Monday, May 12, 2008

Clearing the Clutter

Hi. My name is Cadyn, and I'm a hoarder.

For the past couple months or so (when Drew and I started to seriously discuss moving), I've been going through a material purging phase. It's weird-- not wanting THINGS has always been so foreign to me. I never understood the shopping buddy that could just pass up that really beautiful (and useful) robin's egg blue tea kettle. And it was on sale! I'm a nester, so I'm always looking for ways to spruce things up: rearrange furniture; paint existing furniture; buy decorative things, organizational things, cleaning products, fabric, ribbon, lotion, clothes, shoes, more clothes and more shoes, food, more food, movies, books, new sheet sets; improve my life somehow.

OK, you get the picture. I mean I didn't just buy things blindly. I made sure there was intention behind that purchase. But when I realized I had five (yes, five, although one was broken) different kinds of coffee makers in our kitchen, and I had stopped drinking coffee about 4 months prior, I decided to get rid of some. My parents' neighborhood was having their seasonal community yard sale in a few weeks, and I made the decision to not only help them get rid of some stuff, I was going to start really clearing my clutter.

I've never thought of myself as a hoarder, but in retrospect, I think five coffee makers for someone who doesn't even drink coffee constitutes a hoarder. But I was one in disguise. You'd never know it by looking around my apartment. You see, I was an organized hoarder. Everything had a place, at least. But what I've taught myself in the last couple months is that even if there's room for it doesn't mean I have to own it. I am not ashamed to say that I am a total sucker for packaging. Ahem, check out this Martha Stewart goodie below. Now who doesn't need some adorable boxes to give out your homemade cookies in?

But I can appreciate the beauty of products without bringing them home with me. I love looking though Domino and Cottage Living magazines, and thought I got inspiration from them. But I literally keep myself up at night sometimes wondering why my own nest, my sanctuary, never looks as good as the ones in the magazines. Disregarding the multi-thousand dollar sofas and rugs, it's the lack of clutter that makes those rooms! Duh!

Why had I never seen it? So now when I get an urge to improve my life somehow, I look around and I don't think about what the room needs. I think about what the room can do without. I made $100 at my parents' yard sale from my things alone, and I'm proud to say I'm having another yard sale soon with my friend Orea. I have an ongoing pile on the chair in my studio of things to take out to the sale. It's a slow process, this purging, but it's oddly satisfying. Just a little here, a little there, then wait a couple days to see if I miss those things. And the funny thing is I never do.

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