My oldest son came and we purged the garage. You could really call it a carriage house
because in the past that is all it would hold. Thankfully, it is not attached to my 100-year-old
farm house, because it has become the storage space for everything besides a carriage.
So on this day that the cleaning out took place, if you could have been a mouse in the corner, I
am sure you would have had lots of laughs. This went like one of the TV organizing shows –
he wanted to discard what I felt was important. For instance, I came out of my office to see
him sawing long poles in half. To him it was trash – to me, great stakes for my tomato plants.
As some of you know, when I work with clients, I ask questions and they make decisions. My
typical request is “Tell me about this” and depending on the response, I will ask more
questions but clients make all their own decisions.
I am a sentimental person and want people to keep what is meaningful or useful to them. That is not how this went that day . . . Son: “You don’t need this!” Me: “ I like to garden and I want it.” Son: “It is just taking up room! Get rid of it.”
Well, 6 hours later we were still speaking and had not killed each other and the garage was purged of 35 years of stuff. I put my foot down on major remodeling projects like “Let’s saw this bookcase in half and hang the pieces up here.” I reminded him I couldn’t reach “up here”.
One big stack was made for his brother to come and claim anything he wanted. A mountain
of discarded stuff is waiting for a big trash day. I really do appreciate all his help, and now all
my gardening things are where I can get at them.
This was a good reminder to me not to ever take over my client’s decision making. To
each of us our stuff is important.
So if you are doing a family garage project here are some pointers…
Organizing Tip 1. Working on a big project with a partner helps. (Really, it does!)
Organizing Tip 2. Purging equals freedom and space. Go for it!
Organizing Tip 3. Offer unneeded items to a family member, friend or neighbor. Check with
local charities to see if you can contribute useful but no longer needed items.