Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!
Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Winter Projects

Every year around this time I make a list of things to do to pass the time during the dreariness of winter. These projects include doing stuff around the home, special projects, fixing items, and reorganizing files, photos, and CDs.

Starting with the last one mentioned, this always ends up on the list. It is also the least likely to be done. Hence, it continues being added onto the end of whatever list I am working on at the time. “Must Reorganize Files, Photos, and CDs”. I mean, really, it is the most boring thing to do, but if I finally do it, I know it gives me a sense of satisfaction. I think I try and do it some of it every 6 months. The files are the easiest, I toss articles I haven’t read or looked at again. I shred old bills. I combine files. I toss catalogs. It’s a productive event which is good to do while watching an old movie. CDs are the next easiest task. The hardest part is deciding whether to organize by artist or genre. I have them stored in old Coca-Cola and Pepsi crates from the first half of the 20th century. I usually end up getting rid of at least a dozen CDs that I don't listen to anymore. They are passed onto family, friends, or co-workers. If they don’t want them, I take them to the consignment shop or sell them at a flea market. Reorganizing photos takes forever because I have so many online and in photo boxes and albums. I try and toss photos that don’t mean anything anymore like the photo of that dog from Scranton that looks like Andy Rooney, or the photo of some old friends which was photo bombed by that jerk coworker that I never really liked. I have started tossing duplicates as there is no point of keeping them anymore. How many shots of the Liberty Bell does one really need anyway? It requires at least a good afternoon, but ultimately, is a satisfying and nostalgic trip down memory lane.

I spend time “doing stuff around the house." I know it sounds generic, but where else can I lump in the following fun (yeah right) projects: cleaning out the junk drawer; throwing out melted Tupperware; tossing expired bathroom lotions, medicines, and old cleaners; finally getting rid of the skinny clothes (while accepting the fact that I have moved up 2 waist sizes); cleaning the fridge out of mold experiments; emptying the food pantry of cans of fruit cocktail from 2003. You get the idea. It is boring, but it is a task that needs to be done. The upside is that you feel pretty good afterwards getting all this stuff done.

Special projects are also moved from list to list each year. I bought some great fabric 4 years ago with the intention of reupholstering a foot stool. The foot stool got tossed during a springtime purge event of the garage so that never happened. This fabric is an incredible colorful tweed pattern which now is slated to become pillows this year, or the next.  Most likely the next year! I also have a lamp in the living room which needs to be rewired. This particular Art Deco lamp was supposed to be rewired 2 years ago. I have the rewiring kit; it was placed into the drawer of the table on which the lamp is sitting. The lamp sits on the table, extinguished, looking dark and sad.

I guess the lamp could also qualify for my next winter project subject:  items which need to be fixed or repaired. This includes bulbs that need to be replaced, cold drafts that need to be closed off, painted walls that need to be touched up, rugs that needs to be cleaned, etc. I have three bird houses that need to be repaired before the springtime. Two were blown off of their respective trees during a particularly fierce storm we had towards the end of the fall. One lost its flooring at some point. I can only imagine the poor bird which went to seek shelter and fell through the bottom! Sorry Mr. Wren, my bad! The other one lost its roof upon a rough landing ala The Wizard of Oz. I found it sitting on the lawn like Dorothy’s house with the roof scattered about a 5 foot area. Lastly, I bought a bird house at an "end of the year" yard sale which needs some loving care. It looks like an old general store and needs to be repainted and renailed. I am actually excited to work on this one.

For the record, I have every intention of completing these winter projects. They are all perfect to do on a cold wintry day. But if not, there is always the beginning of next winter! I am sure there will be more birdhouses to repair, light bulbs to be replaced, paint to be touched up. And don’t forget the files, CDs, and photographs to be reorganized. It’s a given they are just gonna be moved to the next list!

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