Monday, October 12, 2009


A weird phenomenon has overtaken me this week. I’m nesting. You remember, those obsessive moments at the end of pregnancy where you felt you HAD to get everything in your house just so? Well, except for the pregnancy thing (I’m NOT), that’s exactly how I feel.

It all started with my mother-in-law telling me she needed her desk, which she left here when she moved a few years ago. At the time she didn’t need it in her new place. But now she does, along with the shelves we commandeered in the living room. So we’ve bought a new desk we are waiting to be delivered and picked out new shelves, which I’m getting one at a time. Not because I want to, but because Target seems unable to get them in any quicker.

So far I’ve bought 1 shelf, set it up, and started rearranging furniture and clutter to make space for it. I’ve also stripped everything but the essentials from the desk, so it will be ready when the new one comes in and the hubby puts it together.

Unfortunately, the need to declutter and clear out has spread from these two areas to anything that loosely resembles a “pile”. You see, we are “pilers” around here. One minute, I’ve got a good expanse of lovely clean carpet. The next minute, someone has heaped up a pile of stuff they don’t want to be bothered to put away. Now, I can’t point fingers, because we are equal-opportunity pilers. I do it just as much as everyone else. Actually, I might do it more, because after I’ve cleaned up after everyone else, I’m too tired to get around to my own junk. So I pile it up until I get the urge to “nest”. I’ve learned to go with the feeling when it appears (which is never at the traditional times, like spring), even if it might be 10 o’clock at night. You see, I never know when it might come again, so I jump in with both feet while it lasts. As for everyday cleaning, as long as we aren’t growing mold, we’re good.

And as of last night, in about 4 hours between 8 and midnight, I decluttered my hubby’s side of the bedroom, several living room piles (including the bookshelf area) and the pile on the chair in my office. We aren't pile-free by a long shot, but this week I've made a nice dent in the clutter. I’m hoping this feeling lasts for a while, since our local RWA chapter’s Christmas part is at my house this year and I have a lot of work to do before my house can go on display. Yikes!

How about y’all? Is your house magazine-ready or comfortably lived in? Do you clean on a schedule or when the urge hits you?



Linda Winstead Jones said...

Magazine ready? Ha! Never. The worst is when I try to get organized and end up moving piles from here to there and then back again. Luckily I'm in throwaway mode at the moment. A couple of days ago I went through a box I haven't been in in, oh, six or seven years. And what was in that box was old to begin with! Those of you who know me -- will I ever again need that 36B bra? I think not.

I'm trying to get things in order, but my husbands piles -- I don't touch. I'd be much to tempted to throw it all away.

Problem Child said...

Bwahahahaha! Magazine ready. That's so cute...

If the health dept comes by, I'm toast.

Smarty Pants said...

Occasionally I try to put myself on a cleaning schedule - Monday I do the living room, Tuesday the bathrooms, etc., but it never really pans out much past the first few days. With 4 animals and a sloppy man, its a constant battle. I just let it pile up and get overwhelmed and stop all together. At the best, I keep up with the kitchen and the bathrooms. The rest, well... its just a good thing that almost no one ever comes to my house.

PM's Mother said...

Every other Thursday I rapidly clean up the piles around the house (except for my den/office) so the house cleaners can do their job. (I don't pay them to clean up my piles.)

This has been the best way I have found to keep my house from being overcome by piles.

PS: I still have boxes in the closet from my interstate move 17 years ago...someday...sigh!

Linda Winstead Jones said...

We moved into this house 8 years ago. At that time, we put several large boxes under the house and promised ourselves we'd go through one a week. How many have we taken care of?


Playground Monitor said...

Can I plead the Fifth?

The sermon at church yesterday was based around the verses in Mark about rich men and camels going through the eyes of needles. This pastor interprets the Bible with the 21st century in mind, so we all breathed a sigh of relief at his explanation. But he did bring up two interesting points.

1. When John D. Rockefeller died he was the richest man in the world. Were his fortune adjusted for inflation, it would exceed Warren Buffet and Bill Gates combined. A bystander at his funeral asked his accountant, "How much did he leave?" The accountant thought a moment and said, "He left everything."

2. He who dies with the most toys still dies.

Not to get all morbid or religious, but it did make me think about all the boxes of stuff I have sitting around, drawers of things that I have difficulty opening because they are so full, clothes I can no longer wear, etc.

Jean said...

Depends on the magazine.

Angel said...

Gee, looks like I'm in good company. SP, I too try to put myself on a schedule occasionally, which usually fails as soon as something higher priority shows up. I can't remember the last time I dusted... and filing, don't get me started!


Angel said...

PM's Mother, One of my dreams is to 1 day make enough money to pay someone to clean house for me. Sigh. I'm not making much headway there, but some day.


Sherry Werth said...

Equal-opportunity pilers....I love it! Yes Angel, you are in good company. If I hired a maid it would take me about 2 weeks to get the place ready for them to clean it.

Debra Glass said...

I occasionally nest without having the 9 month virus. :-) I clean baseboards, fans, throw stuff away. But I only do it when the urge hits me. I keep up with house in between that time - but only because I start to ache from spending long hours at the computer.

Angel said...

That's about right, Debra. I only clean because I can't sit at the computer any more. :)


Virginia said...

I have been hard at it myself. Cleaning windows and closets and stuff like that. It hits me in the fall every year!

Lynn Raye Harris said...

I bought a bigger house so I'd have places to stuff the crap. Unfortunately, my ability to accumulate is beginning to catch up to the size of my house. My public areas are usually ready in a pinch. But what you don't see are the piles of junk behind closed doors. :)

PM's Mother said...


I was 80 years old before I could rationalize the expense of a house cleaner. Even now the only way I can afford it is to spend PM's inheritance.

Now, windows, that's another thing. My solution is just to close the blinds. Dirt on the windows cuts the sun's glare. (See, I can rationalize almost anything!)

PM's Mother said...

Lynn Rae,

Haven't you heard of Murphy's Law? "The junk expands to fill the space."

Jane said...

My home is not magazine ready. I do not follow a cleaning schedule. I clean when the urge strikes me and when I can't avoid it longer.

Kathy said...

Of course, the house in my mind is ever magazine ready... :)

That's odd. I've been going through the same thing, Angel. Throwing away piles of stuff that have no purpose other than to comfort the need for piles. I finally cleaned off the study desk and bought organizers so everything fits in its own space. (There was stuff from 2001 in those stacks. ACK!)

Oh, the desk looks very nice now. But, 'how long?' I ask.

catslady said...

I'm a pack rat so I hate throwing anything away. Sometimes I think you're just born that way or not. I have a nephew who is just like that. On the other hand maybe it's because my mom and sister are total cleaning fanatics and throw everything away they can get their hands on - who knows lol.

PM's Mother said...

I have come to the conclusion that most creative people are "Pack Rats". We cannot be neat and creative at the same time. (We are too busy creating!)

I had a sign over my desk at work that read "NEAT PEOPLE DO NOT MAKE THE EXCITING DISCOVERIES THAT I DO"
and another that read "A CLEAN DESK IS THE SIGN OF A SICK MIND".

M.V.Freeman said...

I clean because I have to, not because I want to. *sigh*

We have a very lived in house--and I won't mention the magazines, and papers *cough-hubby-cough* has around, not to mention my books...then there are the kids.

Ah well, so long as I can keep it under reasonable control I am ok.

And I am like you, sometimes I just clean when it hits me (usually its a procrastinating pattern I have when I should be writing)