Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Balance the books?

What is one persons junk is anothers treasure.As you may have gathered my dads hoard of books are gathering dust. A few days ago i found a book which appears older than my dad. Its called "More English Idioms for Foreign Students" by A.J.Worral. It is the 2nd edition from 1954, published by Longmans with the old logo (they publish a lot of revision guides of which we have in abundance). The terminology is probably dated but this would be ideal for "TEFL- Teaching English as a Foreign Language".Anyway, this got me thinking, books older than my dad might be worth something......
A contact list of antiquarian bookseller including websites are available at city libraries are a  good starting point to find out the value of rare or out of print books. One website will even help set up a booksellers website from £24 a year!for further details look at and the following

I haven't been able to find how much the idiom book is.  You hardly going to make a killing on this. (idiom for "make money £ which i have just checked is an idiom used since the 50's).Here a few tips if you decide to go down this road:
  1. Compile what you are willing to get rid of make a list. Use Excel Spreadsheet
  2. categorise them according to theme e.g if books educational, language,travel etc.
  3. Get them valued. A recent book you can just check on ebay,amazon or abebooks to find out how much others are selling it for. If an old book check online or with a secondhand bookseller
  4. Description and condition of books.
  5. Cost for sending by post. You can either weigh and measue thE dimensions and then check with the royal mail (UK) website.for each item. Will you send by first class or second class?
  6. Organisation- How will your books be stored and will you know where they are especially if you have thousands of them. Group according to genre/topic. Nothing would be more frustrating if a buyer had paid but you couldn't find the item or worse it had fallen in to your pets possesion.
  7. And this is me being very "grown-up and responsible" you would have to declare your business as self employment to HM Revenues and Customs aka the "taxman"

I am interested to find out  if anybody sells second hand stuff on the web and HOW they manage to do it efficiently as i can see the above being time consuming.

Friday, 19 February 2010

allergic to your house?

Everytime my dad goes through his hoard in his room he produces a tirade of high pitched sneezes. He then takes his anti-histamine tablets prescribed for hayfever (not recommended see your physician ). The next few hours he will say he has a cold...denial again. No it's an allergic response to the hoard of books and junk. My dad sneezes everytime he shifts his hoard around. Doesn't take a scientist to spot the pattern now does it?
You see even though his stuff is neatly stacked in cardboard boxes, moving them does propel dust  on all surface areas into the air .Now here's the science cilia (tiny hair) lining the nose detect these dust mites and the allergic response is sneezing and mucous production= snot. Not to mention choking your throat. Does anybody else have this problem with resident hoarders who can't see health hazard of collecting too much things even when it hurts them?

Do you think this latest episode will prompt my dad into getting rid of junk-he told my mum that he aims to rid of 10 books a week- i shall give him the benefit of the doubt- in the meantime if anybody wants any books give me a shout i might just have what you are looking for.

ps earlier this week i said the snow had gone-ha it snowed  yesterday. Can't wait for spring and spring cleaning.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

squashed beneath the feet.

yesterday i found broken pieces of white plastic.....upon trawling around the bunk bed ladder i figured it was a crushed 3 pin plug to a study lamp. The study lamp can't reach the table so it really is just dumped on whatever it can when not in use. Someone must have crushed it- see accidents as a result of hoarding... and if i mention this not only will i get a rollicking (unsure spelling) for not using my eyes but why it wasn't it neatly folded away- get realy who neatly wraps wires around a study lamp after each use....hairdryers i can understand as it is easier to wind the wire around.My dad will argue none of his belongings break (and even if they ae soemone else will get blamed) because he "puts them away properly" i argue 95% of his material things are hardly used. For example- dad has not played any sports fo some time still there are at least 3 cricket bats,hockey sticks and squash rackets...oh and books on each sport.

Hey could have been worse the glass bulb could have been smashed.oh wait i found a broken one on teh stais a couple of months ago.
Hope this post is evidence of hoarding creating health hazards.

old technology

Alas February is here, daylight is longer and it seems the snow won't be here anytime soon. And as any person living with a hoarder will know more DAYLIGHT=more SHOPPING hours at shops/discount stores and carboot sales.
I was impressed with my dad not buying anything last month. This month he is a "proud" owner of second hand hi fi system with cd, tape player and speakers. I don't care how almost new it looks or how cheap it was. Like most technology of the 80's it is bulky, ugly and unwanted- CD's are no longer purchased but songs downladed on to phones and MP3/IPOD players but our hoarder hasn't cotton and fails to understand why anyone would wan tot get rid of it. The HIFI now sits on top a bookshelf in our front/lounge room for visitors. I can guarantee you it won't be used, it will accrue dust and be an eyesore.

Monday, 15 February 2010

SPACE Rules part two

Organising your house:SPACE stands for Sort, Purge, Assign, Containerise and equalise.
Yesterday we looked at Sort and Purge. Today...
ASSIGN a home for objects.Storage is about being able to take your things out again with the greatest of ease. If you can't find something, can't reach it, or can't use it because it was improperly stored, what good is it anyway?  Instead of asking, "Where should it go?" try asking yourself, "Where do I use it?" and "Where will I look for it?" e.g Computer games should be next to the console/computer

Keep like items together in containers that won't slide off the shelf. The container should be appropriate-too big then you are tempted to overstuff items that should not eb thee and make it more difficult to retrieve what you want at the right time. Storage containers are an opporrtunity to show your style and according to budget. Possible containers;bags, boxes, bins, bottles, bowls, and baskets. There's a variety of materials to match your decor.


I ACE: Assign a home, containerise and equalise.

Assign a home-look at each object and decide if is needed, used and how often. Have a bag for charity ready. Each item should have a "home" where it should be stored accordign to what it does e.g hairgel shoulD be kept where you do your hair ideally the bathroom near a mirror. Avoid getting distracted fom the task upon finding something old that brings back memories, you've found an old exercise book and you go off and show someone. Kitchen items in kitchen, display items in living room, clothes in bedroom in drawers and wardrobes.

Storage come in all shapes, sizes and materials.Choose a suitable and keep similar things together in it so that you can find it. Think about where it will fit in the room.


I believe this means having a balance. Regularly review what is needed and where it needs to be stored. Could be every month or 3 months either way mark it in your diary.
*the space rule is from a organise your life article i read.

Friday, 5 February 2010

Note to self-sort house:SPACE Rules

How to sort your home?
When you enter a room think SPACE, no not the lack of it but how you are going to get space following the SPACE rule:
Assign a home

You will need to be focused don't get distracted by old memorabilia and go and show it to mummy?

Follow the above in order to get more organised around the hoard.
Sort- With each item ask d i use it/love it or is it costing me money? Start with the large items that are in your face. Categorise them together eg. trousers, gardening tools.
Put items for another room, returning to others, or mechanical parts in their own piles near the door. When you get the urge to run, take a deep breath, stretch, and remember your goals.

GET RID of items broken, battered, and really don't matter to you any more -- clothing beyond repair, uncomfy shoes, dried paint, dead batteries,"Purge" doesn't necessarily mean to throw something away. It means that it should be removed from the rest of your possessions. You can toss it in the bin, recycle it, give it to someone who can use and appreciate it, or sell it.

Think of purging in economic terms. You pay for clutter with your time, energy, and money -- in rent or mortgage -- for all the space you use to house your stuff, even if it's deep in your cupboards or stashed in the attic. If you're paying £15-£20 or, more likely, closer to £30 a square foot for office space, is it worth it to pay for clutter?

Next post will part of the SPACE rule

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Girl living with parents hoard of books- FACT OR FICTION?

Of all the days today i have also come across a book review blog featuring a book entitled Dirty Little Secrets by CS Omolulu, reviewed only today!what a coincidence, i've just been saying how it is being recognised in the media.Damn there's my idea to write a story about living with a book hoarder.Here is the review of the book AND an interview by the author:

And if i can't get it at my library i may have to break my new years resolution and buy a copy!
And if you live with a serial hoarder you may want to hint this book in their direction. (Like place it on any flat surface that is not being used in a really visible place).

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Hoarding in the media

Hoarding is slowly gaining recognition as a serious Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).
In the winter of 2008 I tried explaining to a relative or like most people see it as joke. Lo and behold there was a programme on bbc radio 1- it spoke to a hoarder who admitted the problem and the underlying roots. That news clip also brought to attention the first UK conference on hoarding.

I came across this link is about a sticom in America about a hoarding family -damn they stole my idea :( but would love to see it here in the UK:

Here, reality programmes galore there is one about hoarding but not the main channels. Its called Gutted and appears on the Home channel. All of the hoarders belongings are put in a removal and the contestant has to win them back. If they can't all the objects are auctioned off and the money or theirs to keep or if they really love their crap sorry possesions they can have them back. You know what i would do. I take it the contestants have to choose participate in the first place. I do wonder if the contestants get any conselling or cognitive therapy to analyse why they hoard their particular obsession from books to memorobilia.... otherwise what stops them from going back to old habits?

Monday, 1 February 2010

my messed up room

What does a normal bedroom contain?bed, wardrobe, dressing table and storage space and a window to let the glorious sunshine in the morning right?
What does the daughter of a hoarder bedroom host?3 largeboxes with a deluxe bbq set, loads of suitcases on an ancient drawer set ("throw away? they don't make strong furniture anymore"), Cardboard boxes and bin bags of clothes- to keep, a futon with a plastic box of my books a computer table with folders (im guilty here),sliding wardrobe which one has to climb to get to and use all body force to "slide" open, stand free radiator and a bunk bed. Curtains fall off because the clutter is in the way sometimes sliding off and taking the curtains with them.Foot injuries and bruising by objects is routine, sound familiar-  you're hoarding or somebody is hoarding their "precious junk" in your room to the point a room is inhabitable- doesn't it just make you angry and feel like you can't think clearly. To get one piece of item i need to lift objects, climb stuff etc like a stunt woman. Constanly feeling disorganised and always thinking i need to clean this and that.Even when i have vacuumed the 4ft by 50cm square of carpet that is clear, whole room still looks like a tip and makes me feel like a tip.
Can i see much of the carpet? hell no(it's a hideous red anyway)
Ok my academic books are on a bookshelf in a corner but its concealed with boxes so i can't even access them leisurely. I can't fit a book shelf beacause is a control freak when it comes to holes in walls.1% of my dads books sit cheap aluminium bookshelf and line the whole stairway corridor-im just thankful that all of us can get through without ever resorting to the firebrigade imagine explaining to the telephone operator: "what's the emergency? im stuck between a pile of and the stair bannister--help!???!

That's my rant for today got the negativity out of my system
next i'll tell you about ripping the roof and ladders confused?yeah that's what im lyk evy day 2 da point i dont mke sense.