Saturday, March 26, 2011

Spring Cleaning and GIFTS

My urge to purge and clean for spring hit heavy and hard today.  MOTH and I got after it in the garage while the kiddies rode biked, rode plasma cars and piddled around with outside toys.  The weather was wonderful and it felt good to be busy with cleaning.

I pulled the laptop out to the garage and showed Big how to post to Craigslist while I pulled things out, set things aside, locating missing pieces and sorted for trash, sell or giveaway.  We posted 29 things for sale.  Three freebies.  Two are left. 

When I came inside, I still wasn't quite done.  I hit the old Thomas stuff.  Made a bunch of lots for ebay sale.  Then hit the armoire that houses clothes.  Then into Little's closet.  And on to Mimi's. 

I'm plum tuckered out tonight, but feeling satisfied and motivated.    I'm ready to dive headlong into a task per week of organizing.  Ahh, organizing.  My secret fettish. 

While I was pitching, purging, sorting and tossing, I thought alot today about gifts.   In the last several months, I've been really troubled by gifts . . both giving them and receiving.   I'm dangerously close to a blogger-taboo topic, so I'll skirt the real point and redirect toward my own point.

In the last several months, I've been contemplating gift giving.  And receiving.   I've never considered myself to be a poor gift giver.  Or a poor gift recipient.  I do believe there are two sides to every story and if ever I've given the vibe that I don't appreciate a gift, I apologize.  Likewise, if I've  missed an occasion and failed to deliver a gift, I apologize.   My personal belief is that any gift should come right from the heart.  We live in a world chock-full of materialistic stuff.  Most of us have way too much stuff.  We have houses that are full, basements that are overflowing, garages that burst at the seams and call for storage units . . . all full of STUFF.   I'd rather give a heartfelt handmade card with a personally illustrated smiley face artfully displayed on the back of a napkin than a $200 THING that is neither wanted or needed.   I'm a big fan of gift cards. 

So . . . Gifts.

Remember our days of youth when you'd get a gift and then the giver would want it back.  I can remember playground chides in that innocent childlike tone . . . "Indian Giver!!"  I was always taught that once a gift changed hands, it's like deeded property.  Once officially gifted, it's the recipeints property, and therefore belongs to them.  If they choose to keep it, sell it, or trash it . . that's their choice.  And if that happens, the person who GAVE the gift doesn't get to say anything about it.  You don't get to be mad or hurt about someone else's property.  You just don't.   Because . . . well, it's not yours anymore.

It all seems really intuitive to me, but just to make sure I'm not minimizing a bigger situation, I've been trying to come up with an example.   Sure, there are a few.  In years to come, if I gift my original wedding band to one of the girls and they hock it to feed a habit or buy fishnets, it's likely I'll be disappointed.  But, if they don't like a t-shirt that I gift to them and they leave it at the pool or put it in the goodwill box, that's okay.  It's more than okay.  My girls today sorted through baskets of STUFF figuring out what they could give, sell or trade.  I'm okay with that.  Even for things that might be important.  In the end, it's all material STUFF.  It's JUNK.  It's tangible CRAP that doesn't mean a good God damn.   I'm actually overjoyed to see perfectly good t-shirts and shorts that are too small tip the brim of the Goodwill box.  Someone can put those things to use, and I think it's important to teach kids to be selfless and giving. 

I'm not sure where that brings my thoughts . . . or if that leaves them anywhere.  But, I know that this topic has been at the front of my brain since the beginning of December, so it feels good to get it out.  I need to free up some brain space . . .

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