Last night while at a volunteer group meeting I was talking to a lady I know who has a lot of serious health issues and she was mentioning that their little trailer was hell to heat and she only had 2 small blankets.
I thought about how just the day before I had been wondering what I would do with a thick white duvet I had been given as a gift and didn’t need, one I don’t really like white and 2 I have a lovely Gothic themed collection of wonderful comforters.
Well I could cover it for a quilt? Probably never as my one quilting experience was not all that great.
Of course i could take the filling out for pillows. But then I have a few space bags full of old pillow filler and brand new pillows cost $3.
So I had just stuffed a 13 gallon bag full of the duvet and threw it in the garage for future uses and there it sat waiting to be of use so I told them to follow us home and I gave her the duvet and a small bag of inexpensive fuzzy socks I was thinking of making sock animals or rice bags with (even though I really disliked the colors)
Here I am busting my hump to organize my art room and art supplies and I have things I have no likely use for or real affinity with but it has always been hard for me to let go of things because of “I might need it some day” syndrome. So finally I am making an effort, I gave away most of the clothes I had when I was bigger even though it is hard for me at times to not want to do something crafty with all of them so I chose just ones I had altered too much already and gave the rest away.
For me it was just really stash busting unneeded stuff, for her it was the first warm night she has had in a while she told me.
Sometimes I hold on to stuff just to have it, so now it is time to be more honest with myself about whether an item will be used or whether it could do someone else more good that it is doing me.
I have all the storage stuff ready to go in the art room and tons of stuff basically sorted in the front room.
The problem is that it seems so overwhelming at times knowing I have large card table totally covered with plastic shoe boxes full of loosely sorted random items, not to mention the entire area under the table is packed with only slightly better sorted paper and that I still have so many boxes to go through stored in the garage. There are times I look at it and want to cry or give up and just haul it all back in boxes in the freezing cold garage.
If I am to meet my February 9th self imposed deadline I need to stop getting stalled by both health issues and self doubt. So I am taking a page out of UfYH at http://unfuckyourhabitat.tumblr.com/ and every time I pass through the front room to get to the back of the house (our room, art room and bathroom) I grab one or 2 things off of the sort table, take them in to the art room and put stuff where it goes.
This will work for about half of the stuff on the table and make space for further sorting and space to bag and box stuff up which will then go into the art room the exact same way. Then I can bring in more stuff and begin sorting that.
Progress is a great motivator!
I have a project I am working on that will involve 30-35 small (4″x4″ to 5″x7″ and random sizes in between) art pieces, mostly mixed media “paintings” that I need done by April 1st
I am determined that I will not start any of these pieces until the art room is finished and so I am setting my goal for the art room to be finished by Feb 9th (one month from now) which will give me about 7 weeks to finish them.
Today mom came over and we brought in and emptied all these old rolling (and some that dont roll) plastic dressers some of which were mine and some were given to me by a friend who had left a few random art supplies in them.
We stripped them down and mom washed the drawers and the frames of them and we tossed the frame to one 3 drawer wide dresser that was broken though we are keeping the drawers to use in the garage and for the sorting of art supplies.
Now I have empty drawers to put things in (the wooden dresser is empty) and I will be putting medium sized clear plastic bins on the shelf in the closet and getting some small 3 drawer sets for pens and pencils to go on top of the plastic dressers in the closet
I also went through 2 huge bins of plastic food storage containers and lids and disposed of some and found lids for the rest, the reason I mention it is I had been using 2 boxes made out of those wire storage cubes and I now have 2/3rds of one full of tiny little storage containers ranging from 2 oz to 6 oz as well as a couple entree/sandwich size ones that are not air tight. I plan to use them in some of my drawer units for things like beads and random findings. Also I now have those wire racks for sorting stuff into.
Right now about 90% of my art supplies are in the garage waiting to come in box by box to be sorted one at a time so they dont over whelm me which was the problem before.
I still need to put up a few plastic shoe bags to put things in but now there are actual places for things to go.
Before Art room closet
Art room closet in progress
Bookcase wall with drafting table over whelmed by STUFF
Bookcase wall with rolling carts ready for supplies
Library desk area with tons of stuff (now waiting in the garage)
Library table area waiting for supplies
I had been in a lot of pain this last week and have been having a medium bad flare up of arthritis brought on by over doing it for the last month and by wrenching my left knee from stepping wrong and finally it was beginning to lessen so just this morning after cleaning up after the party I started organizing the art room and moving my rolling (and non rolling) plastic dressers around to get the best usage of space.
I figured out where my drafting table can go best and where to move the bookcases, then moved them around til they fit.
I bought 4 cardboard bankers boxes and 8 clear shoe boxes and 2 clear plastic bins that are about twice that size of the shoe boxes and was all ready to bring in the remaining dressers, empty them of random junk, clean them and figure out where to put them…
And so of course I fell on the ice and have wrenched my other knee to the point where every movement makes me want to cry
I have all of this motivation to get stuff done and just walking from room to room or laying down or shifting in a chair is agony.
I have end stage (bone on bone) arthritis and I am half way between cortisone shots and cant have another for 2 months so there is no point going to the dr, I just have to wait it out and hope the pain goes away soon and my motivation hangs on.
We had the party and the Tea Room (lounge in my temporarily emptied out art room) was a huge success and it has made me determined to use every bit of space in the closet and come up with a way to cover it during parties (we removed the folding doors as they wasted a lot of the usable space) so I want to use some of my material and possibly grommets and cupboard hooks to make a removable curtain.
I intend to replace the wide rolling carts with a solid set of my thinner ones without wheels and use the top shelf of the closet for plastic bins that can be lifted in and out. The drawers of the dresser will have divisions like shoe boxes and cardboard dividers
My existing bookcase and the chubby rack will be full of supplies (need to buy the boxes for it) and I will use some of the shelves in the garage for items I seldom use, tools I would most likely use out there anyway and the material (in large ziplocs) that I don’t have a specific project for (those can go in drawers)
I will use the wide rolling carts and they can just be rolled in to our room which we close off anyway during parties.
I know it seems strange to plan my art room around using it for parties but we have amazing and very respectful friends and we love being able to allow them to have birthday parties at our place, heck we have a fire pit we dug out back and we partly chose this place for that reason. Also by having events I hope to be motivated to keep my art room organized.
A huge help in giving me motivation to get my art room clean came from getting ready for the birthday party I am giving a friend today at our place.
In prep for sorting the art room into something usable we took everything to the garage and since the room was mostly empty and we can use more space we set the room up as a lounge area. Floor pillows, Oriental rug, small table, dim lighting to make a tea room where fortunes can be told and it looks amazing.
The thing is for Years due to depression my entire house resembled the art room before we stripped it and it is hard to accept that I am finally getting the habits I need to maintain it the way I want.
All the time since we moved I was feeling that my house was a mess, that I can’t keep up with everything but it took us less than 2 hours of casual work ( with breaks ) to get it party ready and about 75% decorated for a Russian theme party and that included moving the remaining storage stuff out of that room and moving all the random kitchen stuff out as well.
The thing is the house is fine it is now within 30 mins of “guest ready” at all times except for the craft room, so realizing that this one black hole was dragging me down has motivated me more and more to get it organized and keep it clean and put together.