In Defense of Clutter

Posted in Hiring A Maid, Uncategorized at 3:20 pm

I often read about ways to organize my life and eliminate clutter. It sounds very seductive – relieve stress, find your keys instantly, purify your mind. I wonder though about the other values you embrace on your way to a clutter-free life.

I have games from my grandmother’s generation. Handed down from relatives near & distant that know I worship hoarding. Board games in boxes so strong you could prop up the side of the home with them should it start to collapse. (One wonders if Haggard had taken out an old game & played it with his family when he was first tempted to illicit activity if he would be happier now.)

Gifts from my clutter-happy side of the family tend to be few but worthy of keeping forever. Small collector’s items, large lathes for creating hand-made wooden pens, origami kits that supply the Christmas decorations for the following year’s tree. Of course, no one said my family was practical – I have some trouble finding homes for all these things.
Other friends are definitely in the clutter-free pew. Equally generous, they tend to arrive with a multitude of cool gifts never meant to be kept. Do they know the stress of determining if the pieces can be mended or worked into some other collection so their memory is treasured?

Does buying an object knowing that it will be trashed in a relatively short time lead to a lack of respect for all things material? I’m not sure, but I think it a very slippery slope. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to find a home for this tiny screw. The ones I had like this from 25 years ago are starting to corrode.


  1. you should know :D said,

    02.08.07 at 9:42 pm

    if u want less cluttered areas in the house you should considder raising your child’s allowance or hireing her to do clean or something of that sort… slgihtly above min. wage of course!
    and was that last sentance supossed to be funny?

  2. Christine said,

    02.09.07 at 6:47 am

    Most parents are pleased when their teenage children talk to them. I think I will write a post on the evils of hiring a maid on the character of one’s children.

  3. Karen said,

    02.18.07 at 11:22 am

    I am a minimilast who does not save anything. It makes me feel bogged down and confused! However, I admire you for keeping the games. My biggest regret is having given away my Mystery Date Game from the 1960s. How do we know what’s worth keeping?

  4. christine said,

    02.21.07 at 12:42 pm

    I save anything that might be worth keeping in a memory box for each child. We then spring clean the box as a family and toss the items that no longer have attachments. If you liked the game as a child, in my house you could have requested that it be ‘memory boxed’ instead of tossed on a cleaning day. If it made it through several spring cleanings I move it to the ‘permanant memory box’.