I am bucking a long-standing tradition of making no New Year's resolutions for two reasons: the sewer backed up into our basement just before Christmas and I've seen several episodes of Hoarders.
Consequently, reduce, reuse and recycle is going to be Naperville Now's basement theme for 2011. But I need your help in the form of comments, reminders, and encouragement. Also directions to an electronics drop-off site.
I have been captivated by a most excellent article by Martha Beck since it appeared in O Magazine in 1999:
"There are two ways of going through life: Gather everything in sight, just in case you need it. Or, trust that you'll find exactly what you need, just in time. Guess which one lets you really stop and smell the roses?"
This may be the most liberating essay I've ever read. Too bad it took me two years, the sewer and the A&E Channel to tip me into action.
By New Year's Day 2012, my goal is to have a basement that looks like this:
Or as close to this as possible. Bear in mind there are things I cannot change about the basement, like the HVAC stuff and, possibly, the quantity of Christmas decorations. (And then there's that stupid crawlspace, which should be stricken from the home engineering handbook. If you're digging a basement, dig the whole goshdarned thing. Don't leave a huge square of dirt just for grins. It's gross. And damp. And gross.)
My accomplished son-in-law, bless him, built 8 feet of freestanding shelves over the weekend. These will hold a few strategic items off the floor, and as for the rest, I hope to be able to reallocate all of this stuff from my house to someone else's via the online Naperville Yard Sale.com. Or to Goodwill, which just opened south of us. Or I will recycle it. Or repurpose it. Somehow.
Then I shall paint the floor a lovely shade of grey and close the door.
I think this is doable.
Anyone have any thoughts on mold eradication?
P. S. My pal Nancy informs me that the Naperville Park District is recycling broken Christmas lights. You can read about it here. Too late for me, but perhaps it's not for you. You have until Feb. 1st .