Author Topic: DECLUTTERING  (Read 41230 times)

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gmatoy

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #30 on: August 12, 2013, 12:47:15 AM »
Well, my version of decluttering is a little different...I sew and my sewing "goodies" have outgrown the "sewing/guest room." So, my summer project is to sew, organize,  and/or donate as much as possible since I have the summers off of work. (Except, of course , the unpaid babysitting that we do for our granddaughter.) There is now a path in the sewing room now and I have sewn every day for a week. Not all day, but for at least some time each day. I'm trying to stay strong!
Reading everyone's struggles and victories is wonderful! I have set a goal of two hundred doll dresses for a local charity by next month and I just went over one hundred, so I know that I didn't set my goal overly high! :D

TootsNYC

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #31 on: August 12, 2013, 10:22:11 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.

Yeah, that's the sort of help I need!

Once I had a friend of mine come help me clean out my closet. She was a little slimmer than I, so I knew she'd be able to wear all the clothes I'd gotten too fat for. And since she was a parochial school teacher, I knew she'd be willing to take some of them as recompense for her time. But mostly, because I knew she had given up her time to help me, I'd stay on task and get somewhere.

It was great!

Outdoor Girl

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #32 on: August 12, 2013, 11:09:42 AM »
I just started the 19th of 20 knitted hats I need by Wednesday for a group of underprivileged kids - I should be able to finish them tonight.

So I'm tackling my yarn stash a little at a time.  I did have it whittled right down about 3 years ago and then I went cruising kijiji to build it back up again.   ::)

Decluttering is a winter pasttime for me.  I do so much gardening in the summer that the house goes to pot.  So much so that I am going to hire someone to clean for me once a month.  I can handle swiping out the toilets in between.

But this will also help me with the decluttering since I'll have to tidy up before the cleaner arrives.  Not clean; tidy so she can find the surfaces she's going to clean.

I'm posting in this thread mostly for the inspiration to get going on decluttering.  I'm hoping this thread is still going by the time the end of gardening season rolls around, whenever that is this year.
After cleaning out my Dad's house, I have this advice:  If you haven't used it in a year, throw it out!!!!.
Ontario

TootsNYC

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #33 on: August 12, 2013, 11:21:20 AM »
I have built up a fabric stash again, and I'd love to be able to get rid of it by sewing it all away.

I have mending, too--finishing that would create three benefits at once:
   -pants are mended and back in circulation
   -pants aren't sitting on the chair in the corner (less mess)
   -I feel good about getting it finished

But of course, I'm in the middle of making shelves, and I still have to paint them.

jayhawk

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #34 on: August 12, 2013, 11:44:56 AM »
Well, my version of decluttering is a little different...I sew and my sewing "goodies" have outgrown the "sewing/guest room." So, my summer project is to sew, organize,  and/or donate as much as possible since I have the summers off of work. (Except, of course , the unpaid babysitting that we do for our granddaughter.) There is now a path in the sewing room now and I have sewn every day for a week. Not all day, but for at least some time each day. I'm trying to stay strong!

Ugh. I need to do that with my scrapbook room soon. It's getting desperate.




I put myself on a scrapbook paper fast for 2013!  I have bought a few pieces here and there, but only because I didn't have what I needed in my stash. I also went through and culled out a big bag of paper and gave it to the art teacher at my daughter's school. Unfortunately, it didn't make much of a dent! The "fast" has actually been freeing. No more "I must take time to look at all the paper" at the craft stores.

Margo

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #35 on: August 12, 2013, 11:58:54 AM »
I'm another trying to declutter. My motivation is that I want to move house, so reducing the amount of STUFF will hopefully help to sell the property more easily, and maen less stuff to move when it fianlly happens.

One big thing for me is taming the book piles - I'm in the process of boxing up the books which are no on shelves but are overflowing in heaps next to, on top of and on front of the book shelves.  Which meant first clearing and rationalising the cupboard under  the stiarsso that there is somewhere out of sight to put the boxes of book.

I have to make a choice as to whether it is worth packing up a book so I am also getting rid of a lot of books - it helps me that my local library accepts donations, so I am giving as new (read once) and nearly new books to the library, and I feel I shall be able to borrow them back if I do suddenly feel I want to re-read them.

 Slightly less good but still decent books to local charity shops and the oldest/most falling apart/unlikely to be popular ones go to the local dump/recycling facility, which I understand sorts the books which are taken there and some go to charity, the remainder are recycled.

I have donated about 300 so far, and am very nearly at the point of no books not on shelves in the living room, and should be able to mange the same for the main bed.

I've also managed to get rid of lots of elderly half cans of paint and creosote, obsolete electronics and general junk.

I have a big bag of financial documents which are all over 6 years old, which I'll be disposing of via our confidential waste bags at work.

Still on the to-do list is to go through the kitchen and ditch all out of date stuff, reduce the number of useful-boxes-for-putting-things-in that I've kept (which hopefully should mean that some things which currently live on the counter tops can go into cupboards, to make the kitchen look a bit bigger!)

I'm definitely finding that having started, it's getting easier - I was looking at the heap of books stacked up against the end of one of the bookcases in my bedroom yesterday and found myself thinking "If i got rid of the 'Sharpe' novels and Jean Auel's from the bookcase, most of that stack would fit in the case, and I *know* that the library has copies, and I'm pretty sure my parents do, too, so I can borrow copies f I want to read them again.

Once I've done the books and the kitchen (which affect the appearance of the place) I plan to go through my wardrobe and get rid of things I don't wear or which I'm too fat for.

Of course, as the property market is sluggish here and so I expect it will take a long time to selll the house, the next challenge will be vigilent about keeping the place uncluttered!

I've come across a few things which have been boxed up since I moved in and am trying to decide how to deal with them - one small box is mostly ornaments - I have a hard time disposing of them as many were gifts or came to me from my Grannie's house when she died, but are not things which I want to display. I kept them for sentimental reasons but am thinking that if I haven't had them out, or felt the lack of them in the last 10 years I probably won't.

I think I will unpack the box just to see what is in there and whether there is anything I would now want on display, and then take  a deep breath and say goodbye to the rest!

It's good to know I'm not the only one trying to get rid of stuff and finding it hard work!

Outdoor Girl

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #36 on: August 12, 2013, 01:26:36 PM »
Margo, for those things that have sentimental value but that you are never going to display, would taking a picture of them work to free yourself from the need to keep them?

I'm in a similar boat with some stuff.  I have a lot of things that my Mom gave me that I'm having a really hard time parting with.  I just need to give them away, already.  She's been gone, coming up 10 years in September.

And my Dad is going to be downsizing in the near future so I'm going to have a lot more stuff to deal with.  My Mom loved collecting dishes so I'm going to have to sort through those and keep the ones that mean a lot to me and sell the rest.  I have collections of my own - including about 60 tea cups and saucers.  I may use the ones I don't like as well to package cookies in for my Dad's church's Christmas bazaar - put cookies in the cups and put sugar cubes, decorated as presents, around on the saucer.
After cleaning out my Dad's house, I have this advice:  If you haven't used it in a year, throw it out!!!!.
Ontario

z_squared82

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #37 on: August 12, 2013, 01:39:17 PM »
Oh, I find decluttering so cathartic! I say I go through what I call a ďpurging bingeĒ about every 4-6 months. It happens more if Iím feeling particularly broke (money wise). I take things up to my preferred consignment shop, and whatever they donít want, I drive down the street to the big thrift store with the bins out back. I keep trying to get my best friend to weed out her Two Walk-In Closets (!!), but she says it doesnít bother her. Until it does, and then she buys something else to feel better. At least she has the closets organized by season?

I loved helping my now-ex-boyfriend clear out his closet while we were dating. You could barely move clothing around in there, but he only really worse a dozen different shirts. I helped him go through everything, getting rid of what didnít fit, deciding what was being kept even if it didnít fit, etc. We filled four of those yellow bags Vietnam Vets leaves behind. Drove them right up the road to one of those Planet Aid dumpsters that he had never noticed. He really appreciated that help.

I have a problem with hoarding craft supplies Ė Mom and I have quite the fabric stash. But I did just have her help me go through a whole bunch of fabric sample books my father had diverted from their way to the dumpster and brought home to us. I knew we were never going to use them all, so we picked out about a dozen to take up to Zero Landfill (which I'm so glad I know about and you all should search to see if you have it in your city, too). Most of the donators are interior design vendors giving outdated samples of fabric, tile, flooring, carpet, etc, but I emailed the organizers and they said we crafters could donate, too. Yay for getting stuff out of the house!

Figgie

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #38 on: August 12, 2013, 02:10:10 PM »
We pretty much emptied out the basement (have almost 40 empty large, Rubbermaid containers now) earlier this summer.  I am not the one in our family who has a difficult time letting go of stuff  :)  It is my spouse who has issues with that.

But he watched the TV show "Hoarders" and that really opened his eyes to how things can take over lives and become more important than the people he loves.  I keep reminding him that if he doesn't love something, it is time to send it out into the world for someone else to love and treasurer. :)

Being the oldest daughter of the last surviving daughter of the oldest daughter, many family heirlooms were passed on down to me after Mom died.  And I finally sat down with my daughter, asked her what she thought she would like and what she didn't care about and set aside one small tub of things. 

I then decided that I was not responsible for holding on to other people's memories for the rest of my life.  Most of the things I have were important to my Mom or my Grandmother.  I have very few or no memories attached to these items and so I decided it was time to set them free.  :)

Realizing that I didn't have to keep things just because they were family heirlooms was tremendously freeing.  It is so easy to feel guilty because this bedspread was crocheted by my great-grandmother and that tablecloth was embroidered by my grandmother and supposedly, that meant I was supposed to keep them for forever.

I've found that I don't feel any guilt because I remind myself that I want my home to be full of things that are important to me, not to other people.  It helps keep the clutter down.  :)

TootsNYC

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #39 on: August 12, 2013, 02:59:57 PM »
Quote
I then decided that I was not responsible for holding on to other people's memories for the rest of my life.  Most of the things I have were important to my Mom or my Grandmother.  I have very few or no memories attached to these items and so I decided it was time to set them free. 

I recently told my kids, "When I die, you can ditch stuff that was important to me. I treasure this pen that I got from my college--but you shouldn't feel that this means you can't toss it after I'm dead. You're entitled to value different things from me."

Of course, I am using one of my greatest treasures--the cookie jar that my grandma had. So hopefully they'll treasure it for their own memories of it.

siamesecat2965

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #40 on: August 12, 2013, 03:09:23 PM »
This feel so good. I know I won't miss any of it. 

This is so true for me. While I am not anywhere near a hoarder or packrat, I tend to keep things out of sheer laziness. But after having helped my mom move several years ago, i began to de-clutter. I now do it a couple of times a year, and even though i don't bring much BACK into my apt, i still seem to find stuff to go. which is good.

My rule is if i haven't used it or worn it since the last time, i don't need it, and out it goes.

and quite honestly, i can't think of anything i've donated that i really miss or would want back.

KenveeB

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #41 on: August 12, 2013, 05:06:14 PM »
Quote
I then decided that I was not responsible for holding on to other people's memories for the rest of my life.  Most of the things I have were important to my Mom or my Grandmother.  I have very few or no memories attached to these items and so I decided it was time to set them free. 

I recently told my kids, "When I die, you can ditch stuff that was important to me. I treasure this pen that I got from my college--but you shouldn't feel that this means you can't toss it after I'm dead. You're entitled to value different things from me."

Of course, I am using one of my greatest treasures--the cookie jar that my grandma had. So hopefully they'll treasure it for their own memories of it.

Good for you! My mom periodically gets upset that my brother and I don't want all her "treasures" (how she says it) when she's gone. We point out that there are lots of things that we DO value and want passed down, but every single thing she values isn't necessarily going to be a treasure to us.

magicdomino

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #42 on: August 12, 2013, 05:36:07 PM »
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.

One of my friends has been very good about coming over and helping when I'm clearing out a storage area.  First, Friend keeps me on track, as opposed to getting distracted by reading the book I just picked up, or wandering off to water the plants.  Second, when I'm thinking about keeping something "just in case," she'll look at me like, "Do you really need that?"  At the same time, Friend doesn't argue too much when I insist on keeping my childhood Etch-a-Sketch just because it still works.

TootsNYC

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #43 on: August 12, 2013, 07:05:57 PM »
Quote
I then decided that I was not responsible for holding on to other people's memories for the rest of my life.  Most of the things I have were important to my Mom or my Grandmother.  I have very few or no memories attached to these items and so I decided it was time to set them free. 

I recently told my kids, "When I die, you can ditch stuff that was important to me. I treasure this pen that I got from my college--but you shouldn't feel that this means you can't toss it after I'm dead. You're entitled to value different things from me."

Of course, I am using one of my greatest treasures--the cookie jar that my grandma had. So hopefully they'll treasure it for their own memories of it.

Good for you! My mom periodically gets upset that my brother and I don't want all her "treasures" (how she says it) when she's gone. We point out that there are lots of things that we DO value and want passed down, but every single thing she values isn't necessarily going to be a treasure to us.

And the stuff you end up treasuring may not be something she treasures at all. She may think it's just a utilitarian flour canister, and it may really speak to you.

Gwywnnydd

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #44 on: August 12, 2013, 07:54:05 PM »
It's a small dent, but I got the Rubbermaid bins out of my bedroom, and holding toys in my DS's room.
Then I took a box of random stuff, and a large bag of clothes, to the thrift store.

I have a little more space in my bedroom now =).