“365 Boxes:” Day 49

by | Feb 18, 2023 | "365 Boxes" | 2 comments

As should be obvious by now, I needed to think a lot harder about this project before I dived in. The original idea, as you know, was to clear out one box every day from the garage and reclaim the garage, one day at a time, as usable space. And the project has been somewhat successful at clearing out boxes from the garage.

But there’s a catch I should have seen coming: Donating the items isn’t just a matter of dropping them off in the dead of night at the back door of a designated drop-off spot. My spouse (the Master Recycler and the accountant) and I both want to be sure that the items are clean and usable and that we have at least some documentation of what we donated. But neither she nor I have had the time or the energy yet to take care of these details I failed to foresee — so many of the items that have been brought out of the garage now are sitting in the living room. This was not the point of the project.

The answer, of course, is to clear out enough space in the garage so that the items in the living room can return to the garage, in an area set aside for items that will be donated. The risk here is that three years later, the items still will be waiting in the garage. The hope is that “365 Boxes” has gained enough momentum to ensure that won’t happen. But it’s a risk.

In the meantime, as I was trying to work out this new wrinkle, I pulled two boxes — OK, a box and a shopping bag — from the garage.

Boxes 49 and 50: Saturday, Feb. 18, 2023

CONTENTS: Box 49 actually is a shopping bag from Fred Meyer. It contains a variety of plastic dishes (possibly purchased at the Missoula Target) that got heavy use in our old household. Some still are in decent shape; others, not so much. The bag also contains small tubes of cosmetics, bottles of old food supplements, a breadbasket, napkins and — this is sad — a box of ancient Godiva truffles. Box 50 is an empty box — the starter kit to introduce one of our cats to a kidney-care diet. The cat still enjoys the dried food; the wet food opened, shall we say, to less enthusiastic reviews.

DISPOSITION: We’ll donate the dishes in the best shape and find ways to reuse the others. The old cosmetics and food supplements will be thrown away — and, alas, this was the fate of the candies, although I was tempted for a moment. I plan to use the breadbasket to serve bread, as odd as that may sound. The shopping bag will be returned to service with our other bags. (It’s my imagination, I’m sure, but I sometimes think the checkers at Fred Meyer are just a little peeved when I show up with bags from Natural Grocers. To be fair, though, the Natural Grocers bags are great — although the illustrations are a little odd — and you can occasionally get one for free.)

With the empty box (and with the numerous other empty boxes that will follow), here’s the test: Is this box in good enough shape to be used again? This box is in excellent shape. I will find a spot in the garage (or possibly the attic, the site of the “365 Boxes” sequel) for these top-of-the-line boxes.

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