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Of Clutter, Cleaning, And Changing House

My father used to say you either ought to move every two years or never move. He had a point.

I signed a lease on a new cottage last week with the goal of being moved no later than the second week in June, which gives me some time. The last time I moved I did it in a hurry.

Although I’ve got some other things on my plate today, I decided to start with the bookcase in my office. Here’s what I found:

  • Half a dozen books I’ll either sell or give away – even some on writing. I am, however, keeping more than I’m getting rid of – sigh!
  • A box of business cards that when I sorted them, I ended up keeping maybe a dozen. Who were those people anyway?
  • Three unopened boxes of staples that don’t fit my stapler – into the donation bag they went.
  • Glycerin soap – why in my office? No clue.
  • Checks from a long-closed bank account – thank the goddess for recycling.
  • Three phone books that will go into recycling. When will the phone companies figure out phone books no longer work – or when will advertisers?

  • Unknown number of telephone cables, connectors to who knows what, and computer-type cords. Anything I didn’t recognize or that doesn’t have a USB  connector when into the computer donation box.
  • More 3 ring notebooks than anyone would ever need – have to sort through those.
  • A nice, square basket with a lid that has who knows what in it. Oh, it’s got stuff I want to keep – dry erase board stuff and I think I’ve got a place for such a board again. So I’ll keep that. With luck I’ll remember it and not buy duplicates.

So, what kind of clutter is in your office you’d like to let go of?


Photo by CBIdesign; found at http://www.sxc.hu/profile/CBIdesign

{ 16 comments… add one }
  • I hoard cords. I usually fold them up neatly, put a rubber band around them individually, then put them in a small box in the basement. Never know when you’ll need that cable. I find myself constantly looking through that pile of cords for that one the computer stuff didn’t come with. Oy!

    I think I need to move. It’s the only way I’m cleaning this study. 🙂 Your place sounds wonderful.
    .-= Lori´s last blog ..Are You Settling? =-.

    • Anne

      I finally started draping my cords around a hanger – I can see them that way which makes it easier to find the one I want.

      The cables etc. I’m giving to my tech… it’s only because he’s a tech who donates stuff that I’m able to let go of ’em. 😉

    • Anne

      You know, if my computer is working the way I want it too… all systems, I figure the cords still wrapped in plastic etc. are probably something I can let go of. We’ll see if I’m right.

  • For ages, my parents stored my stuff. Then I got a proper house (not just a room with other people) and my mother kindly dropped it all off on my doorstep. Most of it was stuff I knew I didn’t need but didn’t have the heart to throw away…so it’s all boxed up in a cupboard for the next move. I hope it’s a long while away – I’ve never had to move a whole house of stuff!

    • Anne

      Good for your Mother, Lucy! Might be worth sorting out and giving useful stuff away.

  • Interesting. Back here in India, ninety percent of people come into a house and then live there for generations. Moving, or shifting as we call it here is a big, big, big step and inevitably we take everything – and I mean everything – except that one thing we keep in the house for luck’s sake or something.
    .-= Roy DSilva´s last blog ..How to Freelance: Setting Up a Price Point =-.

    • Anne

      Love the different customs around the world. Thanks for sharing this one.

  • Books are definitely a problem for me. I love my library, I’ve spent a lot of time searching for some of these books, and I have no intention of letting them go. That said, there are probably a lot of impulse buys I could ditch.

    In my office, where I never work, I have a ton of craft stuff. I hate to think about it, but if I move in the near future, it won’t be going with me. All the stuff I collected for miniatures and dollhouses will have to go. I can’t keep it in storage and I just don’t have time to work on it. 🙁
    .-= Elizabeth West´s last blog ..Remake Rants =-.

    • Anne

      I will say that every time I move my books now I end up reading at least a few of them.

  • About every two-three years I go through my entire house and purge, and then I have a yardsale! For anyone who has trouble doing that, Tim Gunn’s book A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style is really amazing. It’s about clothing, but you can definitely apply it to everything in your life.
    .-= Allison´s last blog ..A Post for Parents =-.

    • Anne

      I had a vision of not moving so many books… I should have been more specific… am getting rid of 3 smallish boxes of books… the rest will follow me. With clothes and almost everything else, if I haven’t used it in 6 mo or a year it tends to go! Books? Not so much.

    • Anne

      I may have a yard sale… or not. Got some stuff on Craigslist now. Allison, you sound well organized!

  • Your dad was right. I don’t mind moving. I grew up in a military family so I moved every two years for most of my childhood. As an adult, I’m still a bit of a nomad. Because of all the moving, I despise owning things because I realize I will eventually have to move it.
    .-= P.S. Jones´s last blog ..Yes You Do Need An Editor (And His Name Isn’t SpellCheck) =-.

    • Anne

      Yes, he was. I lived on small boats for years and years and still have less stuff than most. I judge that by the fact that I never ever get all the shelves in the kitchen full or the second closet… this new place may become the exception because it’s small. We’ll see. The easiest move I ever had was when my wee boat was towed from one dock to another… even the cat stayed aboard!

  • Oh, I feel your pain! Are you leaving North Park? I lived for over 20 years in San Diego and the last 6 in Encinitas. I had a 3BR townhome and really didn’t think I had all that much. Wrong!!

    But, then I decided to move into my 87-year-old mother’s home in Boise, ID (who was living alone since my Dad died ). I had to get rid of everything since my Mom had everything. I gave to Goodwill, Salvation Army, you name it. I gave away 20 boxes of books!

    I wrote about the fun(?) on my personal blog http://blog.millercathy.com/2009/07/26/where-did-all-this-stuff-come-from.aspx

    I wish you good luck and much happiness in your new home!
    .-= Cathy Miller´s last blog ..Stand Out in a Crowd =-.

    • Anne

      Leaving North Park for City Heights. I’ll be overlooking a canyon… much quieter and much more like country. I don’t use most of what’s available in North Park… oh heck, I’ve never been 100% at home in this particular place.

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