day 30, twelfth month

Today I outdid myself, chore-wise. 2 loads of laundry, and dishes. Then for some reason, I ventured down to the basement.

My basement. Let me tell show you it.

Why, yes, it is BRIGHT YELLOW throughout. Kinda wakes you up when you go down there.

There are boxen and binen in my basement. (Note that I refer to it as “my” basement. This is an acknowledgment of the fact that most of the boxen are mine.)

Those particular binen in the photo contain Halloween and Thanksgiving decorations. We are a decoration-happy family here.

The basement is in a sorry state. Maybe a lot of folks have a basement in a sorry state, but somehow, I imagine everyone having theirs all tidy, with boxen stacked neatly on shelves, with clear labels and some sort of logic to the placement of boxen around the room.

We’re not there yet.

Our basement is free-form. Our basement has a mind of its own. Our basement is, shall we say…quite unruly.

And so I ended up spending a big chunk of the day down in our bright yellow basement, going through boxes in search of my weaving books. I have a lot of weaving books. I just don’t know where they are. One would think, for example, that they would be in a box labelled, oh….”weaving books.”

The box labelled “weaving books” had knitting books in it. Now, I was glad to see my long-lost knitting books (who knew to look in the weaving box?), but this did cause a certain amount of consternation: What sort of label would be hiding my weaving books? I emptied five, count ’em, FIVE boxes of books today, putting the contents on various shelves and re-arranging everything in two rooms to accommodate this. And then, just for kicks, I went through a half-dozen more boxes quickly, opening them, scanning the contents, and then closing them up again (I’m running out of bookshelf space!).

My weaving books are still AWOL. Fascinating.

The mysterious PAPPERS

I think one goes through a certain amount of Box-Shock when one moves. When one makes three major moves in five years (2004, San Diego to Colorado; 2008, Colorado to Canada; 2009, Milton to Bolton–70 miles), one becomes a bit disoriented as to what sorts of objects one actually owns. Boxes get multiple, and thus cryptic, labels on them: “04 paperbacks; 08 books; 09 same but with kitchen implements” (oh…really?). When we knew we were moving from Colorado to here, we valiantly opened every single box in the garage, sorted things (we got rid of a third of our stuff, wooot!!), tossed things, repacked the rest, and re-labelled the box, trying desperately to follow A System. We were good at first, labelling each box with a code (BKS013 would be the 13th box of books packed), and then listing the box code in a spreadsheet with a description of the contents.

That system broke down after about two dozen boxen. We were packing so fast we just didn’t have time to update the spreadsheet. We’d randomly make up new codes “HHd009” for Household 009, or “PAP012” for Papers 012. The final death knoll came when the professional movers arrived, ready to pack up the rest of the house for us. The driver and his crew were French-Canadians, on the homewards leg of their trucking run. Half the crew didn’t speak English; half the crew didn’t speak French. Communication was a charming mixture of sign language and desperately-recalled words from college French 101A. We thought it had all gone fairly well…until our boxes arrived in Canada a couple of weeks later. They were all labelled “Pappers.” ALL. OF. THEM. I think there were 71 or 72 boxes packed by the moving crew, and they had labelled every last one of them PAPPERS. (Sometimes a secondary label was added: “Pappers and baskits.” I see.)

So let’s just say that we’ve had an interesting time finding things. The fact that we had to unexpectedly move 9 months after we arrived here didn’t help any. There are boxen in our basement, still labelled pappers, which I have not opened since Colorado. I hope the rest of my weaving books are in there, because I sure as heck can’t find them in any of the boxes labelled “books” or “weaving.”

But I do have two bookshelves upstairs, and one downstairs, which are better organized today than yesterday. One-third of the craft books and mags:

And I want to say that this is half my sci-fi/fantasy/mystery/horror collection but I bet it’s closer to a third of it:

Good work for one day.

Today’s Random Good

I signed up for the Health Month game. It’s a social networking site meant to help people give each other support in fun ways to accomplish health goals. Lately, I’ve been obsessing over the extra weight around my belly. I know, I KNOW: I’m the one telling everyone they are beautiful, and here I am, getting grumpy at myself for being overweight. But…it’s been bothering me. I’m not comfortable in my clothes; I know the extra weight isn’t good for my chronic pain stuff.

Go, Team Crafty!

I’ve been cutting back on portions; Nicholas and I already eat organic vegetarian fare, we rarely eat processed foods at all anymore. The smaller portions are just making me hungrier, though. I do exercises, as much as my particular disability will allow…but I seem to be gaining weight, not losing. ARGH. (It could be the meds, totally it could.) So I’m switching to muscle strengthening and toning exercises, hoping those will get my joints and bones strong enough to do some real exercise down the road. My goal: To be able to wander around the spring fibre festivals to my heart’s content…without using my cane.

This is Gertie. Gertie is not invited to the spring fibre shows.

Why is this a random good? Well, besides the fact that it’s good for me, and good to find encouragement for Tough Goals…I also get to help someone else. A small fee enabled me to sponsor one other person in the game who couldn’t afford to pay! I sponsored a college student named Re, because I remember what it was like to be in college and have zero money. Good luck Re, I’ll be cheering for you! It was fun to sponsor a complete stranger, to make her life a little better in this tiny, easy way.

If you want to set a few goals for the month of January, come play the game with us! We’re Team Crafty!

And because a post without a cat in it just Is Not Acceptable:

It's very good to have helpers on a big project

About sandi

Knitter. Spinner. Quilter. UFO Wrangler. Sometime bead artist and weaver. Two toddler-age kittens, 1 permakitten, 2 grownup cats, 1 beloved dog angel, 1 spouse, 1 crazy life. I suppose that the 5 cats make me 1 crazy cat lady; OTOH, apparently, yes, I do need that much feline supervision.
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11 Responses to day 30, twelfth month

  1. InJuneau says:

    Oh, the boxen and binen… Have you been peeking in my basement/garage/spare bedroom/laundryfiberchaos room? I don’t even let the DH in there; how’d you get in? I’m going to start tackling them, ALL of them, in the new year, I promise!


  2. Naomi says:

    LOVE the bright yellow basement. And the view of the Karmic Geese.


  3. Ann Williams says:

    Love this post!! Can you come to my house? I seriously need help with organization!!


  4. Mardi says:

    Kitty asleep on the big piece of Karmic nothingthereness. I love it!


  5. Mary Beth says:

    I feel soooo much better now knowing that my basement is not the only one it the world that looks like this! Thank you so very much for sharing!


  6. Lynn says:

    I have no boxen and binen.



  7. molly says:

    and another lovely picture of another lovely cat. my kittikidz would love it, if only they could rouse themselves from their kittidreams on the couch…


  8. stitchesandwords says:

    “Pappers?” Seriously? Oy.

    The Health Month game looks like fun, toes crossed it helps you reach your goals! I’ve got some changes in mind for January too, but I really don’t need another place on the Internet to sign up and spend time on (please, not Yet. Another. Login.) The game idea is good though; maybe I can make up my own game to play for motivation. Will have to think about that.


  9. GinkgoKnits says:

    I think most people have boxen from their last move in their basements whether that was months or decades ago. During/after college, I spent five years moving at least annually and I’m amazed how fast things accumulate when you’re not worried about having to pack and carry those boxen soon. I miss the simplicity of when I was able to move to another state for the summer with just the stuff in the trunk of my car. Driving out alone to that summer job made me feel truly adult and totally free. I like my stuff but it can sure weigh a person down.


  10. AllisonInPhilly says:

    Wow. About 2 weeks ago I declared that I’d reorganize the basement during intersession btwn Xmas and New Years. With a few hours to go — haven’t been down there. But now that I can call them “boxen and binen,” I might just get down there today! Also, the “PAPPERS” story was great!! Happy 2011 to you and your household!


  11. Diane says:

    Ok, I’m a bit behind but I’ll give you these two things.

    1. When we moved from Wisconsin, lo these 14 years ago, a box arrived labeled Photon. It was a big box. It was a heavy box. That made me wonder about what happens to photons when they are transported across state lines. Turns out, they become futons.

    2. As for the inkle weaving, if it were me, I’d back it up. All the way. It goes pretty quickly and then you don’t lose the entire warp. Failing that, just start weaving with a VERY firm beat and then, when you cut it off the loom, unweave the part you didn’t like and see if you can rewind it on the loom. Should be simple to get rid of the weft threads since they’re so visible. Embroider scissors. Use em. 🙂

    (and I’ve given up on KD since you left. No useful information, one big ad.)


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