The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
The Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
– William Wordsworth, 1806
If Mr. Wordsworth were alive to see how encumbered by the world I am in 2012 I think he’d be truly shocked.
That was evident when my grandchildren were here last week.
Daughter Anne said: “I look at all the mess and realize it’s all ours. I’m really sorry, Mom.”
Anne is referring to high chairs, sippy cups, books and toys, portable cradles, and swings, not to mention diapers, laundry and additional food that’s crammed into the refrigerator.
I told her that I would much rather have the house messy and them here than to have a clean, shiny house (and I meant it).
It is such a treat to enjoy my grandchildren, but as you grannies and gramps out there know, it is a constant effort to keep pace with their schedules when one is at an advancing age.
If I were younger, maybe it would easier – but it’s no piece of cake. Perpetual activity abides in this house when they’re around.
To my surprise Anne said it is easier to take care of them in their 1,000 square foot apartment than here. Here we have to have a set of everything on each floor; a changing area, diapers, books, blankets, “lovies,” etc.). That was a reality check to me.
When Anne mentioned she was not accustomed so much “stuff” it triggered a decision in me yet again to get rid of more of it. So I’m on the quest again.
I mention often that I am getting rid of “stuff.” I don’t want anything new anymore and have been purging a lot lately. I must say that it is quite liberating (though if you came to my sewing room or office you’d never believe me).
I’ve gone from eliminating extraneous stuff we’ll never use again to things I might possibly be attached to emotionally. That is a real conundrum. Then we’re amassing years worth of photos and memorabilia from Tommy’s mother’s house.
When I was in a Garden Club and/or Herb Society years ago, we held meetings at our home. I needed plates, mugs, carafes, etc. I still have most of that around but don’t need them any more and need to give them away.
Tommy took Anne and family to the airplane (there was no room for me in the car) and I started ditching stuff from the minute she left.
Though Anne is used to living in such strict confines and only has one drawer she doesn’t judge me by my “things.” But she was amused by all the tools and gadgets I have: i.e., the de rigueur instant-read thermometer, plastic scrapers (used to scrape batter from bowls and clean cooled cast iron skillets), tomato scooper (nothing else does the job quite as well) and strawberry huller. And have you seen the relatively new corn scrapers that take both levels of corn off the cob with one swipe?
I have two; one by Kuhn Rikon and another by OXO and I have found that each of them performs the task for which they were intended very, very well.
Yesterday AmVets called to see if they could stop by for donations next week. Was that great timing or what?
The caller (obviously a “newbie”) was so surprised and thrilled when I said “yes” that I figured she must work on a commission. Now each of us has something to gain. I put garbage bags on my front porch on Wednesday and they’re gone. Winners all around.
While typing this I visited amazon.com to a show my boss Michelle a photo of these corn scrapers and literally laughed out loud.
Does this display an obsessive compulsion to “things” or what? What would Mr. Wordworth say?
I imagine the earth in Grasmere, England must have gently rippled as he rolled over in that British grave.
‘Til next week.