Date: 1 October 2013. Glasses.
In the last article of the Becoming Clutter-Free series (Prepping
I had the audacity to suggest you had too many plastic containers and some
judicious culling was in order. Hopefully you can be proud of the one
small neat and tidy section in your kitchen cabinets you created. Also by now you
should have dropped off the extraneous at your nearest thrift store or
donation center and are ready to have at it again. This week we're going
to make a big difference in the amount of space in at least one locker as
we prepare for life aboard a cruising boat.
And remember Mr. Anonymous from last week? Well, take a
gander at success:
I spoke with the gentleman once the project was completed
and rather suspect he thought it was just a matter
of taking a before picture and then shoving everything back in the locker
and being done with it. (insert laughter) Bless his innocent heart. However, like a
good sport he did actually do the whole job and you can see how tidy
everything is now. It looks amazing!
In chatting with him afterwards a couple of things he
He said he sat on the floor just looking at the job for at
least fifteen minutes before starting however once started, it wasn't nearly
as difficult as he'd imagined
Also, he was surprised by how much happiness he derived
from the job once completed.
And yes, it really does look amazing -- fabulous! I'm proud
of his results and can't wait to meet him one day along the waterways.
And this is at the end of your work when you live aboard:
Peaceful evenings with soft sunsets, warm breezes and cool
Life is rough, but some how we (Skipper and I) manage....
Today we are going to tackle the locker shelves you go to
when pouring a drink. I've yet to meet a dirt dweller who didn't have at
least 50 glasses, mugs, tea cups, plastic cups, traveler-commuter cups,
wine glasses, Styrofoam cups, disposable plastic party glasses, etc. --
everywhere things to drink out of! And I'd be willing to wager a cup
of hot tea (or coffee) aboard Seaweed that more than half have not been
used in the past year.
So empty out your lockers of all cups.
After everything is out, consider what you use regularly. Have you some
fabulous cups at the back that you don't want broken so you never use
them? Tell me how many cups you've broken in the past six months. Next,
please share with me how long ago (decades?) since you learned how to walk
and carry a cup without dropping it? And once you're dead, why would you
want a stranger to use your stuff when you could have enjoyed it all right
now?! Even if you did break your "special cup" can you not afford to
replace same at a thrift store?
In other words:
Enjoy this moment and use what you
Only put back what you love. Nothing else!!! Okay, I'll
grant you that you might find something you've not seen for a couple of
decades that has meaning. Yes, put them back in that lowest locker space
-- we will come up with a use for the things that have great sentimental
value. This isn't about throwing away your history, rather, it is about
clearing the chaos so you can enjoy the best of what you already possess.
Goodness knows I don't have a whole lot, but what I do have
I use and enjoy. The Star Trek mug is special (I've had it since 1993) and
I will feel sad when it breaks, but then I'll go out and find another that
pleases me and use it. Folks who visit are often tickled to find that I
serve beverages in glasses (real ones/not that plastic junk) and yes, I
have occasionally cracked one. And none of my glasses match -- not even
close, but then again I'm not out to impress anyone. Life is so good
afloat my happiness overflows, and it certainly doesn't rely on having
matching anything. My earrings match, so it's all good.
Now I did break both of Skipper's food dishes -- originally
pretty champagne glasses I found at a thrift store so she wouldn't have to
bend her little neck to eat. Of course my Deck Swabbie isn't spoilt or
Her tray is shaped like a fish; I found that at a thrift
store for 99 cents. Usually it holds her food and water, but when there's
a get-together I use the platter as a serving dish (washed of course) ...
Boaters strive to have multiple uses for each item.
As I was saying, this week's task is to select your very
best cups, glasses and such and use them. The rest go into a box (or more) and get
donated -- all done this week if you please. And try to restrain yourself
regarding plastics -- they are fine for children, but you're an adult now.
Pick glass! Yes, even on a boat there's nothing wrong with living well.
I'm not camping and for the sake of my long-term happiness aboard I want
to use nice things. Perhaps you as well?
Now if you prefer plastic, yes, of course keep what makes
you happiest. Just because I have some deep seated preferences for
glassware doesn't mean you must... if you simply put away what you truly
love, your excess chaos will solve itself naturally.
A brave Anonymous reader has volunteered this photo:
And I noted that there are no coffee cups shown above. I
wonder what he's hiding!?!
Stating the obvious: seldom does one ever have that many
friends over at one time. And if I did in a moment of insanity invite said
horde of visitors I have to believe I'd opt for
disposables. Now is the time to select from the mess what your favorites
are and use them. The rest go into the box for donation or disposal and out of your
You are progressing beyond the
hunter-gatherer stage of life.
This is Job Two in preparing to be a boater.
When there is a get together on a boat of more than another
couple or two, most boat folks (especially those of us on smaller boats)
bring our own drinking glasses. Would you like to know what guys are those
who object most stringently to real glasses aboard their boats? The
fellows who pretend they are going to sail around the world -- not that
they go anywhere. They just like to be ready. (rolling eyes) Unbelievable
to live like that in Spartan conditions for years until old age or
injury/sickness prevent departure. Booze generally has a part too. It's
Plan on making your boat a home, and if to you home means
nice things have them aboard as well. And even now do not resist using
the good stuff: it's yours. Enjoy it. If you don't once it gets to
the thrift store some poor cruiser like me will snap it up!
Motivation helps. This is S/V Oremae... she's a beauty and
just this past week sailed across the Gulf of Mexico and into Fort Myers.
Her owners, Tina (she crochets --
and Dave are terrific. We've shared more than one cup of peppermint tea
aboard that boat, and trips to the flea market as well. Plus I've heard bacon
popcorn mentioned though as I recall we were too full from the clam
chowder to have some the night when we watched
The Incredible Mr. Limpet DVD. What great memories -- simple pleasures, without the
hullabaloo of going out and spending money... that's what life afloat is
like. I love it!
And yes, that could be you sailing off aboard Oremae....
If you'd like to become a boater, there are steps to help
make the transition smoother. Take care this week of the glasses and next
week, well, I've got a plan all mapped out. The is the same drill I used
for myself -- and it worked well though I'll confess the start was the
worst. (But it did get better/easier. I promise!)
As you go thru your stock of drinking glasses definitely
pitch (give away, get rid of, donate) those you don't love. And think how nice it will be to have
another section of your lockers
that is neat and tidy.
clutter it up!
Seriously, if you won't need all those cups on your boat, you
don't need them now. And don't worry: the tasks do get easier.... Step Three in a
week or so.
I'd love to hear of your progress. Did you find any
you'd forgotten you owned?
And, are you interested in the the series continuing?
Boatyard Blues ~
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