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Archive for March, 2012

What Was Said

I recently watched the documentary I Am. Twice. Within a week. This is one DVD that I would like to own. The director of this movie goes all over the world, asking influential people two questions: What’s wrong with the world? and What can we do about it? The answers always come back to the title of the film: “I Am”. The journey the director takes the watcher through is fascinating and enlightening. And entertaining.

If you want to watch the trailer click here.

While watching this film I was struck by something that Coleman Barks, author of The Essential Rumi, said:

What was said to the rose that made it open
was said to me here in my chest.

A quote from Rumi’s poem “What Was Said to the Rose.”

I had never read Rumi before, but this quote made me think that I should. So, I sought out the poem.

Then I sought out Coleman Barks reading this poem:

Something for our souls to ponder as we soon head into the Easter season.

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Letting Go

It’s been about three months since I made my new year’s resolutions. So, how are things progressing?

Most of my free time in the past three months has been spent decluttering and organizing:

I’m proud to say that after starting out with files in two plastic file bins and a small two drawer file cabinet, I now have consolidated the files into only one plastic bin (old tax papers) and the small file cabinet. I still have papers to weed through and organize so that the file cabinet isn’t so stuffed, but the major work has been done. I save articles that are of interest and that I think would be useful. This was a good idea, except that once I put them in the file folders in the cabinet, I never looked at them again. Once I go through all of these articles in this process, I decided to put them in clear page protectors and then put them in three-ring binders (I have quite a few sitting around in plastic storage drawers) organized by topic. Then these binders will go on my bookshelf. That way, when browsing for something to read on my bookshelf, I have a greater than average chance at re-reading some of these articles that I clipped. It also gives me a chance to use some of the three-ring binders that I (and my husband) had kept since college.

A couple of years ago I set out to price the cards in my baseball card collection. I used a standard price guide to determine value, and then wanted to contact Kruk Cards in Rochester, Michigan to see what they would offer me. Then we moved out of the metro-Detroit area. I couldn’t find a similar establishment in the area where I live now, so I decided to go online and find out more about what buyers were offering others for cards similar to mine. Turns out that my cards, most of them from the 1980s, were basically worthless. My husband said that I should find some kids that would want them. How was I supposed to do that? So, I posted on my Facebook page that I wanted to give more than 2,300 baseball cards to whoever wants them for free. I got no takers. So, I got back online again and after a while found the non-profit Sports Cards for Kids. They’re looking for donations of sports cards of any kind and the donations go to The Boys and Girls Club, a children’s hospital, and a couple of children’s homes in North Carolina. This felt like a good place to donate my cards. I re-packaged them up last week and sent them off this past weekend.

In my decluttering of files I ran across a print out for Arts & Scraps, a charity in Detroit that provides art and crafting supplies and kits to classrooms and organizations to foster creativity in both children and adults, including those with developmental disabilities. I craft and sew, but I also have craft supplies and material from past projects that I no longer wanted and until finding this brochure (and double-checking online to make sure that this organization still existed), I didn’t know what to do with. Two weekends ago I donated a large box of supplies and have another, smaller, box mostly full. I’m still going through my stuff so I’ll probably have more to donate. I also vowed not to buy any more crafting/sewing supplies until all of my currently unfinished projects are finished.

Except

I was inspired by a post on one of the minimalist blogs that I read, one dealing with “good” china that is never used. The blogger and commenters basically said “why not use it?” I decided to do something with a sweater that my aunt, my mother’s sister, gave me years ago. The sweater was my mother’s, but really had no meaning to me other than it belonged to my mother. For more than 10 years it sat in a plastic bag in my memory box taking up space. In fact, I forgot what it even looked like. I first got the idea to make the sweater into a throw pillow. In my planning I decided to take the sweater out of the plastic bag and realized that even though I remembered it being a pullover style, it was actually a cardigan. Well, can’t make it into a pillow (or, if it was possible, it would be too complicated for my sewing skills), so I abandoned that idea. I also remembered it being very small, but when I took it out of the bag, it actually looked like it would fit me. So, I tried it on. It fit perfectly. Now, the winter white, black, and grey pattern isn’t exactly me, so to speak, and, the buttons didn’t all match perfectly, but I decided that I would stop storing the sweater and actually wear it from time to time. I’ve worn it three times already, and now the style doesn’t look as dated to me as when I first put it on and I’m liking the pattern better too now. But, something has to be done with those buttons! So, while I was out this weekend I picked up some plain black buttons to replace the mismatched white/yellowed buttons on the sweater. Add one more sewing project to the stack…

All in all, stuff to keep is slowly being organized, shelves are being cleared, storage bins are emptying, and more and more boxes of stuff are going to various charities. Hopefully by my next quarterly update I’ll have made significant progress on my other resolutions to crochet, sew, read, and write.

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