Snowy Sheep! Plus, my new favorite game

We have been getting a crazy amount of snow this winter. I’m not complaining–except for Christmas, ours has been fairly moderate and steady–we’ve had nothing like the 2 feet dumped on DC last weekend–and it’s been pretty and slow-melting. It’s been fun watching the sheep grazing through and frolicking in the snow.

And I don’t know if it’s just the cold, but their fleeces look delicious. I had to move Fudgy up to a bigger blanket yesterday–not because she needed it, but because my only spare was a size 4 and Honeybunch had pretty much destroyed his size 2, so I wanted to swipe her 3 to swap with his rags. In the process, I got a peek at her incredibly luscious, pristine fleece. With the new hay bunk, maybe next year, the unblanketed portions of their fleece will be almost as clean (though still dirty and weathered). I washed her old jacket (above) last night and I’ll be patching it up before replacing Uncle Honeybunch’s disaster (below).

(Here they are under all that fleece, just for reference!)

Speaking of cleaner fleeces, the fabulous new hay bunk for the sheepies arrived yesterday! At first, only the youngsters got it and all the grownup sheep didn’t seem to know what to make of it. I snipped out some of the crossbars in the grid to make bigger gaps for bigger noses (I’m looking over at you, Fudgy). I’m really digging the new setup. For one, I can already tell there’s going to be WAY less waste. With the open bunk, they could knock out and trample a whole flake with no effort, and so far with this one, they can only pull out about what they’re eating. I’m guessing they’ll cut their hay by almost half–that’s about how much was ending up underfoot before. And with this feeder, there’s no way for them to mash their heads deep into the bales (and the hay deep into their fleeces), one of their favorite pastimes. Plus having two separate troughs that are visually divided by the hay bunk makes for way less shoving and bullying when it’s time for grain. By contrast, they seem almost polite. Gasp! Delightful!

So  my new favorite game is to watch an episode of Hoarders and then go organize something for an hour.

I’m not typically keen on reality shows, even the real-life voyeuristic ones, but Rachel turned me on to that completely heartbreaking and addictive train wreck of a show and I must say it’s the biggest gorram cautionary tale I ever did meet. Watching it makes me feel equal parts understanding and relief. Just a hair’s breadth more crazy and I’m there.

Actually, for the last 4 months before I moved to Harveyville, when all my stuff was packed up and stacked to the ceiling in my living room and den (lunatic collections take up a LOT more space in bubble wrap and peanuts than they do all clustered adorably on shelves everywhere) and you had to maze your way through, fighting for space with two deranged, shedding dogs–one of whom required a labyrinth of rugs because she was old and couldn’t negotiate the slippery wood floors–I was those poor folks. If I hadn’t known it was just a temporary state, then the alarm and horror on the face of everyone who came into my house would have made me ashamed and depressed instead of amused and sheepish. Even now, with no excuses, if it weren’t for my excessive space here and our guests, I could easily seep into the crazy. I can totally relate.

Right now, half of my office totally looks like an episode of Hoarders. I dragged everything out of my “storage closet” (ahem–aka, where I shove everything when I’m sick of my office looking like an episode of Hoarders) so I could get to my filing cabinet at the back of it to look up my washing machine’s warranty info (it’s still under warranty! hurrah!), and I decided to leave the overflowing boxes out over my office because I didn’t want to just cram it all back in there, Fibber Magee and Molly-fashion. But I have a feeling I’m going to jam it all back in tonight, because I’ve still got bigger fish to fry and I’d just as soon not sprain my ankle hopping over stuff in the meantime.

This topic is very much on my mind right now because one of my uberlist goals is to work through One Year to an Organized Life. I’m a little behind, thanks to my vacation, but I am making really marvelous progress on my kitchen (January) and respectable progress on my bedroom (February) while also attacking another Uberlist goal, to sort through a box of crap from the storage room each week. Although with the size of this place and the scope of my crap, the time allowances in One Year to an Organized Life are just adorable. I’m working at about 10X the recommended time for everything beyond simple list-making.

My big issues are my craft stuff, my collections (most of which I’ve never even unpacked because they need homes first & I have neither mad carpentry skills, piles of money, nor access to an IKEA) and the fucking recycling. You city dwellers don’t know how lucky you are. Years of living in Austin, with breezy single-stream recycling, conditioned me to recycle. Now, despite how inconvenient it is, I simply can not not recycle. But there’s no pickup in the sticks, so recycling means accumulating and constantly maintaining and organizing tons of crap and hauling said crap off to the recycling center (which on principle, I have to combine with another trip, of course). It just never freaking ends.

The one thing I am capable of keeping perennially organized is my stash. Here are some pictures of my stash from a craftzine profile. I’ll photograph new organizational oases as they arise from the chaos. These are in a corner of my bedroom, the former Mathematics room. It’s about the only part of my bedroom I like right now.

  • Vicky says:

    Awwww – they look so snuggly in their overcoats!

  • siona says:

    ¡wooooooo! que pasada de ovejas y de lana … que envidia me das …
    un abrazo,
    SIONA

  • 10a says:

    Oh my goodness, the sheep are so splindly without their fleeces, and Honeybunch looks like a popped corn ;-)

    And I love that cabinet of yours! That might be the trick to making organizing more pleasurable I suppose, If it ends up looking pretty (and not just organized). The book that helped me plan the lay out and storage places in our new house is ‘Storage’ (no surprise there ;->) from Terence Conran. Good tips for displaying collections too!

  • Cathy says:

    Oh, I just caught about ten minutes of “Hoarders” and saw myself!!! Eik! I started cleaning out my computer/weaving room right away. To the uneducated eye I’m sure it doesn’t look any different . . . sigh . . .

  • JelliDonut says:

    Those sheep photos are adorable! Yes, hoarders makes me feel like hiring a dumpster and parking it in front of my house, but what would my DD and DH do without all their stuff? At least I’d have more room for MINE!

  • Regina Leeds says:

    I wanted to wish you well in working through One Year to an Organized Life. I also had to tell you how very dear the sheep are! I am a total animal lover and those faces took my heart. If you ever want to ask me a question about any aspect of the book or organizing in general, please feel free to write to me!

    Blessings,
    Regina

  • Nikol says:

    Thanks so much, Regina! What a treat to have you visit! (FYI: Regina’s the author of One Year to an Organized Life, my guidebook to getting a grip on my clutter.) Though I’m behind because of the scope of my stuff, I’m really staying motivated and making serious progress. My kitchen is almost there, and I’ve cleaned up my bedroom that’s been like a frat house for over a year. I’m almost ready to tackle my closets.

  • busyHSmom says:

    That gorgeous cabinet filled with all your lovely yarn makes me swoon!

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