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Buried treasure

I finally came up with a plan of attack for the basement.  You may recall we were flooded last weekend.  It was only an inch or so of water, but it was across the entire floor, and anything that had been sitting on the floor was damaged.  Thankfully that wasn’t too much stuff, but Neil and I moved a whole lot of stuff out of the basement and stacked it up in the family room that night, in an effort to minimize any future damage, should the water level rise.

We were lucky that once Neil pumped out the water, it stayed out.  The biggest challenge we now have ahead of us is our family room full of stuff.  It’s so full of stuff, we’ve got little more than a few narrow pathways to walk.  So many of the boxes that were in the basement only ended up there as a result of pre-party last-minute cleaning.  There are several years’ worth of that kind of thing.  It’s tempting just to throw those boxes away without looking inside, but what if there’s something I’ve been missing in there?

It’s been so overwhelming, I haven’t known where to start.  (Which would explain why it’s a week after the flood and it still looks the same.)

Well I finally figured out what I wanted to do after one too many frustrating attempts at shipping book orders.  My “warehouse” area has gotten more and more disorganized over the years, to the point where it’s a hair-pulling experience trying to find some things.  For the past year, I haven’t put away new arrivals – I’ve been stacking them in a pile on the family room floor.  And now that there’s little space in the family room, digging through that pile for what I want has gone from minor annoyance to major pain in the butt.

So that’s where I need to focus – my pile of “new” arrivals.  But I can’t put away the new arrivals until I organize the shelves in the basement.  And I can’t organize the shelves in the basement until I find a place to put some of the non-book-store stuff that’s been accumulating there.  And I can’t do that, until I deal with the four huge stacks of my crafty books on the floor that Neil has been asking me to sort through since 2004.

So yesterday I put on a few LOST podcasts, plopped myself down on the cold basement floor, and dug through those book piles one by one.  What I ended up with at the end was one pile of garbage, two piles of books suitable to be donated somewhere or other, and two piles I wanted to keep.

158/365

I further sorted the keep pile into “business” and “personal.”  I was relieved to find that only a dozen or so books were in my personal pile – a relief because it shouldn’t be too hard to find someplace to keep them.  The business pile, I sorted yet again, into books, project books, magazines, and DVDs.  I put away the project books and DVDs, and made a small dent in the magazines.  Today, I finish going through the magazines, and start in on the books.

But here is the payoff, for those of you who have stuck with me through this story: buried deep in those piles were some treasures that I forgot I had – old popular project books that are long out of print, and a few copies of the first several issues of PolymerCAFE, also long out of print.  I know there is a demand for these things – I get email from customers often, asking if I know where to get copies of them.

So sometime in the next week or so, I’ll be putting them on eBay.  I’ll let you know when the auctions start, in case you have a particular interest in anything and want to keep your eye on it.

Also, I’ve come to the conclusion that my magazine area is completely out of control.  To that end, once I get this all organized, there is going to be a magazine sale at Polka Dot Creations the likes of which you’ve never seen before.  I’m willing to take a big loss on these, just to get them out of here, so you’ll be able to get some fantastic deals.

So, it’s a busy day today.  It’s order packing day and they just went out the door, there’s more basement work to do, and my new laptop that I ordered three weeks ago (before our self-imposed spending freeze) is finally supposed to arrive.  Yep, busy day, but I’m actually enjoying getting in the trenches and accomplishing something!

By the way, those of you who didn’t win my giveaway of Perfectly Paired this week should hop over to Patti’s blog.  She’s giving away a signed copy.

7 thoughts on “Buried treasure

  1. Did you get a Mac? Do you know about the Delicious Library application that lets you take a snapshot of your magazine, book barcodes and “catalogs them for you? The free version has a limit on the # of books, not sure what the paid version costs, but it might be helpful!

    1. No, I got a Dell. My husband has software and a barcode scanner, but I have never felt the need to set it up and use it myself. Just about everything I came across in the basement is already entered in my system, but if I find a few things that are not, I’ll have to remind myself of the scanner! Thanks for the idea.

  2. So proud of you Lisa. It is so hard to commit to cleaning up. Zach’s walk in closet was FULL of clothes and I never wanted to do it. So one day I got sick of it and Zach and I cleaned it out for hours and I put it in my car to go to the salvation army. Zach got a ds game out of it and I got a totally clean closet. I still smile thinking about it. CONGRATS!!

    1. Aw, thanks, Karen! I’ve still got a ways to go, so hopefully I’ll still be this gung-ho a week into the process, LOL!

  3. Sounds like a lot of work! But I’m curious about those magazines…! Good luck!
    Barbara
    .-= See Barbara’s latest blog post: Snow Buds =-.

    1. I’ll be sure to post here when they’re available 🙂

  4. Lisa,

    I’ve been listening to Peter Walsh’s audiobook “It’s All Too Much.” I’m hoping it will get me motivated to do some decluttering/purging/organizing of my own. I also enjoyed his audiobook “Does this Clutter Make My Butt Look Fat?” It definitely made me think.

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