Saturday, September 17, 2011

Using What You Have

In the final weeks before Allison went back to school we made a goal of cleaning out the closet in The Bean's room.  It was filled with a mish-mash of stuff ranging from crafting supplies to 15-year-old magazines to winter gear for The Bean.  It was overflowing, unorganized, and driving me crazy.

We tackled the closet like champs.  Then we did the hall closet.  Then the bedroom closet.  Then the kitchen.  And, even with Allison back at work I'm still looking everyday for things to get rid of, find better homes for, or make more useful.  I'm on a bender and I love it!  Maybe my nesting instinct was on a timed delay.

One day last week our cousin stopped by to bring me some files for my computer and when he walked in the door he had a huge smile on his face and a plastic bag in his hand.  He had been at a farmer's market earlier in the day and was chomping at the bit to give us a gift that he picked up there.

Enter conflicting emotions!

But first, a little back story.  Allison and I are both tea lovers.

Our Tea Collection - the top shelf is two deep at the end.
One Christmas my grandma gave me a ceramic teapot she'd had since she was a teen.  One time our brother-in-law gave Allison a birthday present of a cast-iron teapot. My brother gave us one that he picked up while living in Hawaii.

Suddenly we had a tea pot collection.

I suspect tea pots became a go-to gift when people didn't know what else to buy for us.  As of this week, I'd guess we have ten teapots stashed away in our kitchen.

So, now back to cousin Paul.  He was so excited about his find that he didn't even wrap it, and that's saying something for a gift coming from him!  He handed it over to me, I dug in, and this is what I pulled out.

It's a Pineapple!
It's so cute and he was so excited. Now, my first thought was "But we're trying to get rid of stuff, not get more."

I immediately felt guilty for thinking it.

So, I made a decision.

This is a teapot I will use.

It's going to be one more dish to wash and it might get a little banged up with every day use, but what's the point of having it if it's just going to sit in a cupboard collecting dust.

De-cluttering is about getting rid of stuff that you don't use or don't love so I'm not going to let this gift fall into either of those doomed categories.

I've used it every day since he gave it to us.

Allison used it this morning.

And it looks so cheerful sitting on our counter.


  1. It is so cute!!! I don't even drink a lot of tea, but I think I would love to have a little teapot like that.

    And I always plan on organizing my house, but typically focus on organizing my classroom first. Then I'm too tired to do it all at home too. Oh, well! :)

  2. We desperately need to organize our house and get rid of tons of stuff. I'm not looking forward to it and it doesn't help that Erik has a meltdown when we throw away things like sticks and rocks.

    Love the teapot! Adorable.

  3. @Holly: I'm still working on organizing my classroom! I feel totally behind on things this year, but at least the house seems more under control than it did earlier in the summer.

    @Shannon: I can only imagine how much you must accumulate with two little boys. I find the kid stuff overwhelming at times, and we only have one! Could you maybe sneak some "collections" away while Erik is napping? It's incredibly sweet that they treasure lovely little nature finds, but I can also relate to just wanting it GONE.