Monday, November 29, 2010

Seven Things Week 3

I've been thinking about appraisal criteria this week.  As an archivist, appraisal for collection is part of my job and is ingrained.  In archives there are a few guidelines for keeping things - legal reasons, administrative reasons and the nebulous "historical" category.  The historical category is a bit of a catchall because not everything is necessary to keep, but the unecessary can be useful.  I tell my clients that apart from the legal and administrative records, you need to keep just enough to tell your story.

So what is my story? It's largely pragmatic with a smidge and a half of sentiment thrown in.

TSS uses the  William Morris "is it useful and/or beautiful" criteria.  We both agree that if we don't feel joy when looking at it, holding it or thinking about it, it is probably ripe for decluttering.  So keepers fill me joy, intense sentimentality or wry remembering or are just useful. It would be great if all my stuff filled me with joy etc., but I don't feel that way about the breadmaker. It's just useful.

Sometimes the useless and hideous are kept for sentimental reasons and that's fine.  I don't have a souvenir box as some declutterers do, but I do acknowledge that some things are just awful but meaningful. As we move through the weeks of the challenge, though, I know that I'll have to assess some "sentimental" things more harshly and develop some other criteria for retention. 

I'm beginning this process even now by applying an economic formula - if I had to pay to store it or move it would it be worth it? and a bit of emotional blackmail - If I hang on to it "just-in-case" am I depriving someone else of something they could use or need?  Would it bring more joy to someone else?

We've had a very bus.y week, with several unexpected family commitments (and the jam), so outs are not greater than ins, but we're still on track
  • 16 jars - donations from a colleague of TOF's who know we be jammin' - GIFT
  • 10 Tupperware lids - ordered to fit some bargain buys without seals - PURCHASE
  • 1 DVD - TOF got a TV series at a garage sale $6
  • 1 pair boots  - new Blundstone safety boots for TOF at garage saled $10
  • 1 book, novella bought last week read and released - OP SHOP
  • 1 pair jeans with truly scary sparkly bits on - OP SHOP
  • 1 lipstick holder - OP SHOP
  • 2 glass jars (nearly done with rehousing the buttons) - OP SHOP
  • 1 bottle (contained our red wine vinegar) - GIFT
  • 1 deceased watch band - BIN
  • 1 ex-battery pack thing - BIN
  • 2 vases - GIFT
  • 39 jars cherry sauce and jam
  • 7 bottles preserved cherries
IN 28
OUT 10



2paw said...

The jam jars will be useful, and better donated than bought I think.

LynS said...

Yum, cherry jam. What a luxury.