- 5 “cleaning rags”
- cat food jug
- Wrecked gift bag
- Broken “flower pot”
- Many pet pamphlets
- Wiggle giggle ball that doesn’t giggle when it wiggles any more
- Post its (this time not from work)
- Out of date Vitamin D
- 4 magazines
- Dog-chewed lid
- Broken scissors (put back in the drawer, even)
Med bottles and various other things from the cleaning closet that I’m just too beat to list. It probably wasn’t nearly 42 things. But it was something.
After a week off (funny how life just happens and suddenly I realized I missed a week), I was attacked by my cleaning closet.
This is what the closet looked like:
In the process of finding way too much stuff to get rid of, I discovered whatever the opposite of a treasure trove of stuff is:
- A bread bag (really?)
- Spoons from MREs. They were leftovers from Katrina, my only guess is that I brought them into the house before I had silverware
- A bottle of Windex with a quarter inch or so of Windex still in it.
- A jug of vinegar with even less
- Lightbulbs I didn’t know I had
- A bag of clean socks (whaaaat?) with medical papers in it (double whaaat?)
I had “stacked” (and I use that term loosely) torn towels and t-shirts in the closet, presumably to use them as cleaning rags.
NOBODY NEEDS THAT MANY CLEANING RAGS!
This week was an epiphany of sorts: I really want to spend as little money as possible. I want out of here. I had left Mississippi years ago, returning after about five. After living in the desert, I fell in love with her all over again. Got a job, got my degree, got another job.
This week I sort of “woke up.” I’ve been complacent. I’ve held my current position for almost eight years–that’s far longer than I’ve held any job before. With an awesome boss and awesome coworkers and a work load that doesn’t ask too much of me, I’ve grown complacent.
Everything I love about Mississippi is wrapped up in my family and my immediate surroundings. I was born here and left the state for about five years in my mid 20’s. The summer nights, filled with fireworks and lightning bugs; the boat rides to Ship Island and from Long Beach to Biloxi and back again; the sheer greenness of the honeysuckle, grass, and oak trees stood in stark contrast to Arizona–a place whose state color should be beige. Beige for the rocks, beige for the houses. Everything running together and nothing really standing out.
So wrapped up in my memories of childhood, I was shocked when the South came thundering back in all its greenness and pinks and yellows and purples of flowers, demanding that I take her back again.
And I did.
But now it’s time to go. I’ve been back for thirteen years now, so very much of that spent miring in complacency. It’s time to go. But there are many steps between here and there.
Paring down the house is just one step. Another is saving money. One thing I did do this week is to change my cell phone plan. From unlimited everything (and I swore, they’d have to pry that plan from my cold, dead fingers) to a finite amount of data. In doing so, I saved $10 a month. After watching how good I am at seeking out wifi, I may be able to pare it down again, for a total of $25 saved a month.
Sure it’s only $10 now (and .70 cents that the state will no longer get in sales tax), but it’s a start. I may be able to pare it down again when I see how my data use works when I’m paying attention to being on wifi.
Ten dollars and seventy cents a month. It’s a start.
Oh, and I also did my taxes. And my brother’s taxes. And go grocery shopping.
And cook up some chicken at 830 Sunday night because I refused to let it go to waste.
It’s been a productive week.