Sunday, November 9, 2014


As you have seen from earlier posts, I fully believe in peace and harmony in the home. That's why I've been busy these past months striving for minimalism in my home. Among my first projects were getting rid of extra furniture items, excess bed and towel linen, and deplasticizing my kitchen.  So, recently, I knew I would have to tackle the junk in my drawers. And, just  a few days ago,  lacking more pressing things to do, I decided to open up one of my drawers and organize it.  My goal was to do this in one afternoon. It was after lunch and I hadn't done much of anything on such a rainy Thursday.  I started by opening the lower drawer of the two-drawer file cabinet in my bedroom.

I have had to face a lot of challenges in my transitioning to a lighter lifestyle and I've found that tidying takes a lot longer than you would think. Can you imagine that, at first, I thought paring down a whole house would take only a few months?  But the year is almost over and the more I work at it, the more I find major loads of junk that don’t need to be around my home. Looking hard for some justification, I like to blame this slow progress on my husband, who isn’t totally on board for this adventure. But, then, again I, personally, have a lot that I still need to do - what with the cleanliness, the organization, and the day-to-day clutter that I also help create.

It's good to have organized file drawers.
But, I did something today – I worked on clearing out misplaced things in the bottom drawer of my file cabinet. What I found was a unsettling combination of craft and scrapbook materials, English as a Second Language lessons (now dusty from my teaching days), pens, sundry office supplies, assorted greeting cards, and other mementos that I had “filed away” for some later date when I could get to them. Oh, and also I found a few knitting and craft patterns that didn’t’ make their way to the four large scrapbooks that I've dedicated to dreaming about and documenting my handiwork projects.

What went and what stayed.
I saw some improvement as the afternoon progressed. I organized and got rid of almost all the things that don’t have any place in this drawer, including, of course, my husband's misplaced files. That was easy enough.

I also discovered what looked like 100 greeting cards for all occasions and blank notes. Not being much of a greeting card person, that supply could easily take me well into my next lifetime.  Obviously, most had to go. I chose to set aside all the specific greeting cards for give away and keep about thirty with nice designs and a white page inside. Those – in my own handwritten note - can be used for birthdays, anniversaries, get-well and even for condolences.  They should last me a while and when they run out, I plan to buy totally blank note cards and print up the fronts with my own colorful artwork.

Office supplies continue to make up most of the space in the drawer and that’s the way it should be. I tossed the extras. For example, I kept only one of the four big letter stencil sets and about a third of the pens that I had collected over the past couple of years. Dried up glue and no longer working scissors quickly found their way to the trash can.

My personal documents were transferred to the top file drawer that I, as yet, haven’t organized the way I want.  Now, the ESL file is up there, too.

Crafty pages have been reassigned to scrapbooks on a shelf.

Smallish sundry mementos and sewing materials have found their way to a few boxes in the closet where I usually stash them.

I have to admit that I still have a smallish stash of pens and other highly useful office accessories near my desk and consequently, outside the bottom drawer. But, given their utility – by proximity – for the time being, they'll have to stay where they are.

Oh, and did I really get everything down to the sought after shoebox full? Well, that was just me, daydreaming, again. In truth, I haven’t accomplished all that I set out to do -- yet. But I now have a large pile of throw-outs and destined-for-the-thrift-shop that accounts for about half the former contents of the drawer. So, I guess it will take another rainy day inspiration to finish the task. And just cheating a bit - I have a couple of over sized boot boxes, on reserve, that might fit the shrunken contents of my second file drawer - whenever I get back to work on it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Being sick, but not sick enough to stay in bed, I decided to take on your challenge. I cleaned out a drawer in my dresser.
I found a girdle that Aunt Jean gave me (she has been gone for years) and, I swear, my leg wouldn't fit into it. Wonder why it's still here? I guess it belongs in the 'when I loose weight' bag that I have had for 20 years.
Then there is the pile of socks with no mate (gonna find them someday)and underwear with loose elastic that would only take a stitch to fix, fancy underwear that is probably dry rotted, ...and my grandfather's undershirt that he left at my house in 1969..... and my grandmother's 'smell good' a little crocheted heart that still smells of her perfume after all these years.
I threw out the socks, underwear, and everything that fit me in 1980. My grandfather's undershirt and Grandma's smell good went back in the drawer.
I'll let my children wonder what in the world they are when I'm gone.
The drawer looks better.