Sloth and Toil

This is the longest break I’ve had from work since my vacation in July. Even though I only work part-time, and have a super-short commute, I’ve been very appreciative to have this time off. Sleeping in is a rare treat- I’ve slept till almost ten the last few days, which I never do! We got home from visiting my family Saturday, and I spent the rest of the day in pajamas, reading. It was awesome.

But I’m trying to have a balance between laziness and accomplishment. Giving myself freedom to relax has helped me be more productive during the times when I work. It’s been great to cross some things off my list these last few days.

When I look back on this year and think about what I’ve learned, I hope I remember this: EVERYTHING always takes much, much longer than you expect, even when you plan to only do a couple things. For example, I allowed myself a leisurely morning yesterday, and planned to complete two medium-sized tasks: writing January’s menu plan and giving Project 333 another, better try. Emma and I were having ice cream with her Brownie troop at 2, but I still felt I could get both tasks done.

Ha. Ha. Ha.

On the upside, I gave Project 333 another try. Last time, my effort was definitely halfhearted and I threw in the towel pretty quickly. Since I got a few new items of clothing for Christmas, it seemed a good time to give it another try. We still have a few months of cold weather ahead so the timing also felt right.

Last time I think it flopped because I didn’t really plan strategically enough. This time I started by making a list of targets for each type of clothing- pants, tops and accessories. I then divided tops into shirts and sweater, and accessories into scarves and jewelry. My initial list had 10 pants, 12 tops, 11 accessories. As I started working through everything I altered my plan. I decided I didn’t need 10 pairs of pants but I wanted more shirts. I also have a few cardigans, which I love, and I paired them with shirts and counted each as one because I won’t wear the shirts alone as they’re sleeveless.


Five pair of pants plus two in the laundry.

Five pair of pants plus two in the laundry.

After I chose shirts and sweaters I went through my scarves and kept 6 out of the 25 or so I own, and boxed the rest.

Pared down shirt drawer

Pared down shirt drawer


Organized but unnecessary.

I didn’t count jewelry, because I have a lot of costume jewelry and I love all of it. But I went through my drawer and filled a tray with pieces I don’t wear very often. Most of my bracelets were hung from an old mug rack.  But I don’t wear bracelets often because they get in my way when I’m working, so I packed most of them and the mug rack away.


Way fewer things in the closet!

When I finished I lost count of numbers, but I have lots of space in my closet and drawers. Previously my shirts and sweaters occupied two drawers, with miscellaneous items left to be stuffed wherever. I have pants and a shirt I wear when painting, and velour sweat suit I only wear around the house because it looks too much like something I owned in fifth grade. I tended to stuff those things wherever I found a spot, but now they have a drawer.

The process took way longer than expected. Packing everything into a tote and a box and shoving it to the back of the attic was important, so I don’t feel tempted to go looking for something. I’ve had a minor headache all day and haven’t been able to shake it, so I decided to make it a Netflix day. But I did finally reorganize the tv stand.tvstand

This was a task I’d been dreading. Whenever I looked at it, I felt overwhelmed. It still doesen’t look aesthetically pleasing, but I recycled old magazines and put lots of CDs and DVDs into binders. When Emma was about a year old, she grew very fond of throwing discs all over the place. So we too them out of the cases and put them in binders. Until recently we had all the cases, but I really have no interest in going back, and in fact have recycled most of them. The reality is, discs will go the way of the cassette tape as the world gets more digital.

I have no idea what I’m going to work on tomorrow, other than January’s menu. I’m going to pull a lot of ideas from prior months which I think will make the process easier. All the Christmas gifts  have been put away, amazingly enough. I hope you all had a good holiday and are looking forward to 2016!