On the beach

Not really, not today, but I have to return to my full-time office job tomorrow so I tried to make the most of my final day today.

M, Long Beach, WA

M – Long Beach, WA

Through the years I have learned a few things about me and going away on vacation. After several years and different tries at it, I find that returning home on a Friday and having the weekend prior to going back to work makes the most sense. Then I have time to do the dirty laundry, talk to my kids and close friends, sort through the mail, and take care of chores I have not even thought about while we were away. This year was no exception. Yesterday was a lazy day full of chores that did not seem like chores, today even more so. While we were roaming and hiking and enjoying ourselves, I found myself thinking about projects I want to start tackling when I got home. Weird, huh? I am away to stop thinking about work and yet as I grow more relaxed and detached from routine responsibilities I became more and more excited about longer-term projects I have been putting off. Like decluttering and cleaning out the garage. We have been in this house 2+ years now and there are still boxes on shelves out there that I have not looked at or thought about in all that time. My purge mood must be starting to radiate from my pores or something, because M is looking scared. He hates when I get into these moods, because suddenly he has to justify years and years of crap that he might need someday. We are not a fun and peaceful couple during these sprees, as he is a packrat and I am more a minimalist. It’s truly not a fun time, because neither of us gets 100% of what we want, but somehow the job gets done, a lot of crap gets tossed, sold, or donated, and yet even more crap gets reorganized and into a new  home.

So we started today, in the garage, and it was only a little icky. A carload of donations later, a whole pile of stuff photographed and listed on craigslist, a lot of items pitched in the trash, and stuff we are keeping reorganized and we are about a quarter of the way through the shelves. We are also left scratching our heads at how we still have tile setting materials (3.5 bags of it) and grout (1.5 bags of it) plus the 6 boxes of extra tiles, all of which need to be moved to our storage unit. I lobbied hard to donate it, but M prevailed. We may decide to tile something else and can use at least some of the thinset and the grout with the remaining tiles. Not to mention the extra paint, which is ready to be disposed of properly, plus the brushes, rollers, and miscellaneous other stuff that has expired in one way or the other. I cannot recall why we felt compelled to keep this stuff, only imagining that we were too tired after 3 months of remodeling and moving to bring ourselves to throw it out.

Through it all, we are still married and M was uninjured in the process. I have a wicked temper sometimes, and arguing about the crap in our lives is the fastest way to engage it and make me think husband-maiming thoughts. As I said, our positions on stuff are well entrenched and polar opposite, and it is one of the sure-fire ways to get us arguing heatedly. Hence our only getting through a quarter of the shelving in the garage today. It is a start and enough. M also knows the purge is upon us and at the ready to help to ensure he does not lose vital drill bits or pieces and parts that look like trash to me but are somehow critical to the workings of power tools.

Between the garage purge, grocery shopping, and dinner out with the kids, it has been a wonderful weekend, even if the beach is truly far away.

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