As per my New Year’s Resolution I pulled out the first box from my back room and put it on the kitchen table today. I started easy, since I already knew roughly what was in this one, but it was still a little daunting.
First things first: I pulled everything out and put it on the table.
Then, to avoid temptation, I immediately collapsed the box and left it by the door to add to the recycling later.
BOOYAH! Seeya, wouldn’t wanna be ya, boxy!!
Now, to find homes for everything. I know research says it’s good to start with the most difficult job but I figured just opening the damn box in the first place was a pretty hard step so decided to start easy.
The paper bag was full of packaging and receipts for techie stuff so I immediately palmed that off onto hubby to assess. The Ursula LeGuin book was a gift from an old boyfriend (who I’m still friends with) so went on the bookshelf, while the comb and colour run remover went to the bathroom cupboard. There was a random knitted bootie in there (part of a pair that I bought second hand years ago) which I didn’t have the heart to chuck so gave it a reprieve: it will be used as a small toy sleeping bag by my oldest until I find the other one and donate them back to the charity shop. Two paint shade fan decks were left over from when we got permission to paint our last house (hubby’s dad is a bit of a handyman). They’re about five years old so I’m not sure if they’re useful anymore BUT they could be good for a craft project so I put them aside to take to Reverse Garbage (who I’m sure will LOVE them). I resolve to myself that if I don’t make that happen within a week they will just go to the nearest charity bin instead.
So far so good!
I look at the pile of craft magazines and books…
Nope. Not ready for that yet. Onto the bag of old makeup and jewellery.
This bag has been sitting around untouched for a few years now so most of the makeup goes straight to the bin, along with various sponges and applicators that are literally falling apart as I pick them up. Ew.
Some of the makeup is barely used and still in good nick, but they’re remnants from my uber-goth days so I know I won’t use them again any time soon. Neither will I use the big stack of bindis again, but just flicking through them brings a wash of fun memories of getting dressed up with friends and dancing through the night…
Where was I? Oh yes. Confronting my inability to let go of things.
I put the bindis and best makeup and bits and bobs aside to give to a single mum friend who I know will use and love them, as she’s the type of person who feels much better within herself when she makes the effort to look good but doesn’t have much money to splurge on non-essential stuff.
It then goes straight into my handbag to pass along at the next opportunity.
I do keep some of my favourites and take a moment to indulge in some face painting –
Now this is the hardest bit. You know how some people hoard newspapers? Or takeaway containers? Well my thing is craft books and magazines. I love them. I pick them up and flip through them and get inspired by all the projects inside.
Then I put them away “for later” and go buy some more.
I know it’s all online now and if I want to make something specific a pattern (and tutorial) is but a google away. I don’t care. Crafting to me is about disconnecting and slowing down for a while. Flipping through pages and dog-earring my favourites is a big part of the process.
I go through the stack, lovingly wiping the dust and mildew off the covers and allowing myself to be weak. A couple of old cooking and pregnancy magazines are able to be thrown in the recycling bin without any trauma, since they aren’t relevant to me anymore. A handful of the magazines don’t really grab my aesthetic (they were gifts or “bonus” magazines I was never really into) so go with the shade fan decks to be passed on.
But the rest? I cannot part with them. So much beautiful crocheting and knitting and Chinese knotting and bead weaving and embroidery literally at my fingertips. Rationally I know I “should” cut out the handful of patterns that interest me in each, and rationally I know it would take a few lifetimes to actually make everything in them I fancy (and this is only a small portion of my complete stash), but I’m just not emotionally ready to listen to reason.
For now, the stack is living next to my bed (and has already been colonised by toys, because of course it has).
This is not acceptable in the New Meg Order. Before I move on to the next box I will design some permanent storage for them. I already have the shelf space in mind and some ideas for how to organise them. This will be a project for the weekend.
So the first box is almost done. Feeling pretty positive at this stage. Here’s hoping the rest is this easy!!