Thursday, July 19, 2007

Putting Obsessive-Compulsiveness to Work

I like to clean and organize (except don't say that to my wife because she'll laugh at you for saying something so silly). But I really do. And beyond spending quality time with my parents, there were other motives behind my trip.

See, I come from a family of pack-rats, but I seem to have somehow broken free of this habit. I don't like having a lot of stuff.* Give me a one gift and I get rid of two things. And while I am quite guilty of creating little piles of papers and such around the house, I don't like clutter. I have actually put myself in a little bit of a bind because I am suddenly finding that all my clothes are wearing out and tearing up because I wear the same few outfits over and over because I have given a lot of my clothing away. It's just how I am. I keep things that are sentimental to me, but there is a rather draconian vetting process that determines what stays and what goes. My motto: "A memory should be a thought, not a thing."

So a trip to my folks' house is both a blessing and a curse. There's so much to do! But I never get it all done...Their house isn't dirty, it's just cluttered up, and Lord knows they've had plenty of more important stuff on their minds lately. So I make it a point to do what I like to do when I'm here: organize, clean, and purge!

We've all been cleaning out magazines, sweeping under furniture, rearranging rooms, all to streamline the house and make it less stressful for everyone. For example, is there REALLY a reason to have the last four years of Entertainment WEEKLY (56 x 4= 224)? The answer is NO. It's been very productive and we've made good headway on a lot of projects.

AND my Mamaw Bane allowed my cousins Matthew and Scott and myself to clean up HER house, too, so we spent 2 hours yesterday vacuuming and purging newspapers and such from her house. That was great. She's fought against anybody coming over and cleaning her house (a matter of pride, I'm sure) but we were smooth and slipped in under her radar under the guise of a "visit from the gransons." It must have worked swimmingly well, because she told Mom today she's hopes we can come back over next week to do more work. Awesome.

So that's what's been up lately. I am planning some visits in the next few weeks, but for the most part it'll still be clean clean clean over here.

* Books and CD's excluded. Katie has accused me of wanting to get rid of HER stuff while my stuff seems to magically get overlooked when it comes to simplifying. It's somewhat true...FINE. I admit it! OK!

1 comment:

Erica said...

I believe the original motto was "A memory should be a thought, not a keepsake." But "thing" works, too. I think that motto everytime I try to clean.