Tuesday, January 01, 2008

The Best of 2007?

Posted by Lara at 2:04 AM
This month's blog exchange challenge was to define and give out the "Best of 2007 Award." Where to begin? There was the Best Vacation in Orlando this past October, but that already got a bunch of blog air time. Speaking of air time, there was the Best TV Experience, which was being on the Mike and Juliet Show on Fox TV. However, that was also covered in several posts, and it makes me feel guilty for not awarding the Best Kids, Best Husband, Best Dog or a tie to the Two Best Cats. I could go sarcastic and recognize the Best Unsympathetic YMCA Staff Member who dragged his feet helping me when I got injured last week because he was busy on a personal phone call or in a related accomplishment give myself the Best Validation Award of 2007 which involved showing him the giant bruise on my knee. Of course I also want to give out the Best Friend Award, the Best New Friends Award, the Best Blogger Awards, and the list could go on and on. However, I have finally settled on one so here it is: The Wisest Act of 2007 Award. It is being given jointly to the best husband of 2007, the Big Giraffe, and me for donating all of our baby clothes to the Salvation Army.

Deciding that we were done having children was big for the Big Giraffe and me. In fact, until my younger son (YS) was about a year old, I still had pangs for a third child. This surprised everyone, most notably myself. Then in June that all began to change. I began meeting with a personal trainer, started getting into shape, and then subsequently began training for a couple triathlons later this year. While, I certainly wouldn't not have another baby because of the work it would take to get back on the wagon exercycle post-partum, I realized how comfortable I am with that stage of life being over. It cemented the completeness of the vision that my husband and I have almost always had about our family. That being said, it surely hasn't been any picnic getting back into shape.

About a month ago, I got into a major nesting spurt and no, I wasn't pregnant. I realized that it was time to say good-bye to all the baby clothes. Time was key for two reasons. First, I wanted 2007 to be a clean break. Second, the Big Giraffe's employer is closed during the week between Christmas and New Year, so anything done before new year wouldn't just be on my shoulders. That said, I did start the effort on my own well before his holiday shutdown. It was so overwhelming that it was hard to start. I gradually began sifting through all the clothes and sorting out what needed to be saved (all my older son's (OS) clothes which can still be passed down) and what could be given away (99% of YS's clothes). This was made harder when I sometimes constantly found a top that was missing the bottom (or vice versa) and had to put the whole sorting process on hold while I ransacked our small house to find the missing item. Sometimes I would get distracted or overwhelmed and a week later a short while later resume the sorting. There just may have been giant heaps of clothes on our bedroom floor making our house look like we needed help and not that we were trying to help out others. These heaps both strengthened my need to get everything done in 2007, and as an act of faith I went ahead two weeks ago and called the Salvation Army to arrange for a pickup. First available was December 31. Just in time.

The sorting continued, and it actually started going better, but last Saturday we realized we only had two days to go and a lot that still needed to be done. The Big Giraffe and I teamed up and tackled the basement together. Neither of us felt very sentimental about the clothing, which reinforced our feeling that we were ready to part with it. We went through each and every item. We paired up outfits and bagged together shoes and socks with their appropriate mates. We also had a separate set of bags for items that could not be donated, and for a surprisingly significant amount of trash that we had accumulated. We may also have found a couple unidentifiable items in our basement, but that's just hearsay. Then we hit the Land of No Return: our hall closet. I pulled a muscle in my back (and exercised the sailor side of my vocabulary) maneuvering between the Christmas tree and the hall closet door to empty out the closet. Don't worry, the kids were in bed. As part of cleaning out the old, we went after stuff of our own that needed to go. We tried on all the old coats and emptied out every pocket. We went through all the bags we no longer wanted and made sure they were cleared out and in good condition. We matched up gloves and more shoes.

Even though it undermined our candidacy for Best Procrastinators of 2007, it was so important to the Big Giraffe and me to finish this year, that we actually had everything clean and neatly folded, placed into garbage bags, and put in the basement by the evening of December 29, two days prior to the pickup! Last night the Big Giraffe spent a good three hours half hour moving a dozen bags and two boxes upstairs by the front door so that we were ready for the Salvation Army. We eagerly anticipated their arrival, feeling glad that items that had meant so much to us were going to people who could use them. We also knew that we had made the right decision for our family. The right action to take. The wisest action. Thus we earned recognition for the Wisest Act of 2007.

Then we woke up this morning and realized we were not ready to give everything away! Was another baby on the way? No. Did we want another baby to be on the way? No. (Sorry if I teased any of the grandparents.) The Salvation Army called to reschedule their pickup into 2008 because of the snow. Now all the bags have to be carried back into the basement, and they will have to be carried back upstairs for next Monday. Alas, the donation has not been completed, and the Wisest Act of 2007 Award is rescinded. I should have recognized the best vacation.

My name is Alex Elliot. I am the professional Mom of two cats, a dog, an ant farm, and oh yeah...two boys: a 4 year old and a 1 year old. I am here and part of this blog's ongoing education through this month's Blog Exchange. Lara is sharing a post about some of the best of her life in 2007 on my blog, Formula Fed and Flexible Parenting. Please enjoy her post and the other January 2008 Blog Exchange posts. Happy New Year!

9 comments:

Amanda on 4:56 AM said...

Happy New Year to you both. Off to read Lara's...

Jodi on 6:40 AM said...

I need to do the same thing. We are re-doing michael's room and their are bags of clothing in his closet. I have a girlfriend that is pregnant and she is getting it all. But, i have to get it in order first.

Happy New Year!

Heather on 1:53 PM said...

Wow. Good for you for tackling that. After this baby is born I need to do the same thing. Three is most definitely it for us. We will have a hard time fitting three kids in our little house as it is!

Mayberry on 5:22 PM said...

Go Alex (and Big Giraffe!). You should take that act on the road -- I'll hire you.

Suzanne on 6:53 PM said...

Yay team Elliot! And Alex, I am very proud of everything that you've accomplished this year.

Jenn on 8:33 PM said...

what a brilliant way to end the year - happy new year indeed!

Alex Elliot on 4:54 AM said...

Thanks so much, Lara for such a great blog exchange partner and for everyone's comments!

Jen of A2eatwrite on 1:02 PM said...

But you've got it ready to go - so YAY for you and the Big G!

Lara on 9:15 PM said...

thanks, alex, for exchanging with me! i was proud to host your post. :)

 

Life: The Ongoing Education Copyright © 2012 Design by Antonia Sundrani Vinte e poucos