywhere... he died when I was 20 and I have very little of his. I will look through it and think about what to do with the items, then probably stash it in my newly neat closet for now. It makes me feel good to have something of my Dad's in my room.

Trouble spots (help welcome!):
I saw some super cute little china plates on a Free site about 2 years ago. They are little dessert plates with fruit painted on them and I think they are so cute! I don't have good china. We eat off plastic plates right now due to the teen who throws and breaks things. I am hanging onto these dishes to use "someday." But part of me almost wants to donate them. They are in a stack on my bedroom floor.

Also - when my kids were little I created a cardboard box for each of them, full of little keepsakes, art projects, notes they wrote me, their first footprints, stuff like that. Each kid has a box. My intent was to give the box to them once they "settled down." But now I find it hard to give them up. My oldest has 2 kids and he is the one I am most likely to just mail most of his box to (save a few special things). But he is not the type who would even care. His wife might like to see these things. He would probably just throw them all away. But he does have kids now, so I don't think he is going to grow any deeper in appreciation. My other son who has a wife, kid and house would probably throw all of his away too. The other kids don't have homes yet. Any thoughts on what to do with these boxes?

Well, I guess my next step for today is, get a box emptied, then go through those under-bed tubs, donate some of that, and then put some random items that I am keeping but don't have a home in there and put them back under the bed (maybe winter clothes, journals, and some cables that I don't know what they are for so am afraid to get rid of them yet). Also will look at, dust off, and handle those dishes and if I really want to keep them, find a home for them OFF the floor.
Posted: 17 May 2021 - 01:57 PM
I'll try to catch up a little here. Might not remember everything, but if I think of something else important I can always post again.

The second Covid shot made me less obviously tired than the first one did, although there may be some lingering mild fatigue that comes and goes. I didn't get good sleep at night on the weekends, just off rhythm and there was chaos Saturday evening with a big thunderstorm and heavy rain all of a sudden, the boomers were making roommate's dog uneasy and I had to dash out to move my van into the driveway because of curbside deep water. It was crazy.

SubC, hope by now that paper has turned up. So annoying when something like that goes missing.

I'm really enjoying getting to experience vicariously what I think of as Tatoulia's personal KonMari makeover. 😉 Marie Kondo would probably need a defibrillator if she saw my mess.

I'm clearing a bit of floor though. There had been an ongoing issue which, since it is finally resolving now, I can bring myself to make a confession about: For 2-3 months earlier this year, I wasn't doing laundry here, and I didn't know for sure if it might be that I'd just wait for the end of the pandemic and start going to a laundromat to do it.

This frustrating state of affairs began one ugly dreary cold day back in January. We were trying to make progress on the BIG BUT. In the middle of all that, my van was suddenly discovered to be in need of a new battery and alternator. I was devastated because it meant there went the few hundred dollars left from whichever stimulus payment I'd been hoping to use as seed money for rebuilding a bit of savings.

To say I was in a foul mood that day would've been an understatement akin to describing Darth Vader as a bit grumpy when he hasn't had his first cup of coffee. In addition to the van repair and the attempt for progress on the BIG BUT (which stalled out later that day), my roommate's washing machine had stopped working. Repair was an iffy proposition so she decided to get a new one.

Off we went to Lowe's. I wasn't even in the mood to go, but she really wanted my input. Now bear in mind that I grew up with a dad who knew mechanical stuff and kept things running for Mom and me. He had actually chosen a new washer to be delivered on a Thursday back in 2003, I'd been using their previous one on Saturday and it had quit. He picked a nice one. But he died in the night between the Tuesday and Wednesday of that week. 😭 The machine worked great though, and it was his last act as a husband and father providing for his family.

So, back to Lowe's. The pandemic had caused glitches, so the selection was less especially if you wanted to have a machine delivered from stock on hand. I noticed how laundry machines were more electronic, naturally, not surprising. Some had the physical knobs and looked more like the older ones; some had touch controls and looked very different from what I've been used to, the old school type like what my dad got and that roommate had. The newer electronic control ones looked intimidating to me...

Guess which type we ended up with because it was in stock. I was so doubtful and suspicious of the contraption. My roommate was going on about how to operate it but I just felt so lousy and bewildered. It had so many strange and arcane procedures to be learned, it would need different soap, it just all sounded so complicated. I told her I'd need to study the manual, and I downloaded a PDF of it. But I felt rebellious and passive aggressive. So I took my sweet time about all of it. When I'd see the new machine I would glare at it. If I was being childish I didn't care. 😠

So - it was probably a good couple of months before I calmed down and felt like I could face the thing and attempt to interact with it. But finally one day I did, and I found a quick start guide which was a lot simpler, and I printed out a paper copy and highlighted the important points. So now I'm using the machine and able to get caught up on laundry.

I'm seeing a little floor now in my bedroom, though. Our Great Plains May Monsoon Season is going on, so I guess I'll just do what I can. There are a few not too difficult things I can piddle around at the house with until I can ever return to a real purposeful work pattern involving the storage unit. I've reached the point of resignation with this year and its crazy erratic weather, and the way I'm 2-3 months behind where I'd imagined I'd be on decluttering by this time. 🤷‍♀️ *shrug*

Lila, I share your dilemma of having a difficult time finding a staging area aka clear place to use to sort through things. It makes this whole undertaking harder than it ought to be. You're probably getting more done than it feels like. Because you mentioned several things! 😉 The absence of the big awkward metal piece should make things easier especially.

Today I began going through some ceramic and wood bunny themed items I'm intending to paint and sell or donate to raise money for the bunny club. I had Penny the black kitty as supervisor and cardboard box inspector.

The other kitty, the grey floofy boy, still comes and sleeps with me some nights since the weather has stayed cooler. So I guess Monsoon Season has a few compensations. 🐈
Posted: 17 May 2021 - 12:11 PM
HIP HIP HOORAY! That is wonderful news, SubC!

I have the day off. Am getting packages ready to mail then off to the museum with BF.

People are still wearing masks outside. They are lifting restrictions here with inside mask wearing, which will be difficult for me to accept. But I'll still wear a mask indoors. And outdoors. I have been very pleased seeing how many people are still wearing masks outdoors.

Posted: 17 May 2021 - 09:47 AM

In time for tomorrow, as needed!
Posted: 17 May 2021 - 05:27 AM
Tatoulia, we live in very different places.

About 60% of the adults at the zoo were wearing masks. Even though there were signs everywhere and psas on the speaker system. On the way there, we got gas and I watched 4 people walk into the quick stop, past the large sign, wearing no mask. One person went in with a mask on. Masks are required indoors everywhere in my state until June 2. Nobody cares.

To go inside the kangaroo exhibit - WITH the little kangaroos - you had to go through a gate a few at a time. They would not let you in if you were apparently over 2 and did not have a mask because you could make the kangaroos sick. I watched them turn a family away because they did not have any masks WITH THEM to put on. even for the adults.

We also passed 5 people smoking even though there is no smoking allowed in the zoo at all and that is also clearly and repeatedly posted. (Obviously the smokers were not wearing masks.)

Anyway, Bean seemed to really like the zoo. His favorites were the ducks (anything similar to a duck) the cats (actual large cats) and the giant koi in the monkey moat. He ignored the monkeys. We also went inside the tortoise exhibit, where the tortoises were eating leaves. He kept pointing to the leaves overhead - at home he does that and I pick him some leaves and he feeds the goats. I did not pick him any leaves, and I think he was wondering how grammie got so stupid.

We bought hot pretzels, but no souvenirs.

I told Dh that when things are better I will come back with him and Bean and have lunch in the beer garden. I did not define "better". We'll see if we have another outbreak when all the restrictions are lifted or if most of the cases have already been the people who refuse to follow the rules anyway.

Over 8% of our state has officially had covid, and I keep reading that real numbers are 4-10 times that. 37% are fully vaccinated. There's some overlap, but maybe we are actually reaching at least temporary herd immunity.....

Anyway, none of this has to do with my stuff, except that it uses band width. I worked on prepping sone garden beds before we went. I go get Bean soon. And I still can't find my paper.
Posted: 16 May 2021 - 09:21 AM
SubC! Great to hear from you! Wow! You and your family are getting a lot done!

They've lifted the mask requirement outdoors here and I've noticed that about half the people are still wearing masks which is terrific. I use cloth masks but may get some paper ones for the summer if I'm going to be walking a long distance. Try to keep cooler.

I have to do shredding today. Shredding and sorting. Then my friend will put everything in bins in the closet. We bought only after she determined what we needed. So it's going great. My only task is to go through the stuff. I don't have to do anything else.

My friend's cat is living at another friend's house and she will be staying there for a week, starting Friday, as that friend will be out of town. So I need to make sure that we are finished here before she leaves on Friday. She'll still be back and forth here for her clothes and other stuff, but I'll want to be done with things here at that time.

Lila, you are doing great! It is possible to do this. It really is. I've been doing this for years and honestly, it gets easier and easier. Our friend Tillie used to talk about how we are building up our muscles.
Posted: 16 May 2021 - 04:49 AM
Ok, I'm going to try to catch up a bit this morning.

Lila,mi am very proud of you for getting rid of flitters to make room for your new - currently useful - clothes.

My new shirts for work arrived, but I have not gone through my shirts yet.

It sounds like you are making really good progress on sorting through things and starting to reclaim sone space! Is the stuff in the car going to ge dropped off?

I think your shoe rack was a good choice, and again, you found stuff to pass on so that you would have space for it - good job!

CM, I hope that by now your arm is no longer sore and you are feeling better in general.

Tatoulia - I am just blown away. I can't believe how much you and your friend did in two weeks!

Yesterday I finally finished planting the first section of my garden. (About three weeks later than I would have liked) Dh did a lot of mowing, including some very tall areas that I may rake up and toss to the goats. It is not great hay, but it is free hay. (Well, free except for time, but it is also a little heavy to let lie.)

Dd needed to change her brake pads, so she came over for dad assistance and shop use and I got to play with bean. Dsil spent a lot of time just walking the dog through the woods, and we all had dinner together.

Today we are meeting them at the zoo. Today is the last day the zoo will require masks outdoors, so I figure the less careful people will probably put their trip off until next weekend. They still have timed entry and reduced ticket numbers.

I still cannot find my important paper. I am getting stressed about that because it is time critical.
Posted: 15 May 2021 - 09:51 PM
My life is easier with her changes to my kitchen cabinets and drawers. Much easier. I can't believe that in 14 days she has transformed so much.

Good visit with mom today.
Posted: 15 May 2021 - 10:17 AM
Every kitchen cabinet has been cleared. She took everything out and I I had to decide. She removed everything and then I made the decisions. She makes this very easy.

So I'm going to see mom today. I have to get ready.
Posted: 14 May 2021 - 09:00 PM
Way to go, Lila! You are doing great!!!! Do one bin at a time and do your best!!

Okay my friend emptied my junk drawer in the kitchen. I feel new. She took every book ofc of my book shelf and I got rid of half. Amazing. And she arranged my bookshelves really nicely.

We didn't do any shredding tonight because it would've killed me. Still chaos but I'll get through it.

SubC I hope you find the paper you need.
Posted: 14 May 2021 - 08:30 PM

I got the metal panel out of my room. I got a shirt, pair of jeans and set of pajamas into the donate box and made room for those new workout clothes. I had my son put two large donation boxes into my car, including a large handbag a friend gave me a year ago that I have never used. Now there is a little more space in my room to keep going.

I am about to look for tax papers, and then before bed I will put the shoes on the shoe rack.

I have no idea what my next steps are but maybe if I go in my room tomorrow I will get inspired. Maybe will pull the tubs out from under my bed and get rid of stuff from those, so I can use those to store things I decide to keep... thus clearing out more space on my floor.
Posted: 14 May 2021 - 06:35 PM
Goid luck Lila!

Tatoulia, I have been reading and cheering!

I lost another important piece of paper.

Gotta run.
Posted: 14 May 2021 - 10:25 AM
Good morning,

You all are doing fantastic! I am trying. I have been sorting books in my bedroom (there are a LOT that were given to me by someone I love and respect, that I am very hesitant to get rid of any) and I got one medium sized box of books put together and moved into my office (not at my house). I put one large novel in the donate box. I have a stack I am giving away. Will try and sort the rest and get them mostly on shelves, getting rid of what doesn't fit.

I bought some workout clothes because I am doing PT several times a week and nothing I had fit. I will try today to go through and donate some older things that are just really not my style. Make room for the new in the drawers.

I am still feeling pretty depressed. I am working on my bedroom too. I go in there and since there is no space to sort, and I can't even get to the boxes and bins, I get frustrated and quit. Today I am taking a HUGE metal panel out of my room that my husband left in there months ago. That will give me some space to move. I also bought a shoe rack for my bedroom closet. I know it was bringing another thing in, but everything was just thrown in there, and shoes on the floor in my room, so I am hoping this will end up making things better. I did have to pull out some stuff, blankets and sheets in a plastic container, to donate to make room for the rack. I plan to get all the shoes on it today.

I saw a bed online that has hydraulic lifts and the mattress lifts up and the whole space underneath is storage. Wouldnt that be great?? Then instead of a bed with junk and dust bunnies under it, I could store blankets, sheets, pillows etc in there! Goals for the future. I am always looking for furniture that has storage space.

I also need to do my taxes so today is sort papers day to find what I need. Wish me luck.
Posted: 14 May 2021 - 08:36 AM
Hello. We didn't do anything last night so it's good for a moment not to have trash bags or recycling bags hanging around. There's still chaos where I have to go through things. But it's fine.

Today I have to continue to be focused at work.

Cm how are you? How's your arm? How's the BIG BUT? SubC: sending you strength as we move forward in the pandemic ease of restrictions.
Posted: 13 May 2021 - 04:15 PM
I did manage to take a lunch time and I took everything to goodwill. They even to ok the books! Yay!

Going to nap a bit then take garbage out.
Posted: 13 May 2021 - 10:36 AM
Ps I did get a break last night. I fell asleep and woke up around 8:30, showered, then back to bed.
Posted: 13 May 2021 - 10:34 AM
Cm! Glad you are feeling well and woohoo for the unexpected refund! You have a good list of things to do! I hear you on the weight. I am huge right now. Probably my hugest. Between having my friend here and listening to my mindfulness tapes, i feel better about myself. I'm on the road to good health!

SubC the open Mike night sounds so great. What a wonderful opportunity for everyone to celebrate! I, too, am stressing about my state reopening. My SO understands and supports my conservatism but my mother, The Biochemist, does not. Yup, the biochemist thinks I'm being selfish. So this is my life now.

About the friend getting into my closets. The two off-limits closets were the coat closet and the bedroom closet. She took care of both of them out of sight from me and I am grateful. She cleared out the floor of my bedroom closet and got all the dress shoes into boxes and on the shelves. She didn't open the drawers in my bedroom closet and she didn't try to get rid of anything. She showed me a few things and asked. Since I don't have a lot of clothes, and I tend to buy on the more expensive side, there aren't any clothes to get rid of and she didn't try. everything is in nicely. She got rid of all extra hangers and now each closet has a small number of extra hangers in the front. The off limits coat closet is neatly stacked with purses and has the reusable grocery bags in a basket underneath. She did what needed to be done and having her do that without me, and despite being under strict orders not to touch, was good for me. My cleaners yesterday loved how the closets looked.

I am very happy with how this went. I still have papers to sort through. And I want to do one more shredding tonight. I'm going through old birthday cards and Christmas cards etc. as i mentioned before, she brings the stuff to me to sort or decide.

Everything is very nicely done and I'm really happy with all of it. We need three more little baskets for her to finish. What's terrific is the logic she's put behind how things are organized. Also, we have lots of empty space now.

I'm thinking I'll go to goodwill at lunch to get the bags out of my car. I haven't taken a lunch since getting promoted. And I'd like to clean out my car for when I take mom out on Saturday.

So that's the news from here. Tillie, if you are reading, we love you.
Posted: 13 May 2021 - 07:49 AM
I'm doing okay except for mildly annoying arm stiffness at the shot site. Checked to see if it's okay to ice it and it is so will give that a go.

Got a nice surprise in the mail yesterday - the oral surgeon's sent me a refund check for a decent chunk of the bill. They are really great about that. It's an estimate up front but then they adjust it. Awhile back there had been one for last year's tooth extraction, which went to my roommate because she had lent me the money. But then that's less on what I will need to finish paying her for each month, so a win-win.

I feel like I'm going to be fine to go out for a bit, take that check to the bank and I have a library book to return, and an item to exchange at Target. That'll probably be enough errands and I can chill when I get home.

I've been eating more than I was before all these dental and medical things (e.g., taking antibiotics). Eating to buffer my tummy. Literally feeling like eating much more lightly after I take the last pill at 10:00. I'll make sure to hydrate though. In a few days I'll dare to check my weight and see where I am with it. Hoping the extra food didn't do too much damage.
Posted: 13 May 2021 - 05:05 AM
Good morning.

Tatoulia, I hope you got your break.

I don't really understand how your friend can clean out your closet without you.

I hope your friend gets her place to live.June us in less than 3 weeks!

I have three and a half weeks of school and you have a few more weeks of company and clean out. Then we will both have a break!

Tonight is "open Mike" night at my school. First we have a slide show of the graduates that features pictures of them growing up with a focus on their years with us, then people are allowed to speak about/to any of them. It will be online again this year, which I actually kind of like. I have so many who are Important to me this year!

I am still struggling to find enough energy to do the things I want to do.

My governor announced that all health restrictions will be lifted in three weeks, which makes my Dh happy but me unhappy. It basically means that I have three weeks to go places that are indoors - a thing I just started feeling comfortable with, because after that, even if places require masks, my fellow citizens will be ignoring those rules. I don't see cases getting low enough in three weeks to make that ok. I don't see local vaccine rates getting high enough in 3 weeks to make that ok either.

Also, it means that Dh and I will be in conflict because I will be uncomfortable with his behavior and because I won't want to do list of the things I promised him I would do in june when I wasn't around my kids anymore.

On the up side - we start vaccinating 12 y.o.s today!

I really want to see Pfizer get full approval so that schools can require it. (My school won't, but it will still make a big difference in the population)

CM, how are you feeling?
Posted: 12 May 2021 - 02:57 PM
I thought I had written earlier today but I guess I didn't!

Good luck today, CM! Drink lots of water and rest as much as you need to,

So ladies I'm not feeling as light and happy as I'd like. I think part of it is because she still has her stuff here and there are still many things for me to go through. I may take a break tonight.

It's so funny, I think about the stress of it all and I just want to eat ice cream. I have not had ice cream in 10 days. Having her here keeps me from binge eating. So I am getting a much more organized house and I'm not binge eating. It's a pretty good situation here.

My cleaners came today. It's just the one who comes right now. Her mother took a different job. They must've needed the steady income or something. She's doing a great job for me. She'll come again next week. I will have her every week until my friend moves out.

My friend found a good apartment but without a job, the landlord is hesitant to rent to her. We will see what happens in the next day or two. If she does get the apartment, she'll be gone in June 1st which would be good for her. She hasn't had a place to live in a long time and she's bouncing around.

She did my bedroom closet yesterday. I'm not sure if I mentioned it. I had to leave the apartment as it was stressing me out. So I went to get the car and then BF helped with getting the seven or so bags for donations into the car.

In another hour I will go get our dinner for tonight. We are out of everything here. Im thinking quiche and salad. We are out of fruit and just about everything except cat food.

Wish me well. I would like a break tonight.
Posted: 12 May 2021 - 04:59 AM
Happy jab day CM!

I hope your cousin is able to help you.

Tatoulia, I continue to be in awe of your progress! The good feelings will come soon.

Nothing here is ever "complete" - lol.

The money spending is ok. A little stressful, but I am not being extravagant by most standards. The big project will "pay" for itself in eggs in a couple of years and last long past that. Mostly I keep buying myself more work.... I want all the things, but i overestimate what I can do. (Dd1 is in charge of the big project, so that will go well.)

Yesterday i did some laundry and dishes, cleared the worst of the overgrowth from behind the greenhouse so I can see the irises that are about to bloom, finished squaring a raised bed, and planted the last of the leeks. We are still getting frost warnings here!

Today is a long teaching day and I am struggling to get started.
Posted: 11 May 2021 - 10:56 PM
Tatoulia, I was going to say, your Magic Mess Fairy could stop by Kansas on her way to her next destination. I hesitate to frighten her to death, though... 🤪

SubC, busy time for you but nice getting to see some family I'm sure. Wish weather would cooperate more for both you and me.

I'm almost giddy about getting the 2nd Covid jab tomorrow. And I only have 2 antibiotic pills tomorrow a.m. and p.m., then one a.m. on Thursday and I'm done with those suckers! The tooth spot is healing well as far as I can tell. Once in awhile I take a single Tylenol or Ibuprofen. They always send a script for opioids along and I'm like Nope. I hate those things. They either make me barf or get hives or constipation. Who needs that!

The clutter, well, I vacillate between strong despair and glimpses of hope. I try not to take too seriously the bad feelings these last couple of weeks especially. Between the BIG BUT and the tiredness from the dental stuff, I think my brain is a bit whack. I've shifted into neutral acceptance re the BIG BUT, and the tiredness will be resolved when I get sufficient rest.

This year so far has been way different from what I'd hoped, and I'm just trying to believe it can still be one of accomplishment as far as decluttering, and peace of mind regarding the big decisions and plans I need to start making in order not to end up a bag lady in retirement in a few years. I will be talking to my cousin about the social security disability/part time work etc. stuff pretty soon. Hoping that there will be a viable solution to my dilemmas.
Posted: 11 May 2021 - 01:19 PM
Cabinets not can binges
Posted: 11 May 2021 - 10:59 AM
Ps the fact that I notice the chaos is good. It used to be chaotic here as a rule. Then it was just closets and can
Binges that were chaotic. So it is worth it to feel the chaos.
Posted: 11 May 2021 - 10:58 AM
I know your house is going to look beautiful when the fencing and plants are complete. I do hate that feeling of spending money after money after money. I haven't bought my plants for my window boxes yet. Too much going on here. Maybe on Saturday.

Right now there is still chaos so it's hard to feel the progress. I don't look in the cabinets or the closet. I just deal with the stuff out here. And between her suitcases and having to have two places for kitty to eat and having papers out for me to shred etc, it feels heavy and not light.

But we will get there. Cleaners come tomorrow.
Posted: 11 May 2021 - 09:25 AM
Tatoulia, you will feel so much lighter when the donations go!

I am buying, buying, buying...

Wood,, fencing, plants, so many plans for spring...

And it is so wet and cold.

No rain until Sunday, so I am going to try to do a garden thing every day.

Sunday - house.

Today, trash and recycling drops, just what's easy.
Posted: 11 May 2021 - 08:36 AM
We are doing it! She got into the kitchen last night. I think I mentioned that we bought some organization baskets and bins on Saturday once she had a clear idea of my needs. So she's doing a great job organizing and putting things back in a logical fashion. We are at the point where I am saying "get rid of it" snd she is saying, we have room, you can keep it.

We have to get the donation bags to the car tonight. Actually, we have to get the car here. Too much to carry.

We took out so many garbage bags last night, including an additional two bags of shredding, representing our efforts last night.

I only get uncomfortable when she says what's next. I'm better when she's just doing it and not talking about the next area she's cleaning. She started on the kitchen on her own. And that was better than saying, I'm in the kitchen. I shred and she brings me stuff to ask about and she also makes a basket of stuff for me to sort. The system is working.

I don't feel lighter but I know we are doing this.
Posted: 10 May 2021 - 09:06 AM
I'm grateful that you are healing, CM. The magic mess fairy is here at my house-disguised as a Japanese woman who has boundless energy and common-sense organization skills. She's here at my house at least through the end of May so I can send her your way when she's done.

Something that resonated with me was SubC?s phrase of shrines to the past. Thank you! I've been letting go of a lot of stuff and this will help me even more. I've been able to get rid of stuff I never thought possible and yet I still have plenty of stuff left that I love. I can't have a shrine to the past here. I don't have room for living.

Big trash night for us here. Also, she's going to go grab my car and bring it down today so that we can load the stuff for goodwill. We took three or four bags down and have much, much more. I found some sweet dollhouse furniture. Some will go to my friend who has my other stuff and some will go to my sister and sadly I had three pieces that needed to be tossed.

Okay back to work for me!
Posted: 10 May 2021 - 05:00 AM
Tatoulia, you are rocking it!

That is an amazing clear out!

CM, I hope your jab doesn't wear you out too much. I am so happy that you will be fully vaccinated though!

I did not know there was a magic mess fairy! How do I summon her?

My mother has been using quarantine to sort out the house. She is on the last room upstairs. (Upstairs is basically 4 bedrooms that are rarely used and had become storage/shrines to the past.) she is on the last room and "almost done" she says she has empty drawers in every room. She has been grouping like items together (which she says has meant bringing some things up from downstairs and making some rooms look worse) and recording where everything is in a notebook, marking the areas my brother or I are supposed to help her with.

I will be going to visit at the beginning of July, so we will see how many of those areas we can get through. I'm sure it will mean me bring more stuff here. (I know she has the letter my grandmother wrote to my grandfather about her parents giving her a hope chest for Christmas and I am supposed to take it because I have the hope chest.)

I had a great Mother's Day weekend! Saturday I got two loads of mulch and the day with Bean and Dh made a nice dinner for us, Bean's family and dd2. Sunday I slept in and dd2 made pancakes for breakfast. it rained most of the day, but dd2 helped me pull weeds, prep beds, and plant cucumbers during a brief break in the rain, and ds and ddil called on FaceTime and we talked for a hour. (And I also called my mom.)

Bean today and still lots to do!
Posted: 09 May 2021 - 11:43 PM
Wow, you ladies seem to be having some progress. I wish I weren't so stalled out. Trying to believe it will pick up soon though.

Weather is still blah. My 2nd Covid shot is Wednesday - and the days following it are to be nice weather, but will I be tired from the shot? Who knows. Maybe I'll get lucky and not be tired.

Found out some things re the BIG BUT that aren't a miraculous resolution, but do make the whole business less of a mystery and source of consternation. Still wish it was completed and behind us, of course, and we don't know when it will be.

Dental surgery recovery proceeding well. A little fatigue and mild pain but nothing serious. I can chew food enough to get by. Four more days of horse pill antibiotics, I'll be glad to be done with those. I wonder if they sap my energy a bit. I have probiotics and vitamins to take.

I want the Magic Mess Fairy to come and deal with all my mess. But she seems to be social distancing.
Posted: 09 May 2021 - 10:12 AM
Big doings yesterday. Wow. We have four bags of books, one bag of coats, one bag of miscellany to donate. Huge changes. We have empty spaces in my closet. Two big recycling bags and two big trash bags. Less painful last night than other nights.

Huge changes. I'll feel lighter once we get the garbage and recycling out tomorrow night. Not yet there.
Posted: 08 May 2021 - 10:44 AM
SubC! Congratulations on the good meeting with the administration! Very good to hear that you are appreciated.

Once again you have a very big day and weekend in front of you. You amaze me.

Friend and I haven't done anything the last two nights. My two kitchen drawers are amazing and so easy to use. And despite getting rid of so many kitchen items, the drawers have all that I need. So that is a big weight off of me. She has one more drawer to do.

We have a lot more to do in the living room closet but we are getting there.

I have a big list of errands today and I just hope I do them. Right now I am waiting for the laundry to finish. I washed friend's sheets and pjs this AM.
Posted: 08 May 2021 - 05:01 AM
Meeting with admin went great.

They made a point of telling me I will get a raise next year. (But that unfortunately raises will be small because we are behind from covid) I told them some things that are more important to me than a raise (didn't phrase it that way) and they made a couple of notes to see if I can have those things.

I talked a little bit about my teaching goals and style and things I've learning in the last few years and they gave me positive feedback on the direction I want to go.

Bean is going to have to help me with laundry today.

Also, my car is full of recycle/reuse stuff from school.

BUT part of it is a bunch of identical small cardboard boxes from some equipment we ordered. The boss of things gave them to me and they are 1/2" shallower than my supply cabinet, and stack exactly 5 high and almost exactly four wide on the shelves. I am putting all the materials for a specific project or 5 jars of glaze, or one category of item in them, and labeling the end with tape. It makes the cupboard more efficient and more visually quiet and I can easily find things. I brought some of the boxes home because there are things I have been storing in my home studio that can now be transferred to my cabinet.

Gotta go milk!
Posted: 07 May 2021 - 04:50 AM
Make up and shredded oaper... I'm going to relax about your trash.

CM, I hope your BIG BUT resolves. And that you could laugh at Tatoulia's joke. I'm head your surgery went well.

Tatoulia, your friend would completely stress me out! I'm glad she is helping you, but definitely stand up for your breaks!

We moved to a new state when dd2 was 2 weeks old. My mil showed up to "help" she thought we should completely unpack and organize the house in less than a week and she wouldn't do any of the things I needed her to do to help with my 2 and 4 y.o. She just wanted to unpack my stuff, decide where to put it, and throw out the boxes.

Yesterday I burned the burn bag. I have been making really bad choices about my time use - especially in the evenings, and staying up too late. I blame it on being tired, but then I stay up too late....

I have got to do better.

I have so much planned for this weekend! Early start tomorrow to pick up free mulch, then Dd is bringing Bean and taking our truck (which I have to have the mulch out of) to pick up compost all day (same location - free city yard waste program, two days a year) as sil's bday present. They are coming back for dinner and dd2 is coming into town for dinner and to spend the night and help spread the mulch on Sunday. I want to make sil a birthday pie. Dd2's bed is covered in clean laundry. My dishes are piled up again.

I am behind on garden planting and have some critical end of year things to get done for school in the next two weeks. Today is my end of year conference with admin, and I really don't have my thoughts together.

Must get moving!
Posted: 06 May 2021 - 10:15 PM
I'm glad the dental work went well despite the BIG BUT. Hoping for a resolution and a happy one! You know I'm on your side. And I have a BIG BUTT so truly I am a kindred spirit.

All the garbage out and the recycling out. Good to say goodbye to six bags of detritus. We didn't work on apartment tonight. My friend spent time with my mother (even snuck upstairs and played with the cat) then we went for a walk and then BF and I ran errands. Now I'm running the dishwasher and getting ready to listen to my tapes.

Love you all.
Posted: 06 May 2021 - 05:53 PM
Had my molar tooth out this morning at the oral surgeon's. It went smoothly and like the one last year is so far giving me little pain. I'm just taking it easy. Have to take another week of antibiotics, bleah, and these are augmentin which I think is harsher on my gi tract than was the amoxicillin. But I've got my probiotics and my crackers.

The Big Unresolved Thing that I don't want to speak of in further detail almost got resolved earlier this week, then got derailed yet again. I'll just call it the BIG BUT. Ha. I probably won't refer to it much. Someday may feel like telling the story, if ever it has a happy ending. If ever it has an ending.

So I had been upset about the latest false hope re the non-resolution of the BIG BUT. And since I'm one who is super aware of the mind-body connection, I had feared the stress could cause a bad outcome with this dental surgery. Very thankful that proved unfounded. So now I just recover from the physical, which should be easy enough. Then I'll regroup and tackle the mental, emotional, and spiritual.
Posted: 06 May 2021 - 10:03 AM
Putting on a shirt! Snort! I hope I meant nice shirt!

I am a little stressed about what's in the trash bags, too, but what's done is done. Our shredded paper is not recyclable and I do have at least one bag of shredded paper

This whole process is stressful. She is relentless. I had to have a break last night so I asked her to neaten out my linen closet which was already in good shape. So she did that and I threw out my makeup etc that hasn't been used in a year.

She's here for an indeterminate amount of time so I'm trying to make the most of it. Her tackling of my kitchen drawers has been very positive. But I'm going to break soon so I'm going to need her to lay off. Tonight we will work since tomorrow is garbage day. But I'm going to need a bit of a break. Her plan is to finish everything this weekend but I'm not going to be able to take that. But I think I can get her to ease up. We are saving a few things so for her when she gets her own apartment. She's looking at another place today then she's going to go run errands for my BF.

She did my hair and makeup for my seminar yesterday and I felt really confident and happy.
Posted: 06 May 2021 - 05:27 AM
Oh my Tatoulua,

I am laughing about your shirt because I think you mean a nice shirt, but I sometimes have to put pants on for company and it's because I'm just not wearing pants.

I'm happy for your progress, but I'm also trying to not stress about your trash bags. I want to say "three bags of trash?! Are you sure? Let me look...."

Lately I have been wandering around the building at school saying "this recycles. This recycles..."

I am trying to get my act together for a trip to the "moop palace" (what my Dd calls the city reuse/recycling hub.) moop is an acronym for "material out of place" just like a weed is a plant that is growing in a place where you don't want it, "trash" is often just moop.

This morning it think I will take out the burn bag and do that because it is full and because I got a chicken breast for Dh this week (one of the things I like about feeling able to go in the grocery store - Dh chicken breast comes in a piece of paper instead of a plastic wrapped styrofoam tray)
Posted: 05 May 2021 - 10:36 PM
We have one recycling bag, four donation bags, and three garbage bags. It's been hard but it's going. She straightened up my linen closet and it looks great and she's done two out of three kitchen drawers. It's hard but it's getting done. My friend is relentless and fearless. Cannot wait for garbage night so we can get this stuff out.

I don't yet feel lighter but I'm trying. I've been shredding and shredding and shredding. I was feeling lighter yesterday. Today I feel a bit besieged.
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