Jam-Packed STUFF

The problem with trying to reorganize the basement after ten years of accumulation of STUFF is that sometimes it’s so jam-packed that you have to make it more messy before you can make it less messy (this is a common organizational problem), and it can be quite depressing, honestly, and feel like you’re not making any progress.

But a month or so in, I think I’m over the worst hump. I have one main room down there with three areas:

• the tv-watching lounge with art supplies
• the sewing section
• the gardening section

…and then three small rooms off that:

• gym area
• holiday and luggage storage with boiler, etc.
• Serendib supplies + fridge and deep freeze)

It had gotten so bad that we really had to pick our way over everything to get to anything, so the first step was just going through and throwing out as much trash as possible, then consolidating STUFF in the main room to start sorting. That was kind of horrible.

The second step was sorting STUFF to what actually belonged in the main room, and what belonged in the other three rooms. Which led to the main room getting sort of cleaned out, and the other three rooms getting jammed with disorganized stuff again. Sigh.

Third step, actually putting away STUFF in the main room, which was a sort of higgledy-piggledy shoving things into all the various storage cubbies and drawers I had bought and assembled for this area a year ago, when I actually started this project (and then was hit with COVID depression and abandoned it for a year).

Fourth step, with main area clear, was to tackle the gym area and clear things out of there, putting away what I could, giving away stuff, etc. (There’s been SO much stuff going to the Oak Park Free to a Good Home FB page, I feel like I’m spamming it.)

I haven’t really finished the gym area yet, but I got it clear enough that we can actually use the equipment again, so I’m pausing on that, and today, I’ve treated myself to a little time actually organizing some of the art cubbies.

Here you see all the watercolor supplies, finally together in one place. Don’t they look inviting? Don’t you want to sit down with me and actually finish that beginning watercolor course we signed up for 18 months ago at the start of the pandemic?

Not yet. More organizing to do. But soon, my pretties. Soon! Now, though, I have to go teach a Zoom cooking class…deviled potatoes and green bean varai.

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