so today . . . i've started cleaning out the extra bedroom. this is not nearly as easy as it sounds. i thought about taking a picture so you could all see what i am up against, but then i decided against it--some things are just too personal to share, and the state of that room is one of them.
we live in a house with four bedrooms. there are only three of us, and two of us share a room, so you would think we would have plenty of space. but we don't. and here is why . . .
first of all, we live in southern california. for some reason the houses in socal do not have a lot of storage space. oh, they may have a three car garage, but the closets are small, the stairways are open (thus, no 'under the stairs' storage space,) and did i mention that the closets are small? they have no basements and no usable storage space in what they call an 'attic.' and while many houses do have three car garages, there is no way you could actually get three cars in there, because that is also where the washer and dryer are, and the hot water heater, and the christmas decorations, and the baby high chair (just in case you ever need it for grandchildren,) and the sports gear (remember, i have a chris evert tennis raquet and a raquetball raquet! and bowling balls--surprise!!) so where do you put everything?!?
we moved here from oregon, where they know how to build houses for people who have stuff--big closets, built-in storage in any nook or cranny that can be enclosed, and if that isn't enough, there is always room in the backyard for a storage shed. of course, that is because they don't have a swimming pool in the back yard . . . and their houses don't cost the same as a small country, so they can afford to have a lot of stuff.
you see, this is my problem--i moved from oregon, with all my stuff, to california, with no place to put it . . .
at first it was ok. rollie and i had a room, diandra had a room, i had a room for my huge craft desk and supplies, and we still had an extra bedroom for guests (which is good, because we live pretty close to mickey mouse and his crew.)
then diandra moved out . . .
. . . and rollie decided maybe he should have a room in which to keep his stuff. he works at home at least one day a week, so it made sense to turn diandra's unused bedroom into an office for him--then he wouldn't have to work at the kitchen table any longer. we call it "the man room." we moved his grandfather's antique desk in there, got a leather rocker/recliner, a sound system, and of course, a big tv. (you may have noticed that only one out of four of those items is work related . . . ) he is a much happier camper now that he has his own space. and it worked out well, because i still had a room for my enormous craft desk and supplies, and we still had an extra bedroom for guests . . .
. . . and then diandra moved back in.
we were delighted to have her back, of course. our household is a lot more fun when she is in it. but she needed a room. we couldn't take "the man room" away from rollie--that would have just been cruel, and my craft room has this HUGE work table/desk in it that would be hard to move, so the solution seemed to be to give her the guest room. we moved furniture in and out, she bought bedding and accessories in brown and pink, put her stuff in the closet and drawers, and soon she had her own space again.
which was great, unless you wanted to come stay with us. because now we have no guest room.
the truth is, we don't have all that many visitors, but it is nice to be able to say to people, "yes, come and stay with us" if they are going to be in the area. so this is a problem that needs a solution . . .
and the only room with any flexibility is my craft room. i call it my craft room, because that is it's purpose, but it has actually become the room where i put anything that i don't have a place for, or anything i don't have time to deal with right now, or anything i think i might get rid of but i'm not sure about yet. yeah, you can probably kind of imagine what it looks like . . . i went in today to start the process of clearing it out and found christmas ribbons, empty boxes (remember, they are not trash--they are free containers!) magazines i haven't had time to read, cute picture frames that won't fit in the drawer where i keep cute picture frames, bags i pack in when i travel, christmas cards people sent to me (the pictures are so pretty,) clothes that won't fit in my closet, clothes i am getting rid of (maybe,) empty shopping bags (which are great to put the stuff in that i am getting rid of,) not to mention the odds and ends that have been tossed in there because i can't decide what to do with them, but i'm pretty sure the stuff is too good to throw away . . .
so i have my work cut out for me. i am determined to get it done, because last week we had to tell some friends that were visiting that we had no place for them to sleep. and rollie's parents are coming for their first visit here, and are planning to stay in a motel (which i'm sure is preferable to sleeping in our recliners, but still . . . )
i was going to be ruthless! the first thing i carried off were some pillow forms that i have probably had for over 10 years. i bought them to cover with fabric and use on some antique oak chairs in my kitchen. but then we moved into a house where there was no room for the chairs, so they now live with my brother and sister-in-law. and yet the uncovered foam chair pads are still in my craft room. waiting to be covered. to sit on chairs that i no longer have.
i carried those pillow forms downstairs and stacked them in the living room! wow! it felt great! finally i was getting rid of stuff i have been hanging onto for years! i put some of the magazines in the recycle bin, i made a stack of empty bags to hold all the stuff i was going to get rid of, and i stacked the empty boxes in the corner, because i may need them to organize the stuff i decide to keep . . .
then i found the t-shirt from our vacation to cozumel. i hated to get rid of that--it had been such a fun trip! and then i thought, "it would make a great pillow for the family room. maybe i could use one of those pillow forms . . ."
as i said, it isn't as easy as it sounds . . .