Monday, March 28, 2011

Spring cleaning. Part 1

It's that itchy time of year again.

And before you ask, NO, we do not have bugs in this house.

The itchiness I'm speaking of is that feeling I get every year, when spring is technically here (and by technically, I mean it's STILL FREEZING where I live, and trying to turn over the earth in the garden results in a bent-up spade), but for a variety of reasons, this fresh, new season seems to be just beyond my grasp. In order to soothe the itchiness and quell the urge to just bust right on out of my skin, screaming for mercy from all the cold and grit and SALT that's caked all over EVERYTHING around here... I have decided to undertake some clean-up projects, instead.

I'm not just talking about household-domestic projects... I'm talking about some general lifestyle changes and emotional clean-ups, too.

1. I let you in on some of my personal knitting shame in my last post. Although I've been steadily working away to finish a bunch of the projects-- I actually completed three projects in two days last week-- I have decided to release myself from some knitterly guilt. I actually FROGGED (as in RIP-IT, RIP-IT... OUT!!!) three other projects, as well. And do you know what??? Because I was really not enjoying those projects, the process of ripping out all those thousands of stitches was actually therapeutic. It felt GOOD!! That hideous tam, the blue pull-over, and the pale green summer sweater are HISTORY, people. Now, I can concentrate on a few things that will give me good feelings. FYI: My mother's sweater? Was not one of those frogged. Hell, no one's THAT good at conquering guilt.

2. I purged my facebook friends. Yes, I admit it-- I'm on facebook. At first, I signed up in order to keep an eye on my teenager, who was also dipping her big toe into the pool of cyberspace... And, a good thing, too-- there have been more than a few occasions upon which the Big Bad Mother has had to step in and curtail a few inappropriate comments from Child Number One's "circle" (needless to say, those kids have been notified and duly "blocked"). However, when I went back to school last year, I discovered that facebook was THE most convenient way in which to communicate with my colleagues, most of whom averaged about twenty-two years of age. We were able to instant-message one another, and the ability to share information quickly and conveniently was hugely beneficial. However. Now that I am actively seeking employment, I do worry about having too much of a "presence" on the world-wide web. Besides, what twenty-two year old do YOU know really cares that a 40-something-year-old woman is spending the day doing laundry, car-pooling the kids, and scheduling endless trips to the orthodontist?? Not very many, I can tell you that. Most of my former classmates can do without me-- and if they need me, they have my email address. Only my nearest and dearest need to see my facebook status: because YES, I AM THAT BORING.

3. I finished the final assignments for my university course. I am NOT taking any more courses this spring. Therefore, I NEED TO PURGE PAPER IN MY OFFICE. The shredder isn't going to know what hit it. Neither are my burly recycling guys.

4. In a vain effort to conquer the last of the crapola in this heap we call home, I have decided to redecorate the basement. Have I mentioned that we have a lower floor?? Probably not-- because it resembles the closest thing to Armageddon that I ever wish to see. It is a combination of late 1980's testosterone (think the dark-panelled bar in the tv show "Cheers") and the main play-area of "Romper Room". The resulting chaos makes me feel physically ill, whenever I have to venture down there. My laundry room is right off of the furnace area, and is chock-a-block with a higgledy-piggledy of random discarded articles that are too "precious" to actually throw away. I have decided that I can no longer stand it. SO. Out come the paint cans and overalls!! I am going to strip wallpaper, sand surfaces, and paint out the grime. Purging is always easier when you actually empty the room for a reason such as this: by the time I'm done with it, the place will look too damn good to shove all the crap back in there. It's going to take awhile, and it's going to get much, much worse before it gets better... but, this mammoth project should last me until the ground outside thaws, at least.

4. I used to sew. A lot. And, because of this, I have an enormous fabric stash that was carefully parcelled into large packing boxes, when my sewing room was dismantled upon the birth of Child Number Three. At the moment, I am working to create the costumes for a musical being put on by the public school that hosted me for my first teaching practicum (I'm so happy to be able to "give something back" to them!!), and the pleasure I'm discovering from sewing again has got me riled up to do MORE. Once the basement is done, I'm going to set up a proper station for myself upstairs, and get back to doing more of the needlework I enjoy. Of course, the main challenge will be establishing an organization system, so the whole thing doesn't get out-of-hand... That's one of the reasons why I packed it all up, years ago-- you can't have babies crawling around amongst the pins, getting tangled in thread and fabric scraps... Well, you CAN, but the results aren't pretty.

There will be more. And, as I get going, there will be photographs... Nothing is quite so satisfying as "before-during-and-after" posts!! Especially the AFTER.

What are YOU doing to stay sane this spring?


Nan Sheppard said...

Ahhh yes, facebook. When I moved, I got involved, to stay in touch with family and friends far away. I usually friend acquaintances, and then if they have interesting posts and links I keep them. I actually get much of my international news bulletins on facebook! Regular purges are good.

But most of my REAL friends aren't on facebook at all... or hardly ever log in!

merinz said...

As you make preparations for spring, we are hunkering down for winter. My winter preparations - knitting for a new Grandbaby, due 3 July. And planning another overseas trip - to Perth Australia. Our daughter, who lives there at the moment, is soon going to Bahrain to live!

Facebook - I am not at all sure about it. I do have a page, but restrict it carefully to close friends.

painted maypole said...

i just moved into a new house. there is no keeping sane, just an endless to do list, and a half unpacked box in every corner.

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