Details Distract Me Daily

I am compelled to notice all the little things. All the textures and colors and minutest nuances of the wonder of life. The cadence of prose, the melody of cicadas, and the smell of bread. When details aren’t quite right, I also feel responsible for putting all the bits back the way they should be lest I be distracted until it kills me.

As I consider it all, it all stares back. There’s that one circle of folded magenta fabric that fell off my fancy t-shirt. The one remaining Elsa shoe. The button from the duvet and the feather from the boa that all had purpose until their severed connection. And now they are in object limbo until further notice.The details will be my undoing on

I do have bursts of fix it-ness. The most minute of these detail distractions, after 6 months of living in limbo, I’ll then address in two minutes. Because that’s how my mind works. It’s segmented and prioritized and overwhelmed. I’ll waggle my finger and say I’ll get to you eventually. And I do. Eventually.

But until then, I’ll pass by that broken purse, that book page, that un-hemmed pair of pants dozens of times and wonder when I’ll have permission to attend to all the little things. Perpetually, those big things seem so much more pressing. And in that moment, the hour when all the details finally get their due attention, when glue is squeezed and irons get hot and needles get threaded, I’ll remember that life is always in the details. Whether I forget or remember them, I am only their temporary keeper.

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My New Home Keeping Notebook


Like many American women, I have a lust for organization. I love all the decorator tutorials on organizing my house. I hoard baskets and boxes for some future organizational purpose. I await the permission and purpose to upgrade my organizational game. And then I saw this post

This is Kelly’s ‘how to create a home management binder post on Imperfect I’m calling mine a Home Keeping Notebook. I got that familiar lusty tingle when I read this. Probably similar to the one that made Martha a millionaire. And I started to think that instead of wishing I was one of those people who had their stuff together, I could actually be one.

I printed the article on making the binder exactly one month ago on April 27, 2012. I created my binder soon afterwards. I have again embarked on the clearing of my clutter. One more step towards making my chaos manageable. Always an excellent endeavor.

Her tutorial explains the process but I’ll give you peeks into mine and explain what you’re looking at.

My cover is from a french 1920’s magazine. So that’s a ninety year old Electrolux ad. She’s dropping vacuums on the world. My binder had clear plastic on the front  to slip stuff down behind.


The inside of the cover is a fabric covered piece of foam core. I hot glued it to the inside over the pocket. Thought is would impede the closing but it didn’t.

Stamps, ideas, notes of importance, and whatever scraps of your fancy and humanity are lying around go here.






Inside, Kelly used manilla folders to create the separate sections so I did too. Not liking the flimsiness. My sections were to-dos, meals, blog, my kid’s activities, and future thoughts. And Kelly’s system used post its for the to-dos. So I did too. I ended up with separate segments for  to clean,  to organize, to create, computer, and garden. But I could add cook and write and I’d have all my functions sub-sectioned.

This is the back cover. More artwork from the 1920’s magazine. I liked the wigged woman doting on the little boy. Makes me think of my little prince. Which he really isn’t . And the people were watching a fireworks display..

And this is the drawer in the kitchen where the binder/notebook lives.What else is in there? Cigar boxes with pens, scrap paper, screws, rubber bands, screw drivers, purple post-its, measuring tape, masking tape, a cowboy hot pad, spoon rests, and grab towels.

I’ve organized a supply closet at every job I’ve had. There’s been a lot of jobs and it’s a compulsion. I imposed my order on the houses I cleaned houses during college, whether they liked it or not. That was them but this is now me.

Organizing myself has been very challenging. I have fumbled around making lists on multiple scraps of paper for years and feeling my wheels spin in muddy ruts  I have fits and spurts of systems implementation. If organization reflects ones’ state of mind than mine has been a muddled mind. I had to decide I could enjoy my life more and then let go of the chaos and stress. This is my attempt at making a happy habit. Although i refuse to grocery shop on the same day each week.

Creating the new habit of going to the binder for all my stuff and schedules has been tough. I am slowly starting to try out Kelly’s printables for meal planning and blog subject/posts. I find when I slowly and methodically make lists , then I don’t need to think about stuff anymore. This means I get to go do fun stuff like make paper flowers and cook pate with the mystery chicken livers. I like the letting go part.