With every New Year I have this need to go through cupboards, closets, medicine chests and more. It seems that over the course of a year, there are items that get purchased and/or saved for future use. Unfortunately with all the saving we can find at the end of the year that we have become pack rats of “stuff”. Even the cleanest of homes can have this type of dis-order.
I did start this cleaning out process about a week ago. I started with the bathroom. Now, if you can imagine the smallest bathroom imaginable other than an outhouse, then you have discovered ours. But, to make good storage within a small space, we not only have the mirrored medicine cabinet above our bathroom sink along with the under sink cabinet, we also have one of those cupboards above the toilet that many will install for incidentals. Then, for those who don’t know me or my knack for making wasted space usable, My husband built me a shelf unit behind the bathroom door for towels and such when we first moved in, 26 years ago.
The storage is more than sufficient, yet it was getting out of control with the collection of samples of lotions, shampoos, and more, to the point that things were falling out before doors were opened. So, last week when I couldn’t handle the excess any longer, I went in with cleaner and trash bags, prepared to toss ANYTHING out that I hadn’t used within the last year at least once. All I can ask is “how did I manage to have so many lotions???” By the time I was done, there were three grocery sized, plastic bags full of items we hadn’t used in more than a year. NOTE: If you don’t use lotion within a few years, don’t even open it, just toss it!! It will NOT smell as pretty as the name implies, nor will it have the consistency it should. Enough said. My pride has now been tarnished.
This morning, with my pride back in place, I ask my daughter to join me as I shared with her where everything was. You see, when I change things about, I also have the responsibility of letting others know of how things have changed, or one of two things will happen: 1. I will be asked at inconvenient times where something is , or 2., someone will repurchased something we already have, namely me. I think you can see now how things accumulated…yeah. Back to my story…as I tell my daughter why I’m inviting her to share this small space for a brief moment, my husband wants to know why he can’t be part of the “nickel tour”. Such a funny man!! There is a reason he gets the tour last. He asks too many questions, such as “How come I don’t get more space?” Yes, he does ask and I give him that look of “seriously????” and proceed to tell him that I gave him more than he had before. I do have to give him credit for his observant talent though. Somehow, and I really don’t know how it happened, but my facial cleanser was on “his” side of the cabinet. Oops!! Okay, the men reading this really want to know an answer, but I really don’t understand why he can’t share, since the bottle is taller than the space I have available. I just tell him it’s my way of being close to him. He didn’t buy the excuse, but the unspoken adage of “a happy wife, is a happy life” trump card won, along with my sharing “I love you honey”.
Onward towards my next assignment of order…
The medicine cabinet is the other area I address every first of the year. For some reason we have an accumulation of meds that we stopped taking, yet somehow got put aside when we didn’t need them anymore, or they didn’t work, etc. The cabinet very nicely got put back in order within a short period of time, resulting in only one small bag of Rx and cold meds that we got rid of. The rest of the cabinet had to be tidied for therapy bags, ice bags, OTC meds, regular meds we are using and vitamins. The only disappointment I came away with is that I now have to place an order for vitamins. Although I always purchase in bulk, I actually was out, other than the small basket that we store our current bottles we are using in. For those who know me for natural remedies, this is a good thing, as those items will go bad quickly if they are purchased in an excess amount.
There is more that I will to do before the first month of the year fades away, yet I feel refreshed and motivated, now that these two areas sparkle with order. I am ready to tackle what lies in waiting to be tossed, donated, mended or repurposed for something new. One of the nice things about going through this ritual of mine is that I get the sense that I have regained my sense of control and order after all the holiday festivities have ended.
Getting rid of the old has a way of cleansing the soul, of what we no longer need to hang on to.
May your 2013 bring about a cleansing freshness,