Still, the house looks great.
Hit Salvation Army today to donate the Jeep-load of donatables. Trash service came today and emptied the barrels, and hauled off the other trash I left beside them. I'm well pleased with the progress I've made on cleaning this place up; and my wife is similarly pleased.
It just took a handful of hours per day stretched over one week. All you have to do is to be willing to get rid of junk you haven't used in ten years (or longer).
Example: I came across a box while cleaning the basement labeled "Ed's Dishes" which had been opened sometime since coming here but the contents of which had not been disturbed. I briefly considered going through the box, but then realized that the box has not been emptied since it was packed on December 31, 2003. I took it to Salvation Army without disturbing the contents. There is nothing in there I need and going through it would be a complete waste of time.
Another thing I did? I simply put the towels away. In the basement I found a laundry basket full of towels. I laundered them, folded them, and put them in the towel cabinet in the bathroom. No wonder I could never find any towels.
Getting rid of all the old linens helped immeasurably. Last night my wife helped me fold the other king-sized fitted sheet; I took the folded sheet and put it in the linen closet without having to cram, stuff, or pack. I set it right on top of a blanket.
I can walk to the south corners of the basement unimpeded.
We still have a long way to go, but it's so much nicer now than even a week ago. And now I have permission to spend some time in the garage.