Course of Study: The Attic

These doors look fairly innocuous.


What lurks behind these doors?

But they conceal chaos and disaster.


If you don’t see me in an hour, send a search party.

Welcome to my attic, one of the major parts of my Simple Year Project. It’s located directly over the kitchen, and while I’m content with the size of my kitchen, it’s definitely small. But the attic feels big even though it’s probably the same size as the kitchen. And it’s stuffed with the standard attic-esque items: artwork, off-season clothes, old toys, mementos, decor, a couple t-shirts I last wore during the Reagan administration.


The dreaded attic

Every so often I climb in, attempting to find things to give away. Most of the time, I’m unsuccessful. It’s hard to get rid of things which already have a space and are out of sight.

Sometimes I go in looking for something specific, and most of the time I’m able to find it. Though two years ago I spent hours looking for our beach towels and never found them. Eventually Bob found them in the garage, but by then I’d bought three new beach towels to replace the three missing ones. I have to confess I’m glad to have the extras because we use them a lot in the summer, but I don’t like buying replacement items just because I can’t find something.

I also want our storage spaces to be more defined, with specific spaces for specific items. Right now, when I want something out of sight, I stash it in the closest spot, either the garage or attic, without thinking about a better spot or even a permanent home. (And if I’m sticking something anywhere to get it out of sight, the best spot is probably Goodwill.)

Today I settled on my Attic Master Plan. I’m content to declutter the garage one item at a time for now, and made the tiniest bit of progress today by pulling out the three items below. But the attic is a different monster.


Freecycle, Round 1 of 717

I’d been committed to donating the white cart, but I have a feeling Emma will see it and shriek “dolly bunk bed!” which will free up some boxes. It might be a worthwhile trade.


This is why I have no boxes.

So, my attic-attack plan. I’m going to take everything out and put back only the things we really need. Once all this stuff is sitting in my living room, it’ll be a lot easier to evaluate everything.

Obviously, I should make Bob and Emma help.

However, I’m going to suggest they visit my mother-in-law who will enjoy the company, and I will have at it all by myself. I think it’s the most stress-free approach because I think it’s too big a job for Emma to help. Bob has hardly anything in there, with the exception of a computer from the year of the flood, which has his dissertation on it. It only takes floppy discs and will probably short out the house should we ever attempt to plug it in, but it’s one of the only things he doesn’t want to part so I can live with it.

I don’t yet have a date for this event, but I hope it’s soon as I’m finding myself oddly excited by this idea. I probably need to get out more.