Creative Cleaning

So I won’t mislead you that I’m going to talk about a creative way to clean.  Although if you find or have one, I’d love to hear it!

What I am going to talk about here is how cathartic cleaning has been for me this week.  It’s like the dust has been clogging me up.  I read recently that “clutter” comes from the Latin for “to clot.”  Yes, I’ve clotted my life with stuff– and it blocks me from thinking!  And creating.

I’d love to live more simply.  I’ve come to realize I probably never will.  My mother is a streamlined person who “packs light.”  Her only vice when it comes to stuff is her book collection as she is an avid reader (and a good writer too– she’s planning on joining wordpress soon.  When she does, I’ll post a link!).

I, on the other hand, take after my grandmothers.  I love shoes.  I have many hobbies– most of which require some kind of paraphernalia like crochet hooks, or instruments, or colored pencils.  I’ve tutored.  So I see no reason to get rid of books that are too young for me.  I have flashcards.  I even scrapbook.  Thus seeing a need to keep some magazines or catalogs around.

Now, I’m not a mess.  I’m fairly organized, actually.  Maybe more than most (thanks to the influence of mom).  But in my accepting that I will probably not be able to live more simply by getting rid of things, I’d like to settle for living simpler in that my things will be controlled and confined instead of controlling and confining me.

There is something comforting about shaking the dust off of clothes in the warm sunshine.  Gauzy summer dresses, soft cottons, fuzzy fleece sweaters.  Texture.  Color.  Pattern.  It’s inspiring.

Finding my yarn.  Putting it in a place where I can use it more often as it’s been months again since I’ve crocheted.

Problem-solving and brainstorming new uses of space and storage containers.  Baskets, bins, boxes.  Furniture that does double-duty:  storage ottomans, shelves that are also decorative.

I’d challenge you to pick one thing this summer: your bedroom, your car, your email inbox– whatever.  Envision a new way to use the space.  Clear out the cobwebs and feel the extra space you gain– inside your head!  And feel free to tell me about it.  Cleaning can suck, but the results can be exciting (My trick is to put on a good cd or movie to sing along to or watch while I’m cleaning.  It makes it go so much quicker and even, dare I say, enjoyable?).

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