We're in another purge mode around here. My children have gone through several bins and sorted out what they don't want anymore. There's still quite a bit more for them to go through, and I've got tons more over and above that. Once they've gone through their stuff and decided if it's "keep" or "give away," I have to sort it for where it should be taken: thrift store, teacher treasure bins, friends with children just a little bit younger/smaller, trash... Unfortunately, the local thrift shop won't take donations of toys (Chinese lead paint issues) or stuffed animals, and those make up the bulk of my donations. Sad, too, because my daughter's stuffed animals are in mint condition; anything well loved gets put in the "keep it forever" box.
Then there's my stuff, so much of which is paperwork. The mail comes in every blessed day and piles up. Newspapers, too, plus magazines and newsletters. Insurance is a paperwork nightmare though it's not as bad as it used to be. (When my son entered the STEM program last year, we had to give up most of his extra therapies (which we had because school will provide therapies only as will benefit him educationally, and since that's a question of money, parents rarely win the point); there just wasn't time in the day to coordinate school, homework, and therapies. Few therapies means way fewer insurance messes. Now if only CNMC's billing department would get off my back... I've turned in every piece of required paperwork, including treatment plans, and they are still saying that I owe them $352. Which I don't. Period. I love CNMC. Over the past 10 years, I've come to dread CNMC's billing department.)
And there's school papers. Two kids, two schools: two sets of announcements, calendars, menus, permission forms, fundraisers, completed work, report cards... One kid on an IEP: one cycle of IEP drafts, notifications, "minutes," status on goals/objectives... And sadly, I haven't sorted or stored the past four years' worth of school papers, pretty much everything from the state complaint we filed to the present. It's all sitting in several bins and laundry baskets in the family room just gathering dust. I don't know what to keep, though since the state complaint was denied, I probably don't need to keep as much as I think I should. Truly, I don't want to look at it. Fourth and fifth grades were just so wrong for my son, and sorting it makes me have to remember how we fought and lost and therefore failed my son. Again.
We've also got clothes to go through -- not just the regular change-of-season-oops-this-doesn't-fit-anymore clothes, but also all the clothes that my husband and I bypass day after day. I haven't taught in almost 14 years. I think I can let go of the last of my teacher clothes. And the woefully too-small clothes. And the I'm-never-wearing-that-again clothes. And the shoes that... well, maybe not the shoes.
The basement is in need of a purge, too, but most of what's down there making the mess is the stuff that's already been identified as "give away" but hasn't yet gotten sorted as to where it needs to go. Once it's out, there's not as much stuff to purge as there is to put back where it belongs (mostly holiday decorations and Girl Scout arts & crafts).
If I can get all this done in the next week, I think I'd feel a lot more in control, at least about the house. And I can stand behind the statement that I am not a hoarder. Much. Thank goodness we don't have a garage. Do you think we should open the shed?