I did not take pics of the basement before we started.
I used to pretend that the mess didn’t exist. I went in there to do laundry, and that was enough for me. I had a path to the washer & dryer, and one to the furnace & water heater, and that was it. I wouldn’t look at the boxes because each time I thought of going through them, I would feel real despair.
During the first cleaning session earlier this year, the basement was on the list but got bumped off when life got in the way. I figured I’d go back to it eventually, but it wasn’t until I started making the plan for this session that I realized I couldn’t put it off any longer. An empty, organized basement was actually the key to the whole undertaking.
Because I’m losing my studio room (for a good cause), I needed a new place for some of my equipment. My basement is dry and surprisingly non-dusty, so the loom and carder are going down there. To use them, I needed wall space. All of the walls were lined with bins and boxes, some of which I hadn’t opened in 10 years. If I was to make space for my fiber equipment, I had to face the task for real.
With the help of our friend Aaron, Matt, Angie, and I started the process around 11am. First, we tackled the stuff that could be done quickly: bagging up donation clothes, dusting off the washer & dryer, breaking down boxes and throwing away trash. We were a whirlwind! I tried to go through boxes quickly, and if I couldn’t, I put them aside in favor of ones I could do. We culled our TEN boxes of books down to six. Angie and I set up some shelves I’ve had for years and never put together, and now all our camping gear is in one place. My canning supplies now have a home there, too–and I’m not worried about the jars falling over any more! Oh, and we even rediscovered a cabinet full of the paint from all the different rooms of the house, as well as a whole bunch of ceramic tiles; I think the previous owner was about to do a backsplash of some kind in the kitchen, but never completed it. I’m going to see if those tiles can be used somewhere and if not, I’ll sell them.
We carried up the donation items and made a pile next to the door. AMVETS is coming later this week to pick it all up, so if I can stay on task, we’ll have even more ready for them by then. I have four bins of random sewing things to go through, and several boxes of papers, but the difference in that room is huge. We have a ton of space down there–enough to work in, exercise in, and properly store our out-of-season items.
It’s not done yet, but it’s a whole lot better than it was this morning. There’s a plan in place for the rest of it, too. And once the sorting is finished, we’ll move Dashing’s office around and set up the new gaming area in the Man Cave, which will open up the space for my new studio, which will let us rearrange the living room…see? It’s all connected. It’s all dependent on the basement, which got off to a cracking start today.