Thursday, May 21, 2009

Junk - Part 1 in a Series (possibly)

Today's flavor: Scrapple - a mush of pork scraps and trimmings combined with cornmeal and flour. Scraps of meat left over from butchering, not used or sold elsewhere, made into "scrapple" to avoid waste. Scrapple is best known as a regional American food of the Mid-Atlantic states.

I've decided that I want to become a minimalist. No wait - don't dismiss this idea straight off. You see, my mind is so cluttered that I have no attention span. For a while, I self-diagnosed ADD - we can do that in the 21st century because having a disorder is a very acceptable answer for any question of imperfection in our lives. But then I realized that actually, as a grown-up, I do have a choice about being focused. On anything. For more than a minute. Where was I? Right. My mind is cluttered and all the junk my family has accumulated over the past decade is not helping. It's time to purge. Not in the bulimia way, but in the get rid of all this useless crap way. The husband suggests that we participate in the town-wide yard sale. Hmmm....I admit that I sometimes enjoy browsing through people's discards and have even been known to pick up a few odd bits from the neighbor's lawn. But as I haul a box full of tattered Barbies, outgrown skates, old curtain rods, and still-perfectly-functional VHS tapes, I wonder. Why the heck do I have all of this, and why do I think anybody else would want it? And what about the exercise of selling that formerly "must-have" $200 bread-maker set for $2.00? I mean what's the point? Imagine my husband standing out there for half a day engaging in such negotiations as the sale of a 10 year old cozycoupe for 5 bucks. On a weekday, he'll charge his clients an hourly rate that could keep me in Prada* but on this particular Saturday, for some reason, he'll high-five me about taking in $50 by lunch time. Can't we just dump it all somewhere? Oh, I know that's so un-green. But I reason it's balanced out by my choice of reusable shopping totes instead of paper or plastic. The point is, I used to have wild fantasies of sitting in the front row at Fashion Week, wearing Versace and waiting for my boyfriend, Tyson Beckford to walk. Now my wild fantasies look more like this:
So, I lay out the cabbage patch dolls, mismatched Duplo sets, threadbard area rugs, what-was-I-thinking pieces of wicker, and Tickle-Me Elmo's. As my basement floor becomes visible, I begin settling into that zen-feeling of letting go. It's so freeing to stop hanging on to stuff. It's so clean, so spacious, so open - so perfect for a home gym...and the kids would love an airhockey table, oooh, and if we got one of those projectors, that wall would be perfect for a home theater. My husband's right, getting rid of stuff is exactly what we need to do. First, I have to schedule a haircut - so that I don't have to worry about my getting my hair out of my face while I shop for the new stuff. You know how it's just impossible to concentrate when you don't feel good about how you look. Oh, that reminds me, I want to get this new flat iron...I better make a list - my head is just buzzing with ideas - or is that clutter?

*Hey, don't hate on that Prada comment. Ironically, now that we can actually afford it, I just can't get myself to buy an $800 skirt to wear to ShopRite.


  1. ROFLMAO...

    Purging to buy more to purge again in a few years..makes sense to me.

  2. I totally agree with the declutter. And the don't do a garage sale. I can't imagine what kind of people would show up, and having to talk to them for an hour while they haggled over a few dollars.

    Just call a garbage man.

  3. Try selling your house and moving into a fifthwheel to travel around the country after having been married for 20 years.

    MAJOR declutter....

    I miss scrapple. They don't have it out here in Montana.

  4. I find cleaning out cathartic! My dad used to be a huge pack rat and it drove me insane. Since getting married, I make cleaning out closets and donating items or selling them on eBay or garage sales at least an "every 6 months" thing.

  5. Are you in my head reading my thoughts?

    - from another self-diagnosed ADD mom.

  6. I have been toying with the thought of a garage sale. We normally just donate everything to Goodwill and write it off, but it's been a few years since I've said "I will never do that again" after having a garage sale. We have so much stuff to get rid of right now that I think Goodwill would would turn us away!

  7. I'm thinking that ADD diagnosis may be right on.... and oh my God it sounds so much like my thought processes that I think I'm scared.

    And PS, I have those fantasies too... about the perfectly organized closets.... ahhhhh. Heaven.

  8. I feel guilty about buying Prada or anything expensive for me too so I buy it for my children. I get the same satisfaction from this shopping pleasure without all the guilt!

    Can you please do a blog on in-laws!? :-)

    Must admit I have ADD also...

  9. Okay...scrapple makes me want to vomit. Violently. Hubby LOVES it and orders it from Pennsylvania since they have nothing that hideous here in Washington State.

    As to simplifying. I am SO there! I want things to be more simple in my business and in my home. We have a garage sale in two weeks and I can't wait. It's going to be my extra spending money in Vegas. Anything that doesn't sell gets taken to Good Will ... Except maybe the X Box. I can probably sell that at work or to my baby sitter. :)

    Hubby says we need a bigger house. I just think we need to work harder at keeping the one we have less "stocked" with stuff.

    I do love my new bread maker though. =D

  10. Oh...and I LOVE my Prada purse. I didn't buy it new - got it used on the Purse Forum and it was in MINT condition. It's not anymore. :) I'm hard on things. But I still love it.

  11. I'm so with you on the futility of a yard sale. I recently pulled all my son's old clothes down from the attic (that I was saving for what??) and had all my mom friends with littler boys come over and take what they wanted.

    It was a lot of fun for all of us!

  12. I agree on the yard sale conundrum. I've been doing the purge too & I think that Good Will thinks there is something wrong with me cause I've been showing up at least three times a week with a car full of stuff. What can I say? I used to shop a lot so take my crap and sell it to someone else.


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