Monday, August 31, 2009

If I ever say the words YARD SALE again. . .


. . . somebody slap me, HARD!

See, here's the thing. I love Yard Sales. I come from a long line of yard salers, going back generations. I love going to Yard Sales. I used to love having Yard Sales. And in the past, they've been really successful. I've made over $500 more than once in my yard sale-ing career. So it's going to be really hard to resist having one in the future.

But apparently, Yard Sales are a younger woman's game because this one absolutely did me in.

First, there was the emotional part of it. I ended up sending over 600 books out the door. That was really, really hard and part of me is now regretting it. Logically, I know it was a good move and that I'll probably never open that used bookstore I dream about at night.

But emotionally? It was like saying goodbye to friends who are moving to the other side of the world and I may never see them again.

Then there's the physical part of it. I'm not very strong. My arm muscles are like spaghetti. Sometimes my leg muscles can barely get me up the steps, and if I'm carrying anything (like boxes of books), they just won't lift us both.

I spent four days sorting books, deciding what to keep and what to let go, then carting them up from downstairs. I pulled stuff out of my garage and sorted through it. (Clean Sweep has nuthin' on me!) My girls came to help on Saturday and I couldn't have done it without them because by then, I was hurting bad.

After the sale, we hauled everything to D.I.—two truck loads.

Sunday morning, I woke up sick and sad. Sick from dust allergies, and sad because I have an overactive mind/body connection and when I stress my body, I get depressed. I yelled at my DH several times, and then around 9:00 p.m., I had a total meltdown—sobbing uncontrollably over something really stupid.

I'm better today. Better—in that I probably won't yell or cry. But I'm still depressed.

So, now you're wondering, was it worth it? From a purely monetary standpoint, no. After expenses (hiring neighbor boys to help, signage, etc.), I only cleared about $100.

But, after I get undepressed again, it will totally have been worth the effort of dejunking. In the past month (including what is going to the dump later today), I figure I've moved about 10 pick-up trucks of stuff I no longer need or want out of my home.

I'm not proud that it was in there in the first place, but I'm dang proud it's gone!

And as soon as I get my energy level back, I'm determined to continue on until I'm pared down to only the things I use and love.

If I ever say the words YARD SALE again. . .


. . . somebody slap me, HARD!

See, here's the thing. I love Yard Sales. I come from a long line of yard salers, going back generations. I love going to Yard Sales. I used to love having Yard Sales. And in the past, they've been really successful. I've made over $500 more than once in my yard sale-ing career. So it's going to be really hard to resist having one in the future.

But apparently, Yard Sales are a younger woman's game because this one absolutely did me in.

First, there was the emotional part of it. I ended up sending over 600 books out the door. That was really, really hard and part of me is now regretting it. Logically, I know it was a good move and that I'll probably never open that used bookstore I dream about at night.

But emotionally? It was like saying goodbye to friends who are moving to the other side of the world and I may never see them again.

Then there's the physical part of it. I'm not very strong. My arm muscles are like spaghetti. Sometimes my leg muscles can barely get me up the steps, and if I'm carrying anything (like boxes of books), they just won't lift us both.

I spent four days sorting books, deciding what to keep and what to let go, then carting them up from downstairs. I pulled stuff out of my garage and sorted through it. (Clean Sweep has nuthin' on me!) My girls came to help on Saturday and I couldn't have done it without them because by then, I was hurting bad.

After the sale, we hauled everything to D.I.—two truck loads.

Sunday morning, I woke up sick and sad. Sick from dust allergies, and sad because I have an overactive mind/body connection and when I stress my body, I get depressed. I yelled at my DH several times, and then around 9:00 p.m., I had a total meltdown—sobbing uncontrollably over something really stupid.

I'm better today. Better—in that I probably won't yell or cry. But I'm still depressed.

So, now you're wondering, was it worth it? From a purely monetary standpoint, no. After expenses (hiring neighbor boys to help, signage, etc.), I only cleared about $100.

But, after I get undepressed again, it will totally have been worth the effort of dejunking. In the past month (including what is going to the dump later today), I figure I've moved about 10 pick-up trucks of stuff I no longer need or want out of my home.

I'm not proud that it was in there in the first place, but I'm dang proud it's gone!

And as soon as I get my energy level back, I'm determined to continue on until I'm pared down to only the things I use and love.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Ginormous Book Sale — Reminder & Update!!

Ginormous Book Sale
& some other stuff too

August 29th, 8:00 a.m. till noon

622 E 700 N
Pleasant Grove, UT



426 Titles & Counting!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

This and That

I have been so busy. I feel like all my posts lately have been informational, rather than interesting or thoughtful. It's not going to change soon.

I've added some books to the Sneak Peek list. (I add them in new posts so you won't have to read through what you've already seen.)

I also added a Book Sale FAQs post because I've gotten lots of questions about the book sale. At first I was surprised. But then I realized, most of my friends/blog readers are book nerds too.

I completed a major filing system in my new office yesterday—the four desk drawers that house all my regular use business files. This is the first time in my entire life that I have had a completed filing system. I still have the filing cabinets (long-term use) to do and I'm sure I'll be adding to the drawers as time goes by, but the files I use nearly every day are done. (Happy Dance!)

I've also been working on the new Urban Botanic website. That really makes my head explode. But once it's done, it'll be great.

Busy, but productive. It feels good.

Now playing on my iPod: Any Man of Mine by Shania Twain (good filing song)

Friday, August 21, 2009

A Happy Rainbow

Today I had planned to work on my new business website but after three hours of frustration, my brain exploded.

I took a break, ran some errands, and then tackled my office desk drawers. I finally finished creating my new filing system. Each company has a different color file.

It took me six hours and a full thing of labeling tape, but it's done. It looks like a happy rainbow. (Sorry, the photos don't do them justice.)


This is my writing drawer. Yellow for my blogs. Gray for ghost writing projects. DiVoga files for my books. And in the very back are red files for my Ebay/Etsy business.



These are home files—a happy, happy orange color so I won't be completely depressed when I pay my bills.



My publishing drawer—Rosehaven/LDS(maroon), Oak Rose Press/natural health(pink), Miles Ahead Learning Resources/home schooling (lavender). It's also my design drawer—Professional Pre-Press/typesetting, editing, etc.(green), Desert Rose Designs/online design (blue).



Finally, my fragrance drawer—Urban Botanic (teal) and CustomScentsOnline.com (purple).

Y'know, looking at this? I sort of think I'm nuts. One of these days, I really have to decide what I want to be when I grow up and close down all the other side businesses.

But not today.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Peter Walsh


I started reading Peter Walsh's book, It's All Too Much—which I purchased on my Kindle so it does not add to the clutter already in my home.

While I like Julie Morgenstern's writing style a little better and her tips for organizing are clearer to my brain, I very much like Peter's treatment of the emotional side of cluttering.

He recommends making several passes through, rather than one huge dejunk. I like that idea because you can see an immediate improvement which will help bolster you through the rough emotional decisions.

Between the two books, I should have an amazing life when this is all done.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Tale of Two Pigs

Okay, not so much a tale, as two different pigs from my collection get referenced here. Yes, I have a pig collection. I love pigs.

I also know that at some point, near the end of this process, I will be cutting down the size of my current menagerie.

But I can't think about that right now or I'll get sad, and these are two happy stories. So.

Little Pig #1:
I have a little pig planter that I use for a key jar because 1) I kill indoor plants, and 2) I needed a place to keep my keys where I could always find them. This little pig worked fabulously for several years. I had a spare set at the bottom, then Meg's spare set, then mine and Meg's main key sets would vie for top position in the pig.

Point being, my keys were always near the top and easy to grab.

Then Megan got married and moved out, taking her keys with her. Now there are only my main keys and my spare set in the pig. (Do you see where this is going yet? Let me give you one more clue.)

My spare set of car keys does not have a house key on it!

Yes, this morning, I grabbed my keys from the pig and ran off to work. Did some shopping on the way home—which included frozen and refrigerated items. Pulled into my drive, where I then noticed, I had the spare and no way to get into the house—unless I wanted to climb in the kitchen window, which I not only did NOT want to do, but is also physically impossible for me.

Spent an hour at Sandra's until Melanie could come let me in with her key.

Solution: My spare set of keys is now in a different place. The only keys in my cute pig are my main set.



Not-So-Little Pig #2:
My sister gave me this ginormous piggy bank. This was AFTER I'd decided I was going to dejunk and not bring anything new into my house. But it was so cute!

It lived in a box of stuff for several weeks because I knew that with my commitment to living a more streamlined life—and I really am totally committed to this—I could not bring this pig into my life without one dang good reason.

When I was cleaning out the room for my new office, I stumbled upon the pig and it's total cuteness again, and it melted my heart. But still. I was committed.

Also as I was cleaning out the room, I found about $3.00 in change in various boxes. (Don't ask me why money gets found in nearly every box I go through. I think I have money elves.) My first thought was: Yum! I can go get a frozen yogurt!

My next thought was, I should collect all this money together and use it to help pay for the changes I want to make in my home. So I put it in a stack with the $60 I'd made selling two dressers.

(You know where this is going, right?)

Suddenly, the lightbulb went off! Money—mostly change—that I needed a special place for PLUS cute pig I wanted to keep. Marriage made in heaven! I now have over $100* in my pig and it makes me incredibly happy every time I look at it.

*Dear thief, who is now planning to come rob me because I told the entire Internet that I have cash in my house: 1) You'd never figure out which pig it's in (yes, I have THAT MANY), and 2) My kitchen window is not that easy to climb into, 3) My killer dog will bite you, and 4) I'm sure my neighbors have much more cash lying around in their house.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

I Knew This Blog Was a Good Idea!


Already I've lost the paper where I wrote down what color files I was going to use for which company.

I looked and looked, and I was about to throw a major fit when I remembered. . .

I'd listed them HERE!

Yay, me!

And you thought I was just being OCD. Ha!

Down side, I couldn't remember where I'd posted them. So I'm giving them their own post and adding a new category: Specs. As in, the specifics of what I'm doing.

Coding for Files

Updated Jan 2010

So I can remember. . .

L = Left tab; C = Center Tab; R = Right Tab

Desk files (monthlies)/Cabinet Files (long terms)

Color Coding and Tab Index
Drawer 1
  • Rosehaven Publishing: Maroon (although I prefer to call it burgandy)
    L = Royalty Reports/Client Info
    M = Banking, Budget, Marketing, Projects/Admin & Long-term financials
    R = Monthly Bills/Vendor Info
  • Miles Ahead Publishing: Lavender
    L = Royalty Reports/Client Info
    M = Banking, Budget, Marketing, Projects/Admin & Long-term financials
    R = Monthly Bills/Vendor Info
  • Professional Pre-Press: Green
    L = Current Clients
    M = Banking, Budget, Marketing, Projects/Admin & Long-term financials
    R = Monthly Bills/Vendor Info
  • Desert Rose Designs: Light Blue
    L = Current Clients
    M = Banking, Budget, Marketing, Projects/Admin & Long-term financials
    R = Monthly Bills/Vendor Info

Drawer 2
  • Urban Botanic: Teal
    L = Monthly Bills/Vendor Info
    M = Banking, Budget, Marketing, Projects/Admin & Long-term financials
    R = Licensing Info/Reports

  • CustomScentsOnline—closed this company. Using the same files as UB.


Drawer 3
  • Home: Orange (for monthlies)
    L = Monthly bills
    C = Banking & Income
    R = Receipts (Medical, etc.)
  • Home: Navy (for long-term storage files)


Drawer 4
  • Writing: Yellow (because isn't that a happy color?)
  • Blogging: Misc DiVoga fancy folders with ultra cool designs that I found on CLEARANCE at Office Max!

  • Special Project: Dark Purple
    M = Projects
    R = Client Info/Invoices

  • Any Moment: Red
    L = Royalty Reports/Client Info
    M = Banking, Budget, Marketing, Projects/Admin & Long-term financials
    R = Monthly Bills/Vendor Info

I like the SMEAD brand: Jewel Tones and Brights; 11 pt weight; 1/3 cut. I prefer 2-ply tabs, but they're not available in all colors.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Debt Free!!


Well, almost. We still have the house.

But all the Rosehaven debt is gone! The final payments were put in the mail yesterday. Oh, what a feeling of freedom we have right now.

Rosehaven still has a couple of business "loans" where I have the product on-hand and I pay back the loan as I sell the items. And the Urban Botanic license is structured that same way, as well.

But as far as traditional loans, where a set amount of money is expected by a certain day of the month—all gone, but the house! Yippee!

If you're familiar with Dave Ramsey, we're on step 2 1/2. That's the one where now that we have the $1,000 in an emergency fund and the debt is gone, we're trying to figure out how to live on one income, so that DH can quit one of his jobs before we move on to step 3, which is having 3 to 6 months of living expenses in savings.

I ran the budget and we could totally do it—if we were willing to give up cable, cell phones, and do all our Christmas shopping at D.I. But DH doesn't want to be on that tight a budget. Plus, if something broke or he got sick, we'd be in trouble. So while I'm trying to build my freelance business income up, he's going to stay status quo for a few more months.

Now playing on my iPod: Celebration by Kool and the Gang

It's About Time

I haven't gotten to the Time Management section of Julie's book yet, but I'm feeling the pressure to do something to help me stay clear and focused.

I've made these time block charts before and they help a lot. I block them out according to what my best day is—scheduling creative time in the mornings, and more mundane time in the afternoon. I don't always do what it says, when it says I should—but I'm always clear on what I'm giving up if I choose to use my time differently.

I'm making an informed choice.


My Perfect Weekly Schedule
Click for bigger images.

Morning Routine: I normally wake up somewhere between 6:00 and 6:30 a.m., no alarm clock. My body just won't let me sleep in. In order to have my best day, I like to immediately go exercise (walk outside or do my Wii Fit), then get myself ready for the day. Once I'm fresh and clean and smelling nice, I take some time to read scriptures, ponder and pray. Last I do a little day prep—like throw something in the crock pot or do up some dishes or whatever.

Creative Work: This is my best time of the day. It's when I like to write, design, edit, or do whatever comes from the creative part of me. This is also when I do paid work for my clients.

Lunch: Well, duh. (If it's not on the schedule, it's at a variable time.)

Business Work: This is the business end of my workday. I return phone calls, emails. Pay bills, process orders, create reports, research business related things, do marketing—whatever it takes to keep my business going. On Fridays, I run errands. I like to schedule appointments then too, if possible.

Dinner and Clean Up: Eat. Clean house. (If it's not on the schedule, it's at a variable time.)

Read: I like to read in the evenings—books to review, books for fun, blogs. Some nights I have things like my Writers Group, my Book Club meeting, Date with my DH, etc. And, okay. Some nights I veg out in front of the TV or play Spider Solitaire on the computer. But still, this is when I plan to read.

Grandma Day: I tend my grandsons every Wednesday. They help me do laundry (they're great at putting things in the washer and dryer) and clean house (they love to dust). We play most of the day. When they nap, I do the household chores I can't do when they're awake.

Saturday: This is my special day (and not because it's the day I get ready for Sunday). I do whatever I choose to do on this day, which includes getting my nails done, having pedicures, visiting with my sister, scrapbooking, bracelet making, home organizing, yard work, playing with my kids, rest, rejuvenate, etc. Sometimes I might read. Sometimes I might watch TV all day. The point is, I pick what I want to do.

Sunday: Church and family.

White Spaces: Few and far between, but those are empty things where I have nothing to do. So mostly, I will do nothing.

So if you've read this far, you're probably asking yourself, "Does this woman really think we give a flying leap how she spends her day???"

And the answer is, No. It's to remind myself what I mean by my cryptic notes.

Friday, August 14, 2009

My Busy Bee Life (& the Announcement I Promised)


Oh, my! What a busy week I've had. Very fun and bubbly but also very crazy-making.

Went up to the LDS Booksellers Convention with Sandra. I was the designated driver and she was the designated picture taker, so to see photos, go HERE. The convention was small this year but there was still plenty to see and people to talk to. Makes me sad, though. Wish Rosehaven was still in business.

Sandra and I also cruised down to the Barnes and Noble Authorpalooza this past Tuesday. I didn't have any money, having already spent my book budget for the next 6 months. So whenever I saw a book I wanted to read, I talked it up to Sandra so she'd buy it. (Yes, I'm kind of sneaky and devious that way.)

In between those two events and in addition to the regular Grandma Days, I tended Baby Shrek while his parents were in New York. I posted info and photos so Shrek and Fiona wouldn't be so lonely while away from him. You can see them HERE. (Yes, this is one of those blogs that seemed like a great idea at the time, but I've never really developed it.)

I've also been sorting, dejunking and organizing like a maniac. You can follow my progress HERE.

Which brings me to the announcement I promised a while back. (Hope you haven't been holding your breath.)

Remember when I said that Urban Botanic is closing it's doors? And there'd be no more make and takes? Well, it happened. They official last day of business was July 31st. However, because I LOVE THIS STUFF, I wasn't quite ready to see it disappear. So I've been negotiating and I'm happy to announce that I'm the new Urban Botanic licensee!

Yes! How cool is that?

Today, in just a few hours, we'll start moving Urban Botanic into my basement!!! I'm so excited I can hardly stand it.

It will take a little longer to get it up and running. Right now if you go to the Urban Botanic website, you get a "closed for maintenance" message. But very soon now (and yes, of course, I'll announce it here), the site will be back up and ready to go.


Now playing on my iPod: I Just Want to Celebrate by Rare Earth

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Ready for the Big Move!

Nine days since I've posted about a project or progress (not counting the report on how well the new perfume production area is working).

I feel like I haven't done much, yet I've been very busy. On Thursday, Aug 6th, I had a convention during the day (only brought home two books). Then I tended my grandson until Monday, Aug 10th. No way I could do much cleaning or organizing, or even planning while he was here. Then I had to work on Tuesday, it was Grandma Day on Wednesday, and now, today. . .

I've been working like crazy! Tomorrow, my new UB business is moving into my downstairs, so I had to get a lot of homework done to be ready for it.

I went through the small bedroom downstairs (sorry, once again forgot the "before" photos) and it is now totally empty.
There were loads of boxes of stuff in there, and drum set, and a dog kennel. All moved out. I sorted through the boxes and threw out two bags of trash. I have two big boxes to donate. And I have a TV, computer monitor, file cabinet and other miscellaneous to sell. Ah!

Tomorrow, this will become the room where I fill and label bottles. If I had the energy—and one more day—I'd paint the walls white to brighten the room a bit. But I don't have either, so it is what it is for now.

Then, I went through the left side of the big room downstairs, the part that isn't being used for my perfume production. Almost everything is cleared out of there, as well, except for some things that are too heavy for me to move. Have to wait for hubby to get home to do it.

This room will be where I store product and fill orders.

Last, I went through the shipping area. It needs a lot more work, but it will do for now.

I'm tired. I have a mildew/dust headache. Now I'm off to treat myself to a chocolate, sugar-free frozen yogurt! Then I'm resting up for the big business move-in day tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

The Naked Door

The other project I did today was I took down the Christmas cards that were taped to the back of my front door.

My daughter said that didn't count as a project, but I'm counting it anyway.

Now I have a naked door.

It's kind of sad, really.

Hall Closet #2

No, you didn't miss hall closet #1. I haven't done it yet. Hall closet #2 was bugging me more than #1.

While I should probably be working on the downstairs office/production area because I need to use that space soon, today was Grandma Day. Working down there with four little helping hands is just not a good idea.

So the first project I did today was tackle the hall closet that is sort of a linen closet. This is one of the areas that I had organized before using Julie's system. But when you have teenagers who don't give a hoot about Julie's system, it quickly turns into a mish-mash of hair products, lotions, jewelry, and camping supplies.

And okay, I'm just as bad as they were and shoved miscellaneous cleaning supplies in there too.

Here are the before photos. Because the hallway is only three feet wide, I couldn't get it all in one shot. Here are the four shelves. Then there's a space on the floor that has old towels shoved in there.


Notice that little hand? And how easy it would be for it to reach over to get those cleaning supplies?

Yeh, I noticed that too.

So the plan for this closet is to make it a Personal Toiletry closet. First, I cleared out everything and wiped it down. (I'll need to do this again when we paint, but this will do for now.)

I sorted through all the junk and only put back those things that DH and I will use. I also baby-proofed it, putting anything that could hurt children up out of their reach.

Here are the after photos.


Notice the cleaners up on the TOP shelf? The next shelf (which the babies can't reach) is my personal stuff—hair product, toiletries, sewing kit, jewelry.

Shelf 3 is nicely containerized—soaps, toothbrushes, cotton balls, q-tips. If the babies get into this, they could make a mess, but it won't hurt them.

Shelf 4—our neatly folded beach towels and the ones I use when I dye my hair. The space below where they used to be on the floor now holds our extra toilet paper.

Taken out of the closet: one large garbage bag of junk and four shoe box size containers of toiletries that my girls used. Plus about 14 toothbrushes that our dentist gives us, but I don't like the size. They're going to a neighbor boy's Eagle project.

I could just sit and look at this closet for hours! (sigh)

When Grandma Gets Bored. . .

Remember when I said I'd never get a tattoo?

Never say never.

The boys and I were bored today so we went down to the local tattoo parlor.

I got a heart on my ankle that says "Forever" because that's how long I'll love my little grandbabies.


Baby Burrito chose a scorpion, but he calls it a "pider." And the "pider" says "scaaaaah."

Baby Shrek went with the "tiger" (aka panther) and the tiger says, "Rawrrrrrr."

Hope their parents are cool with this.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Do Some Good in the Neighborhood


Remember that D.I./Donate pile I talked about last week? Well, it's gone.

Completely.

My DH has a friend who is trying to adopt a baby and they are holding a huge yard sale this weekend so we let them have all of it.

Heather & Blaine Roberts
315 South Center St
American Fork, UT

Saturday, August 15th
8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

and

Saturday, August 22nd
8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.


It feels really good to give to a cause that I know will help someone to do something worthwhile and wonderful.

If you get a chance, go check out their Yard Sale. Lots of cool stuff from multiple sources!

Donate Pile Gone to a Great Cause!


Remember that D.I./Donate pile I talked about last week? Well, it's gone.

Completely.

My DH has a friend who is trying to adopt a baby and they are holding a huge yard sale this weekend so we let them have all of it.

Heather & Blaine Roberts
315 South Center St
American Fork, UT

Saturday, August 15th
8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

and

Saturday, August 22nd
8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.


It feels really good to give to a cause that I know will help someone to do something worthwhile and wonderful.

If you get a chance, go check out their Yard Sale. Lots of cool stuff from multiple sources!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

CustomScents Production Area

Completely inspired by my hard-working girls, I went through all the boxes they'd labeled UB—this is all the stuff I use to make my CustomScentsOnline fragrances. This is now my new CSO production area.
This is a pretty desk and hutch office set, but it won't fit in the room upstairs, so I kept it down here. I think it will work really well.

And yes, I painted the walls bright apple green on purpose about two years ago. I was depressed about my business closing and hated to work down here. So I went to Wal-Mart and bought the happiest color paint I could find. I like it.

Up on top is some extra product—oil warmers, puff sponges and extra oils.

On the middle shelf are "Smell Me" cards that go out with every order, my label maker, and a few momentos.

On the desktop to the left are all the oils I use to mix the various fragrances. To the right is a file box of product labels. The calculator is for helping me figure the recipes correctly.

In the left side cabinet:

This holds everything I need to make the Twilight Sampler Packages:
  • latex gloves (to protect my cute new fake nails)

  • tape

  • recipe binder

  • parfum sampler vials

  • parfum bottles—1 for each of the 20 frangraces

  • droppers for filling the vials

  • baggies to put the samplers in

  • info cards in the sampler kits
I already had the cute little boxes and dropper bricks but now they're all in one easy-to-reach spot for me.


In the right side cabinet:

  • Some extra travel size bottles that I use sometimes as gifts

  • Some discontinued oils that I use for personal recipes

  • Everything I need to create parfum samplers for non-Twilight fragrances (I don't sell a lot of these, but enough that I need them nearby)

  • Customer recipes (for when a customer calls in an order for refills)




And then the middle shelf:

All my unscented product, plus some Scent of the Month bottles that I still have for sale.

I am so pleased with this area. It will make it so much easier for me to create the custom scents and get them out in a timely manner! I love this little corner.

Doing Some Homework


My girls are amazing! They came over today and helped sort through junk.

And when I say "helped," I really mean I gave them some instructions and then took off to play with my sister while they did all the heavy labor.

I was so amazed when I got home! They really rocked it!! They spent 7 hours going through boxes and piles of stuff—trashing some things, donating some, putting others in boxes for me to sort through. What's still there now feels do-able for me.

Thank you, thank you, thank you! You are my angels.

And I was so inspired by their hard work that I jumped right in and started on some of the "homework" they gave me—stuff I need to do before they come over again in two weeks for more slave labor.

My first homework assignment was clearing off all the stuff stacked on top of my filing cabinets downstairs. Which I did. I wish I had a before photo, but I forgot to take one. But imagine 4 distinct piles, about 8 to 10" tall. Yep. It was a mess.


Here they are now—nice and empty.

And I didn't just move the piles to another spot. No, no, no!

I went through them.

Most were business-related papers. Some things were shredded, others just thrown in the trash as is. Some things got put away in a new permanent home. Other things need to have a home made for them, so I sorted those into two boxes—one for 2009 stuff that needs to be filed up in my new office, and the other for pre-2009 that needs to be sorted by year and put in the appropriate tax record boxes.

Ah, what a feeling of accomplishment!