Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Not Every Rock Has Meaning, Nor Does Every Vase

Well. I've filled one box and one bag.
The bag is going to the trash depot where I will put it on the side of the trash masher container which is where people in Lloyd set things which someone else may be able to use. Cuts out the middleman of the thrift-store transaction.
The box is filled with glassware that has gone unused for so long that it is lined in Lloyd's oily dust. Also, six silver goblet things, tiny, that my mother gave me and I have no idea what they're for and if you melted them down they'd barely make a bracelet, they're so thin. Hell. Maybe I should check those out before I give them away to one of the kids or maybe I should just give them to one of the kids and if they're valuable- all the better. I have no memory of them as a child. Not like a lot of liquors were drunk in my house.
Codeine was the drug of choice.
Anyway, so it's a start. I've also thrown out a bunch of old supplements that no one is taking and made room in another cabinet for stuff that wasn't inside a cabinet that should have been so that is good.
I've boiled shrimp and have the sheets on the bed that I washed this morning and hung on the line. After supper I plan on washing and organizing and throwing away stuff on the little shelf above the sink. I will keep my mermaids and Seminole Indian dolls but honestly, there's some junk up there I don't even know what is.
I went to lunch with Hank and got to see May and went to the library and to Publix and I ordered new underwear off the internet and so, I guess, in some ways this day has been productive enough. I've been using Amazon like the mall and it sure as hell beats the mall.

It's funny. I feel like I never get anything done and it's always this little thing and that little thing but then I look around and see the plants I've repotted and the plants I've just put in the ground (ornamentals- an experiment) and my weeded and mulched garden and my trimmed up palms and somehow, things do get done and will continue to do so. If I would just take one room at a time and go through each and every thing in it and cull and cull and cull, all would be so much better. Most of it came from the Goodwill anyway, even though I do attach emotional value to things I should not.
It's not like I'm a lazy person. I do the yard and some cleaning and of course there's the ongoing things- the cleaning of the hen house, the laundry, the cooking, the shopping, the toilet cleaning, the...oh hell. You know. The stuff of life.
Which someday, when I am old and gnarled up (if that day should come) and unable to do for myself, I will miss with all of my heart. If, of course, I still have enough of a mind to remember any of it.

Well, the husband is home and I need to make some rice and salad to go with that shrimp. And soon he will have the dishwasher truly in and hooked up and the new cabinet door and drawer back in their places and I can get this kitchen organized and by god, I will, and as I've said before, it's needed doing for a long, long time.

I just have to be ruthless. Which is a word that always strikes me as funny because my mother's name was Ruth. And to think of it all at once is overwhelming but let us think of it as one thing/one day at a time and perhaps, eventually, there will be some order.
I was talking to Lis about this yesterday. I mentioned, as an example of the things I don't know what to do with, is the set of blue bowls my mother passed down to me which are beautiful, in a way, but so old that they are cracked and chipped and I wouldn't dare to use one as they are so fragile and what good are they doing me?
"If I threw them away," I told Lis, "I'd probably never remember I had them."
And this is true.

I need to remember that. That things are not really imbued with spirits, no matter how much we feel they are.
They simply are not.

But I ain't throwing away my plastic angel. Or my Seminole Indian dolls. Or my mermaids. Or my madonnas. Or my vase full of sea glass from Cozumel. Or the little ceramic house that one of my kids made me. Or my aprons. Or the ridiculous creche that came with the house with the pissed-off baby Jesus.

Oh shit. See what I'm up against?
I'm up against me. And me can be a right stubborn bitch.

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. Getting rid of things is so hard. I got rid of enough junk to fill two houses when my Mom died. I still have lots of stuff of hers, some of it I love and will keep forever. The other things like an old picture of my grandparents that is not particularly flattering and it is huge and much more, most of it from yard sales or thrift stores, not to mention my own clutter. I just don't know. Gail

  2. I don't keep anything except old photos and books and I only keep books I know I'm going to read again. I give everything away. My brother knows the man who makes the telly show Hoarders and he told my brother that children of hoarders tend to be extreme purgers. I am one of those. Even the few things I have can cause me terrible anxiety. Mary if I had a house the size of your house I'd lie down on the floor and cry every single day because I can barely keep my 600 square foot hovel clean. You do so much I come here for exercise. I admire the fuck out of you. Happy Birthday Month.

  3. Take pictures of the bowls and the goblets and the pissed-off baby Jesus and so on, before you give them away! That way, you honour them while also emptying your cupboards ;)

  4. I, too, have stuff of really no value. In 1972 I bought my grandma a plaque about how wonderful grandmas are. I even had her name painted on it. When she passed I wanted it back. What will I do with a 43-year-old yellowed plaque that has 'Wilma' in peeling gold flake painted on it? Maybe in the chest with my Girl Scout sash, Sit-Upon, and the skating skirt my great grandma made for me when I was eight?

  5. If it's something I think I SHOULD keep but I really don't want to, I kiss the thing before I throw it out.

  6. You can put the old glass in the bew dishwasher to get it clean and they will come out shiny new. Then you will be better able to entice people to take it away.

  7. Between your post and Elizabeth's post today, I feel inspired to clean up the two rooms in my home that are "junk" rooms in that I keep throwing things in them thinking I'll get to them soon. Two years later, I'm overwhelmed ever time I open the doors. Like you say, a little every day. I'm sure you'll find just the right place for everything once you really get going. Too much stuff clutters our lives.

  8. I got rid of some emotional yet useless and not beautiful things I had of my grandmother's, but I photographed each thing first. I will probably never look at those photographs, but I could if I wanted to. With iPhones and storage so big, you can take a picture of each thing.

  9. I agree with everyone about the pictures. Take the snap, then give it away.
    The thing with fine china and all that other fragile stuff? If you don't use it, it cracks and becomes useless.
    That being said, my grandmere has a glass bowl she showed me the last time I was there, that her grandmother had given her. Omg but I wanted it! How do you ask for something she probably never uses but still cherishes?
    You buy your underwear off the internet?! Brave!
    Happy dishwashing!

  10. Gail- I swear. We spend the first 2/3's of our life acquiring shit, the last third wondering what in hell to do with it all.

    Rebecca- You have no idea how much I appreciate what you just said. I so often feel incredibly ineffective and yes, lazy, and it is good to be told that I am not quite that bad. Happy birthday month to you, my love! I am having a hard time getting into the celebratory nature of it all this year. Too much going on. Although I did order that underwear!

    Anonymous- I probably have pictures of most of this crap on the blog. That's good enough!

    Catrina- Your sit-upon! Oh god. I remember those. Yes. All of those things belong in the museum of YOU!

    Angella- I have done the same thing before!

    Birdie- I had thought of that too!

    Joanne- And these things come to own us, rather than we owning them. It's evil.

    Mwa- So true!

    Heartinhand- I hear you about that bowl. No tactful way to ask for it though, is there?
    As to the underwear- I've worn the same exact type for decades. No mystery or surprises involved. Jockey string bikinis. And they last forever.

  11. "I'm up against me. And me can be a right stubborn bitch." Ha! Me too :)

    I love the suggestion to kiss a thing before letting it go.

  12. My grandmother's statement of choice was 'I'll leave it to you in my will'.

    Said with wry, get your hands off my stuff humour.

    I would give the bowls to Goodwill. Keep only the things which bring you joy, isn't that the rule?

    Get the little liquor glasses valued first!

  13. If I ever feel bad or guilty about getting rid of something I don't really want, I just give it to a thrift store. It completely eliminates MY responsibility for the thing from the equation -- at least, in my mind. Let THEM throw it away. (Or not.)

    But heck no, don't get rid of your treasures! We all have some of those. Getting rid of the clutter helps us see the treasures better. (Not to mention keep them cleaner.) Right?

  14. Hahahahaha. Stuff. Hard to part with. I guess we all have it. But you're gonna love that dishwasher.


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