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Tidying up…

I may have been the last person in America to read this book,

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, by Marie Kondo

Sorry for the size of the text but I had no hope of remembering the title so I lifted it from Google.  I went on an organizational binge after my husband died.  His hobby, well, one of them, was collecting coins, and I was in fear that somehow I would throw away one or more of his treasures, so I had to go through all of his stuff immediately in order to prevent a disaster.  Part of me didn’t think I could make such a mistake, but he was secretive with his stuff so I wasn’t quite sure what to think.  I had asked him if there was any sort of inventory, if he had ever written instructions down in case something would happen to him.  But that was when we never dreamed anything would actually happen, and when he said that yes he had written out instructions I thought he was lying.  Fibbing.  And he was, and I let him.  And, to my relief really, after digging through his closet, which I not-so-affectionately called his ‘toss-in closet’, I found no coins in pockets or any other odd ball places.  They were all in the safe deposit box.  But I had to look, I had to know, I had to be sure.  The responsibility I felt for taking care of his stuff was quite overwhelming.

I mention this because in this book the author doesn’t believe in organization.  You don’t organize your stuff, you get rid of it.  Actually you thank each piece for it’s service, and then you get rid of it.  Hey, I didn’t write the book.  And I did get rid of a LOT of my own stuff after I read the book last year sometime, but I didn’t thank each piece of clothing before it got sent to Goodwill.  So by her standards all my prior efforts to organize Charley’s stuff and my stuff was for naught.

But the big take-away from the book, for me anyhow, is that I have faithfully used her method of folding and storing your clothes every day since.  I haven’t even been tempted to NOT use her method almost from day one.  In her method your things stack in drawers, and not only can you fit a ton of stuff into a small space, you can see everything perfectly.  There is no digging for the particular tee shirt or pants that you might be looking for.  My only cheat has been with my socks, that drawer still looks like a bomb went off in there.  Socks should be folded neatly together, and not turned one inside the other to keep a pair together.  That would cause them stress you see.  So she said anyhow.

But her method has proven itself to me again as I get ready for a pilgrimage of sorts, up north to visit with family and friends.  I’ve had lots of time to get ready this week, so I started transferring pants into the big travel bag I use when I have to bring a lot of stuff.  And, amazingly, I didn’t even use half the bag, so I added the shirts I wanted to bring, and it all fits!  I’ll be comfortable, although not prepared for a formal event, but since that hasn’t ever happened before I think I’ll be safe.  I used to always bring this bag plus it’s slightly smaller matching cousin on a big trip, but not this time…6-12socks.jpgI see fuzzy socks!  I should pack them too.  Last time this Floridian went north she just about froze to death…