If you came into my house, you’d notice the absence of pets.  No dogs, no cats, no birds, not even a fish.  I ADORE the “idea” of them, but the truth, again, is that I can’t even keep this house clean with 4 kids.  I am not adding tasks to my “to do” list just because I have nothing better to do! (And that is really tough to say after a family movie night of watching old family videos and seeing one of the kids say that ALL she wanted for Christmas was a puppy!)  I’m such a meanie.

I know what you’re thinking— she’s a neat freak, or maybe a germ-a-phobe.  You wouldn’t be far off on the latter!  In fact, my hubs would think he had died and gone to heaven if he woke one day to discover my transformation into his dream girl, his goddess: the NEAT FREAK!  I really do love the idea of neat.  The execution however is so far out of my grasp that I gave up trying a long time ago.

You see, I’m an evolving pack-rat.  I really am getting better, but with 4 kids who are no longer young enough to forget about last week’s Sunday School papers, and now believe everything they write on is ART, what is an Earth Mom to do?  The problem is worse than you might think, because every now and then, something I “saved” becomes useful!  So I can never actually REFORM! I will always second-guess that item that I threw away, and my kids will always crucify me for some item of theirs that I threw away!

Here’s a great example: you know the little scoops that come in baby formula cans?  Why would I wash and save them???  Well 5 years after the fact, a use has emerged.  It turns out that they are THE perfect size for jars of homemade sugar scrub!  And guess what?  I have friends hunting for them online because they like making sugar scrub too!  And now the larger protein shake scoops— I must have had 100 of those, have a use as well!  When I do a make-n-take class, I tie these with ribbon to jars of bath salt.  And I have had enough to share with friends for their fun DIY gift ideas.

bath scoops 1 bath scoops 2

Every now and then there is confirmation that something I saved has some beautiful purpose, and has somehow saved me a few pennies or dollars, and this confirmation is a setback in disguise.  My evolution continues at this same slow pace and the amount of storage space in my house continues to shrink.  I need an ELSA moment! I need a miraculous “Let it GO” party.  I need permission to stop saving books my daughters may one day want to read, and trust, they’ll find what they want to read!  I need to accept that if I had time to quilt, I would have learned to do it by now, and just give away all this fabric I keep saving! I need to clean through my craft drawers and scrapbooking supplies! Dear Lord, but if the kids see that stuff, they will want it, and want to use it, and why have I not just brought it all out and let them wallow in it? Oh, yeah, cause then I have to clean it up!

The amount of time we spend managing our stuff . . . I keep thinking, if the kids had fewer toys, it wouldn’t take so long to clean up.  If I had fewer crafty things, and do I really need to keep hanging on to so many muffin tins, cookie sheets, the list is endless! I think I have come up with my resolution for 2015! I think I’d like to have less stuff! I want to be resolved to clear through the clutter and turn in my pack-rat title for an Earth Mom recycler!  Goodwill, get your trucks ready!