I’m just saying…


Since the comment someone made that I should lighten up has struck me hard, I have spent many hours pondering. I pondered into all the years growing into myself. Yes, there are really good days and really awful ones, but I will expand on good ones and leave the bad ones to your imagination.

I want you to know that in all of the aging categories, we share good, not so good, and bad days. What I have come to know is that you CAN make your not so good days into good days, and perhaps you bad days into not so bad days. Now I sound like a babbling idiot, so what! If you get the point, good for you and if you don’t, I’ll take heed.

In order to get moving they say do the hard things first. So, I swallow a small cup of coffee from our needy coffee maker, chugalug down my recommended dosages of medications to keep the workings of my body greased, which are all not hard things. Then, I comb my hair, a hard thing. The hair issue follows me from childhood. Then, the next hard thing is getting dressed. I have two choices, I can pull on yesterday’s clothes at the foot of the bed, easy, or I can dress up fancy, hard. So I choose the hard thing. I dress as if I am going to a formal wedding. I find pretty dress up dresses, hang them in a row. Some of these lace and chiffon apparel have no place in my real life.

I must make them a part of my life or give them to the charity shop, so I put one of them on and start the vacuuming, dusting, canning, and set up house for dinner guests. I start cooking, my passion, easy and hard. You would think I would save the pretty little frocks for company, Of course not. Do you think I am daft? They would call the lunatic ward in the nearest hospital. No, no, no, the fancy dress is for doing the hard things.

When hard things are done. I pull on the clothes at the foot of my bed and rest awhile.

The reason I write is to uplift my past, down beat aging protests and also to bring you to a recent discovery and desire to beat the state of affairs in my closets.

I decided to count the hangers holding items of clothing, skipped the scarves. I added each closet’s contents and came up with 812 items. How can that be? I know many items are from the distant past and I can prove it. Some I tagged from my 50th birthday party. To say I am sentimental about my clothes hanging on the hangars is putting it mildly. What is my point? Here it is plain and simple, how many outfits can I make, mixing and matching items on the hangars? The math is mind boggling for me, but I am willing to make a wager that I will not be living long enough to wear each of the multitude of outfits. You want to know what I am saying. I am saying politely, that, if I buy something else, I have to throw two in the charity bin. If I do not, slap me.

Just saying….

How many hangars do you have? Please count and get back to me with the numbers of outfits you can make. Bet you can’t do the math, I know I can’t even begin to fathom such a project. I just know intuitively, I cannot outlive my clothes. Depressing thought. Or is it?


15 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. etty10
    Aug 23, 2015 @ 14:14:05

    Great article. Thank you!


  2. Diane isaacs
    Aug 23, 2015 @ 14:38:24

    Not fair-you have seen my closet, and I keep throwing away. I have difficulty parting with things that I love. Now it’s not an easy chore. I finally gave something away that was made for me in green suede in London England, 35 years ago. I don’t miss it, I don’t want it, it was too big. It is just painful. I have done this with my shoes, but still keep a few pairs that I want to wear. Interesting topic ! It isn’t even about size. It’s also about how much things cost. How hard were these
    To buy financially? That’s a reason for me.
    professionally I think that everyone has a different reason.


  3. Sheila Clapkin
    Aug 23, 2015 @ 15:06:59

    What a wonderful share. You certainly do know all about it. It is so true, not a matter of size, a matter of pain in parting. Yes, everyone has a different set of reasons as they approach the closet. Mine is a mixture of a long term relationship coming to an end and the momentary pain. Of all of the things I have given away, I only remember a yellow skirt and a white silk embroidered blouse that I would love to have back and again probably NOT wear.


  4. Reene
    Aug 23, 2015 @ 23:37:09

    too true–and the sizing seems to have changed–everything fits differently. my mom once said (one of her momisms) if you haven’t worn it in a year–donate it!! Reene


  5. Sheila Clapkin
    Aug 24, 2015 @ 16:37:48

    My dear Reene,
    You are so right and I neglected to discuss the difference in sizing. Yes, the fit is different, hum. Your mom is right, let me repeat her momism: “If you haven’t worn it in a year,donate it. Ok.
    Thank you!


  6. Sheila Clapkin
    Aug 24, 2015 @ 16:43:21

    As sent to me:
    I can’t even tell you how I relate. I love reading your blog. I didn’t even try to count my hangers.. Too many to count! I have a hard time getting rid of clothes. You know they say everything comes back?? I need to be like “Nike” and just do it! ..lol.

    Interesting what you wrote about all your too many clothes because I have just recently come to the same conclusion – I better start unloading and end the buying. It must be something with our age. Nice to know I’m not the only one with those thoughts.

    I put my costume clothes in one corner of my closet and it opened everything up.
    Now I do not feel crowded. What a difference.

    Oh I chuckled good with this one. I’m scared to count. Threw some stuff not long ago….but……..I always think I might need it someday……….Anyway, thanks for the vision of you vacumming in fancy clothes, etc……


  7. Nuala ryan
    Aug 24, 2015 @ 18:21:40

    I had a friend come and help with my “simplifying”… She created surprises!!!!! All clothes and scarves were displayed on my bed, chairs and patio furniture. I love scarves!!!!! My friend began a matching processing… now my closet holds outfits with matching scarves .. what fun and laughter in watching the transformation. I didn’t know this creative dimension of my precious friend. What a party!!!!!!


    • Sheila Clapkin
      Sep 07, 2015 @ 15:41:56

      What a party indeed. The laughing and the creativity is the fun and joy of closet cleaning. Usually it is a lonesome job, but you had good company bringing the joy of friendship in creating with simplifying surprises. Perhaps in time you two happy souls can come and gently help me. Thanking you in advance and thanking you for the joyful comment!


  8. Helen Baker
    Aug 27, 2015 @ 21:17:07

    Boy, can I relate! It’s just too overwhelming a project. I can’t decide without trying on, and that takes too long, Sometimes I just keep an outfit on, wear it all day, and then see how I feel about it. Shoes are the worst; they have to feel good, look good, and work with the outfit. Sometimes I wear a pair I haven’t put on in years! Then they take up space for another year or two….unused!


    • Sheila Clapkin
      Aug 27, 2015 @ 21:50:57

      You have hit the nail on the head. We can’t decide without trying on, and that
      is the time user upper. But, I have one thing to say about trying on clothes. It is
      medium impact exercise, prescribed for us by our doctors. What can be more motivating?
      When I view the job as exercise, more motivation goes into the project. Still you are right again.


  9. Sheryl
    Sep 04, 2015 @ 20:02:55

    I have too many hangers to count. 🙂 I must say that I’m impressed with how organized your closet looks–and that all of the clothes are neatly hung on wooden hangers. My closet has a mixture of wooden hangers, clear plastic hangers from stores, colored plastic hangers I bought at Target, and wire hangers from dry cleaners.


  10. Sheila Clapkin
    Sep 07, 2015 @ 15:27:36

    I cannot take any closet credit. Our Granddaughter Rachel came over a few times and helped me to arrange and re-arrange the closets. She is a closet genius. She made my closets look like home. Beautifully done, but you now I am messing them up slowly. Why? I can’t help it. I am mixing up hangers from everywhere and does not look the same a day or so after she leaves. I think she is disheartened with me.
    I will continue to get rid of STUFF!!!


    • Sheryl
      Sep 08, 2015 @ 19:22:31

      Your granddaughter sounds like a really special person–and I definitely understand how it’s difficult not to mess up a closet. Every time I clean my closet I line up all of my shoes in pairs–and within a few weeks they migrate back to being a jumbled pile that I need to sort through every time I want to find a pair of shoes.


      • Sheila Clapkin
        Sep 09, 2015 @ 10:30:58

        I have a secret to the shoe thing. Our granddaughter sat back and looked for awhile and came up with a two sided shoe arrangement. The shoes I mostly use on the right and the lesser used on the left. That leaves a very open view to the closest (two door, not a walk in) It allows me to constantly assess shoes and easily move some around. Easier to see I do not wear some at all. Out they will go, I hope.
        I have messed up the closet part now, but understand what I have to do to get it all back. I looked the other day and several lucite hangers are in there along with some wire ones Just a few, but that is how it starts. Right? I am going directly to the closet ( middle one) and going to throw two things in the charity bin. One for you and one for me.
        Thank you ever so much.

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