Sometimes I am very organized. I like to have organization projects where I spread stuff out and decide how it ought to go. I especially like this kind of project when it entails going to The Container Store or some such place to get spiffy new organizational equipment.

I am, on the other hand, abysmal at maintenance. Keeping things organized. Especially when there is so much that needs to be and stay organized. Books and DVDs and CDs. Papers. Photographs. All the mail that comes in. Stuff people give you. Art objects. The kids' stuff. Clothes, linens, dishes, food. Gardening stuff. Lots and lots of Stuff of all kinds. It's overwhelming.

My mother used to say that if one spent five minutes a day on (fill in the blank - often she meant pushing back one's cuticles with an orange stick or putting away the dishes or using face cream), one could stay on top of most things without letting them pile up. Right. Five minutes each day on 100 things that seem to need daily maintenance comes out to a lot of time. And yes, I know, one can spend the time today or one can spend more of it tomorrow or next week or next month. (Or never, in the case of just letting some things slide permanently, whether on purpose or not.)

But then it seems as if one is simply supposed to go through the day pinging and bouncing from one little task to another, constantly, in order to keep on top of everything. This doesn't seem right, either.

Life can get overwhelming. Often life is emotionally overwhelming. But I am finding that life is physically overwhelming, too. I often feel simply overwhelmed by stuff. Mail, things that come into the house, junk, things. Even things I like and want (dishes, food, a certain amount of clothing, linens, books and music). It just feels like too much.