Tag Archives: clutter

A Rambly Random Wednesday

I’m feeling rather random-ly today, so of course, it means another post of random stuff! Here are the random things that have been delighting me:

Dream analysis. My older son has been getting university acceptances and a few scholarship offers, as well as several phone calls from the universities he’s applied to, so we’ve had lots of celebratory-feeling days around here.

Last night, I dreamed he cooked up a whole batch of bacon – it was crisp and perfectly done. I’ve never really been big on dream analysis, but this one just jumps out at me. Yes! He is going to be successful, bringing home the bacon!

A Clean Desk. I did it. I finally got around to cleaning up my desk. I took a picture, since it’s a rare event and I like to record things like this for future reference (and to remind a certain husband that I can occasionally be tidy).


And this should give you an idea how I did it – I call it the “everything-in-the-box” method (note: patent pending).


Writing. I started my first readthrough of my WIP, NANTUCKET, last night and I’m very happy to say that this readthrough is going so much better than the readthrough I did of my NaNoWriMo novel last month. No, it’s not perfect, but there’s stuff I can work on, and the story (so far) is shaping up quite well. (Please feel free to cheer …)

Reading. I finished The Book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern and have one burning question (don’t worry, not a spoiler):

Did Rosaleen know about the book, or not? If you’ve read the book and have more of a clue about this than I do, please let me know!

Lust Speaking of Husbands. As most of you know, my husband is a martial arts teacher. Now that we have a little dojo in our home, he holds the occasional private class here.


What this means is that I’m now getting to see him in his black belt uniform again (I hadn’t seen him in his dogi for quite a while, because I rarely make it out to dojo functions these days).

image index_001_001 ward

I’d forgotten I have a tendency to swoon when I see him in his karate dogi. Oddly enough, it’s not the same for me when he’s wearing his aikido uniform or his jodo uniform.

I guess it’s a good thing to be swooning over one’s own husband.

Blog Stuff. I’m hoping to be able to start working on a new look for Ms. Bookish next week, so if you see funny things happening around here, you’ll know why. The dilemma right now is picking a new template. There are just so many – it’s tough to choose just one. I guess it would be too confusing to use several at once!

Exercise. I’ve decided exercise is no longer going to be a dreaded word for me. It helps that I found a picture of me taken not so long ago where I looked decidedly more svelte than I do now. The reminder that it wasn’t that long ago was a good one.

So, treadmill, you and I are going to begin our love affair, starting today tomorrow Friday. I promise!

That’s my random stuff for today. Every now and then, I love a day of random. What random stuff have you been delighting in recently?

My Magazine Dilemma

If you’ve been following along here at Ms. Bookish the past month or so, you know that we’ve been spending a lot of time decluttering. Not that we’ve been all that successful, because while our downstairs is beautiful and serene and almost clutter-free, all we really did is shove everything into boxes and move it all upstairs.

Into our bedroom, no less.

But there were some things that got moved into the office. All of my to-be-read piles, for example.

And all my magazines. All of them.

Believe me, even I was astounded at how many unread magazines I’ve accumulated over the years:


These are the two stacks that are resting, temporarily I hope, in front of one of my two TBR bookshelves (yes, I also discovered I needed TWO bookcases just for my TBRs).

Here’s my dilemma:

I just can’t bring myself to toss any of these magazines into the recycling bin until I’ve flipped through them.

I always think of magazines as potentially hiding that golden nugget of information, something that makes you go, “ahhh, that made my day” or “wow, I didn’t know that!” or “omg, my life is now changed”.

It can take me hours to get through a magazine. I like to read all the articles, look at all the sources, let myself absorb all the beautiful photography.

In these piles I have fashion magazines, travel magazines, science magazines, art magazines, writing magazines, home decor magazines – no cooking magazines, though, because my husband takes command of these the moment they appear in our mailbox.

Luckily, he doesn’t have the same problem with magazines as I do. He reads every single one of his cooking magazines from cover to cover within days of getting them in the mail. And usually I end up eating something tasty that greatly resembles the cover dish sometime later that same week.

For me, you see, a magazine holds out the promise of a few enjoyable hours lounging in my reading chair, tea or coffee by my side. Lots of sunlight. Soft music playing in the background.

It’s just that I don’t feel like reading a magazine as often as I find myself entranced by the idea of reading a magazine, if you know what I mean.

Do you have the same problem with magazines? Or are you really good with them, never bringing them into your life at all? Or somewhere in between these two extremes?

[TSS] Reducing My Stacks of Books: Ideas Needed

One of the things my husband and I have been planning is downsizing our home once our daughter is in university next year; when that happens, it will be just my husband and I, and our six-year-old, and our current house is really too big for just the three of us.

So we’ve decided to use the next eighteen months or so to get rid of all the clutter, and decide on the things we really need, versus stuff that, well, we don’t really need!

At the top of the list are my books. I have so many books, and aside from the to-be-read ones, there are only certain ones that I really want to keep. So I’ve been trying to figure out the best ways to get rid of some of my books. Since many of them are beloved-but-not-quite-keeper status, I’d like to see them go out to a good home.

Our local library doesn’t accept book donations; apparently it costs them more in terms of labor to go through donated books and catalogue them, so they simply don’t accept donations. So that idea is out.

I’ve only come up with one idea so far: box up the books I don’t want anymore and list them on Craigslist for $5 or $10 per box. Lots of titles in each, but no swapping between boxes.

But I’d also like to give some of my books away. We have a lot of younger children’s picture books, for example, that our youngest has outgrown, and it would be nice to see them go to a good home.

In the past, we’d give books away to Goodwill, but I’d like to give my books to places where the books would actually get used, rather than used only if they get sold.

I could really use a blog-based brainstorming session around this problem – if you have any ideas or suggestions, please leave me a comment!

What’s Up Saturday – June 6

I can’t believe we’re already a week into June. It’s shaping up to be a very busy month for me, as I’ve shifted several deadlines from July to June so that I can actually take off for a few weeks for a holiday. One thing about being a freelancer is that a real vacation can be tricky if you don’t plan well for it; I’ve learned my lesson after several “holidays” turned into working vacations. Not exactly what I’m aiming for!

The Strain, by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan

After reading this review of The Strain at Debbie’s World of Books, and then coming across this interview with The Strain co-author Chuck Hogan at Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind I realized The Strain is definitely one book I want to read while I’m away on holidays. We’ve rented a beach house in Nova Scotia, and it seems like it will be a perfect, eerie read for those foggy nights, and out along Nova Scotia’s South Shore, there are many foggy nights.

So I picked up my own copy of The Strain yesterday, and now I have two must-reads on my vacation list: The Strain and The Language of Bees, by Laurie King (which I’ve already started, but I’m deliberately setting aside so I can enjoy it while I’m on holiday). Another tentative addition to my holiday reads list is Holly’s Inbox, by Holly Denham.

Ideally, I’d like to take six “must reads” with me on holidays, so I’m keeping my eyes open. I’d love to hear your recommendations, too!

It’s Dumpster Time

Seven years ago when we began our (still ongoing … sigh) renovations, my husband and I packed up a lot of things in boxes and stuffed the boxes into our crawl space in order to get them out of the way. Seven years later, we’ve just added more stuff to the places where we used to store these things before we packed them up and put them in the crawl space – and we haven’t taken anything OUT of the crawl space, either.

So we recently decided it was time to really do something about all this clutter. We’ve been in a process of de-cluttering for the past two months now, and while we’ve made a small dent in things, we still have a lot of stuff that simply must go. The problem is, no-one else wants them, either (don’t blame them).

Sometimes you just get to a point where you know you’ve got to do something about things. We’ve reached it. We’re renting a dumpster and we’re going to be going through everything over the next few weeks, and sorting them into the following categories: to dump, to recycle, to give away. Hopefully we’ll have an uncluttered house again. Sure, it still needs things like drywall and doors but at least it will be uncluttered! And I was happy and encouraged to read that the rent-a-dumpster route worked exceedingly well for author Holly Lisle.

This Week’s Picture


I was absolutely thrilled to find that the peony I planted last year is filled with buds. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing it in full bloom!