Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Wherein I assert dominion over the basement.

So! I have not posted in forever, because I was eaten by the large piles of crap in our basement and our garage, although never fear, I fought my way out, and then I managed to break not one but TWO computers in the space of 24 hours, because you know moving across the country is not expensive AT ALL and of course you will want to replace not one but TWO computers a few weeks before you move.  Anyways, that  is my excuse for not blogging or commenting on any of your blogs, although I continue to read them on my phone, because oh my holy heck I am sick of purging and reading the internets is a nice break from that.

So! The basement.  Yes.  I finally finished that.  Sort of.  It needs to be packed, but I purged it of all the crap.  Most of the crap, anyways.  We still have a lot of crap but its now organized crap.  This took me most of an entire day.

This is the far wall at the end of the workbench, containing mostly boxes of the Mister's work stuff from a previous job.  Also, decor crap.

As you can see on the right hand side of the above picture, and again below, is a shelving unit that holds....crap.  Kitchen stuff that we don't have room for in our tiny kitchen, old checkbooks, Ikea decor boxes, three dead computers (that pile has since grown to five dead computers), and a number of plastic filing bins. One of my must-be-done items of business upon arriving in California is to buy a large filing cabinet.

Rounding the corner, we have more shelving full of crap.  FYI, if you are thinking of renting or buying a house, and in the basement there is lots of built-in shelving, it is not because the former owners are ever so handy or generous in providing storage. No, the shelving is there because that basement leaks and has water issues, and the shelving is so that their belongings don't get wet.  Jut so you know.

Anyhoo, to the left we have lots of unused plastic bins and baskets, a large box containing unused lamps shades, a suitcase, office supplies, and a large number of folding chairs.

To the right, we have more suitcases, wrapping paper, coffee makers, art not even unpacked from the last time we moved, a difficult to see hutch to the antique secretary, more assorted crap, and an unbelievable number of plastic forks and spoons in that basket in the front.

And lastly...this fiasco:

I would love to give you a dramatic After Picture.  Except that the basement still looks largely like it did before. The one dramatic change is the wall by the treadmill.  Most of the boxes were wet and were recycled;  the rest was donated.

I know, it has a very "it puts the lotion in the basket" vibe to it.  The creepiness factor makes me walk faster on the treadmill.

The rest of the basement really still looks the same.  Now the junk is organized into boxes of similar junk.  Kitchen crap in three boxes, decor crap in four boxes, etc.  See? Pictures do not look very different.

I gave away six boxes of stuff to family:

One sister inherited 27 Harlequin romance novels, a West Elm starburst mirror, kitchen cannisters, and the lamps I was making over for her but won't be able to finish because it is too cold to spraypaint.  The other sister inherited pink sparkle glitter shoes and a number of other items for Denise. My mother received cooking tins, my entire stash of spraypaint (waaah, did not want to give those up), an electric can opener, and she agreed to transport a Keurig coffeemaker to my grandmother.  My inlaws received a cold storage food bag and two olive trays.  Everyone received at least one cold storage bag from Wegman's, because I can never remember to bring them to Wegman's with me and thus end up buying one every time I go.

I also amalgamated my enormous collection of plastic forks.  Apparently I have over five hundred plastic utensils, paper plates, and napkins.  I should have sent this home with my mother.  I probably will if she comes up again before we leave.

There was a full minivan of stuff donated to Goodwill.

That's five trash bags and two cardboard boxes of stuff.  One FLOR rug, three sets of table legs, a ridiculous number of lunchboxes, a baby piggy bank, a roller shade, and a bunch of other stuff I can't remember.

The basement is as purged as it is going to get, peeps. Now it needs to be packed in boxes.

California, here we come!

Oh wait. There's still the garage.  And Project Patch All The Holes.  But then! We are off to California!

Edited to add: I am linking up to Pancakes and French Fries William Morris Project.


  1. Doesn't it feel good to purge all of that stuff?!??! And, isn't it amazing how quickly we amass even more stuff? Did you find a place in California?

  2. I have to commend you on working out in that basement - wowee!! Scary like our basement. ha

  3. Good for you. It must feel great to get rid of that.Sorry about the computers. Murphy's Law.

  4. As soon as I saw the "it puts the lotion in the basket" a flood of quotes from that movie filled my head. Glad you were able to get it organized and ready for the big move. I'm excited for you and jealous at the same time. I'd kill for some good mexican food right now.

  5. Oh, man. As someone who last summer moved and only just now, this very last weekend, declared that we were done unpacking--which means, we've decided that we've purged the last of the crap that is not going to go anywhere but Goodwill--I have only these words for you:

    Keep purging.

    You will hate yourself (as I have) for having to carry, haul, carry, and unpack anything that you don't love/need. When I found the box of crap that I never unpacked from the move before last, and finally threw away all but a handful of precious art made by my kids, I wanted to kick myself. (But I didn't because that would hurt. But not as much as it hurt me to know I'd moved that crap not once, but twice.)

    OK, done preaching. Good luck! And thanks for making me laugh today.

  6. Wow, you accomplished a ton!

    Harlequin romance novels also go by another name, according to my grandmother who has hundreds of them: "Nickel Nasties." ;)

  7. Good for you! I wish I would have gotten rid of more stuff before moving. My mother-in-law moved from a home in Bergen county to California and we inherited a storage unit full of stuff because she was so unwilling to purge more of it.

    Hope your husband's employer is relocating you---moving cross country is quite an expense.

    How did the kids take the news of your move?

    Best wishes and excited to hear about your coming adventures!

  8. Why oh why do we accumulate the stuff to torture ourselves with? I don't envy you the work, but I would like to have that glow of accomplishment you must have now.

  9. This brought back memories of our move this summer. Good for you in kicking that basement's a**. I have to second the advice above: keep purging. And buy some plastic totes with lids. They are super easy to move & stack, and do a good job of protecting items that need protecting. Or storing out of season goods.

  10. Congratulations on purging so much stuff. Keep going. Hope the move goes well.

  11. That carload of stuff that LEFT the premises is a huge thing to be proud of! Good luck on your move!

  12. Wow! Sometimes the best progress is hard to see. I keep walking past the mess in my basement, as if ignoring it is going to make it go away. Good job!

  13. Bahahahaha on the "it puts the lotion on..." comment (and it making you walk faster). Cracked me up! I don't envy you this job. I thought I envied folks with basements, but er...maybe not.

  14. Amazing! All the best to you in your move! I think you will benefit from the work you did here for a long time... Thanks for posting all your progress!

  15. That "Silence of the Lambs" quote made me laugh out loud...and immediately reminded me of my friend, Tiffany, who used to quote that movie all the time. Sure enough, she quoted up above! I know it's her, because she's always going on about how she misses Mexican food. :)

  16. Okay, duh? I was laughing so hard about the movie quote that I forgot to commend you on doing such a great job on the basement! I'm jealous of the sister that got the 26 HQR books.

  17. That basement is huge! The size in and of itself would scare me off. Well done. Maybe you can get some slasher movie theme tracks for while you're on the treadmill, add a little more fright to get your heart-rate up.
    Good job purging. Hope you get everything done before your big cross-country move (can't imagine!).


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