I have this really bad habit. I let the surfaces in the living area of our house (lounge room floor, coffee table, kitchen table and kitchen bench (actually add the top of the microwave and the top of the fridge)) get really messy. We all know roughly where something is when we want it, but judging by my heart rate when a visitor’s car pulls up in the driveway, it’s not the way a house is supposed to look.
I set Elsie and Maeve to work in the lounge cleaning up: ‘Elsie, you’re on books, find all the books and put them in the bookshelf. Maeve, you’re on drawing things. Go.’
And I get from the garage a big 90L tub that I bought to store fabric in and I fill it with everything off the kitchen table and bench.
Bam, tidy house. Instantly.
I pop the tub somewhere out of sight and make coffee for the visitors.
My friend and I were talking about how when you’re going to vacuum the car, you first empty the contents of the car into a plastic bag, and you sit the plastic bag just inside the door of the house while you get the vacuum. And there its sits, holding rubbish, kinder paintings, a Barbie shoe, a cheque from Medicare and an empty brown paper bag. My friend calls these ‘elephant bags’. And the elephant bag sits there for a week until you clean it out, hoping you’ll find a phone charger.
I’ve taken the idea one step further and developed the ‘elephant tub’ concept. Only catch is they can sit for months (yes, months) and because you go on living your life, totally unaffected by the absence of whatever is in them, there’s no incentive to ever go to the tubs (yes, there are more than one) and empty them out. The newspapers in them are old, reminders have already been received for any bills that are in there, and if there’s an invitation amongst it all, we will have missed the event or birthday party.
Today’s prompt in ‘Sentence A Day’ is ‘What do you need to work on?’ I liked this prompt because we all need to work on something, and it could be anything; breaking a habit, forming a habit, ringing old friends, being for others, writing more, reading more, exercising more, eating less.
I need to work on my elephant tubs. Emptying the ones I have so I can reuse them. How about you? What do you need to work on?