Wednesday, December 30, 2020
Visual Incremental Progress
Wednesday, December 23, 2020
Category 2: Kindle Books
The first book that I remember actively reading on a Kindle device was Anathem by Neal Stephenson. I was traveling to DC and borrowed a circulating early Kindle reader from work because it was going to be much lighter than the three inch hardcover that I was wading through at home. That was apparently February 2011 -- per my Kindle library and it was the second e-book I'd purchased from Amazon. (The first was a short story by Eloisa James.)
Now, ten years later, I have 219 books in my Kindle holdings. Amazon isn't known for being particularly good with allowing users to manage their libraries -- so after navigating a messy import from Amazon to Goodreads and then Goodreads to a spreadsheet and then doing cross validation of the spreadsheet back with my Amazon holdings and then cleaning up my Goodreads; I now have a spreadsheet that includes even the book I bought on Tuesday.
Caveat: I use Goodreads to track things I've read. It's inexact but gives me a general idea of how many (mostly fiction) books I've made it through the year. I have a lifetime membership to LibraryThing and someday would love to get my print library updated and my e-library also aggregated there; and or on a catalog my sibling put together. Basically I'd like to have everything properly sorted and cataloged, but that's not a project I'm working on right now.
But this is a little private library of "Things I Thought I'd Like to Read' and even working back through confirming titles and adding series information, I kept thinking "ooh, that sounds good, maybe I should start that." So Past Me was Shopping Thoughtfully for Present and Future Me. It's mostly historical romances and murder mysteries, with a few giant histories added in for good measure.
So - using up -- or at least moving things to the Read pile. I plugged my tablet in --it's been sitting by the bed being wistful and hoping that someday I'll charge it properly. We'll see how that goes. It did at least turn on after a few minutes so I'm hopeful. Once it's had a moment and been restarted three times, I'm going to download a few books and see about reading rather than another endless round of Farm Heroes Saga.
I'm curious -- how do you consume ebooks? On your phone? On a separate device? My partner has moved over to a Kobo and *loves* it.... so I'm looking at the Paperwhites again if the tablet doesn't work out.
Friday, December 18, 2020
Category 1: Hand Lotion
Essentially, as long as there has been Bath and Body Works, I have had an overstock of scented hand lotion. While I was never quite as loyal as some friends to a particular scent, nor did I ever really achieve the scent-stacking of early BBW years, there was certainly the "Black Raspberry Vanilla" period of my life.
My collection got much bigger when, while living in Queens, there was a BBW between the train and my apartment. Long day? Let's go see about a new lotion. Upset about something? Clearly I need a new body scrub. Celebrating? Tiny hand sanitizers for everyone.
I'd gotten out of the habit, and then it came roaring back a couple of years ago -- a friend had gotten into a direct sales/mlm thing and since I continue to like lotion...
Tuesday, December 15, 2020
Welcome to My New Distraction
Being at home for months at a time makes you incredibly aware of the things that you own. Friends told me of epic hauls through their closets and cupboards, making plans to get to donation places early before they stopped accepting for the day/week due to others cleaning out.
I'm not there, at least not yet. There have been donation trips and a couple of large batches of Mailing Things To People (with their enthusiastic consent), but nothing systematic or comprehensive.
And this isn't either...
This is growing out of my noticing that I've bought yet another book on my Kindle app when I couldn't tell you the last time I opened and actually read something in said app. Or the piles of physical books and yarn I've bought this year as an attempted to cope with disruption, uncertainty, rage, fear, and constant change. Or vaguely wondering what is in the larger of my two jewelry boxes, which I haven't opened in at least a year, possibly longer.
There are many things that I own which are not precious -- which were at some point supposed to be transient items in my life but because of how much I bought, or because I forgot I bought it, or because it's not actively On Fire In Front Of Me This Moment, they've languished. Even more frustrating, some of these things were gifts, things which were generously given and I haven't *used* them. Some I've saved for a special occasion which clearly hasn't arrived yet.
I scrawled out a category list of things the other night I wanted to pay attention to and see if I could make a particular effort to use or use up. I came up with 29 categories in that first pass and I've added more since then. (Don't worry, the list is digital!)
I'm writing about this because I love writing-- and it helps me to work through what I think about things or examining why I have a Bath and Body works hand cream from the early 2000s and whether I actually need to keep that still, only as a perfume aide memoir.
My goals are to look at those categories, see where the overload is. Have a place to think or talk about these things. See what I can use up or donate where appropriate, discard where not. I have no aspirations of minimalism; of no-buying years; etc. I know those don't work for me and I end up over compensating and ending up with more stuff.
It was the original plan to start this in January; the traditional New Year's resolution and getting started, but the ideas have been fizzing in my head and working on this has been a new focus after an exhausting fall.
Welcome, thank you for joining me and reading along. We'll see how this goes and if I can keep momentum going for a year. Join me here or Instagram (or Twitter -- though I expect that to be lightly used) and play along. Maybe you have 10 lemon hand lotions too.