You have to empty a single room for some project. It could be painting, knocking out a wall, or, say, putting in a new floor. All stuff is moved out, and with the new view of your old room, you look around and go, Huh, maybe it'd be better if it looked like THIS! And we did THIS! And moved THIS and bought THIS and fixed THIS! And suddenly, you're moving things to new places, upstairs, downstairs, inside, out. Suddenly, you're majorly rearranging almost your entire house.
And have you noticed the knock-on effect?
Which is what happens when—as you're cleaning and rearranging and sorting and chucking and finding and stacking and planning (and getting just a bit tired because it's the holidays and isn't that exactly when you should be frolicking, lazing, reading books on the deckchair while minions wave you with palm fronds and other minions bring you pina coladas?)—all the other parts of the house notice what you're doing.
The cupboard under the stairs, for example. With the shoes all musty and tangled up and old bags that hold countless forgotten things and coats you haven't worn since 1902.
And the playroom which was once a garage but 8 years ago you turned it into the playroom…and have since let it become buried in boxes and bikes and shelves filled with The Great Unsorted Overflow.
The cupboard above the oven. The cupboard that, when you open the doors, things literally fall out onto your head.
The study. Which is a funny name for a room where you sort the laundry and have removed the desk and have stacked all the books you plan to give away but haven't yet.
These room and spaces all prick up their ears. And the things inside start to call out.
"Hey, lady. Don't be thinking you can get this done on the sly!" yell the shoes which are under the bags which are all in a muddle under the stairs.
"What about us?" squeak the dead batteries in the old butter container in the cupboard above the oven. "You know you're supposed to dispose of us mindfully!"
Countless ancient Happy Meals toys yell expletives as you pick your way through the maze that is the playroom. "Dude! There are children who could be playing with us right now!" they cry from the old shopping bag you chucked them into, years ago, when you tried to do a tidy up.
They all moan with jealousy as another corner is cleaned, another thing sorted in the Favoured Rooms. And you pass them, all these neglected, sorrowful spaces, filled with guilt and a sense of impossible obligation, with your head turned away, your sunglasses on, your coat collar turned up.
I know. It's a terrible time for all involved!
So maybe one day, maybe after I've done this thing and had a holiday and found some minions to wave palm fronds at me…I'll clean those spaces up too.
A girl can always dream.
Anyway! To recap Today's progress:
One big cupboard emptied, moved, filled again. Yay!
Two big bookshelves emptied, wiped of about 300 years of dust, carried upstairs, filled again. Nice.
One really old big bookshelf emptied, wiped down, lugged downstairs, not quite filled up again. (It was heavy. Got tired).
Thankfully, nothing dropped on toes!
Old tv put away in corner. Dragged out to watch a dvd for Pizza Video Night, then put away in corner again. New system sort of works…?
Books put away, toys put away, books put away, toys put away.
Floor swept. And swept. And swept.
Little fiddly bits put away. Paper recycled. Glitter container discovered upside down. Paint box emptied, glitter thrown away, paint box filled again. Kitten (now cat) rescued off new, high bookshelf. Piles of things becoming smaller. Other piles of things becoming bigger.
Glimpses of clean seen through clouds of clutter.
I think it has to be almost done because some of the left over mess is so wild it's almost breeding its own mess colony. I figure it has to look its worst just before it looks Done. This is what is keeping me going.
It is almost done. It is almost done. There is no place like a home that is almost done.
I am not going to post a Before picture (just yet). That would be like making a friend stare directly at the sun. If I'm going to ever do something that crazy, I need a LOT more After pictures to make the pain worth it. I am crossing my fingers that After is coming very soon.
In the meantime,
my Beauty for the day is
1. This little corner of Organised.
Ah. I sure do like it.
2. these delicious moments with my family at the beach.
Even with the wind picking up and the cold nipping at our noses, it sure was lovely there.
And it's funny…
the beach is so wild, so utterly uncontrollable and filled with chaos
—all that unexpected clutter, rising tides, winds that show up without a moment's notice to hurl sand in your eyes—
and yet, it's the most beautiful place I know.