Part Two of Three
The garage has its unique set of problems. It has its utilitarian purpose—a place for the car, some tools, some yard equipment. Our garage is also a catch-all for household items that need “temporary” storage. The previous homeowners built a full wall of shelves for one wall of the garage. On the opposite wall, they installed a series of old kitchen cabinets. Seems like a lot of storage. Maybe the actual problem is too much storage space.
I have always thought dedicated space would have its own set of rules. For example, the shelf closest to the door might be for things we need regularly. But it is over-stuffed with a mish-mash of things that need to be “hidden” (see previous post). Also, if tools are generally in one area, shouldn’t all tools be in said area? Where I find tools is where I last used them--a screwdriver for something near the front yard, is put on a table closest to the garage door rather back in the tool box.
Putting like-objects together creates a new set of problems. I am mad at myself seeing in front of me all of the things I re-bought because I didn’t know where the initial items were and therefore could not remember we had them. At least four large water jug things, two separate sets of stemless wine glasses (really, only my husband drinks wine), canvas grocery bags (at least 37), and shoes. So many shoes. Shoes I haven’t worn in eight years because they were in a box I never opened thinking it was a box of something else.
The tangled web of items creates problems such as: should this be relocated to the house, or should like-objects from the house be moved to the garage? Should I stop doing what I’m doing in the garage to look inside the house?
Divesting myself of things has created new relationships. When we first moved across the country, I gave away clothes and furniture and yard equipment on a local free recycling network. I would tell people about the item, someone would claim it, I would put the items on the front stoop, and then, they disappeared. Here my relationship is with a local nonprofit that takes the flotsam and jetsam of our life and turns it into jobs. I’m not quite sure how that happens, but here I am, with another car load. How will the old Christmas tree stand holder help create jobs? I’m not sure, but I dust the inside of its spider eggs and load it into the car, along with a set of plates, some coffee mugs, and the shoes.