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Organizing vs. Decluttering

I have a recliner. I used to have a Dutailier rocker, but then that whole vertigo thing happened and No More Rocking Chairs for Me. I got a really great recliner and ottoman to go with (Ekorne, which I never can manage to remember how to spell without looking it up because I know words in too many languages that sound roughly like that and it just confuses the hell out of me). Next to my recliner _should_ be some sort of small table for putting a book or device or tea and maybe a lamp on. But that's not how I roll. For a few years, I had a hutch with shelves on top of a 2 drawer lateral file (go big. Not go big or go home. Just, go big). The 2 drawer file now lives in my sort-of office and the hutch lives a separate life on the third floor. I downsized to a three shelf bookshelf that R. had (I don't own bookshelves this short, normally). This is where devices can be charged when they are not overnighting upstairs in their proper charging location. It is also where a bunch of books permanently live (the Dutch reference books, a copy of GTD, a book about Acton, the town trails guide, some blank books, a travel guide to Boston, another book with trails in a multi-town area, and all the Pfeffer holiday books and some similar things). There is also an ungodly stack of Random Crap: the last vestiges of magazine like reading material (Disney Files, Catalyst, some investor stuff, etc.). Library books live here so I don't lose track of them, etc.

Since I'm actually cleaning my own house, and because I am Lazy (<-- Aspirational Statement, so don't even try to argue with me. That is, I aspire to be clever enough to be successfully lazy), I have been trying to maximize the amount of vacuuming that can be done by Roomba (rather than me). I bet you can see where this is going.

So, I had to reorganize the 3 shelf bookshelf by my chair so I could get all the charging cords permanently up, up and away from where Roomba would eat them. Until I did this, every time Roomba ran, I had to blockade the shelf so Roomba wouldn't go nibble on those tasty, tasty cords.

Alas, I only managed to get rid of a couple of minor items. It doesn't really count as decluttering. I threw away a few receipts. I wound up some earbuds and put them into their container and put them in a new location. Really, it is barely worth mentioning. Virtually everything went back. I _did_ move some stuff off permanently to elsewhere -- there was a photo binder/scrapbook that moved to the shelf with the rest of like items. That meant the song books had to find a new home. Etc.

But it looks better, and more importantly it should work better. Of course, I'm probably still going to have to blockade the back of the couch, because I don't even want to think about Roomba repeatedly bashing itself against the somewhat tippy plant stands. Which have glass shelves on top.

ETA: Neat article at Unclutterer a few days ago:


I read Alison Stewart's excellent book _Junk_ recently, and the spark for the author to write the book was emptying out her parents' basement after they passed. Several other stories in the book also involve people having to clear out a space after someone moves away abandoning things or dies. I don't have any reason to expect I'm going to die any time soon, or experience grief of some other sort, but reading the book definitely lit a fire under me. I don't want anyone else to have to sort through all this stuff, nor do I want to have to do it while any more impaired than I already am. Now is as good a time as I am ever going to get.