Color Me Rosy

give your attitude a high-five

Spring Cleaning

Spring Summer cleaning and I have a love-hate relationship.  I love to get down and work up a sweat cleaning my house…for about ten minutes.  Getting rid of clutter takes me down memory lane and I can’t just ignore it, so I sit and I reminisce.  By the time I’ve traveled deep into my past, I’m emotionally spent and might as well call it a day.  Why work on something today when you can put it off until tomorrow, right?

This year I’ve made a little bit of a resolution.  I’m going to tackle the clutter and get things organized.  This is difficult for me because not only will I waste time holding onto memories, but I am not a very good fortune teller.  I have absolutely no idea what will happen in my future.  Chances are I won’t need my zip disk from high school BUT YOU NEVER KNOW!

Okay, that’s a bad example.  But my point is that I hold on to everything.  Seriously.  I blame it on sentiment but honestly, I’m a little afraid I’ll be featured on Hoarders.

My goal was to clear out my junk drawers, as in more than one, and the closets.  The optimist in me has refused to get rid of the clothes I wore my freshman year of college because at some point I plan on being skinny enough to wear them again.  Forget that it’s been 10 years and I’m still dreaming.

Clearing out the junk drawers wasn’t a huge deal.  I was able to talk myself into tossing most of it out with the idea that if, by some chance, I would need a menu to P.F. Changs, I could hop on the ol’ world wide web and find it.  No more random packages of shoelaces, no more take home menus, and no more seriously ancient calculators.  Junk drawers = finished.

Moving on to my closets was a little bit harder.  I had boxes of clothes, shoes, and blankets that hadn’t seen the light of day in years probably.  I’m ashamed to admit that I experienced a major brain cramp and had absolutely no idea what to do with this stuff.  You might be thinking the obvious: donate it to Goodwill.  I thought of it, too.  It just took me a little longer to come up with the idea.  Like I said, brain cramp.

I learned some things about Goodwill that I didn’t know before but seemed like obvious aspects of the organization, all of which make it easier to part with your stuff.  Aside from being completely non-profit, donating to your local Goodwill directly impacts people and programs in your community.  Talk about taking care of things on the home front.

If you’re like me and not obsessive about organization (hence the junk drawers), then a perk to taking unwanted or underused items to Goodwill is that they sort through everything.  All you need to do is drop it off and you’re done.  Simple.

If you’re looking for that tax deduction, Goodwill makes it easier than ever to get a receipt for your donation.

Goodwill is also environmental friendly.  If they are unable to resell donated items, they look to recycle or re-purpose.  No more just dumping things at a landfill.

Just think.  Cleaning out your house makes you feel lighter, more organized.  On top of that, it feels extra good to give.  You’re making an impact without really doing much at all.

Happy Summer

School is about out and pretty soon there will be more tweens on skateboards taking over our parking lots and roads than in the past nine months.  How do we keep our kids from being total couch potatoes during the summer months?  Here are a few ideas to get your kids out of the house and involved in volunteer work.

  1. Hospitals:  If your teenager is interested in medicine, encourage them to call up the local hospital and ask to speak to a volunteer coordinator.  There are various “odd jobs” that need to be done, as well as an opportunity to visit with patients if needed.  
  2. Nursing homes:  Retirement homes and nursing homes are always in need of volunteers.  I did a lot of this in college and I can tell you that it is never dull.  Besides, old people have a way of talking to kids/teenagers without imposing or being condescending.  Wisdom really does come with age.  Your kids might learn a thing or two while helping recreate memories of the elderly they get to know.
  3. Nurseries:  Does your child/teen have a green thumb?  Do they like to get their hands a little dirty?  Set ‘em loose at the local nursery.
  4. Animal shelter:  There are a lot of neglected animals that need a lot of TLC.  It takes a special kind of individual to provide it.  Someone with a love for animals.  Ringing any bells?
  5. Volunteer Center:  If you are having a hard time coming up with ideas on your own, head to the volunteer center in your area.  I guarantee they’ll be able to help.

Volunteer work always looks good on a resume or job application, and who knows?  Maybe they’ll love your teen so much that they’ll hire him/her on for a paying gig next summer.

*A note to teens:  Remember that while volunteer work is unpaid, do try to be responsible.  Don’t skip out, arrive on time, do without being asked, and to ensure the job gets done correctly don’t be afraid to ask questions.  Most importantly, have fun!