Image and text by Gabrielle.

Good morning! I’m waving hello from New York! I’m here till Wednesday afternoon. I’ll be working in my publisher’s offices as we go through the “first-pass” of my book and make a task list of everything I still need to do — tips I want to develop a bit further, additional photos I should add — things like that. It’s amazingly exciting to see all the pages printed out. Also, intimidating!

Totally unrelated, but last week on Instagram, I mentioned that my brain needed something mindless to do, so I had spent an evening “de-fuzzing” Betty’s sweater. Sometimes I need to sort of check out mentally, but can’t handle TV. I need something that will feel at least semi-productive, but not physically demanding at all. De-fuzzing is totally one of those tasks for me. It takes patience, but no skill. You just run the de-fuzzer back and forth over an area until the fuzz balls are gone. I’ve tried other brainless tasks. Ironing sort of works — it would be better if I didn’t have to stand. Inputting receipts can work, or simple filing. Doodling seems like it would work, but I haven’t had success with it. For me, nothing is quite as good as de-fuzzing.

About the sweater. It was originally Maude’s. And then Olive’s. And it’s still going strong, so Betty has now inherited the colorful, sparkly turtleneck. De-fuzzing it makes it look brand new! The thing is, de-fuzzing is not necessarily, or logically, the best use of my time. In this case, the sweater was purchased on a seasonal clearance rack at H&M years ago for $5. So it’s not a valuable sweater money wise, and it could be easily argued that it’s silly to spend two hours de-fuzzing it because my time is worth more than the sweater. But still, sometimes I find tasks like this therapeutic.

Anyway, it made me curious. Do you ever do mindless things to rest your brain? If yes, what are your favorite mindless-yet-productive tasks? I’m always looking for new ones! Also, have you ever used a de-fuzzer?

P.S. — In case you’re curious, I currently use this Remington de-fuzzer. At $8, it’s twice as much as the ones I’ve used from the dollar store, but it has lasted much, much longer. Also, has anyone tried this Sunbeam one? It’s huge! I wonder if it works twice as fast?