Sunday, January 31, 2010

I triumphantly declare a total win.

I did it. Thanks in large part to Alexis. I'm still coughing and still tired and today while on the phone with her, she started organizing her tax paperwork, so I did too. Unfortunately, I found I had never made a copy of my state taxes from last year. I have no idea how this is possible, but it seems to be true.  Also, just yesterday, I threw out a "welcome kit" from Bank of America because they had bought my home loan from Countrywide.  I threw it out because I sold my condo in October, and thus no longer have a mortgage with them.  Today, i went online to print out my statement of interest paid to mortgage this year, like I used to do with Countrywide.  But Bank of America has no record of a mortgage associated with my account.  And apparently that "welcome kit" had a number on it that I was supposed to use to access my mortgage stuff online. grrrr. Oh how I hate BOA. Let me count the ways. Well, I sent them a message and supposedly they will respond in 24 hours. I suspect they will say "wait for it to arrive in the mail like everyone else, crazy anal sister."  But I was going to meet with my new tax lady this week! sigh. The best least I have everything else together.

So the other goal for the day was the car.  And I really didn't feel up to going outside to do it, since it's like ten degrees out.  And Michael had already made it clear that keeping me company wasn't really on his list of things to do today. (He has to watch the crock pot. He is super really excited about making pulled pork in the crock pot. He doesn't quite trust it yet though, despite the whole POINT of a crock pot being that you can leave it all day!)  So I asked Alexis how long she planned to stay on the phone with me. 'Cause if she could tough it out for a while, I could totally get the car done.  But if she was gonna have to run soon, I didn't think I would make it. No pressure or anything. (Erin--I know...not doing so good on the self-motivation front. Ironic, considering I studied motivation in college.)

Lucky for me, Alexis is very patient. So I got the car done! Woo-hooo! It made a huge difference too.  I had to finally give up on some CD's that were scratched beyond repair. It was hard, but I did it.  I brought the car jumper inside to charge. I found out that my fire extinguisher needs a new pin AND to be recharged. How do I do that?  I decided it made sense to keep the rollerblades and sleds in there, because who knows when you'll get inspired to use them--and it's not like I have a better storage area in our apartment.  I got rid of TWO grocery bags of trash, including a half-drunk bottle of root beer my niece left in there last July.  Yeah. Shameful. Unfortunately, my armorall wipes were dried out and useless, and apparently the "multipurpose" cleaning wipes I use in the kitchen do nothing for cars.  So I didn't get to really CLEAN it...will have to buy some new wipes...perhaps a smaller package, since I only clean the car but once a year.

But it's done. Michael convinced me to wait on the closet at the end of the hall (not in our apartment) because that kind of physical labor will definitely start a coughing fit that might last all day. (and, I suspect, he didn't want to get dragged into it, and knew he would, since he is much better at spatial organization that I am. I regularly try to put things in places they clearly won't fit, because my eyes and brain really believe it WILL fit.)

Technically, then, there are 4 things that didn't get accomplished during de-clutter month: the hallway closet, the basement, the memory stuff (which requires buying some kind of organizing stuffs) and ordering pics for the frames. So...they will all just go on a list in the far back reaches of my mind. And when the opportunity arises where I can do it without ruining my day/weekend, I'll cross it off.

But, as I look around our apartment, I feel really proud of the work we did this month.  Not EVERYTHING has a good place or system, but most things do.  It feels roomier.  And we've really managed to keep it clean and organized so far.  And since it IS clean and organized, it only takes a minute to set things right when I notice things out of place. It's not overwhelming. And I really feel better. I hesitate to say I feel more in control, because that only points out how much of a control freak I am.  But I don't think I'm in a minority when I say that my environment really affects my mood, and when I'm surrounded by chaos, it's really hard to find focus and be present. I'm still planning how we'll rearrange things if/when we get the dorm room next door that's supposedly coming our way this summer.  It feels like it would fix all of our problems, organizationally speaking.  But until then...this is good enough. And then some.

And so it is with great glee that I triumphantly declare a total win in the war against clutter.


And I've realized recently that this blog has been a little self-absorbed. I mean, what blog isn't, really? But that wasn't totally my intention.  It did keep me writing on a regular basis, and it did keep me publicly accountable, and thus motivated towards forward movement.  But I also really want it to be helpful and useful to others.  Not just a fun read (I just re-read it, and I had fun at least)...but also inspiring and full of little tips and tricks that could translate to other people's lives.  So tonight I'm going to come back and write a little list of the things I've learned this month...both big-picture things, and concrete tips for organizing. And then next month, I'll try to deliver tips and suggestions, etc along the way.

For now, I've gotta go make a spreadsheet with all the info from my taxes while I wait for BOA to respond. =)

1 comment:

A Little Irish Girl said...

First off, way to go!! I knew you could do it :)

Second, I'm beyond amused that I got a shout out of sorts in this entry. It's like I'm there in your head and I don't even need to say it anymore. Acknowledging is the first step...ha

And finally, maybe you can try to do one thing on the overflow list a month? That way you don't push it off forever, but there is less pressure of exactly what would need to get done. I don't know, just an idea.

Alright, need to go prep for my interview now. good luck with the taxes!