Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Clutter Chaos Part Deux

An update on the chaos mentioned in my last post -

I was going to simply challenge my mother to an "Age Purge," i.e. getting rid of one thing for how old you are, but then I decided that part of my mother's problem is my brother, and if I was going to get my brother to do anything I probably needed to get my sister involved so it all spiraled into a purging competition for my whole family.

I have offered anyone in my family who purges their age in stuff by Sunday a $5 gift certificate to Friendly's. And whoever purges the most stuff above and beyond their age will get a grand prize - probably some sort of bottle of alcohol (unless my niece wins in which case I have no idea what I'll do yet.) So far, my mom, sister, niece, and Friendster Guy (tentatively) have signed on. If you'd like to join us (no prizes, just a feeling of freedom), here is some inspiration.

Fly Lady's Baby steps program (Thanks Anonymous)
Expiration dates of common household stuff
Clean Sweep This will either give you ideas, or make you feel better about your own mess. (Except in my mom's case wherein she'll realize her rooms are just as bad and she needs help.)

The biggest thing to remember is to purge BEFORE you organize. My Mom has already emailed me and said she wants to cover storage boxes with leftover wallpaper first and then use them to sort the stuff in the bathroom. I've tried to gently tell her she's on crack and just needs to throw shit out. In addition, she says she's going to try to use all the myriad lotions in the cabinet instead of throwing them out (are you sensing the problem here?) No matter how much she tries or wants to, it's not going to happen and shouldn't - some of it is older than my brother, and he's 23. I sent her the expiration date link in the hopes that it will alleviate her guilt at tossing things.

No wonder I'm so organized. It's like not drinking because your parents were alcoholics. I'm rebelling against my upbringing. Good lord.

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