Pack or sort???…


Yesterday, was a “sorting” day. 

The definition of sort, a verb as found in the Dictionary.com:

  1. Arrange systematically in groups; separately according to type, class, etc.: “she sorted out the clothes.”
  2. Look at (a group of things) one after another in order to classify them or make a selection:  “she sorted through her mail.”

Henceforth, in this blog, I will use either of these two words, “pack” or “sort.”
“Pack (in our case), referring to the systematic, relatively insane process (in my case) of placing myriad clothing, electronics and personal effects into four suitcases and two carry-on bags with the ultimate goal of being dragged (yes, dragged) around the world.

Oh, there is one exception to the above “pack,” the process of packing a variety of memorabilia into approximately four over-sized plastic totes which our adult children have offered to store for us in their basements. Thanks, kids!

“Sort” (in our case) referring to the systematic, relatively insane process (in my case) of examining and determining the fate of myriad household items as I peruse endless cabinets, closets, drawers, containers, boxes and old totes. 

Yesterday, I spent the entire afternoon sorting only a few items: a small plastic cabinet filled with office supplies and another smaller plastic cabinet filled with cosmetics. 

As I pulled these two dusty cabinets from my walk-in closet where they’ve resided for years in the living room with the TV on in the background, placed them in from of my comfy chair with a “to save” bin on my right an a “trash” bin on my left, working on the smaller cosmetic container first.

Small and smaller plastic cabinets

Two hours later, after picking through every single item, testing, smelling, washing, tossing I discovered I had found 26 years of good quality make-up brushes as shown in the above photo.  

After washing each and every brush and tossing a few, I placed them in this neat little black foldout makeup brush case.  I was thrilled!  It was like brand new, definitely going into the “to be packed in suitcase” pile.  

Toiletries to pack.

On the island of Madeira, Portugal, located off the coast of Africa where we’ll spend 2 1/2 months beginning May 2014, if I need a little paint brush, it will be right there!  As for a makeup brush, yes, I will use some of these, not all of them. As I wrote this today, reality hit me. 

These brushes, minus, two or three for the trip, must go in the “to be sold” pile. If I have had these brushes for so many years and still hadn’t used them it was time to say, “Bye, bye brushes.”

Bye, bye, office supplies.  Bye, bye little cabinets.  But, hello middle photo of miscellaneous toiletries (minus the brushes) including three pairs of false eyelashes that I can’t seem to get to adhere to my own lashes (bye, bye, perhaps?), eight packages of plastic brush teeth picks (our dentist says we’ve saved our gums using these), a portable magnifying mirror, silver cleaning polish (for my silver jewelry), and a plastic container with my cosmetics, enough to last for at least two years.

Office supplies for the estate sale.

All afternoon?  Well, I did four loads of laundry, ironed a pile of clothes, made dinner, washed all the display glassware in the kitchen and spoke to a friend in Florida for an hour, who also retires in the fall. 

Today? Back to the “sorting” in preparation for the upcoming shredding event next Saturday morning; one “to save’ bin on my right and one “to shred” bin on my left.

 

Worrying about ice cubes…

As I hauled out one box after another to our overflowing garbage and recycling bins today, a powerful sense of determination drove me to keep up the pace I had started on Monday.  

Yesterday, I had two more vaccinations; the first in a series of three rabies shot and a single Meningococcal vaccine.  The risks of serious side effects from either of these vaccines are fairly low, although approximately 50% of the population experience mild side effects, including flu like symptoms with a fever and/or redness and itching at the site of injection.

After Tom had these same vaccinations last Friday, he felt lethargic, achy and “out of sorts” (his words) over the weekend.  I guess I feel somewhat the same today.

In any case, I kept myself busy all day, making a trip to the auto repair shop to have a valve stem replaced on a tire, followed by a quick trip to Kohl’s to return an item I’d purchased online. While browsing the store, which I seldom do, I happened across a nifty item for our travels, buying two in the process.  Here it is:

Nifty 32 oz. BPH free drink holder

In looking on the inside of the bottle, there is a  1½” cylinder that holds a gel-like non-toxic item, that can be frozen to keep drinks cold.  While worrying about “safe” ice last weekend, I ordered four ice cube trays with lids to ensure we’d be able to make ice from purified water.  
In discussing our endless list of “habits” we’ll need to break living outside the US, we had struggled with the reality that clean, “safe” ice may be a commodity that we will be forced to include on the “goodbye” list.  

By bringing our own ice cube trays and getting settled at a vacation rental, we will fill them with bottled/purified water to make our own ice.  Every property has a freezer and bottled water for our use.

Also, the ice cube trays with lids will function as jewelry boxes for my earrings, bracelets and necklaces, preventing them from tangling. Since customs in some countries require prescriptions to be in the original bottles, we can each use a tray while situated to contain our weekly medications and supplements, thus preventing the necessity of bringing those bulky 28-day pill cases. 
When I had ordered the ice cube trays online last weekend, I had no idea I’d find these sports bottles that will serve us well for our daily doses of iced tea and water. The iced cube trays will be perfect for Tom’s cocktails.  I couldn’t get home from Kohl’s quickly enough to put the cylinders in the freezer so we could test them tonight with our iced tea.  It took about three hours for them to fully freeze.
Here we sit this evening, enjoying our new bottles of iced tea, knowing that we’ll need two more of these bottles allowing another to freeze while we are using one.  Back to Kohl’s in a few days.

The bottles originally cost $12.99 each.  They were on sale today for $5.99 each.  Today, Wednesday, is Senior Discount Day at 15% off, resulting in paying $10.18 + tax for two, as opposed to what would have been $25.95 + tax.  

While at Kohl’s today I also bought a pair of white KEDs and brown slide sandals.  The KEDs worked out great. But, when I walked around the house in the sandals, they hurt my feet and I will return them. 

The total bill for the bottles and the two pairs of shoes was $51.  Kohl’s was offering their “Kohl’s Cash” today, giving me back a $10 gift certificate that may be used for any purchase within a certain date range that happens to fall into next Wednesday.  

I will return to the store next Wednesday to return the sandals and, while there, use the $10 “Kohl’s Cash,” to purchase the two additional bottles for $5.99 each at a total of $10.18 + tax (once again using the Wednesday Senior Discount), use the “Kohl’s Cash,” pay the remaining $.18 + tax and bring home the additional two bottles.  That’s my kind of deal!