Despite all evidence to the contrary, I do not like clutter. I know, I know. My children and husband are reading this and thinking that I must be talking about someone else!
But I don’t count my elephant collection or the sentimental things I’ve kept since childhood or my numerous photo albums or my endless files of research as “clutter”. I don’t even count my thirty or more coffee cups. I love coffee cups! And bird houses. And, well…some things are just necessary for our emotional and psychological well-being.
So that leaves everything else. Accumulations of extra stuff don’t bother me a lot in the spring or summer, but as the days turn cooler I find myself rooting around in closets and drawers and cupboards for things that have either outlived their usefulness or simply ended up in the wrong location. This morning I cleaned out a drawer in the kitchen that contained expired coupons, receipts, dried-out pens, instructions for appliances I no longer own, a half-empty tube of hardened super glue, a dime, and two pennies. And don’t try to tell me that you don’t have a drawer somewhere that is just as cluttered!
A friend remarked recently that her kitchen remodeling project had forced her to re-examine years’ worth of kitchen supplies and appliances that had accumulated in her cabinets. I’ve never had that much of a problem since I’ve moved so much, but in recent years I’ve had to donate a few things to Goodwill that we have purchased and used for only a brief time. I’ll bet at least ten of you have a George Foreman grill somewhere that is gathering dust!
My worst clutter nightmare is always the big closet in my office. It’s haunting me at this very moment because it is beginning to overflow with items that have been tossed into it since June- books, bags, hats, posters, and jig-saw puzzles that need to be passed on to someone else. Now it has the added burden of storing Christmas presents until I mail them. Cleaning that closet will definitely be on my Christmas break “to do” list!
Women’s magazines are constantly offering up advice on how to “de-clutter” so I must not be the only one guilty of reckless accumulation! I love to look at those photos of simple, clean, decorated rooms after the experts finish throwing out the clutter, but I’m not naïve enough to think my own rooms will ever look that good. Nor do I really care to live that way. Too many rules involved in being picture-perfect! I just want things to be a little better and simpler because I know I’m a pack rat at heart and will not be changing my ways much at this stage of life. I’m not sure why I do it, but I suppose it has to do with being busy and also with thinking that no matter what I pile up or why, it is only “temporary” and I’ll get around to organizing things eventually.
Of course if I start feeling too guilty about my little bit of clutter I can always watch one of those hoarder shows and feel SO much better!! Even my office closet is not THAT bad!