Chronicles of efforts to lighten the load at home. How many items can you have/like/need?
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Cleaning Downsizes Dirt & Helps Organize
This is the perfect opportunity for getting all the carpets cleaned: no one's around but me for a while, our young adults are planning to visit in a few weeks, and the upstairs was done about a year and a half ago and the downstairs carpets are 2 and 3 years old. I'm ready! The effort of getting as much as possible off the carpets and getting other surfaces cleared so that furniture can be moved is tremendous...especially in a home with too much stuff! Every one of our too-many end tables has too many dustables; these have been moved to the kitchen table, mostly.
My original plan was to take as much off the carpet as possible and move the rest to the hardwood and tile areas. A sudden brainstorm reminded me to leave a large path for the steam and vacuum tubes to run between the driveway and all the carpets. With my free hardwood and tile areas decimated, it still was workable.
Without mentioning names, I will mention that I made one mistake. I was lazy. My daughter was home for the July 4th holiday, and I was too lazy to tell her I was planning to get the carpets cleaned. I didn't ask her to leave her room ready. It wasn't negligence; I kind of felt sorry for her because she has been working outdoors in this searing heat so much lately, and she had to drive 4 hours each way to be here. I wasn't feeling too energetic myself. So the weariness of it all kept my mouth shut. The hardest thing we did over that weekend was put fluids in her car - it entailed a trip to Walmart, complete with asking a man who was also shopping in the automotive area for advice on transmission fluid. There were two kinds, neither of which were actually "transmission fluid." Fortunately, the guy was able to help us. Why the transmission fluid wasn't right next to the two kinds of other transmission things (cleaner? lubricator?)I don't know!
My daughter left her room ready for a room cleaning, not a carpet cleaning. I tackled that one first or I would have never gotten the house ready! I put some of her things on shelves, put clothes into a big plastic laundry basket and stuffed it in the closet, and cleared some things onto the wooden platform that she has as a canopy over her bed.
The other difficult room was the office. There are a lot of things stored on the floor! Plus I did move DHs work table out, by first moving everything from on top and underneath. There is still a snarl of wires about a foot wide and 7 feet long under my work/computer tables. I decided to just leave it there. It's not as if it drops food on the carpet anyway. I'll sit down there and vacuum by hand under it.
I still have more vacuuming to do. I worked hard to get the upstairs vacuumed. It took 5 separate vacuuming sessions. For me, this meant 5 trips upstairs to get the Roomba placed into each room and started. Actually, it took more; some to rescue the Roomba from a tight spot.
The downstairs isn't vacuumed yet. That's today's chore. I have to use the regular vacuum for some of it. Oh, and the stairs! That is the hardest vacuuming of all - note to self: do it first!
Just because they don't make stuff the way they used to doesn't mean that the new ways aren't equally valuable, if different; especially digital stuff.
The younger generation really isn't interested in the old collectibles the baby boomers all hope to sell for high prices.
Boxes take up a lot of space, but they can help you cope with stuff in many ways - saving stuff, separating stuff into batches to work on later, storing stuff that is worth storing, or even packing up shredded paper to recycle when you clean out your old paper files.
If you try on a pair of jeans and they fit, buy them! Some people would say buy 2 pair.
Craig's List is a wonderful community resource. In spite of a few bad apples, most of the millions who trade on Craig's List are good people.
Selling or even giving something you used to love directly to a stranger involves 2 possibilities: either you will feel really good to see someone getting pleasure from acquiring an item you enjoyed or you will feel creepy thinking of your impression of this person you don't know using your stuff.
You can find someone to take most anything off your hands if you post in "free stuff" on Craig's List. Post during the day. People sneak a peak at "free stuff" while they're at work!
A dog does not clutter a home so much as create movement and energy within.
After getting your carpet steam-cleaned, the carpet takes much longer to dry than the cleaning company leads you to believe. It is a good idea to keep heavy furniture off the carpet without anything under the legs until the carpet dries, as occasionally stain from wooden furniture can stain the wet carpet. Give it 24 hours - license to procrastinate
Once you have thoroughly cleaned your closet, you can keep it under control by just getting rid of a few things now and then, as you uncover them and realize you are finished with them. As long as you feel good about your clothes when you encounter them in their natural habitat, then it's working for you.
If you are looking for freeware or shareware, a good way to find what you want is to search it on Lifehacker.com. There you'll find the choice programs plus comments about them. On the search engines, you might find the programs that have finessed getting placed high on the search engine list rather than the best programs.
If you are having trouble deciding whether you really want to keep something, think about selling it. If you automatically know what price you want for it, you don't want to keep it!
If you are going to do home repairs, keep the future in mind. Will there be ramifications when you sell the house?
Magazines - News magazines almost always should be recycled rather than kept! Cut out an article and put it in a folder in your filing cabinet if you think you'll remember it and want to refer to it later.
An old invoice from your dentist or doctor may have the doc's social security number on it (and, of course, yours)!
Northern New Mexico
Me at a place where it didn't reach 100 degrees every day last summer!
Previews of Coming Attractions
Kitchen light stays - gets refurbished! Distraction - Facebook Distraction - Games Gilmore Girls Kids and records More hot springs