March Minimalist Challenge: Whatever Happened to Days 28, 29, 30, and 31?

I have a conscience. That probably comes as a surprise to some of my readers, but it’s true. I’ve dropped the ball many times in my life. Often it was because I was afraid my efforts wouldn’t be worthy, other times it was because I once was a world class procrastinator and would fall so far behind in a task that catching up seemed an impossibility. So I didn’t even try.

Often, it was a combination of both, like the year I was in charge of putting together a scrapbook for the president of our women’s group. I became paralyzed by a lack of creativity, a failure to organize, and I never got it done. I’m still embarrassed and ashamed of myself for letting that group down. I’m not proud of my failings. If I could go back in time I’d put together that damned scrapbook, but all I can do going forward is to be a better person.

So when I found myself struggling to keep up with the March Minimalist Challenge, in part due to Studly’s medical issues and my trip to Illinois, I promised myself I’d finish as soon as possible. Day after day I made excuses for myself. After all, it was only a promise to myself. No one else would really care. But, a promise is a promise. And I’m not the same person I was 35 years ago.

On Thursday I kept my promise. I reorganized the cabinets and drawers in all of our bathrooms at Doright Manor and came up with way more than the 118 items needed to satisfy the challenge for days 28, 29, 30, and 31. Inside one pill bottle alone there were 89 pills (I had taken one of the 90 prescribed and suffered terrible side effects).

It’s not an artistic display, and I didn’t try to add alliteration to the post, but by gum, I finished the challenge. I don’t guess the former president of my old club would like a scrapbook filled with my minimalist challenge photos. Definitely not.

Peace, people.

Scraps from Their Pasts

For Christmas I put together scrapbooks of their early years for our two children. The idea wasn’t an original one. Studly Doright’s mom, Saint Helen, had given Studly and his four siblings scrapbooks several years ago as Christmas gifts and for him at least, it remains one of his all-time favorite gifts.

I’m not a very crafts minded person, but in preparation for assembling these scrapbooks I made multiple trips to Michael’s (for non-Americans, that’s THE place to go for creative types) in order to purchase the books and to find appropriate decorative touches for each page. I bought tons of stuff and ended up using only a fraction of it. Project ideas, anyone.

I’m so awful at this type of thing that I actually started all this at the beginning of 2016 and had planned on presenting them with their gifts at Christmas that year, but I got bogged down in the minutiae, and it took me almost two years to complete the task. I’m still not sure how my mother-in-law put together five such books without going crazy, because I’m fairly certain some of my sanity was lost in the process.

I’d looked forward to presenting the books to my kids in person when we were all in Nashville that Christmas, but since I was an entire year behind, and we weren’t getting to see them for the holidays this year, I had to put them in the mail.

Now, I’d worked my butt off cropping photos and arranging them with curlicues and doodads. I’d spent countless hours searching through old school pictures and awards. The thought of trusting these works of heart to the mail almost drove me crazy(er). So, before I boxed them up for shipping to Dallas, Texas, where our son lives and to Port Byron, Illinois, where our daughter resides, I documented each and every page with the help of my trusty iPhone camera.

I’ll spare you from viewing all of the pages (you’re welcome). While I wasn’t there when they opened the books they both assured me they’d enjoyed their trips down memory lane. I’m so glad I spent the time creating these, but even more glad that I had only two children.

Peace, people.