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Busy, busy!

I am still here!  Been very busy of late, what with packing and purging and gardening and driving to Québec for sheepdog camp, not to mention finishing up a course, and of course trying to do some work on the dissertation.  And I’ve been trying really hard to not write just before going to bed – like I am doing right now – so that I sleep well and recover from the stress of the school year.

My garden is doing very well – I managed to reclaim one large bed at my new house and get a few things planted about two weeks ago.  I had hoped to have done more work by now, but with the hour commute each way, I have been finding it a bit challenging to just pop down there.  I hope to get a lot more done this weekend, and the last few things into the ground.  Most of my plants here have been put into pots, or are growing in the ground here, waiting to be transplanted.  I didn’t want to transplant too many things until I would be around to water them and help them with their transition. 

I am also doing some significant un-stuffing.  I have to downsize considerably and am doing my best to let go of anything that isn’t either beautiful or useful.  Setting those two standards makes evaluating stuff pretty simple.  I’ve also been trying to purge my life of as much plastic as possible, such as all my tupperware.  It all went into the recycling bin last week.  I expect I’ll be storing most of my kitchen stuff, and I certainly won’t be storing anything plastic!  The same holds true for the rest of my house.  

What will be tough is parting with some of my furniture.  Of course anything that I really love I will keep.  But I have a number of things that I am on the fence about.  Pieces of furniture that could be really neat, if only I had the time and energy to refinish them.  I used to do a fair amount of furniture refinishing, but haven’t for several years now.  It simply takes too much energy, plus a well ventilated workspace.  I have had neither for a while now. 

I am trying to be brutally honest with myself: I won’t be doing any of these projects for at least another two years.  Is it really worth keeping some of these things?  The answer is coming back negative for much of it, so hopefully I will find the inner strength to let it go.  The question is, go where?  Much of this junk is just that – junk, unless you are willing to refinish it.  Most people aren’t, so likely if I give it up, it will be going to the dump.  Well, perhaps I’ll let the people who come to my garage sale decide on that!

Time to go to bed and hopefully finish the book I am currently reading: Better Off.  It is a very interesting read about a couple who join an Amish-type community in order to live for a year without any power driven technology.  I thought the book would focus more on how they struggled without electricity and gas, but it focuses mostly on life in that community.  Not what I was expecting, but quite fascinating none-the-less.  I am really enjoying reading about how they live collectively, and also how much free time they have.  Or at least, how their “work” is not really work because they do it collectively and make it a social affair.  In some traditional cultures, there is no separate word for “work” – it is definitely a Capitalist invention, for the most part alienating, as Marx clearly depicted.  The “work” described in this book is not at all alienating, and in fact is quite the contrary.  Too bad writing a dissertation can’t be done along the work bees and barn raising models!

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3 Responses

  1. That is awesome that you are de-cluttering. Have you thought about craigslist or freecycle? The book sounds really interesting indeed!

  2. Just what I was thinking, Kristy. Use Craiglist.
    I’m going through a similar decluttering process because of the nasty economic times and though it’s hard to part with some emotionally charged possessions, I know they’re only ‘stuff’ and others will get more value out of them than myself simply hoarding them.

  3. Thanks Al & Kristy – Craig’s list & freecycle are great ideas! As I purge, I want to get rid of stuff right away. I keep thinking I should set it aside to have a garage sale, but then it stays in my house and I start to waffle about letting it go. Once I have decided that it goes, it needs to go!

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