Monday, January 20, 2014

The Mirage

You all have heard from my friend Regina before. I have learned so much from her that I have told her she should start her own blog - but until she does, I get to share some of her writing here.

The Mirage
By Regina Rosenberry

Organizing. Just hearing the word makes me want to crawl into bed and pull the covers over my head. Organized closets, cupboards, and drawers are as a mirage – I strive for them, but they disappear when about in reach. 

So I cower like a student in front of the schoolmarm. In my imagination, she is standing over me, her arms filled with lists, cleaning schedules, and day planners. I am an adult. Will I let a simple word intimidate me from learning? So I sit before her and study the Art of Organizing. In one book, I cogitate on how to organize my entire house in a week. I scrutinize photos of expertly arranged closets in a magazine, then learn about the ease of organizing with labeled, color coded containers. I ponder the theory of, “A place for everything, and everything in its place.” 

Armed with my acquired knowledge, I head to Martha Stewart's organizing aisle at the local store. I check to see how much grocery money is left for the week – money now for Miss Organization – then meander about the aisle. Excitement fills me. Clear containers, tiered racks, stacking drawers, cloth bins – perhaps I have finally found the answer to my woes. Just maybe there is magic in the brown baskets with blue-striped liners that was absent in my recycled, Payless shoe boxes. 

Minutes pass as I ponder my options and finally make my choices. When I hear the total, I wince, but surely it is money well spent for my husband has even added his blessing on this endeavor.

I go home filled with fervor for the job. I have studied the art and have armed myself with the containers and shelving recommended by experts. Miss Organization should be very pleased.

Only a few days flip by when my bubble of excitement develops a small but sure leak. So far, only the bathroom closet is organized and the one week promised by the expert is fast disappearing. The bubble shrinks smaller when I realize my children have not caught the organizing fever. I go to the bathroom closet to find my extra rugs – who were surprised to find themselves folded and organized in the brown and blue-striped basket – dumped onto the closet floor. In their place, curled inside the basket, is my three-year-old. She is baby Moses, she says. And would I please be very quiet so the King's daughter doesn't find her? 

I ease the door shut to protect her safety and walk into the living room, only to find my four-year-old lining her stuffed animals and Fisher Price people on my three-tiered spice rack (that hadn't yet made it into the cupboard.) She is having a chorus program, she says. Would I like to be the old lady in the rocking chair her chorus can sing to?

I sigh. Gathering my books and articles and pictures (oh, those lovely pictures) on the Art of Organizing, I stash them in the bookcase. On the top shelf. Miss Organization can just give me an F on my report card.  

Let the mirage keep haunting my dreams, and I will keep secretly admiring my organized friends. Maybe someday, the brown and blue-striped basket will hold rugs in folded stacks, and the tiered spice rack will have alphabetized spices. Until then, baby Moses needs a safe haven, and I best hurry to my rocking chair. The Fisher Price chorus program is about to begin.

 Regina enjoys life with her husband and five children on a farmette. She takes pleasure in digging her fingers in the garden soil and tending her milk cow, chickens, and goats.


  1. Oh, my. I laughed and I cried when I read this. I can so relate. I'm glad I'm not the only one with a baby Moses and a stuffed animal chorus program. Thank you so much for sharing. :-)

  2. i just finished reading 7, by jen hatmaker. i certainly do not agree with all the things in her book, but i learned alot. do we have excess that we need to spend so much time organizing that could be time spent on others? it was a real challenge to me! what if "organizing" is the worlds way of making us feel ok with all our stuff? we need to guard our minds and hearts against consumerism and the need to find fulfillment in things. thanks for this post!

  3. What a sweet, fun post!
    Thanks for sharing it with us. I'd love
    to read her blog, if she ever should start.

  4. My 'big' sister is one who has always been extremely clean, organized, and a wonderfully creative housekeeper. Not only has her home been spotless, but she is an outstanding florist and gourmet cook!! I say this to say...she tells us now that she has worked all of her life to become 'less obsessive and more relaxed about things" I remember her struggling to NOT jump up and start putting dishes away while guests were still eating!! And she counted it a great victory, when she left spilled milk in the fridge 'until she was good and ready for it!" Hopefully, we can all find peace, somewhere in the middle of tidy and lived-in!!

  5. My 15 yr. old daughter chuckled as she read this post out loud to me knowing it describes us all to well!!

  6. I agree with the opinion that organizing is part of everyday routines and helps to complete more tasks, but it should not embitter life. As it is said in the proverb: Man plans and God laughs.

  7. What a wonderful wordsmith Regina is! We had a great laugh today at breakfast reading this. And, by the way, so glad to know that Baby Moses is still safe!


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