Author Topic: DECLUTTERING  (Read 34023 times)

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gmatoy

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #105 on: August 29, 2013, 11:03:03 PM »
I don't understand why shredding seems to be so difficult for some people. (I'm not pointing fingers at anyone on this site.) I recently spent the better part of a day with my cousin, shredding stuff for her. Stuff from three houses ago. Why pack it up and move it? Why not just shred it before you move? Boggles my mind. My shredder is set up and I shred stuff during commercials. Done. (This may be one of the few things I keep under control!)

Rhindle

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #106 on: August 30, 2013, 01:15:52 AM »
It's not the shredding per se that I find difficult. It's the emptying out without making the room look like an exploded confetti factory that I find to be a drag. Wish there was a better design for dealing with that aspect.

perpetua

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #107 on: August 30, 2013, 03:40:00 AM »
I've just sat down with my Dad and shredded bags worth of paperwork. It's not the actual shredding of it that's made him put it off, it's the not knowing which things he's supposed to keep, so it's piled up and up because he couldn't get his head around what could safely be shredded. He's got bank statements going back years, because he wasn't sure how far back he should keep them, for example.

KenveeB

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #108 on: August 30, 2013, 08:16:01 AM »
For me it's my annoying shredder that likes to clog up and has to be cleaned out regularly, so it's a pain to use. But you shamed me, and I did a bunch of shredding last night. :) My mission for the long weekend is to clean out my office/craft room! I have some crafts I have to work on coming up soon, and I need space to work!

m2kbug

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #109 on: August 30, 2013, 08:30:34 AM »
I've just sat down with my Dad and shredded bags worth of paperwork. It's not the actual shredding of it that's made him put it off, it's the not knowing which things he's supposed to keep, so it's piled up and up because he couldn't get his head around what could safely be shredded. He's got bank statements going back years, because he wasn't sure how far back he should keep them, for example.

Sometimes the act can be so daunting and overwhelming, it just doesn't get done...or it can be a really slow start. 

My old shredder only did a few papers, nothing thick, didn't like staples or those pesky folded corners, clogged and jammed, and you could only do a few papers before over heating and then it's the paper bits mess when you have to empty it and unclog it, and then you have to vacuum and that's after going through the process of going through the papers.

Oh the steps!! :P

I agree, putting the shredder somewhere where you can run a few papers through it while watching TV or cooking some dinner or something that works with just your average routine is useful.

Ms_Cellany

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #110 on: August 30, 2013, 08:46:40 AM »
Invite a neighbor kid over to do the shredding. That's what I used to do. They love it!
Current fosters: Boojum (F, adult); Zuul (F); Magpie (M); Balrog (M); Nazgul (F)

siamesecat2965

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #111 on: August 30, 2013, 09:06:59 AM »

 
I agree, putting the shredder somewhere where you can run a few papers through it while watching TV or cooking some dinner or something that works with just your average routine is useful.

I used to do this, but got tired seeing it in the corner of my living room. So i moved it into the bedroom, into  a corner, but there's no outlet handy. I do get it done on a regular basis, but for me, it's easier to let it pile up for a couple of weeks, pull it out, shred, empty it, and put it back. I try and do it on the days I'm cleaning, so any debris on my rug will get vacuumed up ASAP.

Lynn2000

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #112 on: August 30, 2013, 11:13:29 AM »
Personally, I like to burn stuff. :) I grew up out in the country and that's what we do with a lot of trash. So anything sensitive, that normal people would shred, we set on fire. Of course then you have to wait until it's dry but not too dry, and not windy, and so forth.

Closet cleaning update: So I've been doing some work on this throughout the week. I have two huge Rubbermaid containers in my closet, full of stuff, and I couldn't figure out what was in them. What would I have in the realm of clothing, that I needed to keep, but didn't need easy access to? So last night I dug into them.

First, I found my "dressy" clothes. I don't need them very often, maybe once every two or three years. Like stuff I would wear to a wedding or something. I decided to put those aside and try them on before judging them. Next, I found a whole bag full of nice t-shirts. I used to wear a lot of nice t-shirts to work--I think I have the J. Jill "compassion tee" in every color. But now I always wear sleeves--it's cold at work. I literally never wear short sleeves out of the house. So I have no use for these t-shirts. But it feels weird to not own any nice t-shirts, it's such a basic thing. So I picked out a few in my favorite colors, less than half, and put the rest aside to donate.

Also--tote bags! I am a tote bag fiend. Some of them go back to conferences from ten years ago. I just really don't need or use that many. I picked out a few that I liked best, again less than half, and packed up the others to donate.

Then, I found a bunch of sweaters. They're sweaters I really like; I would wear them tomorrow, if it was cold enough. But, I think the last time I was cleaning out my closet I decided that I just didn't have room to hang them up, and I have so many sweaters that I would be fine without them, so I put them in the box. They're rather bulky so it wasn't that many sweaters. Basically, I want to keep them, but I would ideally like to have them hanging up so I can actually use them. So, they've been set aside, and after I go through what's actually hanging up I'll have a better sense of what I can part with. I also found a long-sleeved t-shirt that I'm wearing right now! Although, after I left for work this morning, I realized why I'd put it in the box with the sweaters... It's a rather warm shirt! Kind of a thermal textured material. And we're in the middle of a heatwave. ::)

I also went through my sock drawer. I caved and ordered a bunch of fun socks recently and I wanted to make room for them. I pulled out a few pairs to move on to the next life, and tried to organize the remainder with some dividers made from an old folder. I don't know if it really helped though. I am pretty sure there is not a comfortable amount of room for all the new socks that are coming. But, one thing at a time...
~Lynn2000

siamesecat2965

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #113 on: August 30, 2013, 11:42:04 AM »
I also went through my sock drawer. I caved and ordered a bunch of fun socks recently and I wanted to make room for them. I pulled out a few pairs to move on to the next life, and tried to organize the remainder with some dividers made from an old folder. I don't know if it really helped though. I am pretty sure there is not a comfortable amount of room for all the new socks that are coming. But, one thing at a time...

I have to remember to periodically cull my socks, bras and undies. It isn't that I'm so attached to the ones that are old and falling apart, I just never really seem to think about going through them and getting rid of the old ones. I did last year, and got rid of a lot of stuff I had been hanging onto.

Amara

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #114 on: August 30, 2013, 02:32:33 PM »
Re: shredding. My parents kept so much paperwork going back decades--bank statements and checks (when they were returned) from banks that hadn't existed for many, many years, tax records (starting when they were first married in 1949) and all the necessary accompanying papers, and more. They had it neatly stored but about a year and a half ago my dad finally agreed to start shredding. I told them and my siblings who were going to have to do it about checking out bulk shredders. Where I live one company is called ShredEx, but they have large trucks with massive shredders inside and can do a *lot* of it quickly. It wasn't done--my brother is still shredding at night--but I knew someone here who did. He was an accountant and had something like 500 pounds of paper. It cost that family about $80 and took all of fifteen minutes while one family rep stood by and watched.

For me, I don't let it build it. I rarely shred either, but prefer to take a scissors to it and cut it into tiny pieces. These are then put into bags that I then use for used cat litter. Believe me when I say that no one is going to dig through a half grocery bag of used cat litter to find cut-up documents.

Bijou

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #115 on: August 30, 2013, 06:08:31 PM »
I love shredding.  What a freeing experience!
I've never knitted anything I could recognize when it was finished.  Actually, I've never finished anything, much to my family's relief.

Figgie

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #116 on: August 30, 2013, 07:30:21 PM »
I try not to handle paper more than once.  So when I get the mail, it goes into a pile to pay, a pile for my spouse to deal with and then the stuff to be recycled goes immediately into the recycle bin and the stuff to be shredded gets shredded then and there.

I find it keeps down the papers in the house by quite a bit.  :)  I keep 10 years of bills/receipts/bank statements and every January 1st, I put this years saved things into a rubbermaid tub and shred the former 10th year of stuff.  Keeps what we have manageable.

TootsNYC

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #117 on: August 30, 2013, 11:29:47 PM »
That reminds of one of my tactics for dealing with paper.  I call it Aging.  They are a lot easier to sort through when they are old, and if you really really need something, you can dig through and find it.

This is really smart, actually, especially if you find you have trouble.

Some stuff is easy to deal with the way Figgie does; but when something's tough to decide about, having a set "aging" place can help.

gmatoy

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #118 on: August 31, 2013, 12:55:50 AM »
For me it's my annoying shredder that likes to clog up and has to be cleaned out regularly, so it's a pain to use. But you shamed me, and I did a bunch of shredding last night. :) My mission for the long weekend is to clean out my office/craft room! I have some crafts I have to work on coming up soon, and I need space to work!

Didn't mean to shame anyone! However, I hope that you will have the space to do crafts by the end of the weekend!

AvidReader

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Re: DECLUTTERING
« Reply #119 on: August 31, 2013, 08:03:37 AM »
This is more a cautionary tale that really motivates.  When my widowed DFIL decided to sell his home of over 35 years, he had to deal with my late DMIL's tendency not to throw things away.  No, she was not a hoarder or a packrat because she did not mindlessly acquire.  She just did.not.toss. and the house was big enough that she could put stuff out of site.  Evidently, during the 60s, when one had carpet replaced, there was a fee to haul the old carpet away.  Cheapskate that she was, she just had the old (1940s?) carpet rolled up and put into the basement.  The kids' toys and stuffed animals/plush toys...into the basement.  The old dinette set when replaced...into the basement (there were at least 3 generations of dinette sets down there, documenting American interior design over 3+ decades).  Clothing she didn't wear anymore...quite literally jammed into the closets of the kids' former bedrooms.  She wasn't saving the toys or stuffed animals for the grandbabies to come.  Only "new" would be good enough for them.

Fast forward to prepping the house for sale.  We (DFIL, the three adult kids and spouses) all got into the basement and our collective flabbers were gasted.  Generations of mice had made homes in the stuffed animals.  When all was said and done, the pile on the curb was 12 feet high and 30 feet long and it took city workers 2 days to remove it.  There was no way or time to sort it for donation or sale.

When I tell this story to anyone, the first thing they do is turn green (the mice in the plush toys does it) and the second thing they do is say, "I've got to get started...I don't want to leave this for anyone."

DH has inherited the tendency not to discard/donate and I have to sit on him from time to time.  Once, I had him watch an episode of "Hoarders."  He sickened slightly and got motivated to fill, and I mean fill, a  black steel sack with junk from his nightstand and from under his bathroom sink.  How does that amassing happen? 

As to shredding.  I do it all the time.  About the only paper we hold on to are credit card statements and at the end of the year, it all goes into the tax prep folder.  After I pay the water/electric bills, etc., I shred the invoices.  I keep all the supporting documents for tax prep for 3 years from filing date then shred.  I keep copies of the tax forms themselves for 7 years then shred.  We have backup copies burned to disk (thank you tax prep software!).  Our county's recycling program accepts shredded office paper in clear bags (I use drycleaner's bags).