Wintertime decluttering slows down.
In spring and summer, when the light is longer and my work load abates, there is time and inclination to chip away at emptying the inherited clutter in my storage areas .
During the shorter days, and when the teaching year is in session, I stop the heavy work.
But decluttering as a way of life has a way of taking hold.
There’s a habit of being aware of all our things: the clothes in our drawers and closets, the implements in our cabinets, the very food in our freezer and books on our shelves, all the stuff stashed in corners… There’s a habit of thinking of each and every thing as wanting a purpose. There’s a leaning toward the learned joy of matching the right purpose with the right tool.
I tore a tendon in my ankle.
I was sent to physical therapy to stimulate its healing and to strengthen the muscles that need to support it.
After awhile the therapist dumped a collection of marbles and dice and little rubber jacks onto the floor and I was given the job of picking them up with my toes and putting them back into their box.
The therapist’s collection was housed in a battered old recycled tissue box that during my month of therapy received at least one layer of revivifying tape.
As my course of therapy drew to a close I wanted a way to show my gratitude.
And then I remembered.
Back in my closet in a sack full of Stuff That Should Be Useful Someday, was a lovely, sturdy, cardboard box, (perfectly sized to hold that collection), covered in damask. I’d received a gift from China in that box years earlier. And that oh-it’ll-be-so-good-for-something-someday emptied box had accompanied me through four house moves.
And now it houses my therapist’s toe-strengthening marbles.
(The picture is of my mother’s old marble collection housed in a completely different box.)