Saturday, March 03, 2012

A wee bit more...

Amos wrote on his blog about The Grand Experiment we are trying just now.  By this I mean that I have rather reluctantly given in to his whining and pleading and granted him the freedom of the dining room once more. When he was much younger, the dining room was his favorite place for activities that should be taking place out of doors.  After cleaning up a gazillion accidents, I got rather frustrated and just blocked it off from him.

So, yesterday I opened the pocket French doors and put up the baby gate that had been blocking the doorway between the kitchen and the dining room.  Amos is beside himself with dining room joy.

Needing some more distraction today, I ventured down to the basement once more.  Today, I made a good dent in reducing and removing my things still remaining in the living space.  Too tired for another photo, I shall have to rely on mere words.

In the living space, tucked back by the stairs, were my two filing cabinets, one 2-drawers and one 4-drawers.  First, I reduced down two drawers from the larger one, letting go primarily of more teaching and professional history things, from back when I was college professor.  Needless to say, the recycling bin is half full of papers.  I then cleared off a spare metal shelf that I had stuck in the utility closet (the owner left 5 of those things behind).  After moving it out of the way, I then moved my two filing cabinets to the utility closet.  This is something that I had wanted to do for a long time.  Primarily, because that would mean I would have no reason to go into living space other than the printer.  Much thought has gone in to trying to move the modem and printer, but for now I will just leave them.  I do not often print, so fetching something should not be a problem.

The larger filing cabinet is on wheels, so moving it, especially with less than half the contents, was rather easy.  I used my expo dolly for the smaller filing cabinet.  The things that I had had on the metal shelving then fit either into the larger filing cabinet or on top of both of them.  All in all, it was an even-ish sort of exchange other than the initial ruthless memory-lane reducing.

I then fetched two more of those striped curtains and hung them over the space between the wall and the stairwell. I was thinking that this area could then become storage or a closet.  For now, I put the empty metal shelf in there.  Eventually, it would be nice to have that area walled off with a door, but the curtains provide a nice visual, if you ask me.  I had already hung a pair directly behind the couch to block the back of the stairs.  This way, the area "matches."

For the other reducing that I accomplished, I sat down and went through all the samples of my professional work, especially the pieces of collateral.  I was dismayed to see that I had not gotten samples of my most recent newsletters, which were quite impressive.  However, I managed to reduce three binders into one by removing all the extra samples.  I won't be giving them out at interviews and such anymore, so I just kept one of each.  I also organized them into categories within the remaining binder.  During this process, I collected the extraneous professional writing samples to put into a binder for those that I already started a few years ago.  And, yes, I now have many, many, many more empty top-loading sheet protectors.

Other than those two work product binders, I still have several other examples that I have wondered about.  For example, I have small binders of: a corporate communications plan, a day-of event binder (agenda, bios, collateral, etc.), a comprehensive out-reach messaging plan (on foster care) with coordinating collateral, and print-out of a non-profit introduction PowerPoint.  I was thinking that perhaps the communications plan binder is the only one really worth keeping.

What I did not touch was that large vertical stack of teaching materials binders.  Getting those all into the computer still seems sort of ambitious.  However, I just do not wish to throw them away.  I suppose I should concentrate on the fact that they are not taking up too much space.  

Anyway, Amos was a champ throughout this latest Myrtle-Stuff-Attack.  He only found two things to chew to assuage his boredom.  I cared not about one of them, but the other has me worried.  I do not know where he got it.  It was this black cap with a rubber ring.  My fingers are crossed that the cap was not something important.  After all, I would not be surprised if he pulled it off either the washer or the dryer.  Something behind those machines fascinates him.  SIGH.

The fun part was that Amos discovered he could peer down at me from above by looking through the wooden return grates in the dining room floor.  One of them is directly over the bookshelf with all of my professional/teaching/family history stuff.  Amos would sniff and snort and yip at me, then come running down the stairs to give me kisses, before going back upstairs to peer down once more.  He had a grand old time.

When I was working on the filing cabinets and curtains in the living space, he spent the entire time on the bed.  [Boy, does he ever love that bed!] So, basically, unless that black cap turns out to be something rather critical, Amos was a very good puppy today, despite the fact that his momma spent a rather long time not snuggling with him in the GREEN chair.

I also decided that the one box of kitchen things I had held onto really ought to be donated, so I brought those things upstairs.  To the box, I added two of the three phones that I have in the basement.  After all, I do not have a home phone anymore and there are still two of them hanging on the wall.

As far as the utility closet goes, I would like to get all of the bricks stacked in there (it is an old coal bin) moved to behind garage to serve as a base for the trash and recycling bins so they are not sitting in mud.  That, however, will be a lot of work...especially the kind that will inflame the tendinitis in my elbows, which is still rather painful.  The study shelving, of course, still needs those lesson plan materials addressed, and more reducing of examples and papers and such.  The filing cabinets could probably be thinned more, as well as the storage shelving.  After all, I might possibly have three (or maybe even four) bankers' boxes of binders on there).  And the job I am completely avoiding is my clothing.  Probably 95% of my wardrobe no longer fits with that weight loss.  However, since I cannot afford to replace even a fraction of the clothing, I have avoided dealing with the whole mess.

So, in sum, I do believe that other than the antique bottles atop the empty desk (these can be moved at the drop of a hat), the books on the "shelves" made from antique wooden crates (I can pack those away when renters come), my golf clubs (I have no idea where to put them), and my guitar case (this can go to the attic when needed), all of my things are out of the living space.  I have moved four trash bags full of paper to the recycling bin.  And I have packed up another box of donation items for people to use rather than gather dust in my home.  A much-needed victory for my day, eh?

I am Yours, Lord.  Save me!

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