Author Topic: DECLUTTERING  (Read 41347 times)

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Cricket

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #15 on: August 11, 2013, 06:29:10 AM »
It's good to know others are doing some decluttering and organizing, too, and all the ideas and tips help, a lot.  I was going to say, "misery loves company", but it feels so good to be doing this, I don't find it at all miserable!

I did get two Spider plants today and the living room already feels fresher and nicer. I love those.  Each of them had tons of little baby plants on long stems.  I cut them off and will probably give them to my daughter to make starts she might be able to sell at her craft fair booth.  She does nature photos so it seems like plants would fit right in.

I am definitely celebrating this breath of fresh air being breathed into the house by paring down all that stuff that keeps staring at me from every surface and corner.   :)

Oh, and I was going to say, something that is kind of spurring me on to keep at it is this:  I tend to not open the drapes on the big windows in the living room, mainly because it puts a glare on the TV when I watch it  :-[.  Even though they are light in color, it makes for a gloomy room, so I am trying to open them every morning.  I'm beginning to think it makes me feel better, or more energetic, to have them open.  Has anyone experienced this?

I've started to declutter as well. It's about 20 years overdue! It's been hard to get my DH on board because he is a borderline hoarder. I stood in the middle of the lounge room one day and shouted "We have too much STUFF!!!"  DH said, "What do you mean by stuff?" He just didn't get it.

I then broke down and told my hubby that our house made me feel claustrophobic. That it was like trying to get out of a crowded elevator. Where we had to move this and this in order to get to that thing we need. Nothing could get put away because there was nowhere to put it. Hence, dusting didn't get done because there is just too much stuff. I told him we keep things in case we need them one day, but when we do need it we can't find it and then have to buy it (even though we've got it "somewhere").

I think I finally got through to him how depressed it was making me. So, when we knew my sister and BIL were coming for a visit we started decluttering. Initially, it just got bagged up and squeezed in the shed. At least we created some space in the house. For the first time in many years, our main living areas were clean AND tidy. So, Bijou, I know exactly what you mean when you say opening your curtains makes you feel better and more energetic! We still have a long way to go, but at least we're on our way now.

My DS commented that our house was so much bigger now. And it is. We can walk a straight path from one room to another rather than manouvering round the obstacle course :)

Thipu1

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2013, 10:43:11 AM »
I'm so happy that this thread has been started up again because my clean-up efforts have stalled badly and I need the motivation.

The situation isn't desperate but it's annoying.  We can certainly easily move around the house but there are things that could be improved.  Back in the days of Ancient Sites, I would write human interest articles on life in Ancient Egypt.    As a result, I have three big Taskets of articles copied from the library. 

There's a lot of interesting stuff like an 18th dynasty Egyptian reference to 'French Toast',  a story about a man who adopted his wife and the the possible ancient origins of baseball.  Still, I'm not likely to use them again and they're not current.  Like it or not, out they have to go because we need the Taskets for other uses.       

The 'Toss Ten' idea is certainly something to consider.

« Last Edit: August 11, 2013, 10:44:42 AM by Thipu1 »

jayhawk

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #17 on: August 11, 2013, 10:55:17 AM »
Another suggestion is to set a timer for 15 minutes. When it goes off, you are done decluttering for the day. It gives you permission to stop for the day. However, you will probably be encouraged by your progress and will continue.

Peter Walsh says if you don't love it or use it, get rid of it. May be extreme, but something to keep in mind.

Deetee

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #18 on: August 11, 2013, 02:03:54 PM »
I find that now that I am no longer a starving student cluttering gets worse and better. It's worse because we can just buy more stuff, instead of pinch every penny. It's worse because we have kids. It's (much) worse because we aren't moving every 4-8 months.
It's better because I don't need to keep half broken stuff because I might use it again or it's the only one that I have and I couldn't afford to replace it.

It helps that I may have the only 4 year old in the world that dislikes stuff and actively asks for help cleaning her room and keeps asking for "stuff" to be removed from  it. We got rid of half the toys in the toy box and 3/4 of the stuffies and she helped and never asked about them again. (There is an ongoing problem with the things she regifted to her cousin as she tries to get those back.)

Sophia

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #19 on: August 11, 2013, 02:10:02 PM »
I am decluttering too.  Husband is redoing a new house we bought in a small town nearby.  We gutted the interior, and on weekends he is redoing it.  So, in between watching our 3-year-old DD, I declutter and box stuff up.  I call it "The World's Slowest Move."  I've got a storage room rented near work, and I drop off boxes when I have a car full. 

One thing that makes it hard is that my MIL is too much of non-hoarder.  It makes me sad to read DD a book that DH bought when he was teenager at a library sale to replace one of his favorite children's books that his mother threw away.  Of course, they are some of her favorites. 

Amara

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #20 on: August 11, 2013, 02:29:10 PM »
I want to congratulate all of you on your de-cluttering efforts. GOOD GOING! I am not by nature a keeper of stuff so I tend to live minimally, but I love it. The only thing I do keep is books and I have weeded out a number of times. Still, there are several hundred and I am thinking that I might make a final, very severe weeding and see if I can get rid of a minimum of 100 of them.

At any rate, thank you all. While I don't have very much, if anything I don't believe to be beautiful or find to be useful there might be. I think I will go through the house again with a very eagle eye and see what I can put up on Freecycle. Thanks for the inspiration for even this minimalist. And good luck!

demarco

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #21 on: August 11, 2013, 03:50:34 PM »
My biggest problems are paper, clothing, and holiday decorations.  I've been making some progress on the first two categories.  I have eight large boxes of old household files in the basement.  I am almost done weeding out the first box and when I am finished, only about ten% of the box will be left.  That's a promising start.  When I'm finished with those boxes, I'll start in on the current files upstairs. I have four drawers crammed full so new papers don't get filed, just stacked on top of the cabinet. Once I weed these out, I'll be able to keep up with the filing. 
 
Clothes weeding comes in spurts, especially around the change in seasons when I move things in and out of storage.  I took five bags to the Goodwill this summer and hope to do even better by fall.

Holiday  decorations are another  matter.  I used to think of myself as the Martha Stewart of midwestern Halloween.  I've got Halloween stuff you wouldn't believe and an embarrassing quantity of Christmas ornaments.  I have never been able to part with any of them.  I've made some discreet inquiries as to whether any of my nieces and nephews might be interested in of it but no luck. 

I hope we'll be relocating anywhere from two to seven years from now and that prospect is encouraging my decluttering efforts.

 

ebrochu

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #22 on: August 11, 2013, 05:15:18 PM »
I'm so happy that this thread has been started up again because my clean-up efforts have stalled badly and I need the motivation.

The situation isn't desperate but it's annoying.  We can certainly easily move around the house but there are things that could be improved.  Back in the days of Ancient Sites, I would write human interest articles on life in Ancient Egypt.    As a result, I have three big Taskets of articles copied from the library. 

There's a lot of interesting stuff like an 18th dynasty Egyptian reference to 'French Toast',  a story about a man who adopted his wife and the the possible ancient origins of baseball.  Still, I'm not likely to use them again and they're not current.  Like it or not, out they have to go because we need the Taskets for other uses.       

The 'Toss Ten' idea is certainly something to consider.

If you want to keep these articles at all, you can try scanning them into the computer, then saving them to either an external hard drive, or even key drives. That way, you get to keep the articles, but they take up barely any room. Plus photos, other articles, basically anything scannable.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2013, 05:17:22 PM by ebrochu »



Amara

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #23 on: August 11, 2013, 05:52:16 PM »
Reporting back in ...

Immediately after I posted above I decided to do what I said I would. Now, three hours later, there are six bags and two boxes of things, plus about 80 or so books culled from my bedroom, bathroom, guest bedroom and bathroom, and the den. I just posted the cat condo on Freecycle, but otherwise everything is going to my favorite thrift store.

I still have the kitchen, living room and dining room to go after I take this break but I don't think I will find much more there. Still ... we'll see.

This feel so good. I know I won't miss any of it. It's funny how hard it is to decide to let it go, then how wonderful and easy it is once I make the decision to let it go. I really don't have any second thoughts. Freedom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mbbored

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #24 on: August 11, 2013, 06:45:42 PM »
Today I started cleaning out my pantry: getting rid of spices I never use, old canned goods, etc. It's amazing how much space is actually in there.

Bijou

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #25 on: August 11, 2013, 07:55:32 PM »
We just returned from the thrift store where we dropped off a big box of things, plus my daughter came by and picked up quite a few of my art supplies.  Then my son stopped by and when I showed him some of the things I was discarding, he took them off of my hands, which made me very happy.   I was really nervous in the thrift store when my husband was looking at a big, old pressure cooker and commenting on what a wonderful distiller it would make.  Thankfully he doesn't want to dismantle it to do so...I was really grateful to walk out of there without it!

I noticed that my DH, who is a very serious "Keeper of Any and Everything", was going through one of his big bins today and getting rid of things.  I was so happy to see that.  If I can keep him interested in doing it through the 3 other taking up space in the living room I will be thrilled and will try to steer him to those lousy industrial shelves we have covering every wall of the extra bedroom, which we will tackle together.  They are all stuffed with junk.  Two of them hold my art supplies and I am seriously paring them down of things I will never use. 

This thread is really keeping my spirits up.   :)
« Last Edit: August 11, 2013, 07:58:41 PM by Bijou »
I've never knitted anything I could recognize when it was finished.  Actually, I've never finished anything, much to my family's relief.

Sophia

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #26 on: August 11, 2013, 10:46:17 PM »
Bijou, well poo, I checked your profile to see if you might live nearby.  I could use some art supplies for DD and I.   But, you aren't central time zone.  So, no chance. 

Dorrie78

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #27 on: August 11, 2013, 10:54:15 PM »
I just attacked a corner of my closet that has been mocking me for a long time. Threw away a big trash bag of cassette tapes from high school, unusable bits of wrapping paper and a few of the dry cleaner plastic bags. I'm keeping my records, though. They seem more valuable! I also threw away boxes of used and dinged up golf balls. All golfers have these by the hundreds, no charity wants them and they are so hard to throw away!

yellowpaint

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #28 on: August 12, 2013, 12:05:49 AM »
I am working on cleaning my basement this summer. A neighbour's 16 year old daughter is helping me. I sort and hand her things telling her what bag or box they go in. She comes over for 1 1/2 to 3 hours a day. I can't handle any more than this. I tell her I am only doing this because she is there. She hauls the stuff up the stairs and into the car and then off we go. This is the only way I am going to get it done. I also found out she can do more than that and had her empty my close, remove the closet organizer, fill, sand and paint the holes. Now she is helping install the new organizer.

Bijou

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #29 on: August 12, 2013, 12:19:07 AM »
Bijou, well poo, I checked your profile to see if you might live nearby.  I could use some art supplies for DD and I.   But, you aren't central time zone.  So, no chance.
I'm in a different zone. 
Your mention of doing things with your DD reminds me of the days when my six kids were little and we would do lots of projects together.  Some of the happiest times.  We would do collages from old magazines, paper mache stuff, build things out of toothpicks or Popsicle sticks and glue, make a diorama out of a box. It was so much fun.  I miss those days and having someone to do stuff with.  My grand kids who liked to do projects have outgrown me (wahhh) and the others are too little. 
I've never knitted anything I could recognize when it was finished.  Actually, I've never finished anything, much to my family's relief.