Monday, March 9, 2015


If you have mothered several small children, you are probably not unfamiliar with the following scenario...

Little Bobby has reached the age of potty training. One morning early in this new adventure, you sit on the edge of the tub while Bobby perches on his little potty chair. You read books. You sing songs. You count the square tiles on the bathroom floor together. And, finally, something magic happens.

Bobby poops in the potty.

You - Mom - are all ready to do a happy dance and to dole out "I went potty!" stickers and treats. Bobby, on the other hand, has a completely different reaction when he sees the piece of poop in the bottom of his little potty chair.





If you didn't know better, you would think someone had just amputated an essential body part. Without anesthesia.

Yes, saying Goodbye to one's own poop as it swirls down and out of the toilet can be rather traumatic.

I had a friend many, many years ago who lived with her husband and her six children in a small, three-bedroom house. Amazing, isn't it - How on earth did so many people fit in such a small space?! Well, they were very deliberate about not having a lot of stuff. I don't ever remember Mary's house feeling cramped or crowded when I visited.

Mary had another friend, Susan, a single, professional woman in her mid-30's. Susan had to sell her 3-bedroom house and upsize to a 4-bedroom McMansion, because she did not have room in her old house for all of her belongings. I guess Mary's family spent most of their income on food and shoes, while Susan had discretionary income to spend on furniture, decorations, a huge wardrobe, etc.

I remember at the time, thinking how odd that Mary and her big family fit so well into their tiny house, yet Susan barely fit into twice the space.

I have a friend who travels a lot. She is the queen of packing light. Her travel wardrobe consists of a few garments that are really great at multitasking and that launder well in a hotel sink. One modest-sized carry-on can get her through a week quite nicely. I'm not very travel savvy and I don't know if I could pack as efficiently as Sarah, but I am definitely awed by her skills!

Last week I wrote about my 30 Days of Dominion plan to knock out some serious spring cleaning. I'm at Day 9 - so far, so good. This challenge has not progressed, however, without causing some stress, for me as well as for other people in my family. There is a definite atmosphere of tension in the house as folks wonder, "What will Mom clean out today?!"

What things have I discovered I have difficulty parting with?

Gift bags and boxes. I save these, thinking I can reuse them in the future. How many gift bags are enough to have on hand - one dozen? two dozen? Even if I have fifty gift bags crammed into the storage box underneath my bed, it just about kills me to toss out even one.

Books. Our shelves are groaning under the weight of books that are stacked bottom to top, two books deep. Even books that I KNOW I will NEVER read again - it pains me to part with them.

Clothes. The slacks that are so big now that they will quite literally fall off into a puddle around my feet:  what if I take them to Goodwill, and then I gain all this weight back?! The jeans that are so holey even my kids are embarrassed to see me wear them? I want to save them - right here in this big pile of other holey jeans - in case I decide to tackle a painting project next summer.

Pet supplies. We have dog collars and leashes, but no dogs. And you never know when you might need a mouse-eaten, moldy old saddle with a rotted girth strap, now do you? Better hang on to it, just in case.

If you didn't know better, you would think I was Little Bobby, freaking out about flushing my own poop.

At fifty years of age, I should be able to demonstrate a little more maturity.


So, Dear Reader, what things do you have a hard time letting go of?

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