Krissie: Seriously Relieved

This is a seriously happy woman. Hey, come on, you know my politics. It’s okay if you’ve got different ones, and this isn’t a political blog. There are much better places for those kind of arguments. Just count me as profoundly thankful and relieved.
But on to problems again. My magpie problems. Combined with my absolute inability to buy anything. I am filled with lust over things that Jenny is letting go of. There’s a white cabinet I would kill for. (She may end up taking it). Ditto a sideboard she gave to Lani. Outdoor furniture which we can have if we come get it.
Well, you know, that doesn’t seem so bad in retrospect. She had discarded kitchen cabinets that we could retool for our kitchen revamp, she has the world’s best washer and dryer that she’s leaving behind (though Lani and Alastair could probably use those). I see and I lust.
Anything that can get to NJ in the big truck can get home to me. I’ve scoped out Christmas presents, I’ve been brutal, and when it comes to fabric I’m driven with lust.
But I have to control myself. I’m an impoverished Taurus who loves Things. I intend to toss all sorts of stuff when I get home.
I don’t know what it is about things, but it’s not just me. They make me happy, they fire my imagination, nothing’s coming in without other stuff going out. Since this is a recycled Christmas this year I’ve got great shoes for Kate and a book of Fillmore posters for Tim and a vintage Hawaiian dress for Erin. Such good stuff.
Stuff. And yet part of me longs for a zen-like simplicity. I watch Niecy and Clean House to give myself a wake up call. It’s just part of me loves pretty.
Gotta come to terms with it. My lust for things embarrasses me. I feel like a scavenger, a vulture looming over Jenny’s magic “stuff.”
I don’t think I’ll ever get over my passion for stuff. Mini-me doesn’t have it, and I ended up no wanting most of my mother’s and sister’s obsessive collection of stuff.
But pretty things make me happy,and this is shopping without money.
Down girl. Let go of all this stuff.
I need a plan to divest myself of my stuff and divest myself of my longing for stuff. It fills the cavewoman part of me looking for supplies. It feels the empty place where there was no mother and now there’s no one for comfort. But damn, there’s stuff.
I think I’ll look at Ikea for an alternative to the white cabinet I long for so desperately, plus replacement kitchen cabinets.
And when I get back home I’ll nest. And talk to my therapist about my passion for stuff.
It’s a wicked thing. That’s the cabinet I’m lusting over. But you know, I can find one. I can find something that will work just as well at Ikea, which I will force Jenny to drive to when I come back down in December.
I’m also fond of the weeping angel, which scares the shit out of Sweetness and Light since they saw the Dr. Who episodes.
And this is the backyard she’s giving up:

47 thoughts on “Krissie: Seriously Relieved

  1. Tricia Halliday says:

    Loving stuff is not a bad thing. Just try and limit yourself so you are not over run with too much stuff. If it makes you happy how bad can it be?

  2. Kieran says:

    You’re absolutely brilliant to understand that your passion for things is serving more than a fancy for the aesthetically pleasing. It’s filling a hole, and I wonder if it borders on hoarding for you? I don’t know the actual diagnostic criteria for determining if one’s a hoarder, but your therapist should know.

    I think the general sense is that if you can’t carry on the life you want to lead because Things are hampering you, that’s where you’ve crossed the line to hoarding.

    Most hoarders aren’t self-aware. But you seem to have had practice observing yourself. That’s always a wonderful trait to have! It will save you on so many levels!

  3. My sister is a stuff person. My mom never throws anything away but that might be more out of laziness. I had a friend who could never have enough stuff. Somehow I missed this gene. Though I still have stuff to get rid off. I purge a couple times a year. And yet…

    Where does it all come from??

  4. Seriously relieved here too. And another Taurus who loves beautiful things, but for better or worse, I have issues with sensory overload, so I try to keep my home reasonably minimalist (please note the word reasonably). Of course, my day job is managing an artist’s cooperative filled with amazing pottery, glass, wood, watercolors…you can see this might get tricky 🙂

    also, can I get a “WHEW”

  5. Molly says:

    My husband is a “stuff” person. Usually, inexpensive crappy stuff. Like coffee mugs. Coke glasses given away by fast food chains. Free pens. Free anything, regardless of useful/useless status. Newspapers. Used empty envelops. I see photos of Krissie’s alleged messes and think, “Amateur.”
    One day, some day . . .

  6. Rose says:

    Count me among the happy and relieved. For the presidency, but also because marriage equality prevailed in the three states where it was up for vote and bigotry appears to have been defeated in MN. Also pleased that two states voted to end the asinine pot prohibition, though that needs to be knocked down federally before we stop pouring resources into it. Ahem – too political, I know.

    Happy for you that your inner magpie is being served, but I have to say, personally the thought of hauling home three or four bags of stuff to add to the stuff I already have is disheartening. That’s why I love the digital revolution – I can have my books and tv shows and music and it doesn’t take up any additional space. Now they just need to come up with digital clothes, make-up, and knick knacks and I’ll be set. Plus I’d never have to dust.

    My sister has been hauling stuff out of her house and bringing it to store in our basement. (Her house has water damage from Sandy and her malicious ex-husband and messed-up middle son have been going in and doing stuff like writing “fuck u bitch” on the walls and breaking eggs on the clothes that had gotten wet that she left in the bathtub to take to be washed later. So she doesn’t feel comfortable leaving anythign she cares about in the house.) She’s sort of a magpie, too – has 3 or four rubbermaid containers of glass ware that used to sit unused in her china cabinet, and will now sit unused in our garage until it can be moved to sit, unused, in a china cabinet at wherever she ends up.

  7. Catherine says:

    I found that once I realized I was gathering up all the pretty…Zealot style. As though one day I could hold ALL the pretty things, in the world, I was able to slow things down. A lot.

    I try now to appreciate without needing ownership. I get my hit at art galleries, or antique stores, or even store windows. And I use my stuff. I store it so it’s easy to find. What’s the point of the good and the pretty if I can’t use it? I store tablecloths in an open basket in shelves near my dining table. I get to see pretty textiles and set a nice table. With my attitude change I’m keeping an easier balance.

    I’m starting to get more ruthless with magazines. They get donated to the hospital a lot faster now.

  8. julianna says:

    Would it be possible for Richie (or maybe your son) to get rid of some stuff while you’re gone? You could direct them on which stuff to get rid of (like all your 1X and 2X clothes, and anything else that’s easy to specify long-distance) and they could haul it off to Goodwill before you even get home. Maybe now that you have new-to-you stuff on the way, it would be easier for you to let go of some of the existing stuff weighing you down. And if they get rid of it while you’re gone, you have no opportunity for second-guessing.

  9. Kelly S. says:

    The thing about this election that bothers me is the division. Basically half the country is happy with the results and half is not. And the media feeds this with bringing forth the extremists on both sides. People making the assumptions that if you aren’t on my side you are a stupid, hating evil-doer. We need more conversations so that people might realize that on many topics both sides agree. I was amazed at how many same answers Obama & Romney had in the site. I’d estimate at least 60%. They actually agreed more with each other than I agreed with them!

    Good luck with the stuff! May you figure out a way to deal with it. Also, if Jenny let’s you have the cupboards and cabinet, take them instead of spending money you don’t have. She will probably be happier knowing you have her stuff then simply giving it away.

  10. I love stuff too, even though I’m an Air-sign Aquarius and “shouldn’t” be so attracted to stuff. For me, it definitely fills a hole. But I have a small apartment and a storage unit, so I’ve already gotten rid of a lot of stuff and am going to continue to get rid of stuff so that I don’t have a difficult time dusting or packing when I need to move or anything like that. Then, when I finally land someplace more or less permanent again, I will have room to acquire the (few) things I’ll need for that permanent place.

    Plus, I need to be frugal, so I cannot buy stuff right now. That’s good for me, too.

    And I, too, am relieved and happy.

  11. Beyond relieved about the election and even more pleased that in my home state, almost everything on the ballot went my way. To an absolutely astounding and startling degree. When I got the ballot and looked at the kind of constitutional amendments Florida wanted, my stomach hurt. Now that Floridians have shot them all down, I feel so pleased with my neighbors!

    About stuff, though — maybe you could work on reframing? I think for some people possessions feel like security and…maybe almost virtue? I own this beautiful thing, therefore I am beautiful? Objects can seem like visible physical proof that you have good taste, have money, love beauty.

    But an another way of looking at them is that they’re chains. Every object you own is a weight that ties you where you are. If you look at an object and think, if this comes into my life, then I will have to carry it with me wherever I go, I will forever have its physical presence as a responsibility that I can’t just walk away from…well, it’s much easier to admire without lusting to own.

  12. Perhaps thinking about “pretty” being connected to a space and not to a thing might be a counterbalance to the emotional pull of stuff? Individual things are pretty, but a flea market is a place you want to visit, not live. I mean, lots of things can be pretty individually but when crammed together, the space is not pretty at all. If you think about how something fits into your space instead of how it looks all on its own, can that offset some of the urge to collect? Though, as you are very well aware, the collecting is about the moment of claiming ownership, not really about what it adds or detracts from your life.

    I know that it’s a hard day for a lot of people. I’m definitely in the “Whew” crowd myself, but at the age I am (ahem), I’ve had plenty of experience living with presidents who didn’t get my vote. We all go through that. So, for those sharing my satisfaction with the results — yes! And really, for those whose candidate didn’t win, I get it’s a hard day. Still, the good news for all? No more political ads! No more robo calls! Now isn’t that an America we can all get behind?

  13. C. says:

    This reminded me of that old saying, “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure.” And, I’ve got to admit, I know where you’re coming from. Sometimes the Stuff that I covet most represents the life that I want to lead, but am not leading currently. And I think that if I can just own that lamp, that piece of furniture, or that truly fabulous coat, then I’ll become that person. I don’t know if this is applicable for you or not, but just another view on the topic.

    Going back to that whole treasure thing, though. Have you thought about selling some of the things you’re giving away to Goodwill? Is there a consignment shop around you, maybe, that you could take some of the clothes you’re getting rid of? Or is there some furniture that just isn’t working out that you could consign with a shop? We have a gently used clothing consignment shop by me and a furniture consignment shop. I’m not saying you’re going to make a ton of money, but I think it may be worth investigating. Also, there are lots of options for selling things online. Like if you’ve maxed out space with your sewing creations, maybe selling some of them on Etsy is an option. Or if there’s fabric in your sewing room that you’ve lost affection for you could try selling that on Etsy as well.

    Good luck with the purging as you bring the new in! And maybe what you’re purging will be the new treasure in another person’s life. So that’s some more good karma right there. And, who knows, maybe you could make a few extra dollars on it to boot. 🙂

  14. Now I’m lusting for that white cabinet. Mostly because my critters knock over everything and I could put stuff in there and close the doors and they couldn’t mess it up. So pretty. I’d take that statue too!

    You’re a bad influence. LOL!

  15. Redwood Kim says:

    I’m a little confused. Is your conflict over the white cabinet over whether Jenny will take it with her? If she does, and you clear the space, Ikea it is. If she isn’t, and you have a plan for it and can make the space, take it.
    If it’s the plan and space that’s the problem, then give it a little pat and walk away.
    I am not nearly the grown up I would like to be. I want to run up to people with Romney stickers and do my little happy dance right in their face. I don’t for a minute believe that half the country supports him. Nearly haf the people who vote, maybe, but our turnout is abysmally low. Anyway, I am trying to confine my huzzahs to my house.

  16. Cindy says:

    I agree with you about the division. I wish the media would quit trying to play this up. It’s quite sad to see our country so divided.

  17. Cindy says:

    I love, love, love the cabinet. I must admit I can’t see any type of angel without thinking of the Doctor. I realize it’s not the weeping kind, but I can’t help it. 🙂 And for that reason, I’d love to have the angel in my yard. I’d forever be looking to see if it was sneaking up on me. I love to scare myself.

  18. jinx says:

    This is giving me new motivation to do some cleaning. I LOVE the way all that empty floor space makes me feel. It looks so luxurious.

  19. Not a fan of things except books. I grew up with a mother who is border line hoarder. I went the opposite way.
    I like the way Sarah Wynde talks about things. They weigh one down.
    Relieved here also.

  20. Maine Betty says:

    So true. I signed off of Facebook so I didn’t have to read the squabbles, and I’ve realized no cable was a blessing this last six months.

    Whether your candidate wins or loses, it helps to remember that an legal and orderly transition of power is nothing to sneeze at.

  21. Reb says:

    I don’t like that “retool” concept. That’s got us a garage full of junk that we’ll probably never get round to doing anything with. I’m trying to fight that urge now – unless I plan to use it this month, it’s not coming onto the property.

    That white cabinet’s lovely. If it is up for grabs AND you can think what to get rid of so you can fit it in, then yeah, go for it. But only if it won’t make your place even more cluttered.

    I missed the collectors gene, so I’m no good for advice on how to deal with it, sorry!

  22. Is that a sliding door? Nice.

    Krissie – I too suffer from TaurusImpoverishus and lust after nice things in a zen space. Weird.

    My new thing is flowers. Buy a bunch of carnations and use the cuttings in a garden. Actually drove out of my way for a free bouquet from my friend and spend 45 mins at home cutting and sorting for planned planting. I’ll tweet a photo of the heads that I saved (thank goodness for long stems.) By growing them I hope to have free pretty things for a while 😉

  23. Ack, no carnations in the photo and it’s dark here, so the pretty aint showing. For a bad pic of RED chrysanthemums and roses and asters – @SarahV2K.

  24. Nah, I just lust after it. Ikea is the place to go. I got all sorts of Danish figurines from my mother. I gave away some to the nieces, sold some on ebay, but I’m left with the ones I have an emotional attachment to, from my childhood. (Though if Niecy showed up she could have ’em for the yard sale). Maybe none of it matters. They’ll put it all in the storage area and I’ll forget all about it. I don’t have to wear clothes that fit — no one ever sees me anyway. The art glass is probably what I bonded to the most, but I don’t need that either. I don’t need nuthin’.
    thanks for reminding me.

  25. julianna says:

    Krissie, no one is saying you don’t deserve to have clothes that fit. But we all care about you and have seen you spend months depressed over your existing clutter problem, so it can be a little worrisome to see a huge pile of new stuff that you intend to add to the mix. If the plan is that you will collect this stuff in December, then it’s a win-win. You have time to clear out stuff at your house, strong motivation to do so, and a clear deadline. And then you’re rewarded with pretty, new stuff that didn’t cost you a thing.

  26. Lynda says:

    I love the cabinet and the angel, too. If there is any way you can get them home, I think you should. These items are more than just Stuff, they’re a literal physical link with someone you love very much. Ikea is great, but it sure doesn’t have the emotional connection.

    It doesn’t take a psychologist to figure out why I’ve been on a buying spree for the past three years, ever since Larry died. In my case it’s very specialized Stuff, top-of-the-line sewing machines and tons of fabric that I’ll use “just as soon as I get organized.” Well, I’m still trying to get organized… If you can ever make it out to central California, I’ll be happy to turn you loose in my stash because I know you’re a lot more likely to really use that fabric than I am.

  27. Lois says:

    I am a Leo but have the collect good stuff gene too. I know you have stuff that you are feeling overwhelmed by but also that you have been limited in your shopping by finances. These are things from someone you love, in your new size, etc. Sounds tempting to me. I have heard that we should wear what we love and what makes us feel beautiful. Maybe keep that in mind. That would certainly limit how many of my current clothes I would keep!!
    Oh, I love the cabinet.

  28. Don’t know about seriously relieved, but you look seriously beautiful in today’s photograph … so you must be doing something right!

  29. romney says:

    Oooh yeah. To my other half, his record collection is like his personality, his sense of self. I have no intention of trying to declutter that. Though I did get somewhere with digitising the CD collection.

    Thinking of possessions as excess weight works for me. I wonder what you want that white cabinet for? New storage doesn’t take away the stuff, it just gives us an excuse to clutter up the place with more. And another bit of chunky furniture to boot! After many trips to Ikea buying storage solutions I finally realised I was actually perpetuating the problem rather than curing it. Get rid of the stuff and you don’t need the storage. Get rid of the storage and you’re not tempted to fill it with stuff.

  30. romney says:

    Blink was the creepiest weeping angel episode for me. Doctor Who is on a permanent loop in my house EXCEPT for that episode. Once was enough!

  31. Cindy says:

    I’ve been begging the kids to watch that episode again, but my oldest keeps saying no. But I love scary shows, books, etc. That episode was one of my favorites. My daughter has a Doctor Who shirt that says, “The Angels Have the Phone Box” on it.

  32. Micki says:

    I think you deserve all those things — but it means when you get home, you are going to have to chuck the things you don’t deserve — the old bookcase, the floppy clothing, etc. A wise old man once told me, “One in, one out” — which means for everything you bring in, you must send another thing out. Very easy to understand, very hard to follow. (And at my level of clutter, it really should be one in, two out.)

    This is a little pessimistic, but Jenny (or other people you love) will always have excess to get rid of. You don’t have to grab on to things now. There will be more later. (Believe in abundance.)

    And finally . . . if you don’t need it, really and truly, there’s a family out there who would be delighted to get that bookcase. There’s a poor single woman who needs a new-to-her pair of shoes. You are a magpie, but you are also a generous woman. Take what you absolutely love, but remember to share the things you just like. (Be generous.)

    I love that you are willing to share these things. I really should follow my own ass-vice . . . .

  33. Micki says:

    (-: I’m so happy, too. I think Romney might have made a good president, if he morphed back into “practical Romney” — the guy who passed healthcare in his own state. But there was no guarantee that he would! And if he died . . . OMG, what a vice-president.

    Obama might make a good second-term president, too. He’s a bit conservative for my tastes, but he has shown he’s got the connections to get some things done. (-: I don’t think Jill Stein (Green Party) could do anything for her first term, simply because I don’t think she’s got the right connections. But then again . . . . Oh, well, it’s over. The real work is going to have to take place on the grassroots levels.

  34. oneoftheotherjennifers says:

    Relieved today, but feel like crap. Stayed up late to hear Obama’s speech, and I am not a night person. I feel truly wretched- is it possible to get a hang-over from dozens of potato skins and cans of soda if you don’t usually eat that kind of junk?

  35. G and T says:

    I am a single woman who loves my things. Before I left the West, I had 62 dinner plates and rarely any company. I did manage to give away one full set of dishes, complete with groovy appetizer plates. With things like that, once I reach a certain point, they don’t appeal. And now that I don’t shop for recreation, I wonder how I spent so much time shopping and depending on where I went, 1-3 hours each way in the car to get to and from. And I still don’t seem to have any “extra” time. That doesn’t seem quite fair.

  36. I consider myself to be more of a pack rat – I have collections of stuff like magazines, books, fabric, beads and other crafting supplies. I’ve finally started to organize the bins and bags I’ve been storing things in – the process itself has been painful but I can actually find things quickly and easily.

  37. Barbara Cameron says:

    Take all the lovely new to you clothes that you can. They won’t be clutter in your closet — they’ll be great for you to wear and feel good about yourself and your weight loss.

    Just think about all the money you’re saving!!! Great reward for your hard work!

  38. So the love of stuff is a Taurus thing? I’m glad I have a justification for it now. I just moved from a big house with a big yard to a two-bedroom condo with no yard. (I loved that yard and I miss my friendly raccoons, but I love the new place!)

    We had to do a massive clear-out before we moved. I hadn’t been in Cincinnati as long as Jenny, but in 20 years I’d managed to pile up a lot of stuff. (AFTER the clear-out I had 90-plus boxes of books.) The Eastgate Salvation Army and Goodwill stores are now furnished in early Becke Davis, and the shelves of Half Price Books are filled with the books my husband and I forced ourselves to part with. We gave our friends a LOT of stuff, and yet – what a surprise! – we still have a lot of stuff left. And now that we’re moved in I’ve been driven to find wall art, as if I don’t have enough already. I’ve been scavenging through things my mom stuck in her garage after moving from a big house to a small one.

    Did you have to post a picture Jenny’s gorgeous white cabinet? Now I’m seriously lusting over that, too! My mom has a fabulous white cabinet, but I didn’t get the collecting gene from strangers, and she’s not about to part with it.

    I read all these posts and respond to them in my head, but this time it was like you were talking right to me. You’ve got a truck to take you home, right? If it fits in the truck, it’s like a sign from God that you’re meant to have the stuff.

    Drive carefully – I hope the snow is melted before you get to the East Coast. This weather is making Chicago look temperate!

  39. Redwood Kim says:

    Extremes much, woman? Will you wear the clothes? Take them and get rid of the clothes that don’t fit. YOU see yourself, Richie sees you, take the dang clothes and feel good. Walk away from the cabinet.

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