This is a warning to all Type A personalities, neat freaks and the uber-organized. What you are about to see might cause heartburn, increased blood pressure or the irresistible urge to whip out your label maker.
My very talented husband recently built mismatched (but still matching) nightstands for our bedroom. See:
This immediately creates two conflicting emotions:
Excitement – Hey, I just got a brand new, handmade, nightstand to replace the bulky, cheap, mass-produced one that I had for years. Yay me!
Dread – Hey, I just got a brand new, handmade nightstand that now needs to be filled with the contents of my former bulky, cheap, mass-produced nightstand.
This is a problem because:
1. I’m a procrastinator (you all know that). Why do today, what can be done tomorrow?
2. I’m a bit of a hoarder. Hey, I might need that Betamax VCR one day!
3. I don’t use traditional techniques like filing, sorting or categorizing to organize my things. I like to haphazardly stuff objects here and there. Secretly, I think this boils down to laziness.
I’ve included a few pictures so you can understand the full extent of the problem:
So, here is one of the drawers from my old nightstand. Note the complete lack of order. You might also note that I collect boxes of various heartburn medications.
Here is a close up of the ooey-gooey inside. See how some of the items are stained red. That’s because I spilled NyQuil in the drawer a couple of years ago and then just let it dry. You’ll also note that I have decided I must keep a single pink balloon, tire levers for a bike and post-it notes in the nightstand–should I ever need to inflate a balloon, flag something or … I’m not really sure what the tire lever does… in the middle of the night.
And the problem is not just with the nightstand drawers. It has infected the whole house:
First, the living room end table drawer. Contents include: various chargers, cat toys, a remote control, a piece of copper pipe and travel brochures from a trip we took over a year ago.
Next, our wine rack drawers. This one has cat nail clippers, napkin rings, wine charms (hey, those actually make sense here), toothpaste and expired (I think) gift cards.
The second wine rack drawer has a watch I haven’t worn in over seven years, batteries, some screws, and a random key. And by the way, the mint boxes are empty.
And lastly, our linen closet. (Yes, that’s our coffee maker on the top shelf. Don’t you keep your coffee maker in the linen closet?) I won’t even go into detail here. We’ll just call it a disaster and leave it at that.
Often this method of storing things works just fine: Of course I know where the ballet tickets are. They’re in the wine rack with the empty box of mints, next to the cat’s old rabies tags.
But then sometimes this happens: Where is my new credit card? I know I left it in this pile of address labels, paper Christmas ornaments and old flight itineraries. Proceed to tear house apart and accuse spouse of throwing it away. Find it two years later under the sofa cushion.
Now, I will say there is one drawer in our house that is always meticulously organized. And, no, it’s not my husband’s nightstand drawer. Although, that one is pretty organized too… It’s our spice drawer.
And in case you’re wondering, I started this project a week ago. The contents of one drawer has been emptied, organized and neatly placed in the new drawer. The other one is still sitting on the living room floor.