walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

Why I Have Not Been Posting Regularly: Personal Organization, Administrivia

Let me count the excuses.

First and foremost, while Sensible People do their taxes in April, we file ours in October. I wish that was not so, however, it is what it is, and while every year I swear I will rearrange my life so that I can file in April, I always decide, after the taxes are finally done, that that's not necessarily the best choice. It just _seems_ that way.

Second, and this is partly related to the taxes, I've been decluttering/organizing/sorting/etc. This was partly, perhaps entirely triggered by the file drawer becoming too full to add another folder to. After the fact, it is often hard to remember the proximate cause but it does not really matter. The True Cause is that It Was Time. The kids are in school. I have a little free time during the day. It's time to stop procrastinating and attempt to restore order.

How has order been restored?

Well, I did an iPad swap with my daughter. For complex reasons that are not worth getting into, she had the most recently purchased (replaced after the screen cracked) iPad, and the one which had functioning 3G on it. I bought a new, pink, pleather case for the one I had been using and convinced her to trade. This was a Big Deal, because it meant I had to install all the kiddie apps on what was soon to be formerly-mine, turn off email, etc. and then do the reverse on the one I was taking from her. But it's nice, because you can actually use it in the car now and, more importantly, while away from the house in general.

Next up, because I was already knee deep in app store updatery, I turned on some synchronization between my phone and my iPad, and made sure it was turned off on the other devices (notably, contacts). In conjunction with appropriate settings on iCloud, this means I actually trust my contact information again, which I had not for a long while. This turned out to be important weeks after this part of the organization project, when I started digging through the inbox on my email and extracting contact information and deleting Very Old Messages.

I'm not sure what happened after that, but somewhere in there I started purging paper files. The shredder came out. R. and I went back and forth on whether shredded paper is recyclable. I sent email to waste management and never heard back from them. In the Pacific Northwest, they _really_ don't want shredded paper in the recycle bin, but that varies by region. I hate the mess, so I bagged it and stuck it in the trash.

As I was shredding, and noticing that back in 2004, I had made an effort to move bills and statements and so forth online, I set up lastpass (previously reviewed -- increasingly loving it, including on the iPad, but still haven't used it on the iPhone), then started recovering lost userids/passwords from infrequently used accounts. Along the way, I had to convince JetBlue to solve a longstanding and somewhat mysterious problem they have actually sending me email (ultimately, I switched them to my other email address and that fixed the problem. Weird.).

I've since mostly finished the shredding project, and started on a Reduce the Size of the pBook Collection project. Predictably, this is something my friend A. did with her library over a year ago. I'm a second rank sheep; she'd a leader. LibraryThing let me make weeding decisions without the distractions of physical books in my hands, giving me a list of a few hundred to pull. R. said, "Don't do it all at once.", and I made a rule to do one box at a time. I took A. to Staples to get boxes and packing tape and a few other odds and ends (mailers, mailing labels, etc. to return borrowed books) and then identified a probable donation recipient who will be _happy_ to get many boxes of books.

Sandwiched in with all of this, I took a couple end tables that we've never really used to a furniture consignment store and set up an account with them. I also tried to donate a couch to HGRM, but I was honest in my verbal description and they don't want it (there was a hole in the cushion which has been repaired but the repair is visible), which means I now have to locate someone who will pick it up and take it away -- before the table which normally occupies that space is returned there from the kitchen. It's in the kitchen right now, because the table normally in the kitchen is being refinished.

Did I mention the couch and chair arrived? It's been like that around here lately.

Anyway. Painters will be arriving to do the master bedroom in early November. I'm trying to convince my son T., who has some Issues with things other than routine (and, specifically, other than playing Where's My Water and various Angry Birds games) that he should be okay with (a) a Halloween Costume and (b) an upcoming vacation. He did not want to go to gymnastics today, so we canceled and I took the opportunity to have a couple of really big arguments with him about the trip and the costume. He spent a few hours wearing the jacket from the EMT costume, and his protests about the trip are less energetic, so I feel like I'm at least winning on points.

Finally, I'm reading _The Art of Organizing Everything_, which is good. Actually, as organizing books go, it's great. I'm awaiting my used copy of _Getting Things Done_; no, I'm _not_ going to join that cult. I do, however, need to set up a tickler file, because I've hit my limit on remembering dates that recur quarterly.

Oh, and I have been reading. I finished Nate Silver's book, which had very good moments, but overall really needed a much better editor. But isn't that always the case?

The latest kindle (R. calls it the paperweight) is _awesome_. I'm going to donate my old kindle keyboard and my previous kindle touch to the library in Mayberry (<-- not its real name). The whole time I had the previous kindle touch, I was tempted to return to the kindle keyboard, because the touch was slow and didn't work very well. But with the new one, I have no temptation to return to the past.

I'm sure there's something I've forgotten to mention, probably involving all the paperwork that has been arriving for the genealogy/divorce research. Maybe later.
Tags: daily activities, decluttering

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