An Ikea wreath, used gift bags, a holiday fleece blanket, half burnt candles, a collection of colored glass vases. These are just a few of the hundreds of items lurking in my basement, awaiting my attention. Each time I pass by the basement door it’s like a collection of pointy-toed heels and handbags of yesteryear are calling my name. And as spring approaches, I am tempted, but something gets in my way. Trust be told, whatever is in the way, is likely what has caused many of the basement boxes to be moved from one house, to an apartment, to another house without even being opened. Don’t get me wrong. Motivation has struck on occasion. I’ll march myself down to the basement determined to make progress. Three hours later and I’m Facebooking photos from spring break 2002. In talking with a friend about the sad state of affairs I find my basement in, I was surprised (and to be honest, happy) to learn that her basement is also a hot mess. So much so, that her hubby has taken to doing the laundry to avoid her weekly panic attacks that strike when she heads down the stairs. And I have to think the two of us are not alone. I grew up in a house where cleaning the basement was a dreaded task. I remember my parents putting on their sweats and heading down there for hours and hours, emerging dusty, dirty, tired and requesting one of us kids to order pizza for dinner. So, what is about basements that have, even the most organized of folks, slacking? I have to believe it has something to do with the fact that life is short. The same reason Matt and I opt for a nice meal out versus a box of mac and cheese, even when money is tight. “What if we die tomorrow and mac and cheese was the last meal we ate?” Cue grabbing our coats and our car keys and hitting the road. It’s not like we are so busy and exciting that we don’t have a few spare hours to organize our basement. But with our hectic work and social schedule if we get a free few hours, we’re more likely to enjoy a good movie or family walk. Now that I’ve put my private shame of a terribly unorganized basement in print, maybe it will motivate me to clean. Or maybe it won’t. After all, who wants to spend the first few sunny weekends we have in a basement? On that note, if there is anyone who wants a free shopping spree consisting of engineering text books and CDs by the likes of The Gin Blossoms and Matchbox 20 (hey, we’re kids of the 90s), come on over!
Emily Caswell is the Managing Editor of CAWLM. She has a passion for fun, family, friends, shopping sprees, cold drinks and Lansing.