I do have issues... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 01-04-2010, 06:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Inspired by the great challenge of 5 items a day, I have bravely attacked and gone through all our clothes, the bathroom, the kids toys - and doing great at it, too - lots of stuff has been given away.

But today I started on the basement, where we have a storage room that I have been dreading for years. I am ashamed to say that most of the stuff in there has followed us during two moves from one home to another - and not much has come out of the boxes since we moved. In other words: we don't use it.

Today, my biggest challenges were:

- notes from University. I loved the classes there, I loved learning what I learned there. The binders are full of interesting notes. Have I ever looked at them since I finishes Uni? No...
Will I ever do?
Most probably not.
But throwing it away seems wrong in a way.

- fabrics. That I will make into the most beautiful clothes and gifts when I have time to sit down. Yeah right, when will that be? I do want to, but being a WAHM with one toddler and a 5-year old, plus a business from home - not very likely that this will happen anytime soon.
But oh - the beauty of the fabrics! Vintage! Some from my grand mothers house

I could go on, but I'll start by presenting these two major obstacles so that I might find a way to turn myself around and be reasonable before I close the door to that room again. I want to win this fight!

Happy mama to DD 04 and 08 April 2011
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#2 of 9 Old 01-04-2010, 07:00 PM
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I completely understand the college notes thing. I went to art school and have (well, HAD) binders and binders full of notes plus boxes of film, photo stuff, design projects, and an entire rubbermaid tote full of the whole design process for my senior thesis. I've held on to all of it since 2001. Did I look at or use any of it even once? Nope. So a couple of months ago I started going through it and tossed almost everything. It was a little painful, but I did it. I needed my space back and I was finally ready to admit that I will never find the time to do anything with it. It was not easy, but I did it. I still have all of my drawings though. I can't stand the thought of getting rid of those. They are meaningful to me still, but the other stuff was not. That was my compromise. I wanted to have at least a little part of my college experience to hang on to, and the drawings are something I will never be able to recreate.

Don't be too hard on yourself. Start by getting rid of the things that do not have such emotional importance for you. Letting go of the non-meaningful stuff will help you figure out what is really important for you to keep.
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#3 of 9 Old 01-05-2010, 12:05 AM
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I haven't quite been ready to let go of my notes or textbooks either. I'm back in grad school again, so I keep thinking that they'll be useful in a later class or later project. And in fact I have used previous readings and printouts. No notes yet, though.

One thing I did do was go through and pull together all the materials from earlier classes that I thought related to my big amorphous "thesis" into one or two notebooks. There is no reason they need to stay in semester order, and a lot of reasons why I need to synthesize them into something that makes sense to me.

Theoretically, I can get rid of everything but those most important papers.

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#4 of 9 Old 01-05-2010, 12:20 AM
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As far as paper goes, notes, thesis , whatever, why not scan them and burn them onto a disc? Takes up a lot less room, they won't mildew, get yellow or get eaten by vermin, etc. Just a thought.
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#5 of 9 Old 01-05-2010, 02:25 AM
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I have a hard time with that stuff too.

I ended up looking through and keeping one or two of my favorite notebooks and recycling the rest.

Save the fabrics for last. Perhaps if you sort through all the stuff w/o as much importance/significance then you can go through and pair down some of the fabrics at a later date. Remember someone else might be THRILLED to make something neat out of the ones you don't need right away!

Great job! Keep it up!

I've been loving the challenge myself.

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#6 of 9 Old 01-05-2010, 02:50 AM
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I have the college notes dilemma too and I've decided the next time I am going through them I am going to throw them out. What I am going to allow myself keep is some reports and notes from a couple of my past jobs that actually will be useful to me in the future if I were to go back to work. But the college stuff - I graduated almost 25 years ago and I do not need to keep it anymore. I have not referred to it once.

I'd keep the fabrics. But I have a thing for them. If you don't, then move all or most of them along to someone who does, and don't look back.
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#7 of 9 Old 01-05-2010, 03:28 AM
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I like the CD idea ...burn two just in case. i would have loved to have such materials from my grandfather to remind me of him... but why get rid of the fabrics...if you have room keep them and their day will come...if you get rid of them know you will have to buy more later...
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#8 of 9 Old 01-05-2010, 08:31 AM
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About the fabric: depending on the material it might even dry-rot, so you won't be able to use it in a few years. (Having said that: I have a box full of "when I get to it" fabric as well - but I've given away some of it.)
Sometimes schools, churches, or other places with arts and crafts groups will love to take some of it. I usually find it a lot easier to part with things when I can "bless someone else" (as FLYlady says). As for the "vintage": you could make a sample folder or something like that as a reminder ("This was the fabric of my Grandma's apron.").

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#9 of 9 Old 01-05-2010, 02:17 PM
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I saved my college essays and term papers. I saved the textbooks. I let the notes go.

Fabric can be useful even for a non sewer like me. I use them to drape the tables and makeshift bar to make things more "put together".
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