A Tidy Desk and A Clean Slate

Sometimes, all one needs to clean the slate, to turn a new leaf or next page, is simply a tidy desk free of distraction.

My writing has taken second fiddle the last few weeks as I’ve been sequentially sick with every upper respiratory infection that swept through South Carolina, and caring for my kids when they got the same. Top that with a GI bug at one point and the fact that all my creative energy seemed to be funneled into the tiny first trimester life that was growing, and you find me camped out in my husband’s recliner as much as possible. Yes, wonderful news for us, the new little one on the way!  This will be number 3 and I’m happily reminding myself that babyhood is easy compared to 2- and 4- year olds? Right? Regardless, joy indeed, all this is grace.

In any case. Spring is here, heralded by clouds of neon yellow coating my blue porch floors and the fact that nearby lake now has gilded waves. I’m dying to clean my windows, as the weather is so nice, and the glass panes filthy, but the pollen has sequestered me to exercise my spring cleaning and second trimester nesting instints indoors.

Back to my desk. I love my desk, which was a generous anniversary gift from my husband last year, I think in part because I’d taken over his. It’s perfectly positioned for a mother keeping one eye on littles, as it sits in our keeping room, just off the kitchen, overlooking the backyard, and in view of most of the main floor. Above you can see the requisite before and after. What you can’t see in the photo on the left are drawers crammed with expired coupons and items of all types. The box of classical curriculum that I recieved earlier this week for my 4-year-old next year had no where to call home. And somehow a pile of notes from my clinic waiting for the shredder, which you now see on the desk surface, after I pulled them down from the top shelf where I’d stuffed them. After purging all the unnessesary, shredding, then organizing, I was left with a calmer place to work, and I’m already thinking more clearly.

Up top on the right, you see the after shot. I realize I need to start being more selective about which books I keep on these shelves, and move some to our library. A perusal of them, and my many roles are revealed. I must keep my medical reference books there within arms length for when I’m wearing the doctor hat. These are complimented by the Helen Roseveare books on my “to-read” list as well as “Toxic Charity”, all of which I hope both inspire and help me navigate the challenges of my work in the free clinic. The parenting books, of which these are just a fraction, sit just to the left of the photo of my very handsome husband. Writing books, which I need to re-read, or at least reference more frequently. A stack of classics, some of which I’ve finished but the covers are too stunning to move elsewhere. The running memoirs, which I love to peruse slowly just before a good jog. And I’ve found a home on the second shelf from the top for the stack of classical curriculum that I was giddy to recieve in the mail this week. I can’t even get started talking about that right now, or I won’t stop. There are a few books I need to read about the Suzuki method, to help make the most of my 4-year-old’s work in learning cello. My own cello rests out of the kids reach on top of my desk.

The Bible, with it’s reading plan tucked inside the cover, rests in its own cubby within sight. I confess, I wish this makes me reach for it more. I have loved listening to the daily readings often on the YouVersion app, where I’ve been able to set both my version choice and my reading plan (M’cheyne’s). I can’t say enough good things about the app, as the ability to hear the passages read while I’m mindlessly folding laundry has been revolutionary.

And one of the benefits of a secretary style desk is the ability to close it up. Thankfully, now I know that behind those mirrored doors is a much better organized stash and my clean slate is ready for action. For spring. Now if the pollen count would just drop, even a little.

I’m linking this post to Simple Mom’s Project Simplify. This week she’s cleaning drawers and shelves, and this desk had plenty of them! I’m also linking this to Pancakes and French Fries The William Morris Project

{ 5 comments… add one }

  • May April 25, 2013, 10:32 AM

    Awesome desk!
    Congrats on the baby! Good luck with the respiratory crud. It is a major hanger-on.

    • Sarah April 25, 2013, 10:47 AM


  • laura April 30, 2013, 10:48 PM

    I am just back visiting now thanks to Edie’s link up. Sort of lost track for awhile…it’s nice to catch up.

    Beautiful news – baby 3 is a great gift. Congratulations!

    Now that I’ve seen your kitchen (*gasp*), this is just the most excellent place for your marvelous desk.


    • Sarah May 1, 2013, 9:43 AM

      Thanks laura! I need to pop over to your blog and see what you’ve been doing with all that wonderful land. Have you finished the Aeneid? I have to say I’m still eeking through it, but keep giving in to temptation to start other books along the way!

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