Saturday, December 17, 2005

Clearing out the trash

The past two days, I've been going through the house, room by room to do a general clean-up before getting out the Christmas stuff. Having just gotten back from vacation, it's been hard getting back in the swing of things.

We have a lot of books and paper in our house. Books, magazines and paper are piled on every conceivable counter, shelf and flat surface. Bookshelves are double-stacked and crammed to overflowing onto the floorspace in front. Papers and books march inexorably up the side of our front hallway stairs. Part of this comes from having avid readers in the house, part of it comes from having full-time college students who leave both completed work and works-in-progress everywhere, part of it comes from a spouse who doesn't know how to throw out, well, anything. So, it occurred to me that the house needs more than a simple tidying.

I started pulling out textbooks and manuals that haven't been looked at in years, magazines that are twenty years old, stuff on the tops of shelves and closets that haven't seen the light of day since I-can't-remember-when. Aha! We don't need that old desk either. Or that old foam mattress. What about the computer desk in the corner? It's just piled with old games and disks. It hasn't had an actual computer on it for at least five years. And what about those old drapery tracks? Admittedly, I went a bit nuts.

Then I thought, what am I going to do with all this stuff? The solution came to me in a blinding flash! I remembered a coupon that came in the mail from a company that would "Remove your Junk". They even recycle the recyclables and donate stuff that's reusable. Much to my surprise, I actually 'found' the said coupon in my mail basket. I looked up their website and, as of today, booked a pick-up time for early next week. Now, all I have to do is get the junk ready.

Weird to do this just before Christmas, but it seems right - even a bit exhillarating. Liberating, in fact.


jane said...

i am the opposite of a clutter person, and get a little panicked when the closest get full. i have been banned from matt's dresser and closet.
i wish we had a service like that here, i will have to investigate. we are coming to the end of babyhood and i need to unload the stuff.
i do love that feeling of declutterfied, it's a rush.

ell said...

I'm actually quite tidy, but have learned to subvert my more anal-retentive tendencies in favour of domestic peace. -- But -- there comes a time when enough is enough and I go on a bit of a rampage, forcing the messy ones (they know who they are) to clean up.

Joy said...

That is exactly what I need to do and plan to after the holidays. My house got out of control when I was sick and is overwhelming. I'm going to look into one of those services; otherwise, I'll make many trips to Goodwill. I'm looking forward to getting my house in order and my life back.

Hay said...

Merry Christmas, Ell. Hope it's a good one. :-)

Simply Coll said...

I too am trying to unclutter my home. It is amazing how I am able to attach sentimental feelings to the darndest things. It's not easy being clutter free. :-)

ell said...

It was wonderful to have all the junk hauled away. The best part is that the reusable stuff will be donated to people who need it. The truck driver said they've been helping a new immigrant family from Mexico recently and that our old desks will be perfect for their kids. Other reusables will end up in thrift stores.

Coll, I know what you mean about being sentimental about things. I still have the illustrated book reports about the Narnia series my son did in Grade 3(he's now 25)!

Wenda said...

Who was that masked man? I have a few cumbersome items I could use his help with? Would you be willing to go my profile and email me his details?

ell said...


I've sent some info to the email address in your profile. Hope it's what you need.