Woven Blessings
Spring 2005

by Sheri L. VanDuyn

The Story of Antiques

Grandmother had it…
Mom threw it out.
I bought it back!

This small hand made primitive stitched sampler with these words hangs in my kitchen. My Grandmother saved everything, loved a good buy and kept everything. My Mom loves a good buy, but doesn’t keep anything. She is a "pitcher"; I am a saver. I really think this skips a generation as Mom usually pitches things my way. (I think she knows that I’ll keep everything for her; if its photos, dishware, Christmas items, or old baskets.)

Well, New Years has come and gone and like I’ve stated at the beginning of this Issue, out with the old and in with the new. My New Year’s Resolution is pretty much the 3 same things from previous years. Lose more weight, exercise more often, and get more organized. Notice the 4-letter word "more." This means I can obtain my goals only push myself to do "more" this year.

Herein lies a dilemma. I like to "keep," dare I say, "save" things or projects like basket kits and patterns to do later. I am a highly motivated person. My home is quite organized and neat on the main level and the upstairs bedrooms as well. But I am a "pile person" and the piles on my basement level where I run the business are growing.

I love this phrase that says – "Creative minds are rarely tidy!" Now this is not to be confused with unavailable to find. I call this "organized clutter." So I am trying to take baby steps toward this full flight of stairs downstairs. This fall my Mom told me of her dear friend Lois (also the Mistress of Ceremonies at my wedding) who had read an article on savers – do I dare use the word "pack rats"? Daily you are to throw out or give away 23 items in your house for a month. Not having read the article, I told no one about my inner challenge to do this. I was sure within the month, my house would be stripped or barren looking. I started organizing the garage some. My closet was next by bringing unused clothes to a local consignment shop and other clothes to a local church helping missions. I also brought several bags and boxes of my son’s outgrown clothes to friends for their boys.

I was definitely on a role and making my 23 items a day doing this for a month. The Holidays have come and gone and I am thinking I could use a little more motivation on my cleaning. So I called Lois and she thought for sure she could find this article which appeared in Guide Posts. We talked about her challenge of "the toss." She shared it could even be papers or articles! This article was sent and arrived 2 days later and I found the magic number was 27 items to rid yourself of. While I still don’t know why this is the total number; I just figured that this was 4 items more in 1 month meaning 124 more items that I have saved and should have tossed. Wow!

Now before you think that I’ve gone over the edge. What I want to state is that I am not doing a tally sheet counting each item (sometimes I think I should); it’s just that I am making a conscience effort to sort, clean, toss and organize.

The gal with the "27" Fling Boogie is professional organizer Marla Cilley, a.k.a. the Fly Lady. She says start small and move fast, so you don’t get bogged down. Spend 15 minutes a day clearing one little area at a time – a shelf, a drawer, a corner of a kitchen counter. At the end of this Guide Post article (June 2004) were Web Sites to visit which I did with such things as regular E-Mails tips sent from the Fly Lady, who helps you break down your house into zones for each de-cluttering. Another site is for "Messes Anonymous" which claims – "Attack the mess; Bless the house!" Another has a book titled – "Sidetracked Home Executives: From Pigpen to Paradise." Who knew? I didn’t! I never knew all this existed; but I can tell you that by the time you receive this, most New Year’s Resolutions have already been broken, but I am really making an attempt to organize "more."

What has really amazed me is the Christian perspective on all of this from the various websites as I am de-cluttering. One writes – "get rid of it. Have faith. Remember what Paul told anxious Philippians, ‘God will fully satisfy every need of yours.’ And that was long before eBay."

So this is my goal this year to do "more" to de-clutter. I know that being creative in art and the world of basketry will be a bigger challenge; but I’ve seen worst case scenarios lately on the TV show – Clean House and the results are very encouraging. So, I will start weaving my way through my house taking those baby steps and concentration on what "more" I can accomplish daily. "Cleanliness is next to Godliness!"

"…God will provide all for you… your heavenly Father knows your needs. He will always give you all you need from day to day; make the Kingdom of God your primary concern and all these things will be added to you…Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be."

~Luke 12:29-34

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