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Hoarding Help Message Boards : The Daily Chat : What are you doing today 2023
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What are you doing today 2023

Posted: 19 December 2023 - 09:34 PM
SubC, I did not know that about the first night of Yule and am so honored you'll be including me and my mother. I am well. I have an annual physical every year and see the doctor periodically otherwise. I did not get my blood work done so I'll have to stop in for that some day next week. I also need my mammogram. I like seeing the doctor. I always feel better after seeing her

Cm! I am so sorry that you have covid! That is no fun! I still haven't had covid. I know it could happen any moment. I still wear masks everywhere and at this point would feel funny without one.

Lila I am thinking of you.

I have turned down every Christmas Day dinner offer and guess what? I was just invited by someone at work and I think I'll be going. He said his wife is an excellent cook and that they'll be playing games and working on puzzles with the high school and college-aged kids. So appealing to me.
Posted: 19 December 2023 - 08:22 PM
Well, I do have covid but it's mild. Barely visible on the test, but it was there. Roommate seems okay. I was the one sitting directly across from the person who had it. Next year I sure hope to break this "tradition" even if I have to become a hermit for two or three weeks prior to Christmas! Dare we hope the virus will be a nothing burger in the world by then? Who knows.

So I haven't done much today except rest and have my prayer time and listen to instrumental Christmas relaxing music on YouTube and read Harry Potter (in the middle of book 5 now). Tomorrow I might rip seams in a few doll clothes and sort the fabric pieces - it is partly fabric I decided I don't like so that will get donated.

Might read a book about Gimp digital photo software because I was going to have a tutorial yesterday at the library. Glad I called to postpone; the cool guy who teaches and helps with tech I sure would not want to give covid to, or anyone else. It can wait until after New Year's probably. Things will be more relaxed then anyway.

So far I still have my sense of smell. Now and then I sniff something to check. Mostly this is just a minor annoyance.

I miss my mom at the holidays too, and my dad; there are memories of things we used to enjoy, childhood Christmases, etc. Those can make me feel warm and fuzzy inside. And the meaning of Christmas, the Bible account, getting closer to God during Advent - sometimes I get a bit frustrated because anymore it seems harder to find the peace and calm I used to have in the season. But I suppose it is still there, if one looks a little deeper.
Posted: 19 December 2023 - 07:44 PM
Good evening.

Tatoulia, I don't know what the doctor appointment was about, but i hope you are ok.

I hope you are able to finish the apartment tomorrow.

Forgive me if I am making a mistake sharing this, but tomorrow is the first night of Yule, which is traditionally a time for honoring mothers - our own, those who have gone before us, and all the women in our lives who nurture and care for us and for others. (Also for baking) so it seems good to me that you will be doing this task with Emiko, who has always sounded like a nurturing presence in your life. I hope that will bring you comfort. I'll be thinking of you, and of your mom when I light candles tomorrow.

You guys aren't going to believe this, but here is what I absolutely need to do before I leave for school tomorrow: sleep, chores, dress, and brush my teeth. My lesson plans are ready, the work is graded, I showered this evening, my car is loaded, and I have a gift card to get breakfast from Starbucks in my console. My great room is nearly clean, my laundry is put away, and there is a fire in the woodstove.

I did not finish everything I thought I might do today, but the things I didn't do are not urgent and not very important. It's a strange feeling.
Posted: 19 December 2023 - 06:09 PM
Hello! Long day here. Had dr appt at 335 but didn't get seen til after five. I needed the appt so not really in a position to complain.

Taking tmr off to work on mom's. Friend Emiko is coming. Goal is to finish it.

Cm I'm so sorry about the health ups and downs. Very very stressful.

Will write more later. I'm a bit shakey.
Posted: 18 December 2023 - 06:34 PM
I am glad to see both of you !

CM,I'm sorry you had a medical scare, but glad it turned out ok.

I'm excited about that new shelf space for you! It would be lovely if you could have only things that are yours in your room.

Your teaching style sounds great.

Lila, I hope you had fun with tot's family. If you don't feel social, don't be social. It's ok. You do what helps you.

I had a good day with bean today. He was tired from last night and very cuddly. We read a lot of books.

I realized I have to go back to the feed store tomorrow because I forgot rabbit food. That's the only thing I have to leave the house for though. I'm going to try to get my act more together in the house. I might even pack for our trip.
Posted: 18 December 2023 - 02:41 PM
I am here, sort of... and reading posts but not finished yet. Nice to see you back Tatoulia and CM. I am sorry for the hard things.

I have had a hard time being social as well and avoiding gatherings. Even family stuff. I finally invited Tot's family for dinner tonight. I wanted to see them before but they were sick. So now I need to find something to cook.

I am having a hard time getting anything done. I will ask Son when he comes tonight to move a few large items for me in preparation for them leaving. I do not know how I am going to manage things in the coming year. I feel overwhelmed. I am still on the wait list for a counselor and they think it will be in 3-4 weeks.

I will go take my vitamins.
Posted: 18 December 2023 - 11:43 AM
I'm back

Glad to be back

Things got weird in mid-November, but now they are okay. I had a medical scare, and one test that caused me great anxiety both in the procedure itself and concern re possible outcomes. But now I just got the call from my doctor this morning and all is well.

Roommate and I are on Covid watch, though, because the other friend we had breakfast with on Saturday texted me later that she'd tested positive. I will be more diligent in future re asking people who say they have a cold, whether they are sure it's not Covid (hard to figure out sometimes how to do this tactfully). We are not having any symptoms, and if we test negative on Friday we'll be home free. I sure hope we don't have another Very Merry Covid Christmas™ as we did last year.

The bombshell medical thing, plus some bad weather here, kind of blew up my November NaNoWriMo that had been going well, but I hope to get back to writing. Did a poem this morning. I've also been doing a bit of decluttering here and there - again feeling like I'm starting to shake up the petrified piles and find things I'd forgotten about (and in many cases can get rid of). Roommate has been decluttering too. I took a bunch of stuff, mostly hers, to the thrift shop a couple weeks ago. Including a boxed Christmas tree and other items that had been atop the shelving in my bedroom ever since I moved in here. So now I'll be able to use that for my own stuff. Need to vacuum dust off it first.

During the time I was trying to keep my mind off scary possibilities and focus in the present, our bunny organization had a Christmas party fundraiser. There were hitches and glitches but in the end it came together and was a big success. I led the kids' ornament painting activity, if you can call it leading since my "teaching" style is pretty low-key because my shyness and desire not to come across as too bossy kick in, so I just go "You can do this, or you can do that, whatever suits your fancy, here's some paint..." Lol! But they all had fun. I made a few notes on the setup, what worked and what might make it even better, because I have an idea for a similar project if we have the March event like we did this year.

I've been to my storage unit a time or two, mainly to fetch Advent and Christmas books/decorations. When I look around, I am starting to see that although it is in one sense a mess, mainly it's just because of the need to set up those sturdier shelves; things piled on the floor were from the old rickety shelves that got removed. I mean, there is plenty of work to do, don't get me wrong, but I don't feel the abject horror I once did just looking at it all. And I'm getting more of a sense of a plan of attack, and of how it will diminish as I go, i.e., not all the stuff will remain anyway. I have a big idea that I'm contemplating - don't worry, it's not to have two storage units, but it is a possible shift of location, and that's all I'm going to say for now.

Motivation and steady commmitment will be key moving forward into the spring, and those are always the toughest thing. Poco a Poco and having my cousin in town now - she was very encouraging and nonjudgmental - those things seem to have made me more optimistic.

The daily routines of life need tweaking - I know I spend more time in "waiting mode" and drifting because of living in a roommate situation rather than by myself, where I would have an entirely different rhythm of life. Although I am not kidding myself that I would never have to deal with the ADHD and such. I'm thinking of a New Year's resolution - I don't make many, but if I find one I really want to do, I will. There are two that are coming to me - read the Bible daily, and really cut back on social media usage of the type that I am getting bored with that just wastes time and energy, and sometimes gets me fixated on things that are just mentally chasing my tail. I know what those things are, and I can make a quick list, and then only use social spaces for more productive things - for example, the writers' group locally, etc.

I did start going to a faith sharing Advent group at my church, though circumstances caused me to miss all but two sessions, and I'll miss tomorrow's because of the Covid thing. I'm so glad, though, that it occurred to me to mention to the facilitator how much I was enjoying the group and to suggest that we carry on into the new year with other materials. She is going to! My parish hasn't had anything for so long, so this is a real blessing, and I've met some great people already.

And I want to get more involved with a local writing group, and keep up the exercising and go to the senior center now and then. My roommate and I are both introverts but we are resolving to do some socializing, in our own way, because we have probably been too much hermits for some years.

So anyway. I have been keeping up with your posts even while I was in radio silence, and I know you have all had a lot going on. I'll probably respond to some more but I just wanted to say I was back and where I'm at in the current moment. I probably got a little long winded, what else is new, but it's good to be back. :)
Posted: 18 December 2023 - 04:40 AM
Good morning.

Tatoulia, it's good to see you. A piano?! This is a larger place than I envisioned. I'm glad you have so many friends to help you out.

I'm sorry about your Christmas party experience. It was brave of you to try. Your decorations sound nice.

We were drinking out of the mugs, so my only choices were bring them home and wash and donate/recycle or trash, and you know me . it was bad enough that my dinner was all on disposable plastic plates. I stuck my fork in my pocket and that will get recycled too.

I enjoyed our caroling evening with friends last night. Our two families have been friends for 27 years. I did get surprisingly teary when we sang "I'll be home for Christmas." I've always celebrated Christmas with all of my kids, even if it wasn't on the day. This year I will only have Bean's family.

I took fudge in two decorative holiday tins and left the tins at my friends' house. They did gift us two half pints of homemade jam, and I will save the jars, although I take them jars from time to time if my closet fills up, and may return these.

I got the laundry washed and dried but not put away. Dishes are mostly caught up, even with the fudge making. I have checked about half the projects, so the rest will be tomorrow. I need to clear the checking station out of my living room this morning because today is Bean's day. I also need to get the feed out of my car and put his car seat back, so I better get moving!
Posted: 17 December 2023 - 08:25 PM
Ps thank you for the support on returning mom's Christmas clothes. I did get them returned. Afterward I wandered around Macy's and I was still looking at things for mom. This will take a while to figure it out. I still knock on her door before entering.
Posted: 17 December 2023 - 06:38 PM
Hi everyone! Lila, I'm glad you were able to get some paperwork signed and mailed. SubC, at events where we get a souvenir such as a mug or a yeti water bottle, I leave it at the event. I've had people run after me to say I forgot my XYZ and depending on the circumstance, I either say it was on purpose or I say that it's someone else's, I have mine. Since I go everywhere by walking or subway and rarely via a car, I need to hold steady with my rule that the thing isn't coming into my house.

I don't know when I've last written. I tried to go to my company Christmas party and I took one step in and burst into tears. I was able to get on the escalator and leave the venue before it was noticeable. I tried.

This weekend a friend came to help me at mom's. All cds have been donated together with other stuff. She cleared out my mother's dresser drawers and took care of things I couldn't. For example, my mother had her baby shoes and her brother's baby shoes and the shoes belonging to us kids. They aren't meaningful to me. So my friend took care of them. She did all the hard emotional work without involving me. I took mom's books down to the common area library. We got the front closet cleaned out. A lot of garbage out. A lot of recycling. Magazines, etc. then we wentfor a late lunch at my favorite place.

I was able to donate the vases and baskets that the 11 flower bunches came in I still have two flower arrangements that are nice.

I haven't decorated here at my house except for the ceramic (handmade) Christmas tree that was my grandparents. I thought all these years, including as a kid, that my sister wanted it but she wanted me to have it. It is very pretty. I did decorate the common area hallway. One person sent me a lovely, lovely Christmas arrangement and I had it in the lobby and I put a big wreath on my door. I also have wreaths on my front windows and "candles " in the windows. Inside I also have a very small paper Christmas tree. That's what I can do this year. Since the Christmas arrangement is starting to droop, I know what I'll do out in the lobby in its stead and I'll probably change my door wreath to something smaller.

Today I was on my own. I got more garbage and recycling out. Honestly I do not see the improvement that other people are seeing.

I'm trying to find a place to donate her piano. Her doctor's office came and picked up her art work to hang as well as some other things for the senior center. I need to finish this. It is hanging ove4 my head b
Posted: 17 December 2023 - 04:37 AM
Good morning!

The party was nice. The food was fine, the desserts were gorgeous and yummy, I got to hold Dh coworker's beautiful, tiny two month old baby (she weighs less than Bean at birth) and ride the carousel. I love carousels.

The company gifted us a pretty glass tree ornament, and two bottomless mugs of hot cocoa at the park - which came in souvenir mugs that I now have to get rid of.

We walked around and enjoyed the lights and Dh bought Bean a wooden puzzle (it's a pterodactyl) from the woman who made it at the Christmas village. I talked to her a little about the Christmas village booths - I didn't get the impression that she was having a great year. The stalls with cheap glitzy stuff were a lot busier. Handmade wooden toys might not be the best match for an amusement park.

The second-to-last load of laundry was in the wash when I went to bed last night. Now it is in the dryer. I've got one more load to put in. And two in baskets to put away. I ran the dishes but didn't unload yesterday. I went to the feed store and Dh went out for cat food. I think I can catch up today and make fudge for our caroling party with our friends tonight.

My big job is checking these school projects. And making the fudge.
Posted: 16 December 2023 - 07:35 AM
Good morning!

I slept ten hours last night. I think things caught up with me.

I have three boxes of projects to check by Wednesday, and at least four loads of laundry to wash today. Dishes are backed up and Dh work Christmas party is this afternoon/evening. It's at a nearby amusement park that has holiday lights and displays. The gathering for food, drinks, and the usual "merry Christmas the company loves you speech" is in a hall for a late lunch/early dinner (from 2-4? Who scheduled this thing?) and then we can stay as long as we want at the park. We have ruled out staying for the 10 pm closing fireworks.

I am going to try to focus on solstice and Christmas and just keeping up with each day and enjoying the celebrations the next two weeks. There will be time to get back to work in January.

One more day of teaching on Wednesday - the kids will spend most of their class time sharing finished projects and packing up their work to take home, so it should be low stress.
Posted: 15 December 2023 - 08:25 PM
I recommend the vitamin.

Mostly vegetarian here (fish a few times a year) and I'm on a 50+ multivitamin for women and an additional 325mg of iron daily. If I miss a few days, I notice.

I finished breaking the pots. I tried to mend one and it did not go well, so that will go in the bridge fill tomorrow. No mercy for bad pots. They don't get better, they just torment me.

My dad picked one he liked over FaceTime, so that is taken care of as well.
Posted: 15 December 2023 - 06:56 PM
SubC, that sounds like it will be very pretty!

The soup turned out very good. I got all my paperwork filled out, took a page to Teen to sign, went and mailed them all. Then to the ups store for two things I was returning. Then to the mall and returned another item, and picked up my new towels and small blanket I got on clearance. I am not doing anymore shopping except Christmas gifts for other people. All my towels are 15+ years old, mostly raggedy. I just wanted a few new ones for my own bathroom. I got 4. I continue to donate as the old ones get holes (animal shelters need them) but the old ones are best for Teen because if they ruin one I won't be bothered.

It is almost 5, and I did not get all the things done, but I did get some important things done, and I can still work on stuff this evening and tomorrow.

SubC, I wonder if I would feel better if I just take a multivitamin with iron every day. Being vegetarian, it is possible I am missing something. I do take a B12 every once in awhile. But I already have a bottle of multis sitting here so why not try? I do have low thyroid and Hashimoto's but I take synthroid and have tried higher doses, doesn't seem to make any difference.
Posted: 15 December 2023 - 04:48 PM
Hi Lila,
yes, that is similar to what I want to try, except I want to do mine with colored epoxy. Possibly with mica for shimmer. Because sadly, I do not have a bunch of extra gold sitting around.

I'm sorry your doctor isn't able to help you. Getting put on iron tablets made such a big difference in my life. I had had my thyroid checked, and when it was normal, I just decided I was getting old.

I had a good day at school today. One of my students brought me a bag of fire starters, and a former student, now friend, sent in a funny and thoughtful gift with her brother. He plopped it on my desk and announced "this is from the sister."

My boss liked the dice tower I made for her niece. A coworker wants me to make another one for her son. I told her we can talk about it after the holidays.

I came home and started my kiln for the last load I need to do before Christmas.
Posted: 15 December 2023 - 01:52 PM
Good morning. I have a few days off now after a very busy week. Tatoulia, hugs. It is so hard losing your mother, no matter the circumstances. Prayers for peace. SubC, I really enjoyed reading about your grandmothers! What a beautiful story. And makes me think about what my little Tots will remember about me, and the holidays, etc.

I remember seeing a thing about how in Japan they glue broken pottery back together with gold, and it looks better than it did before it was broken. Not that you have a lot of gold lying around, but, maybe something else pretty could be used in a similar way.

I am trying to get things done today. I am still feeling so slow and sluggish, but am drinking coffee and making myself do some things.

I am almost done making a pot of bean soup. I have a few more vegetables to chop and throw in. It smells so good.

I have some forms to fill out and mail, and an item to box up and return... maybe 2 items. I want to finish my Christmas decorating (tree and living room)... I waited long enough. The tree just has lights on it. I want to open boxes and start wrapping presents, and figure out what else I need to shop for.

I'm already tired thinking about it. I wish a doctor would take me seriously and help me find out what to do about being so totally sluggish allll the time.
Posted: 15 December 2023 - 04:48 AM
Good morning.

Yesterday I broke another batch of pots, made two dozen deviled eggs, checked some of the kids work (the essentials) did my lesson plans, and had a great time at the party with Bean.

In the process I have trashed my studio, my house, and my weight.

Today I'll teach and try to clean up.

I did have a conversation at the party with a skilled artisan about why my pots keep breaking. He had some suggestions that it is too late to implement (involving the first firing of the pots which is done already), but I will try in January. I'm just going to try one last batch and literally let the pieces fall where they may. I do have plans for the broken pots. There is a decorative mending technique I want to try.

I participated in the "bring a pot, take a pot" brown paper bag gift exchange and I like my pot. It is pretty, small, and useful (a little porcelain tumbler) and I know the person who made it.

Ok, off to face my day.
Posted: 14 December 2023 - 05:05 AM
Hi Tatoulia!


Of course you miss your mom. You have had a lot of hard changes this year and you are handling them really well.

CM, we miss you.

Today I am going to focus on firing another batch of feather pots, making a lot of deviled eggs for the potluck tonight, checking student work, lesson plans, and enjoying the party with Bean. As I look at that list, my gut reaction is that that is too many priorities to use the word "focus". I will do the best I can.

The decluttering has really come to a complete stop again lately. Hopefully I will get back to it after the holidays. I do feel like I've made progress on limiting acquisitions.
Posted: 13 December 2023 - 05:17 PM
Hello Ladies! Thank you for your posts! They felt like visits!

I've let my house go and will put some music on and start some cleanup. Cleaners come in the AM. I miss my mom.
Posted: 13 December 2023 - 06:30 AM
Good morning!

Zoning meeting yesterday - zon8ng change was finally denied, but the guy I'm going to try to get voted off the board basically gave them instructions for another try. The whole thing was exhausting. 2.5 hour meeting, wrecked my whole day. It took until three before I was recovered from the adrenaline nausea enough to eat breakfast.

I did try to do a load of feather pots, but they all broke.

School today. Not ready. Everybody hang in there!
Posted: 12 December 2023 - 06:24 AM
Great job on the returns! So much progress!

I have a question - is x still renting space in your house?

I used to feel bad when my kids lived here. And I used to feel bad for Dh. And I used to get mad at my kids for not helping and cleaning up their stuff. (Those poor kids were overwhelmed. They had way too much stuff.) I used to apologize for my house. and if I could go back and do it over again? I would try less and not get mad and not feel bad about any of it. I don't apologize for my house anymore.

I was lucky to know both of my grandmothers when I was a kid. My mom's mother was also a hoarder, but she was a hoarder with a huge immaculate house (it took the family a year to clear it out after she died - some of the stuff in the attic and basement was very dusty) who cooked and canned and did needlecrafts and read good books, and had beautiful flower gardens and threw huge family events and had parties, and I have no idea how she did it. It was all amazing, and I loved it.

The other one just loved me more than anyone or anything in the world. This may not be true, but I knew it so thoroughly that I can't not believe it. She didn't clean (at all. The maid came once a week. She had a job.) she wasn't much of a cook, she knitted a little. She marked my height on the wall of her kitchen and let me dig in the flower beds with kitchen spoons and taught me how to ride a serving tray down a flight of stairs. She taught me to knit when I was 5 or 6 because the other grandmother didn't have enough patience. I stayed with her for a week once and she didn't make me brush my hair all week and let me choose my own clothes and my mothers friends saw me at school at were horrified. I got to buy lunch all week! She used to say she didn't have time to fuss (and she didn't - she died when I was 15) and "if my tablecloth is wrinkled and it bothers you, I'll find you an iron."

The first grandmother was part of the reason I got overwhelmed with stuff. And she was a lot of the reason my kids got overwhelmed with stuff. And my mother reinforced it and taught me the being exhausted trying to deal with the stuff, being mad at your kids because they can't keep up with it pattern - but we went to school and she cleaned everything up. My kids stayed home and we dug in the flowerbeds.

And my mother admits that a lot of her mother in law's approach was probably healthy, and she tries not to be appalled at my house, but I don't have a maid. And when I quote the iron comment to her - she takes the iron. So does my oldest daughter. And I do not feel bad about that anymore.

I am trying really hard not to overwhelm Bean with stuff. It's very hard this time of year because I remember Christmases at that first grandmothers house with decorations everywhere and music and too much delicious food and piles of presents, and my cousin. But when I think about it, the very best part was my cousin. And we actually got tired of opening presents (we would get so many useful things, and too many toys, and when we got to the toys we really wanted, we wanted to just go play). And we mostly ate cookies and pie.

I have a twelve foot Christmas tree. Covered with lights and ornaments that Bean is allowed to rearrange and surrounded by a toy train he is allowed to play with. We read Christmas stories next to it every Monday. He's three. That's a big enough memory. All he really needs is cookies, a pie, a few presents he actually wants to play with, and people who want to play with him.

I have two pairs of pajamas (bought on sale) three museum quality plastic dinosaurs (also on sale) a family of deer (same sale as the Dino's) and a used book for him. I'll probably buy a couple more used books and add some stocking goodies - candy, a grapefruit - he likes grapefruit, some consumables like stickers scrounged from my basement hoard, and his whole Christmas haul will be under $100, exciting, and not overwhelming.

I'm taking him with me to the potluck at the pottery studio. He's hoping there will be dogs and cake. I can pretty much guarantee there will be dogs and cake. Dogs and cake do not need to be cleaned up, stored, dusted, or (if they are other people's dogs) taken care of.

I didn't check the work at school last night. I was too tired. I took care of the kiln, made some copies, straightened up a few things in my classroom, and brought the work home. Meeting this morning, pottery, work checking, and lesson plans after.

sorry this is so long.
Posted: 11 December 2023 - 10:16 PM
You guys are both doing a lot. Great work! SubC, your cleaning philosphy sounds like mine, right down to writing my name in the dust. But I feel bad about it, and probably should just get over it. I wonder how someone like me in their 50's can get through a whole life of wife and mother etc and never get a cleaning routine down like other people seem to have.

I did good today and returned 6 items! Five clothing and one baby blanket that dil really does not need (heck, I have a tub of them in the garage.. why did I buy one??) I got back about $90! The tops were all pretty cheap prices but this robe I got myself was $52 but way too thin, so back it went. I almost always get dressed immediately when I get up so no need for a robe. I really just need one of those wearable blankets!

Aside from that, I went to visit friends today, which cheered me up immensely, and now I am ready to go back to work tomorrow. It will be a long day but I am glad. I am ready to be productive.
Posted: 11 December 2023 - 05:04 AM
Tatoulia, do you have someone to go do those returns with you? They will be hard. You are doing a great job on the apartment.

I wish *i* had my energy. I run on coffee. I push myself until I am tired all the time. I get mad at my body when it is tired and won't do what I want, even though I know it just needs sleep and good food and exercise.

Also, I don't do a lot of things other people assume one does. I don't clean my house until it really starts to bother me. Or company is coming. I have a high tolerance for dirt and clutter. You can write in my dust. I have a high capacity washing machine and a willingness to dress out of laundry baskets. My skin and hair care routine is soap, water, conditioner, towel, brush. Lotion if I remember - mostly just for hands after pottery or gardening. If I go out, I usually braid my hair at a stoplight. I unsubscribed to all the junk mail and magazines, so I get the mail out of the box every few days and deal with it in about two minutes.

Dh pays most of my bills. I never wash my car. I only make my bed when I change the sheets. I rarely cook (last night I had cheese, crackers and a banana for dinner. Dinner took ten minutes.) I don't rinse the dishes when I load the dishwasher. If they don't get clean, I put them back in the sink so they get wet every time I wash my hands and I run them through again.

Also, this is as close as I get to social media. I shop very little (I can't remember the last time I returned something - 7 years ago? Second choice dress for DD's wedding?) I am super picky about social activities and events and a known hermit, so I mostly don't get invited anyway. I don't text. Sometimes I don't answer the phone. And my job is part time. When I was working four days a week and keeping Bean the 5th, it was killing me.

Today I will do yoga and chores, pick up Bean at DD's work parking lot, play with Bean (maybe bake with him) fix him lunch, take him home and drop him off and go to school and switch the kiln over and check work, unload the dishwasher, chores, and bed. I showered last night, so I probably won't shower until morning. That is literally all I will do besides eating food directly out of containers, dressing, and brushing my hair and teeth.
Posted: 10 December 2023 - 09:59 PM
Hi everyone! Thank you for the encouragement

Today was goodwill day. We had two large boxes that went to goodwill. We cleared out her kitchen cabinets and drawers. All of her pots and pans are very good quality and very familiar to me. But I have my own good quality and familiar pots and pans so we donated all of them. Plates, mugs, etc went to goodwill. Then we went to the office to pick up more boxes. Our floor is bing combined with one of the other floors and this was the first I'd been in so I unpacked my box. We picked up boxes that my friend needed and dropped off two at moms for the next round of clean out. I expect to take mom's books down to the library at her place and I have a place to donate her cds. I need to get her coats washed and dry cleaned to that I can donate them. I may do a little checking to see if any one is doing a coat drive where they clean the coats.

Still more to do. Maybe I can tackle the bookshelves on my own. I did get sad when I went back there alone tonight but that's okay too.

Lila, return the clothes you don't want now. Don't wait til it's too late! I have a ton of clothes to return that I bought for my mother to wear during the holidays. I also have to return the two nightgowns I purchased for her Christmas gift. Something tike me not to take the tags off and wash them (usually I wash her nightgowns before bringing them to her).

SubC I wish I had your energy!!!
Posted: 10 December 2023 - 08:51 PM
See Lila, you are doing great! You already got rid of three times as much as you bought!

The thing is that everything in my week is good. Well, except checking work. I could do without checking work. And the zoning meeting, but I am hoping the zoning meeting will be good news.

There are just so many things I want to do. And then I end up trying to drink life out of a fire hose and the next thing I know, I'm drowning.

I dropped a reasonable number of finished pieces off to be fired for class and I fired a load of feather pots. Two out of five broke badly, but two didn't break, and one only has a small crack.

I have the piece for my boss glazed and ready for its second firing. I'm looking forward to seeing how it comes out.

I also cut Dh hair before he left and ordered ddil's Christmas gifts today. That was fun, because she wanted lots of books "paperback, preferably used" so I could buy her a lot of them and I just ordered them all shipped straight to her, so she will be getting about six packages. Hopefully on different days, but all by the 22nd.

I should head upstairs ad try to get some sleep.
Posted: 10 December 2023 - 03:53 PM
oh Tatoulia, that is a lot to handle. But you are doing great, making progress and not freezing up, which is good. Grief can freeze people. Prayers for comfort.

SubC WOW, what a busy week. I can see why you are overwhelmed. You will get through it - try and look for the happiest bits, like Bean. And you are enjoying your tree and new chair!

I did not buy 30 items of clothing, probably about 10 but have decided to return at least 3, maybe 5 of those new clothing items. I will pack them up today to return tomorrow. I also put 3 more of my older clothing items into the donate box. I had Son take a donate box and bag to my car so I cannot start thinking about taking things back out.

I woke up and thought I heard something in my bedroom last night. Like a mouse or something. In fact I think it was the rain and/or nightmares I was having, as there is no mouse evidence anywhere, but it still has me wanting to clear more things out of my bedroom.

Will catch up more later.
Posted: 10 December 2023 - 05:31 AM
Tatoulia, I'm glad Emiko and your other friends are helping you.

The decision making must be exhausting - even if you are clear on what you want to keep and what goes to your sister, deciding what to tackle next and where everything else goes becomes exhausting after a while.

Dh helped me put the great room mostly back in order last night. A lot of things are stuck wily-nilly on shelves in other rooms, but at least I have cozy and calm in here. I'm sitting by my beautiful lit up Christmas tree in my new rocking chair.

Today after Dh leaves I need to focus on pottery. I got almost nothing done yesterday. I did trim and finish three pieces I had started, so at least those can go to the studio today to be fired. Today is the deadline for my class to have work ready to fire and on the cart.

Tomorrow is Bean, Tuesday I need to go to the final zoning meeting to decide about the Dollar store that hopefully won't be built in my little town, Wednesday I teach and have my final pottery class (we'll be glazing - I won't have a lot to do because I only have three pieces ready to glaze right now. I'm not sure when the new ones will come back.). Thursday Dh will be back and I can work on my pottery at home again, but I also have a potluck that evening. Friday I teach, Saturday we have Dh holiday event for work, Sunday we have plans with friends - I need to make fudge, and then Monday Bean again. I also have a lot of work the kids did at school that I need to do evaluations on and return on Friday or next Wednesday. Those are just the major bits. It all feels a little overwhelming, but I think I am coping really well this year.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 11:02 PM
Another PS Monday night Emiko cleared out my mother's bathroom and clothes closet. I'm working on her dresser drawers. Tuesday night a different friend packed up my grandmother's China for my sister and she will store it until the spring.

I don't know what else I've told you. Ten bags of garbage out of my mother's very small place. I'm working on it. Just slowly.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 10:50 PM
Ps thank you everyone for your kind expressions of sympathy.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 10:49 PM
Forgive me for not reading your posts. Today a friend and I took two large bags of clean linens to the animal shelter. Then we took mom's bed (headboard, footboard, rails), two tables and a chair to the donation center. I also wrapped up some pitchers and vases and we donated them. Tmr we will take things to goodwil. Friday her dr's office will pick up wheelchair, walker, etc.

Nine people have sent flowers to me. A lot of flowers here.

I'll feel better tmr as I make more progress. Did not go to moms on W,Th, F so I am behind.

I should feel better about getting rid of the stuff but I am overwhelmed.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 05:03 PM
Lila, you donated 30 items of clothing - I am hoping that you did not buy 30 items of new clothing and that you have made progress. If you DID buy 30 new items of clothing, I support returning a few. Either that or donate some more. One way or another you need to come out ahead.

My new tablecloth is in the wash for the third time. I spilled tomato sauce on it. It did get lighter the first two times. I hate when I do things like that.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 03:48 PM
post 2 -

I went through my closet and drawers in my bedroom and found a few more things to donate. Made space, hung up or folded 75% of the clothes that were strewn all over.

I need to organize my closet. I need to decide if I am returning a couple things recently bought... probably will.

Will keep updating the tally.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 01:44 PM
Good job on the chair SubC!! I liked your thought process and how you made a logical decision that makes things not harder on yourself.

I went downstairs and sorted two clothing bins of too-small clothing. I managed to donate 30 items and consolidate into one bin! I know I probably should have donated more, but this is a good step since I have already sorted those clothes several times and thought I was down to the bare minimum I can keep. I also took out one shirt to try on, and if it does not fit, it will also be donated. And I took out 3 shirts and put them in Teen's stack since they might fit them and they might like them when they get home... if not, they will also be donated. It just felt like something nice I could do for them.

I am getting close to 700 items gone in the Daily Tally, which does not include actual trash, but only things I was keeping for a purpose or to save. I don't think there is another clothing bin but if there is, I will sort that too.

I am going to pick through my closet and take out things that are nowhere near fitting and put them into that bin downstairs that is empty. Why? Because a lot of them have sentimental value - concert shirts, clothes friends gave me, clothes with pictures of my dogs on them, clothes from recreation things I used to do, and I emotionally cannot donate them yet. But getting them out of my closet and bedroom, and into a bin downstairs is a good first move. Then I will have room to hang up the things I actually wear.

The clothing thing is hard for me because I know what it is like to not have anything to wear, but I am trying to trust that God will provide what I need, when I need it, AND I have lots of nice things to wear now after my business trip. Well, winter things anyway!
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 01:18 PM
I will be right over for dinner..

Of course you are still upset! Good healthy food sounds like a good step though. I'm sorry tot and siblings are sick, but a little quiet is probably good for you.

And getting decisions made about your clothes so you can hang up what you like and pare down what you don't. I want you to be able to easily get dressed in the morning and feel good about yourself.

We have the chairs. They look really nice. We took the other chair up to Dh office and he pointed to the big heavy office chair and said "now where does this go?" And I said "St.Vincent's. But it's raining." And he said "do you want to put it in the basement for now?"

And I thought - do I want to carry this around the corner, down a flight of stairs, around another corner, down another flight of stairs, around a corner and across the basement so that later I can carry it across the basement, around a corner, up a flight of stairs, around a corner, and out to the truck? And I said "no. I want to leave it right here in the middle of your office until somebody is ready to drive it to St. Vincent's." And I walked away. I didn't chose that chair, I didn't buy that chair, I have never liked that chair, and I am not messing with it again except to help it leave.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 12:29 PM
oh SubC that does sound like a bit of a challenge. I wonder if you can put narrow shelves behind the speakers to cover the wires. Something like DVD shelving, which is not as deep but fits books and things. Although adding more things is probably not a great suggestion.

I hope you and Bean have a nice time together. Tot and siblings are all sick, so I am on my own with my youngest Son here. I took a diet pill this morning to try and get some energy and get off the couch. So far no dice. I am eating toast and tea, and am slow roasting a big container of cherry tomatoes a friend gave me. You do them in a slow oven for 3 hours with a few cloves of garlic. I found a recipe where you put them in with small pasta, couscous, or rice and olives and herbs. I might do that with them if I don't feel like eating them by themselves.

I need to clean out the fridge as well and cook something for Son and I tonight. I am still a bit distraught about my Really Bad Thing. I will try and sort clothes today. In fact, it is not too late to return some of my Black Friday buys. I will sort through and decide.
Posted: 09 December 2023 - 05:49 AM
Lila, I'm glad you have someone to help you clean and a better space to be in.

Take this time while someone else is caring for teen and focus on you and what you need..

Tatoulia, I am thinking of you as well.

My main living space is in an uproar. Dh decided he wanted to spend his Christmas bonus on new speakers. They sound wonderful, but they do not look wonderful. They are big, dark, freestanding things and they block part of the windows. The old speakers had stands with shelves that I put art and books on. Now the art and books have nowhere to go. And the cords that used to run down the wall behind the speaker stands are now just running down the wall.

To make life more interesting, the furniture place called. The chairs that were supposed to take until February are done. I don't know if the guy was just very motivated to get paid the balance before Christmas, or if the mild weather we've had gave him more time in his shop, or what. I am excited to have our chairs, but we need to go pick them up today and then move more things around.

Anyway, we'll see if I can turn this disruption into progress.

Dh has to travel for work this week. He is leaving tomorrow and not coming back until Wednesday night. Bean and I will be on our own on Monday. Bean will miss seeing Papa. Even though he is mostly working upstairs when Bean is here, we usually take him a snack in the morning and see him at lunch.
Posted: 08 December 2023 - 06:36 PM
You're right... why am I so good at cramming everything away til later? sigh...

It was a nice visit and now I have a much cleaner, more enjoyable space to grieve in. Son helped me and we vacuumed, dusted, wiped grime off the gross windows (dog nose), washed the dishes, cleaned off the table and bar/counter, and it was 80% like a normal house. Clean enough I think she probably barely noticed the bits of clutter that were left. I feel better.

I am still updating the Daily Tally and will keep on adding bits and pieces. I did not get to the clothing yet. Perhaps tomorrow. I really needed this time off.
Posted: 08 December 2023 - 04:48 PM
Lila, be gentle to yourself. You need to give yourself time to process you pain and grief, you can't just stuff it in a bin to deal with later.

People should understand.
Posted: 08 December 2023 - 02:32 PM
You made good choices, SubC. You definitely should be proud of yourself.

Today someone elderly is coming by for a few minutes, so I am trying to get the main area of the house acceptable. I feel frozen though, slept in til 9, laid around for an hour watching videos. It is very hard to do anything. I am emotionally stuck. But also motivated to not have her see my terrible living conditions. Well, not terrible, but certainly they feel like a disgrace when someone is coming over.

I started another paper bag with bits of trash getting put into it. I loaded the dishwasher and hand washed 75% of the rest of the dishes. I got half of the infamous bar/counter cleared off and washed. Son just got up so he is going to help me with the floors and dusting.

I am really an emotional wreck though.
Posted: 07 December 2023 - 06:43 PM
The throwing did not go well, but here is what I did that I am proud of. I looked at the pots and if they were "eh, maybe" pots, I did not let them dry to see if I would like them better. (Let's face it, I won't) I just smashed them wet. Then I gathered up all the used wet clay, and rewedged it and bagged it. So after it rests for a day or two, it can be wedged again and used again. I did not leave it in a giant pile to dry out and need extensive rebatching. This is part of my finishing things goals. I made life easier for future subc instead of harder.
Posted: 07 December 2023 - 05:18 PM
SubC, I, too, am eating popcorn!

Good advice on the clothing and I will continue to work on it. I made slight progress - put two shirts in the donate box. What I think may make this easier for me is, I have bins of clothing I have not worn in years, that is way way too small. It would be pretty easy at this point to donate most of those, and move anything from my room that is "slightly" too tight but I still really want, into one of the bins. That would kill 2 birds. I think. And is a less stressful thought than donating everything in my room... so I will go sort the bins.

Son and I got the lights on the Christmas tree and he brought up the boxes of ornaments which I'll put on the tree tomorrow. We wrapped a really big present that TotsDad had delivered here for ddil. We put it under the tree.

I am blessed with very good and kind friends so I am focusing on that, and my thoughtful kids and sweet grandkids.

Someone has texted that they are stopping by tomorrow, so my goal will be to get the nativity up and some garland and decor... just a few Christmasy things... and to mop the kitchen floor and declutter the main area a bit in the morning.
Posted: 07 December 2023 - 04:56 PM
Sadly, I am eating popcorn.

Lila, I want you to see if you can do something - you have new, beautiful clothes. You do not want to move all of the old clothes that don't work or don't fit. You now KNOW that you can get new clothes when you need them.

Please go to your closet, your dressers, your chairs. and start bagging the old clothes. If you haven't worn it this year and you don't absolutely LOVE it and it doesn't fit RIGHT NOW, donate it. Just bag it up and donate it. If you think it needs to be washed first, hand the bag to your son and say "I want to donate these, but I think they need to be washed first. Can you take care of that?" Then just trust him.

I spent a lot of time dealing with a bank thing. And I did finish four more pots. Dh is home and needs to do some things in the shop, so I am heading back out to the studio.
Posted: 07 December 2023 - 01:12 PM
SubC, that is very insightful about what angry stressed and sad stressed each say. Quite accurate in my experience. I have been feeling like none of it matters. But today I am pushing through and trying to do SOMETHING, because TotsDad and my grandkids do matter, and my decluttering is for them now.

My bedroom looks like a landfill, you would not believe it. It was only a couple months ago I had the floor mostly cleaned, right? And clear paths and very few small piles. Now it literally looks like a Walmart exploded in there. I don't know how it happened. It did it itself! Well ok, I did it, but it was subconscious.

Today I dug out the half filled box and half filled bag of donations and put them on my bed. I grabbed a paper bag to use for trash and put that there too, and another empty box. Just doing that felt enormous. I picked up trash and put in the bag. The dust was terrible and dog hair everywhere and I started sneezing. I started in one corner and pulled out a box and sorted food container lids, so many. I managed to pick out seven that are still good, but not useful since Teen broke the corresponding glass containers, and I donated those lids. Then I went in the bathroom and pulled out five small candles in glass jars. I picked out my favorite one and donated the other four. Put dirty laundry in the clothes basket. Put a few items away where they belong. Got overwhelmed, found a bag of Hershey kisses, took a handful and am now sitting on the couch recharging.

My goal is to get the donation bag and 2 boxes (or at least 1) filled and put into the car.

There is a playpen in my room that is literally filled with stuff and has clothing draped all over the sides... probably 15+ items, maybe 20 or more. And more piles on the rocking chair. I hate to admit this but most of the clothes are new. I went a little crazy with stress shopping online during Black Friday and got some great deals, but... well, I have no where to put the clothes now. So I will be sorting the older clothes to pick put things to donate to make room for the new ones. It is simple stuff like some soft sweatshirts for when I am home, a hoodie, some plain long sleeved tees for layering under sweaters. I had to get a few things for my business trip as well and I feel SO GOOD about the blouses - Tatoulia, you would be proud of me! and a friend went with me to tell me what looked good AND insisted on buying them! - so, some older stuff really can go.

What else are you all doing today?
Posted: 07 December 2023 - 11:54 AM
Lila, I do the same thing. I resolve to empty the sink before I have a snack, or spend five minutes cleaning up before I fix any food or watch a video. And I have so much resolve in the morning when the whole day is stretching ahead of me. And then somehow I loose all my resolve and find myself by afternoon eating popcorn and watching YouTube on the couch with a sink full of dishes.

I don't know the answer.

Today I am in my studio. I'm firing the kiln and trying to motivate myself to do some stuff for my class. Realistically this is the last day to make new stuff for this class. I can fire 25 pieces. I have 16 I didn't smash, 7 of those are actually finished, and I like 5 of them.

Your son doesn't get to be disappointed in you. You are doing the very best you can (if you honestly don't believe that, then, ok, do better, but you can only do what you can do.) if he has talked himself into believing you can do more, that's on him. His job is to do the very best HE can do to help you, and then whatever happens, happens.

I don't know the answer about the stress cleaning you mentioned elsewhere, but I think it matters if you are angry stressed vs sad stressed. When I am angry stressed I can clean. And talk to people I am afraid of. And do other surprising things. But when I am sad stressed I just want to eat and sleep and watch videos and read.

Angry stressed says "none of this is as important as." and "well, at least I can do this." and sad stressed says "none of this actually matters. None of this will make a difference."
Posted: 07 December 2023 - 10:47 AM
Hello friends. I had a hard week. But I am ready to try and not dwell on it anymore, and try to get some things done. I did not get anything done this week. In fact I took the week off work but have been unable to get things done. I posted on SubC's Really Bad Thing thread because I didn't want it here, but it is there if you want to know. But anyway, I am going to try and get up off the floor today and focus on my blessings, and get some normal life things done.

The moving probably will be in 6 months to a year, and I am not sure if Son who lives with me will move with me but it is likely. TotsDad is moving in with the family probably in a month. He would like it to be sooner but I have not made room - I am trying. He is going to stay here a few months while he renovates his house. I feel like he is disappointed that I am not getting it done faster because he could do it in a day. But I am trying. Sort of. I will try today. I will also try to get the tree decorated.
Posted: 06 December 2023 - 04:41 AM
It was a cold, wet, dark day yesterday and everything was a struggle, but I did get the pots smashed and clean up in the studio quite a bit. Also nearly caught up on dishes and laundry.

I'm still tired, but teach today and have a class tonight, so I'm pushing through it.

Hope everyone is ok.
Posted: 05 December 2023 - 06:14 AM
Good morning.

I slept in today - very tired. I've been trying to do a lot, including more throwing pots, which is physical. I realized last night that I have used almost 50lb of reclaimed clay the last two weeks (although some ends up back in the reclaim bucket from trimming feet). At this rate - which I don't think I can sustain - I might get down to what fits in my buckets and not have a bunch of plastic bags sitting around by the end of the school year.

The more progress I make, the more I understand the reality of my situation.

I am keeping all of you in my thoughts as you face the challenges in your lives. Although I am hoping that CM has a positive thing keeping her busy.

Bean and I did some shopping yesterday with my teacher gift cards. I now own a mattress pad without any tears in it and a new "Christmas" tablecloth that is cream with gold stars and so can be used for other celebrations. I put my new Christmas placemats from the craft sale on it and it looks beautiful. We also bought Bean some paints and a wooden tree and he is working on a surprise for his parents.

I have not reworked any "salvageable" finished pots yet, and have set myself the task of taking 4 (two for November and two for December) down to the bridge and smashing them into the backfill today. I promised myself I would either fix or smash two a month. If I actually get around to fixing any in December, I will credit January.
Posted: 03 December 2023 - 11:06 PM
My condolences, Tatoulia.

I've been away from posting for a bit and there is a reason but I don't feel ready to say it. It's nothing to do with any of you, rest assured. Poco a Poco. Take care.
Posted: 03 December 2023 - 07:34 PM

I am so very sorry. I know that your mom leaves a huge hole in your heart and your life. You were an amazing daughter and it was a gift for your mom to have you there beside her to the end.
Posted: 03 December 2023 - 06:44 PM
oh Tatoulia, I am so sorry for your loss. It is hard losing your mom, even when things have been hard. Hugs to you.
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