Thursday, March 26, 2015

Sing It, Joni

Hello! I'm still here! Recovering from Mulch Weekend and all that, you know.  In fact, I woke up Monday morning and lay in bed a few extra moments (oh, all right, an extra half hour), luxuriating in the thought that I had a peaceful week ahead, with time to focus on the children's schoolwork, maybe clean up the house, etc.  Oh, lovely thought!

And then I went downstairs, where I found Larry and the handyman discussing when exactly to tear out the front wall of our kitchen.  Yes, folks, my spouse is at it again.

So I was up late Monday night (well, into the wee hours of Tuesday morning, actually), preparing for Larry's next fit of destruction by emptying our kitchen hutch of 14 years worth of leftover craft materials, photo albums, CD's, and cookbooks.  Then I had to relocate what wasn't thrown away PLUS the myriad other piles of kitchen crap that kept jumping out at me every time I turned around.  Oh, and did I mention I also had to empty the pantry? It was a daunting task, made easier only by my discovery of an unopened bag of mini Reese's peanut butter cups left over from our New Year's party.

Finally, at 2 AM, I faced an empty hutch.  In case you didn't know, 2 AM is an excellent time at which to get maudlin. EXCELLENT. So, yeah, there I was, eating peanut butter cups and feeling all weepy about the passage of time, reminiscing about the day Larry and I dragged 4 kids under the age of 10, including one baby, to IKEA, where we managed - in an unwonted episode of spousal harmony - to agree on a table and chairs and a matching kitchen cabinet. Considering that all our furniture prior to this purchase had either been bought used or found next to the apartment dumpsters on Moving Day, this was really a big moment for us.

Looks empty, but it's actually full of memories.

That hutch? It became our catch-all for all the craft supplies my children have used over the years.  I can't tell you how many times a day we have rummaged around in there for construction paper, glitter glue, paints, playdough, beads, craft sticks, magic markers, etc. And now, all those days, all those hours spent creating at the kitchen table, gone!  Nothing left of them but an old wooden cabinet with its doors falling off its hinges and a getting-old woman in not much better shape, alone with her memories and her Reese's.

I did mention maudlin, didn't I?

The next morning (after a refreshing 5 hours of sleep), I watched the handyman break that cabinet up into pieces and haul it off to the dump.  I managed not to cry, but "You don't know what you've got 'til it's gone" played non-stop in my head for hours. Because, dammit, it's true.


  1. I always get a little weepy when I clean out any of my kid's stuff. I usually hold on to things a little too long because I'm not quite ready to part with them. But, eventually, enough time passes and I am able to toss it. Thank goodness for Reese's cups!

  2. To the dump? Yikes, that's hard-core. Hope it is being replaced with even-more-useful storage!

  3. Oh yes, when confronted with anything that reminds me of Man-Child when he was a wee, little one, I also get maudlin.

  4. If I lived near you, I would have been "junking" on your street that morning before the junk man arrived.Not that I have a place for such a lovely piece, but with that many memories, it should have been saved somewhere, don't you think? Besides, I need more craft storage.

  5. was beautiful! And yeah sometimes ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

    We need to replace some flooring but we already did one big room and now we know just how much work it is to move the furniture before the carpet guys come.

  6. But where are you going to put everything now? I have a few pieces of furniture that I just can't get rid of too. One is a table that I got for my first apartment that folds down on the sides. Love that thing.

  7. Aw. I'm kind of sad now, too. Funny how just a piece of furniture can hold more than our crap, isn't it?

  8. I have been doing a lot of this work. It feels good once it's done--I'm lucky to have guest rooms to display some of my favorite kids' stuff still.