Monday, September 25, 2006

There's Wood Under Them Thar Files!

Ok, I'm not the best housekeeper in the world, much to my husband's chagrin. But honest, I've really been trying hard since the kids have been off to college. Normally, I take piles of paperwork that accumulate all around the house and carry them over to the desk, where I place them and pretty much don't think about them again. For the past three days however, I have been exerting a herculean effort to reduce the Mt. Olympus sized pile of papers on my desk. I have forced myself to look at every single piece of paper and decide - right then and there - how to dispose of it. Could I afford to part with it? Is it something that I positively will never use again in this lifetime? Ok, reluctantly into the trash - after all, there MUST have been a reason why I held onto it - what if I just can't remember right now?

Well, on to the next pieces of paper. Into the receipt box. Into the medical file. Into the trash. Into the contractor file. Trash, trash, trash. Hey, this isn't so bad! Oops, I really should pay this bill, right now. Ok, bill paid AND filed away! Now we're getting somewhere. Is that an encouraging little speck of desktop I see over there??? Now to go through a batch of newspaper sections, looking for the articles that I had found interesting at some point. Hmmm - now WHICH article was I interested in? Ah yes - cut it out AND file it - remainder into the paper recycling pile. ATM receipts - filed. Checking statements - filed (oh, do I have to look at those?) College loan papers - filed. Recipes into the recipe box, where they belong, of course.

Trash, trash, file, trash, file, file. It's like an archeological dig. Is this really my life? No, I don't think so, which is why I'm so disinterested in it. But on the other hand, getting to see more desktop is exciting! Although I'm not quite sure why . . .

I finally see the full desktop! There's my stapler, tape and letter holder. But I also see a beautiful blown glass piece in the shape of a small milk bottle, decorated with random millifiori, that we had purchased at an art show; a spectacular red and gold glass piece from St. Petersburg, given to me by a friend who visited Russia; a handmade wooden box with beautiful inlay, that I was surprised to win in a free raffle sponsored by a fine craft guild; a Waterford votive candle holder given to me by my dad, one Christmas. Such treasures and memories. I had forgotten about them, buried beneath the everyday detritus of life.

I think I'll tackle another room tomorrow and see what other long-lost treasures I can recover.


Ordinary Janet said...

If I had those beautiful-sounding pieces on my desk, I wouldn't have anything block the view! The papers would end up on the floor.

I know all about that clutter-I've found stuff I'd forgotten about, too. Especially whan I excavate my desk drawers!

Ordinary Janet said...

Something's up with Blogger today-I've experienced long waits, and when I tried to post that comment, I had to try four times with the word verification, even though I got them right every time.

Sunflower Optimism said...

You're right, Janet, but sometimes I just take the easy way out - dump and run. I forget about the treasures I have in my life. I'm glad I cleaned up the clutter and got to see everything, as if for the first time. I wanted to post a picture of my newly cleaned desk, but it was pretty dark by the time I was done.

PS - love those crayolas, myself!

Kat Campbell said...

I'm so glad I'm not the only one who sometimes gets overwhelmed by the blizzard of paper that comes into every home. You're an inspiration today Sunflower! I'm going home to find my desk... if I can find my office.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Kat, now don't laugh, but my husband was looking for the mail last night.

He - "Where did you put today's mail?"
Me - "It's still in the mailbox"
Him - "Why didn't you bring it in today?"
Me - "I didn't want to mess up my clean desk."
He - "??? (while shaking his head)"

I'm drowning in paperwork! But I feel like I accomplished a lot yesterday and I feel calmer, with less mess. I'm going to try to keep chipping away at the clutter, a little each day. Hey - we could start a "No Clutter" support group!

Oh - Janet - I forgot to mention - the "papers on the floor" look? That would be my son's room. My husband, the neat freak, cleaned out son's room after he went to college, so now it's one of the neatest rooms in the house. Go figure.

Also - now I'm having a problem posting, also.

Velvet Sacks said...

Oh, Sunflower, may I borrow you for a couple of days? My desk is a disaster. I'm missing some of my favorite photos, and I have no doubt they're under this pile of paper somewhere. I own so many books about organization that it's a chore just to organize the books.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Sure that would be fun, Velvet! Although you're not allowed to yell at me if I mistakenly throw out something you absolutely can't live without ;-) I promise to save all wayward photos. The best organizing book I have is "Organizing From the Inside Out," by Julie Morgenstern. It's the only one that works for me because it taught me how to organize according to what makes sense for my own brain.

I'm so proud, Day 2 and my desk is STILL clean!

PS - Hey, how about those Saints, huh? I think everyone was a Saints fan, last night :-)

Ordinary Janet said...

didn't I read somewhere that a good way to get organized is to dump ecerything in the middle of the floor and then sort it out? I think the middle of my floor would still be full of stuff a week later.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Well, Janet, I recently tried that. I was a decorative painter, but due to my recently diagnosed RA, I had to give that up and I'm switching over to jewelry making.

Anyway, my daughter was "helping" me reorganize my studio. She made me take almost everything out of my studio and we put it in the other half of the basement. I threw out several trash bags full of stuff. I put a lot of things back (art books, supplies, etc.) But then she went back to college and here I am with a fair amount of stuff still in limbo.

Maybe I'll try to tackle some of that tomorrow and either throw out or find a home for it in the studio. Would make the hubby happy to not have to step over quarts of paints and sample boards. We like to keep him happy.

Dr.John said...

Thanks for your comment on my blog. It looks like the same law that applies at our house applies at yours. We call it Linna's law # 1. " All flat surface s attrack things." So if its flat we lay something on it and forget it.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Thanks for stopping by, Dr. John. Yes, yes, about those darn flat surfaces! I never knew that phenomenon had a name - Linna's Law # 1, it is then ;-)

Dr. John - if you visit again, may I trouble you to read my "Blood Done Sign My Name" post? If you read it, you will know why. I'm a woman on a mission.

Betty said...

As Dr John said we manage to cover all flat areas with junk or maybe not junk.

Betty said...

As Dr John said we manage to cover all flat areas with junk or maybe not junk.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Wow Betty, I never knew what it was. Now I know, Linna's Law # 1. Very insidious. I don't even want to go into the library, with my nice clean desk. Anything I am carrying will jump out of my arms and land on the desk, I just know it!

My kitchen table is conforming very nicely to LL # 1, unfortunately.

Minxxeee's Mayhem said...

Sunflower firstly thank you oh so very much for dropping by my blog. Secondly After taking a breal from starting the weekly de-clutter of my house I actually read thos blis particular blog and had to have a giggle to myself seeing as how I am doing the EXACT same thing right now.
As for the beads..... well STILL not done but I think I'm developing OCD or something from the amount of sorting I am doing. lol.
Have a MARVELOUS day.


Sunflower Optimism said...

Thanks so much for stopping by, Minxxeee! Well, my DESK is still clean - but you should see what my kitchen table looks like now ;-)

Guess I'll have to work on that today, that and my beads. Hope your bead sorting is almost done - you are a good friend!