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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Sick, Tired, and Busy

I plan to be back soon with some posts on J-topics that hopefully everyone will find interesting. But, in the meantime, I am sick with a head cold, tired, and just really busy. Today was spent reorganizing our home due to the adventures of one busy toddler. I finally tackled a project I had been putting off for a really long time. I'm an organized person, so I don't want to even admit how long this stack of unfilled papers has been moved from the dining room table where it would await filing to its hiding place on Shabbat, only to be put right back on the dining room table, but a woman could probably give birth to a child in the time frame I'm thinking of.

Today I tackled my desk, eliminating most of what was super-attractive a busy little one (for best results: I'd have to send the entire desk out the window, but that was not an option), and on top of that I dove into that infamous stack of papers and managed to sort through about two-thirds of the mess. G-d willing I will finish sorting and filing that stack by Shabbat and can tackle the more foreboding box of papers and stuff that has moved with me many, many miles. Truth be told, besides some papers I need to keep from a major transaction from years ago, I could probably burn everything in the box since I obviously haven't missed it!

I define myself as organized, and I really am. But, wow have I fallen behind recently. I can't even imagine life in a disorganized house. The thought sends chills down my spin.

The irony of today was discovering a small piece of paper that is soon to hit the trash bag entitled "Time to Clean Up Your Act? Follow These Clutter-Busting Rules for Real Results." Thought I'd share them with you:

Rule 1: When in doubt, throw it out. (Good advice, at least 1/3 of my stack could have been thrown out ages ago).
Rule 2: Use it or lose it.
Rule 3: Efficiency counts, so arrange and store things accordingly. (The system was pretty efficient until a cute toddler decided to climb from one place to another with the greatest of ease).
Rule 4: Handle each thing once, deciding then and there whether to keep or toss.
Rule 5: Recycle if possible. (I try!)
Rule 6: Pick a number and stick with it. If you need one old jar for pan drippings, toss the rest. If you need a few boxes for storage, pick the number you need and don't exceed it. (Done. Our home is too small for infinite storage).
Rule 7: Use a filing cabinet. (Here I can pat myself on the back. Not only do I have a filing cabinet, but I have a folder for every category I need!).
Rule 8: Do something now. Pick one place to start and finish. (It took getting sick to tackle the project. I think I will try to eliminate the impetus and just get started).
Rule 9: Find a place for everything you keep and put it there. (I may be one of the only people without a junk drawer in my kitchen or anywhere else).
Rule 10: Items displayed in the home have to pass a "function or form" test. If they don't have either, get rid of them. (Our home passes the little space test. So, this rule is followed quite well).
Rule 11: Don't do things "later." (Ok, ok, I got it already!)
Rule 12: Label things. (Passed with flying colors. Kitchen is labeled. Files in the file cabinet are labeled. I even labeled my husbands drawers so he knows where to find the things I organized for him).
Rule 13: If needed, call in a professional. (Will avoid this and just use the rules above).


Pragmatician said...

Sound advice but hard to put into practice (what if?)

I had such a déjà-vu when you mentioned the dinning room table thing.

Selena said...

I am not a super organized person, but there are 2 things that drive me crazy and can really mess up a house:

1. Old Newspapers
2. Old shopping bags.

For the Newspapers, we only get one on Sunday, and it is ALL in the recycling by Monday.

For the Old shopping bags, yes they are very convenient for garbage, baby diapers, etc. but I go to the store 3-4 times a week (I told you I am not organized), so I don't see a need to have more than about 10 at any given time. We have a little holder for them on the inside of a cabinet, and if they don't fit, I get rid of them.

themarykaygal said...

Out of Town- We don't keep shopping bags at all. Garbage bags are in their box in the cabinet. And we don't get a newspaper. As for you, S-Lady, when are you going to come organize my house? :)

Selena said...


I would love to not get a newspaper but my husband needs his coupons :)

Orthonomics said...

Wow! Blogger is finally back up and I'm going to sleep after yet ANOTHER cup of tea.

Outoftown-Newspapers drive me nuts too. But, at least they don't end up in the infamous stack of papers. They have their own stack and get taken out regularly.

MaryKayGal-I'm almost done with my stack. We will talk after I tackle the foreboding box.

I'm Haaretz, Ph.D. said...

"I can't even imagine life in a disorganized house"

You're invited to mine :)

Feel better SL!

Anonymous said...

I hope you feel better and are able to get through Shabbos prep. Perhaps you'll skip the challah baking this week. ;-)

Orthonomics said...

Thanks for the good wishes. I'm starting to feel better, and I'm baking my water challah, since (believe it or not) it is easier than getting dressed and going to the store).

Shabbat Shalom all and I look forward to resuming with more regular blogging soon.