About a month ago I came across a blog post entitled “Decluttering Burst: let go of 100 things in less than an hour” on the website Be More With Less, and I decided I was going to start with my clothes. And that led to the decision to try to do a one-hour, 100-item decluttering burst every day.
I got rid of a whole buttload of stuff in the first week and shared what I was doing on Facebook. I live on a busy road, and I am fortunate that if I put stuff I don’t want anymore out by the road, it’s usually gone by the end of the day.
After my clothes, I went through the kids’ books, and I set up a free book stand on the side of the road.
After the books I moved into the kitchen and dining room and got rid of a whole bunch of glasses and dishes and crap I’ve been hanging onto for years but have never, ever used.
Somehow I ended up in the basement, and I got rid of some of the kids’ bigger toys that they haven’t touched in over a year.
That led me to a sh*t ton of chairs in the basement that I had plans to refinish but I knew I was never gonna get to.
While I was dragging stuff up to the side of the road, I saw some crap in our yard that the kids didn’t play with anymore either, and I put that out there, too.
We rearranged the kids rooms, and moved some furniture around. I also put bed frames and dressers and all kinds of stuff out by the road.
Every single thing in those pictures (and a bunch of stuff I never took pictures of) was taken by people within 24 hours of being put out there.
So I’m still getting rid of stuff.
I went through the kids’ rooms and got rid of at least six garbage bags full of clothes.
I’ve also sold some stuff on the local Facebook tag sale sites.
We had a big air conditioner that works but we just don’t use anymore. I sold that. I sold a set of Angelina Ballerina books. I sold a 12-piece lot of Number 3’s clothes. A huge Rubbermaid container of wooden blocks. I made about $150 from what I’ve sold so far just from decluttering!
Now I’m back in the kitchen.
A couple days ago I went through my cookbooks. I had about 30 of them, but I never used them! I got rid of at least half of them.
I have a secret decluttering weapon aside from my busy road.
The church my parents got married in has a small thrift store. And rather than give my stuff to Goodwill, I give it to my mom, and she takes it to the thrift store. We have Number 4’s open house to go to tonight, so my parents are coming to babysit, and I have two big garbage bags in my dining room that she’ll take when she goes home. So I won’t drive around six bags in the back of my car for the next four months.
Today I moved to an area that has really been pissing me off since school started.
The dreaded plastic container drawer.
It’s our garbage and recycling pick up tomorrow, so I wanted to do this one today.
It’s actually not anywhere near as out of control it has been in the past, but I have been wasting time every day searching through that drawer trying to find tops or bottoms to containers. We had so many lids.
I took everything out of the drawer.
There are some containers in the fridge, and the kids have a whole bunch in their lunch boxes, so there are more containers that what you see in this picture, but I know those aren’t broken, and I know they all have tops.
The dishwasher was full of clean dishes, so I emptied that, and then I matched up everything I had.
Then I got rid of everything that was left. Anything that didn’t have a lid, or lids with no bottoms, things that were cracked or broken or things just looked terrible.
It kind of kills me to get rid of that many containers that were missing lids, but I never every use them, or I pick them up, spend a couple minutes looking for a lid, can’t find one, and get really mad at myself for wasting that time.
I got rid of 31 pieces of plastic. It went right into the recycling bin.
Now everything is back in the drawer, and there is nothing in there without a matching top or bottom.
There isn’t a huge difference in a before or after picture below, but the amount of time I just saved myself every day will be significant.
Between the two bags of clothes, cookbooks, and other random stuff I’m giving my mom tonight and the stuff I took out of this drawer today, I got rid of well over 100 things!
It feels good to get rid of this stuff. I feel lighter. So does the house.
Plus I’m $150 richer.
If you are looking for some motivation to get rid of crap and simplify, there you go.
I’m nowhere near where I want to be.
But I’m getting closer!