Daily Affirmation

The best things in life are free.
The second best are very expensive.
- Coco Chanel

Sunday, March 4, 2012


Have you ever had a task you wanted to complete, but it created a domino effect for about 6 other tasks?  I'd been wanting to clean out my makeup drawer for awhile now.  I had old eyeshadow compacts that I hadn't used in years, many MANY old tubes of lipstick, face makeup that had never been used up and a bunch of old pony tail elastics.  I don't know what it is about me, but it's really hard for me to throw away something that is still perfectly good - even if I know in my heart of hearts that I'm never going to use it.  I keep thinking "What if I suddenly need that burgundy shade of eyeshadow down the road?  What if I suddenly discover the thrill of concealing the shadows under my eyes?  If I throw all of this great stuff away, I'll have to repurchase it."  Well, that was my rationale.  And then Friday on the Today Show, a woman was on there talking about makeup and it's shelf life, and how old makeup can give you acne, infections, etc.  I took a look in my knarly makeup drawer and made my decision to purge.
An hour later, it all looked so much better!  Everything neat and clean and useable.  Old crusty stuff thrown away.  And then I started eyeing the tall shelves in the bathroom that hold my skin care, everyday makeup, makeup brushes, perfume, and on and on.  It was a disaster.  So messy and dusty and disorganized.  So today I tackled that chore, starting with my makeup shelf.  This is the shelf that holds my skincare products,  my makeup brushes, and the everyday makeup supplies - the eyeshadows and brow shadow.  The mascara is in the (currently) cleaned out drawer, as are my containers of bronzers and blushes.  Other than the mascara, everything else in the drawer is an occasional product - even the blush.  The stuff on the bathroom shelf is all daily wear.  So... there's sort of a system.  Don't judge me.
OK - so once everything was all cleaned out, thrown away, dusted off, and reorganized into different baskets and containers I took a look at the perfume shelf.  Total mess.  I started the purge process there.  So many "almost gone" bottles that I was never going to completely use up.  So I cleaned, threw away, dusted off, and organized everything on that shelf.  Which led to the third shelf.  The one that holds towels AND body lotion.  There were about 3 "almost gone" containers of lotion, and a mystery container of Grecian Formula that L wouldn't own up to buying.  (Really?? Who ELSE would have bought it??)  I really can't stand to waste good lotion so I managed - very messily - to empty all of them into one container.  Sooo much neater!  Grecian Formula went in the trash.
And then there was the final shelf, which held a stack of old towels no one is going to use.  So they are now the car wash towels, and now I have a shelf to store my curling iron and a pretty container of soaps on.  I didn't realize that I had so many bars of soap - I'd been given some as gifts, bought some that I thought were pretty, and had gradually collected a boatload.  So now they're all in one place (as opposed to thrown in a drawer) and I'll remember that I don't need any more because now they're right in front of me.
Now all of this led to the drawer below.  This drawer held a bunch of cosmetic samples obtained from Sephora, a really nice bottle of massage oil that I forgot I had, lots of nail polish, several candles, and a ton of stuff like old shampoos and conditioners that I'll never use.  So out went anything that had been sitting for a long time.
All of this purging felt SO GOOD!!  And the pile of trash was growing when I took a peek in the cabinets under the sinks.  With a sinking heart I realized that this area, too, needed a good purging.  I had no idea that we'd collected so many packages of Day-Quil and Ibuprofen, and ALL of it was expired.  I organized our first aid items in a basket so it all makes sense ( and in an emergency it can be easily grabbed!)  I threw out old toothbrushes and any products that neither one of us wanted or could remember buying.
I don't know how I'd amassed such a collection of hair products, but there they all were - many of them barely used or maybe half used.  And then I'd moved on to something else, I guess.  I got a bag and started piling anything that was still good and/or there was still a good amount of it left, and I will give it to my nieces this weekend when we're up there visiting them.  I added any cosmetic samples I'd been collecting, as well as some brand new mascara I am never going to use (I'd bought two of them, found I was allergic to it, and never opened the second one).  I put bath salts and bath fizzies in the bag - we don't even have a bathtub anymore!  And the little girls will love them.
When I was all done, it was so satisfying to look into all of the cupboards and shelves and see everything neat and clean and organized.  I don't know what it is about cleaning and purging, but it really gives you a lift when it's all over!  Not so much when you're in the midst of it - that's when I question my sanity in starting the project - but when it's all done I get the biggest sense of accomplishment.  All is in order in my little corner of the world.

This is completely off the subject of cleaning, but I talked to Katie yesterday, and their family was out playing in the snow.  They had gotten the girls a coaster and sled, and had found Mia a little snowboard for 70% off - about $7.00!  So for your enjoyment (I've been enjoying these pictures all day now) here are a couple of pictures of Mia shredding up the bunny hill.  I think we may have a future Olympian here.  Just sayin'.

My assignment to myself this week is to find out what the other grandkids in Denver have been up to.  I find that sons are not nearly as communicative as daughters, and so I don't get those daily reports on Lexi, Matthew and Skylee.  I shall seek the facts, and return and report.  


  1. Ok, you've inspired me to begin my Great Spring Purge during Spring Break. It is so hard to get started, but like you said, so fulfilling in the end.

    The pics are adorable! Thanks for sharing~

  2. I find that the best way to tackle a large task is to chunk it down into smaller tasks. Each task completed is a small victory which produces satisfaction and builds momentum. Before you know it the large task has been completed. You actually found a better way and its one that I also use. In the beginning you don't even acknowledge the large task. Your only goal is the small task. When the small task is completed and you achieve a sense of pride in the accomplishment you're on a roll and naturally want to experience more of the same.

    I subbed to your blog, karen (small k). Like Shelly (above) you were there for me long before I was here for you. That means a great deal to me. I have a feeling we're on opposite sides of the political aisle. However I am confident that we can and will reach across the aisle. If you stick with me I'll stick with you. Together we will find and explore common ground and prove to the world that considerations like race, religion and politics need not stand in the way of great friendships. Let's do this!

  3. I could picture this perfect. Been there, done that.

    And the pictures are darling!!

  4. No pics of the bathroom? I was holding out for a few.

  5. Now you've got me all revved up for organizing!

    And those pics of the girls are darling. That last one with the snowboard makes MIa look like the cutest little ski bunny ever.


  6. I think it is great that you got rid of all those old cosmetics. I have been meaning to do that too, but as I've said before, these days it is so easy for me to procrastinate. I have old lipsticks that are so dry, I could never use them anyway and I always seem to use the same two lipsticks anyway and there must be about ten in my drawer. I will definitely get to them in my spring cleaning days, but I don't usually hit them until April!

    As usual, the pictures are darling. Always enjoy seeing pics of the grandchildren.

  7. I'm jealous of your purging project! Good job! And yes, one project DOES lead to another. Just ask my husband. What started as a basic bathroom remodel job in the basement has involved 3 other rooms! The basement is a disaster!
    Cute pics of grand kids. I have found out that unless I have a pipe line to my daughters-in-law, I'd never know what's happening with my sons' children!


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