I believe it was after I nearly stumbled head first into the garden tools, that I realized I have a problem with my charitable donating. There are three large, black trash bags sitting at the bottom of the stairs in our garage. They have been there for months. There is also a coffee maker and a brown, paper grocery bag filled with old Halloween costumes. It is because of these things that the entire family runs the risk of a broken bone or chipped tooth every time they enter or exit our mud room. They are there because I can't seem to get them to Goodwill.
Oh sure, it used to be I'd put those bags right in the car so it would be easy to drop them off, then drive around for months still carrying them, reminding myself every day that I should swing by Goodwill. But the Goodwill donation center is about 15 minutes away. And not 15 minutes in any direction I really ever need to go - it's not on my way to anything - so in my mind it's about a 30 minute round trip to nowhere. Of course, I'd more than happily drive 30 minutes to see my kids do virtually anything or to even check out a great sale on shoes. But because this is not one of those cases, the donations for Goodwill remain in the car, eventually supporting my grocery bags, padding a fragile lamp purchase or even clothing children at cold sporting events.
I realize that perhaps the convenience of the Goodwill location is getting in the way of my finishing the job. But Goodwill certainly isn't the only option for getting rid of our unwanted items. We get approximately 15 calls a day from ARC thrift stores offering to actually come by to pick up our stuff, but we see their number on Caller ID and say, in exasperation, "Sheesh! We don't have anything already! Lay off!" Then minutes later I find myself climbing over the piles for Goodwill on my way to get my cell phone out of the car.
What do I have against ARC - am I a charity snob? Do I prefer Goodwill because they have a better logo? Because they have commercials? Because I know style bloggers who will frequent Goodwill and find a never worn pair of Rag and Bone jeans? Or maybe I think Goodwill is a better choice because I can do it on my own time, not according to ARC's neighborhood pick-up schedule. Apparently though, my timeline involves about a three month delay from gathering the donations to actually donating them. I don't think it would be too hard for ARC to beat that.
ARC is like the nice guy who is always there for the girl, but never gets her attention because she's so focused on the hot guy who doesn't know she exists. And just like in any classic romantic comedy, I've reached the point where I've decided it's ARC I really want and now I'll spend the rest of the day today waiting for the phone to ring and fearing I've ignored them for too long. When they do call, I'll eagerly answer the phone and ruefully smile knowing it's not too late after all. And I will continue to answer every time they call until I have purged my house of all unused, unneeded and unwanted items.
Music up. Roll credits.
I'm wearing this today.
I prefer neutrals until a color specific holiday comes by. Since tomorrow is Valentine's Day, I'm wearing red - I'm like a fashion weathervane, really. One look at me and you know what's coming. Also, note the bizarre angle of the photograph. I had to take it myself because Geoff is out of town and I find it a little humiliating to ask my kids to take blog photos of me. I've seen a ton of bloggers take this approach to documenting their outfits, but it felt weird to me - my arm doesn't look attached to my body. I wanted to show the awesome Kimberly over a pattern though, and the fabulous new Gilded Arrow bangle with the Renegade from Stella & Dot (three supremely useful pieces to own).
gratitude: the sound of a storm moving in, online research, sale prices, abundance
thanks and love.