Well, even though I really needed to go to work today (I need to finish the Profiles on both Katrina's and Katie's computers!!!), I ended up staying home.
That was a GOOD THING, because I was past due taking down Christmas, which usually happens on December 6 for us. And considering we have a bunch of stuff to do this weekend, I really wanted to try and get as much done as I could. I originally started upstairs, but that quickly shifted to the family room. There was just a LOT MORE STUFF to put away down there!
And this is what usually happens, by the way: I end cleaning and organizing various parts of the house as I go along. I rearranged part of a cabinet in the kitchen, for example. And totally shifted things around in both the garage and laundry room. My on-going goal of down-sizing and organizing has applied to the holidays. I did get rid of a couple of large bags of decorations this year -- and gathered some other things that I wanted to take to the beach house. (Those items are waiting patiently in the garage for our next trip, even if they didn't get used this past Christmas.)
Anyway, it's a lot of careful packing away and then lifting and carrying boxes and boxes of stuff. And these go under the stairs back in the laundry room where we have a bunch of storage we've ALWAYS used just for our decorations for various holidays. It's a TIGHT space and the light bulb there is at a level where you MUST duck under, or risk smashing the bulb with your head (yes, I've done that before). You have to shift and shift and shift the boxes back and forth as you work -- first to take them out to re-pack, then to get them back where they belong. And I need to make sure there are no 'hidden' areas back there where a cat can go and be unseen. I have enough issues with the cats hiding away from time to time -- I don't want to give them a spot where I can't find them even when I'm looking! Hahaha. It's actually amusing, because even if I label every box with what should be inside, I end up putting things into different boxes every year. And putting the boxes into different spots when they go back away.
This year I decided to put my Christmas pillows into garbage bags and store those there, too. Previously I'd tried storing them in the coat closet, but it really didn't work. There are too many pillows for that closet, even if I use those bags that are supposed to flatten stuff out (they never work for me, by the way).
So, this took HOURS. And hours and hours. Both cats were very upset. They HATE it when Christmas comes down. They were underfoot and upset. And I didn't even touch the Christmas tree today! Or their beloved tissue paper that's spread out under the coffee table to play on from Christmas morning until now. I need to wad it up and toss it out, but I just couldn't do that to them today...
Colin was lying on the cushions we put in front of the fireplace at one point (which are right by the tree). And spent ages on the tissue paper -- either watching or playing. They were both following me around the house as I worked and totally boo-boo all day long. (They KNOW the tree is next. Hahaha.)
I also took down the decorations from outside. The tree was new this year -- it's a couple of feet high and sticks out. It used to fold down flat. But I added lights and don't want to take them off, so I needed to find a spot in the garage where I could have it standing up. That was interesting!
This is long-winded enough. Let's just say it was a very busy, tiring day. I had maybe wanted to COOK if I stayed home, but that certainly didn't happen. I was such a sweat-ball that I had to shower after Marilyn got home from work! She was kind enough to stop on her way home and get takeout Chinese! So we had a good dinner and I didn't have to worry about what to fix.
I was starting to think I wouldn't finish both the family room and living room, but I happily did. I still need another box for several items that I couldn't quite squeeze into the existing boxes. (I did take one box away for the beach, so I guess that's why...) But that stuff is sitting on a shelf in the laundry room, and not out in either of the two rooms.
So now there's 'just' the tree to come down. And by that I mean, THERE'S THE TREE TO TAKE DOWN!!! Hahaha. This year we put on more ornaments than maybe any other year in our entire lives. I spent days and day and days putting on and adding more decorations. So it would be ridiculous to think I could get it down in one day.
As I was saying yesterday, it takes far more time to take things down than to put them up. It's depressing, for one thing. Even though you're ready for Christmas to go away, it's sad when it does. And it's exciting to decorate for the holidays! Plus pulling stuff out and deciding where to put it in the room is easier than taking it down and carefully packing it up for another year.
I'm glad I got so much done. I'm glad I also cleared the old food out of the upstairs fridge -- which should have happened last night, but didn't. And that I tackled some cleaning/organizing projects as I went along.
I still need to stay motivated to continue my on-going project for the entire house. But it's rewarding to see CLEAN, CLEAR SURFACES appearing. The mantles both up and downstairs are nearly empty right now. The top of the bookcase at the bottom of the stairs in the family is bare -- and I am NOT a bare space person. Eventually I'd like to end up with a lot MORE bare spaces -- and things put away in closets, cupboards and drawers! Anyway, that's the goal.
Time for bed. I'm worn out tonight. I already took a HUGE nap after dinner.
I did actually do some festival-related work today, too. I had a lengthy phone call from Atmosera (who hosts our website), discussing a migration with Christopher. I love those guys so much -- they're a delight to work with. And I'd started my day helping Katrina with an IT issue on her computer. (No, it never ends.)
We have a REALLY, REALLY BUSY weekend. It seems like additional things keeping popping up, too. So I need to get to bed. It's actually highly unlikely that I'll get a chance to work on the Christmas tree until next week at this point...
Sleep well, everyone! I look forward to it here!