Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Weekend Excitement

Behold, everyone, the big accomplishment of my weekend...

You might see a small area of countertop.  What I see is something I haven't seen since we moved in here. You see, that metal cage thing on the left is our paper sorting basket which is mounted under the cupboard.  The top one is Justin's and the bottom one is mine. In the now empty spot that now proudly displays my glasses holding parrot was this:

It is now an empty basket.  However, it has never been this way.  Before, this basket was stuffed and jam packed with papers, coupons, cards, photos and a huge variety of other junk.  It is no secret that I am not organized when it comes to papers and filing and I have a problem with being nostalgic so I don't like to throw away cards, wedding invitations, and birth announcements.  When my hanging file basket gets full I clean it out and file papers a few times a year (yeah, seriously, that's all).  Justin's basket is always organized and almost empty which is a result of every non-bill related piece of paperwork automatically becoming my problem.  During these rare sorting sessions, all the extras I couldn't designate to a file or bring myself to throw went in this basket.  All the outdated school pictures and baby pictures and invitations that I rotated off the fridge were shoved in my stack and then ended up in here. 

Almost every day, I felt bad about the sight of that basket and I regularly have been unable to face sorting through it.  A few months ago I almost cried when Justin placed a stack of stuff that we had removed from the fridge in my basket because I honestly did not know what to do with it and I knew it was just going to be shoved in a disorganized pile somewhere else if I moved it.  Ugh. 

So, I finally gave up the delusion that I will one day put things in a scrapbook.  I love scrapbooks, and not the fancy, acid-free photo collage kind that has become popular since the 90s.  I mean the old fashioned kind where a person would tape things to the pages as they accumulated them and they would, as the years went by, become a piece of history.  When I was younger I loved looking at the scrapbooks of my parents and grandparents and the fascinating aspects of their young lives in the 30's and 40's. They were filled with vintage birthday and Valentine cards, birth announcements and obituaries of relatives and friends and programs from school and church shows.  My grandma's had WWII ration books and my grandpa's had copies of the school newspaper his one room school published.  If anyone doubted that the education students received in those tiny classes was lacking I would suggest they look at the memorabilia in that book.  It was quite impressive.  When I was a teenager I kept scrapbooks where I taped all of the above and more, including "Student of the Month" certificates, funny notes from friends and newspaper clippings from those rare occasions where I scored points in basketball games.  I would never part with those books.  The urge to save little pieces of daily life is still with me but I finally decided that it will be years before I can start making books like that again.  Good lord, I haven't even printed physical photos for over a year and haven't put any in albums since Ben was a baby.  I accepted and acknowledged my limitations and then headed to Hobby Lobby and bought several photo boxes which is where I will store all of the mementos that I want to hoard.  I also bought one for each child for birthday cards and the preschool projects that are starting to accumulate.  Then I tore into the basket. 

It took WAY too long but I emptied it out!  In the mess I found so much junk including an Avon chapstick with a mini calendar printed on the wrapper from 2008, three golf balls (yeah seriously), golf tees with our names printed on them that we handed out at our wedding (you would think we golf a lot but we don't.  I haven't golfed in four years), a baby photo of our oldest nephew who is 11 which I'm almost certain was mixed in with some pile of Justin's stuff and he just shoved it in my pile because he didn't know what to do with it, a hook that you keep in your purse so you can hang it from the table at restaurants, an iTunes gift card (SCORE!), two letters from the United Way asking for donations for Dolly Parton's Imagination Library (which we use and I have always intended to donate a small sum to) that I saved thinking I would deal with it later and apparently put off for not one but two years worth of donation campaigns, a burned CD that is not labeled and many, many expired coupons. 

Dealing with this basket  was a very uncharacteristic action for me and I am still pleased with myself over it.  I should add that, while I was dealing with it, the kids trashed the rest of the house so by Sunday it looked worse than ever in every other room and area.  Now I just have to decide where to stash the photo box...

I started this post yesterday and was unable to finish it for various reasons so this is a day late but yesterday was my sister's birthday.  She turned 31 which is probably one of the lamest birthdays of all birthdays.  The ten year milestones are coming fast these days and this is just another one...it's been 10 years since I used to run to the "store" for her on a regular basis!  Haha...such power I had...I miss those days!

This was the night of her birthday. 

We sure chose some beautiful clothes for a birthday party!  Or to teach Sunday School...

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