One of the joys of merging two computers (three, if you count my old computer whose documents were saved to a folder on this one when 2BDH and I put it together) is finding electronic scraps, notes, and oddments. This, from the spring of 2007, when I was working on the Sabbath Socks (did I ever finish them?) and LittleBit was a junior in high school:
I’m not sure why I assume that the Insomnia Fairy is female; the sheer persistence and consistently bad timing of my own personal Insomnia Fairy suggests a middle-aged male who just bought the fairy equivalent of a Miata or a dooley because Titania’s upstairs maid told him to go sleep on the couch.
I’ve been dealing with the contents of four boxes that have lived under the dining room table for the past couple of months. [The Four Box-men of the Spring Cleaning Spasm? Somehow that doesn’t have the same ring as the original. Suggestions welcome.]
I emptied the “shred” box last week. Yesterday it was the “read” box’s turn. More stuff for the “shred” pile, but not a lot, and a bunch of expired coupons into the trash, and some catalogues that I wanted to get to, now seriously outdated and into the trash as well. A couple of things for the “file” box, and a handful of items that I still need/want to read.
Which leaves the “forward” box [half an hour, tops] and the “file” box, probably a good week’s worth of puttering that needs to wait until later this summer, when I’m in the mood to take a couple of long weekends and LittleBit will be visiting Middlest in VA. I need to purge the existing files first and dispose of dead warranties, create new hanging folders and file labels, clean off this desk, line up a series of edible and non-edible treats to reward myself for chunks of progress, etc.
If this sounds like war, it is. Me v. the Forces of Entropy. I need a certain amount of visual chaos in order to function creatively. I watched the remake of “Yours, Mine, and Ours” yesterday afternoon, and I looked at her studio and thought “Yes. Perfect.” And there are other parts of my life that I need to have tidy in order to feel competent: my dining room, because it reminds me that I am not only an artist who needs solitude in order to create but a woman who likes to cook for her friends [if not necessarily for her offspring]; my financial records, my bookcases by topic, the craft supplies for anything I’ve done in the past but am not currently doing [I have at least one skein of every color of cotton embroidery floss that DMC makes and am partway down that path for Anchor floss. I spent two or three months patiently winding floss from my old storage system (LoRan cards in an oversized three-ring-binder, more like a three-ring-circus) onto plastic bobbins with tiny pre-numbered stickers. There are seven or eight translucent white plastic boxes stacked on a bookshelf in my room, next to the cross-stitch books and flyers.]
Most people seem to be either left-brained or right-brained. I would probably be more comfortable, and certainly easier to live with, if I were one or the other, but I am not. I am both, and I never know until I wake up in the morning which hemisphere will be Officer of the Day.
We return you to the present. I'm still dealing with too much stuff in too little space, but I continue to make progress. And I'm dealing with the chaos in a space that the bank and I own, with freedom to paint the walls, bang holes in them to heart's content, rearrange furniture at 3am without worrying if it will disturb the neighbors. And I own power tools. Everywhere I look, there is evidence of love and time invested in my home. Almost every week, an item or a bag or a box leaves for its new home. Yesterday, after our dental appointments, I dropped off a needlepoint pillow at my best friend's house and got to see their renovations.
Which only encourages me to continue with my own. I'm no longer wrangling paperwork into carefully labeled file folders. I'm now (intermittently) scanning items and saving them. I have a 3TB external hard drive. The files from Beloved's computer and mine do not show as even a hint of a line on the bar graph that represents available memory. My CDs are all uploaded to iTunes. The originals are alphabetized by performer and topic and stored in bright red boxes (seven of them, and one empty) on a shelf in my studio. My cross stitch threads are patiently waiting for me to get back to them. The eight three-drawer plastic rolling carts are emptied and living at Fourthborn's, their contents organized to a fare-thee-well in clear plastic shoeboxes lining the wall in the hall. (They will eventually move onto shelves in my studio. Baby steps.) The efficiencies I've learned as my office went paperless have crept into my home, and I am grateful.
The sky just opened up, loudly and impressively, outside. No hail, but I'm pretty sure that Lorelai and the Tardis are now squeaky clean.
This is the part where, in lieu of going to the gym this morning, I draft a letter for my visiting teaching route. I printed off the handouts yesterday, and I just finished updating the mailing labels.
I'm under no illusion that I'm in control of my life or my surroundings. But I continue to make room so that Heaven can nudge me in whatever direction is needful. I call that progress.
- Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!