Author Topic: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!  (Read 939268 times)

Melody

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2250 on: July 22, 2015, 04:06:37 AM »
I am also still my highschool size. I weigh about 4kgs more but am 2inches taller so clothing size it's a wash. However two inches taller and a different body shape means I haven't actually hung onto any high school clothes bar a raincoat, some pjs and some track pants. Other things that may have still fitted me today wore out long ago, it's not like I had the money to spend on super high quality stuff back in school.

Melody

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2251 on: July 22, 2015, 04:10:03 AM »
When I have a fear of needing something in the future I always ask myself how many 're buys I have had to do. The only one I can think of would be a printer (done with university... Goodbye printer... Never thinking I might need it for job applications a couple of years down the line) and a few bits of sports equipment here and there (I give up the sport only to take it up again). Given there have been so few "fails" I feel quite confident in my ability to assess if I need something again. Sports equipment tho, I will now proceed to keep forever and ever ;-)

MsPeacock

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2252 on: July 22, 2015, 05:38:09 AM »
Part of my desire to have a lot of stuff on hand - consumables - like shampoo, laundry detergent, etc. - is that I cling to the hope that by doing this I will magically have to go to the grocery store less often. Or Costco less often, because I most def do not enjoy doing a Costco run.  For me the laundry detergent et. al. falls in a different category than say books, excess clothing, DVDs, and general clutter. I can tidily store my extra shampoo in the cupboard in my laundry room and it is put away and not 'clutter.'

Villanelle

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2253 on: July 22, 2015, 06:05:31 AM »
Our dishes are chipped and looking pretty awful, and it is time to replace them.  I was assumign that once Stateside I'd cruise thrift stores, TJ Maxx and place of that ilk, and sales until I found something I liked.

Then I realized I have two sets of dishes in storage (gov't paid, due to overseas moves, not due to excess stuff).  One is my grandmother's china, and the other a lovely Mikasa set my mom gave me.  And yet I'm considering buying dishes to use?  The Mikasa set isn't 100% my taste, but I certainly don't hate them.  And given that they will generally be underneath a pile of pasta or a slab of meat and some potatoes, it doesn't much matter.

I've also started going through the two bins (large shoebox size) of "travel products" I have soaps, shampoos, toothbrushes, sewing kits, eye masks, etc.  I grab them thinking "this will be nice to have" or intending to donate them, or thinking I'll use them up with my every day grooming.  But I don't.  I'll empty the nicest of the containers because I do find it very helpful to have 3-4 travel size bottles, but everything else will either go in the shower to be used, or get tossed. 

Sibley

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2254 on: July 22, 2015, 08:58:57 AM »
Another successful round of uncluttering completed. Persuaded DH to part with 95 DVDs.  Removed 2 ikea cabinet towers from our family room.  After DVDs and old school papers and unused board games cleared out, DH and the kids conceded that maybe open space was better than mostly empty cabinets!
Also sent 4 more boxes of clothes to donation center.   Only 2 closets left to clear.  Three hoarders vs one minimalist makes for slow going.

Keep it up! You're making progress with them too.

CU Tiger

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2255 on: July 22, 2015, 04:16:33 PM »
Yes, use the good stuff!

I have a story about that.  My grandmother had an entire floor on her house that was designated "the good part".  She would keep it pristine but never use it.  When she had a party she would spend hours cleaning it, then have all her guests in the basement.  Never made sense to me at all!  Why have it if you're not going to use it!

Extreme example of course, but it does show the silliness of saving the good stuff too long.

Now we have the house.  You know what?  I use the main living areas, cause it's the nice part!
Interesting story about your grandmother. We live in our house and use everything. If it's too good to use we don't own it.

I helped my Mom and Aunt clean out Grandma's house after she died. She had MULTIPLE sets of beautiful towels, unused and stored all over the house, while the towels in the bathroom, the ones she used, were so threadbare you could read the newspaper through them.

It made me sad. She had nice things that she never used, because they were "too nice" or because she needed to use the old things until they turned to rags and dust in her hands. So she died and those towels were given away to be enjoyed by strangers. I came home and stopped saving the "good" things for some magical future time. If I have it, I use it.
There are two ways to get enough: one is to continue to accumulate more and more. The other is to desire less. - G.K. Chesterton

Mrs.LC

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2256 on: July 22, 2015, 07:39:44 PM »
Took a trip yesterday to see our son and girlfriend. We took along a few items they were in need of and we weren't.  I call that a win-win!!
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theadvicist

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2257 on: July 23, 2015, 05:49:36 AM »
Took another load of items to the dress agency (consignment store) yesterday. I knew I'd taken all the best stuff already, but since I made so much money from what I was just getting rid of I thought I'd try again. She didn't take anything! But she did send to charity for me, so it was worth a try, and it's saved me carrying it around to drop off myself. 

I also did a big charity drop off (and I mean parking right outside and making four trips in and out!), with stuff that I have been decluttering over the past few weeks.

And I put three more items of clothing in the donate box when I got home.

I've also found space for my jeans in my drawers, so they are not stacked anymore, but folded Marie Kondo style. I didn't weed them as thoroughly as I should have. I have too many pairs, I know. The empty shelf is staring down at me and I love it!

Anatidae V

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2258 on: July 23, 2015, 07:30:47 AM »
I have moved all of my craft stuff out of the room and back in again about a month ago, sorting into 3 categories - tools, projects and supplies. All the wedding projects are taking up the available bench space because they are the most urgent and important. Worked out quite well, except that I now had a spread of stuff I needed to go through that took up the whole floor (room is MAYBE 2m by 3m at most). Turned out that the cupboard has a mould issue again, so I had to move everything off the floor for the handyman to get in tomorrow (love renting). Now I've sorted about 1/3 of the stuff, and taken 2 grocery bags of rubbish out of it - yay! Plus I think that I have all the wedding information in one place again, so it can be accessed easier for the minor amount of things that we need it for (logistics only at this point). I'm moving nicely towards my goal of having the majority of the supplies sorted into projects :)

wintersun

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2259 on: July 23, 2015, 08:24:24 AM »
Serpentstooth,

Quote
I hoard consumer goods because my lizard brain thinks we'll all be safer if I have a nice big cache of diapers and dish detergent. It's obviously irrational, but I still get all happy looking at the diaper closet.

Do you have kids? :)

wintersun

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2260 on: July 23, 2015, 08:35:42 AM »
Wow, the paper piles are almost gone! 

I am going to have three binders: one slim one for important docs, one for need-this-year-papers  and one in a cupboard for Archived Papers Which I Am Choosing To Keep.  I am keeping new computer paper in drawers now that the drawers are so empty.

We have destroyed (by ripping, shredding or burning) two large boxes of personal papers. Phew.

Now to deal with the random bits that are left.

Question:  With investment reports,  do I need to keep reports from years ago or do I just need this year's reports? I don't actually understand the whole report but can decipher the top two pieces of paper.  Is there any reason I need a record? should I keep the top sheet from each quarter?



Mrs.LC

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2261 on: July 23, 2015, 10:14:54 AM »
Wow, the paper piles are almost gone! 

I am going to have three binders: one slim one for important docs, one for need-this-year-papers  and one in a cupboard for Archived Papers Which I Am Choosing To Keep.  I am keeping new computer paper in drawers now that the drawers are so empty.

We have destroyed (by ripping, shredding or burning) two large boxes of personal papers. Phew.

Now to deal with the random bits that are left.

Question:  With investment reports,  do I need to keep reports from years ago or do I just need this year's reports? I don't actually understand the whole report but can decipher the top two pieces of paper.  Is there any reason I need a record? should I keep the top sheet from each quarter?
Are the investment reports available online? If so then you can burn the paper ones.
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expectopatronum

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2262 on: July 23, 2015, 02:17:50 PM »
Soooooo. Today we are finishing our downsize from a 2600sqft house to an 800sqft apartment (plus a 8x10 storage unit). Celebratory post is coming - but oh. My. Gosh. We had so much stuff. My husband was definitely hanging onto a lot more things than me, and there are some things that we moved that could probably go...but we'll be going through them once we are back from vacation.

I was so proud, though. Here are some of the things we got rid of:

- Crafting supplies that hadn't been used in >2 years.
- Two glass chess boards (we don't own chess pieces...)
- Wedding decor (gave to a friend)
- Cheapo IKEA coffee table (gave to a friend)
- Cheapo Halloween decor
- Cheapo 4th of July decor
- Cheapo Christmas ornaments (non-sentimental)
- Cheapo mini bookshelf and desk chair from college
- Extra kitchen table and chairs (gave to a friend)
- Chocolate fountain
- About 150 plastic hotel key cards. They weren't even unique! Some of them had Pizza Hut ads on the front! There were tons of duplicates! WTH!
- Husband used to have about 75 polos, 75 T-shirts, and basically cut it in half.

We took two SUV carloads full of stuff to Goodwill, and that's just from the last week. Over the last few months, it's been even more than that!

We also produced an incredibly shameful amount of trash.

Moving into a smaller place is definitely going to help us keep the stuff to a minimum and think twice about buying something. I'm still on the waiting list for Marie Kondo's book but looking forward to reading it.

riverffashion

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2263 on: July 23, 2015, 02:22:40 PM »
One book & T-shirt donated. One pair of shorts beyond repair to trash.& one super scratched pair of sunglasses trashed.

dorothyc

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2264 on: July 23, 2015, 05:05:43 PM »

- Husband used to have about 75 polos, 75 T-shirts, and basically cut it in half.


They won't do him much good like that, except as crop tops. j/k ;)

sheepstache

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2265 on: July 24, 2015, 06:41:03 PM »
I feel like people might appreciate this:
http://www.jspowerhour.com/comics/178

iris lily

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2266 on: July 24, 2015, 06:53:22 PM »
I normally don't buy stuff to pour into another, decorative container. I just use the original container. But a few years ago family gave us a jug for olive oil.mimhad been pouring it into the jug. The jug was opaque and I never knew how much was in,it.

Today I just got tired of re pouring, and I tossed the jug. Now I'll use the olive oil in its original bottle. We use it up fairly quickly so there never was a real need to keep it refrigerated.

horsepoor

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2267 on: July 24, 2015, 10:59:47 PM »
First major load of eBay stuff gone to the post office today.  I have a few more paid items packed up and ready to leave on Monday.  So in the last three days, I've sold $2,270.02 worth of crap!  OK, not crap, but horse gear I don't need and have not been using.  I'm going to relist the stuff that didn't sell, and hopefully double that number.  I've sneaked some clutter out with the boxes too, like wrapping the saddle I shipped today in a big wad of quilt batting that's been kicking around for years taking up way too much space.  There are some other things around here that I'm motivated to get sold now too, as I watch all this cash pile up in my bank account.

Cressida

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2268 on: July 24, 2015, 11:43:48 PM »
First major load of eBay stuff gone to the post office today.  I have a few more paid items packed up and ready to leave on Monday.  So in the last three days, I've sold $2,270.02 worth of crap!  OK, not crap, but horse gear I don't need and have not been using.  I'm going to relist the stuff that didn't sell, and hopefully double that number.  I've sneaked some clutter out with the boxes too, like wrapping the saddle I shipped today in a big wad of quilt batting that's been kicking around for years taking up way too much space.  There are some other things around here that I'm motivated to get sold now too, as I watch all this cash pile up in my bank account.

Nice work! And yeah, quilt batting is a space hog.

Ready2Go

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2269 on: July 25, 2015, 02:56:54 PM »
Big win today.   Going through a pile of old papers and found $100 of Amazon gift certificates and $200 of LLBean gift certificates!!   
My thanks to whoever started this topic.

riverffashion

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2270 on: July 25, 2015, 02:58:04 PM »
Big win today.   Going through a pile of old papers and found $100 of Amazon gift certificates and $200 of LLBean gift certificates!!   
My thanks to whoever started this topic.

Excellent. I love finding money.

Practical Magic

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2271 on: July 25, 2015, 10:15:18 PM »
Wow, the paper piles are almost gone! 

I am going to have three binders: one slim one for important docs, one for need-this-year-papers  and one in a cupboard for Archived Papers Which I Am Choosing To Keep.  I am keeping new computer paper in drawers now that the drawers are so empty.

We have destroyed (by ripping, shredding or burning) two large boxes of personal papers. Phew.

Now to deal with the random bits that are left.

Question:  With investment reports,  do I need to keep reports from years ago or do I just need this year's reports? I don't actually understand the whole report but can decipher the top two pieces of paper.  Is there any reason I need a record? should I keep the top sheet from each quarter?

From what I've read about keeping tax-related documents, you're supposed to save everything relating to investments until you sell it (real estate, stocks, mutual funds, securities, etc), because it's proof of your basis & resulting profit or loss. Annoying, I agree. And really it's all sort of a gamble. What are the chances you'd ever be audited? Maybe slim. But I just went ahead and scanned all the paper statements I had kept, then threw them away. Once or twice a year I will download online statements to the same thumb drive where the scanned docs are saved. They don't make them available online for more than a year, usually, so it's good to get them while you can. 
« Last Edit: July 25, 2015, 10:24:48 PM by Practical Magic »

babysnowbyrd

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2272 on: July 26, 2015, 07:52:03 AM »
I'm only starting this thread, but I've recently lost my job and moved. I netted over $500 in two yard sales. My stuff has been greatly reduced, but I bet I can still reduce it by another 50%. I love the progress I've made, but still feel burdened by the many things I still have.

One of the hardest challenges for me to get rid of my stuff is the scarcity mentality I have. Interestingly, when I had lost my job and started getting rid of things, it was much easier. I was very stressed out, and the things were just mostly clutter to me and I was happy to get rid of so much. I still ended up with a lot left over but no time to go through it more thoroughly, so I boxed up everything that was left quickly and moved.

Now I'm in my new place, which is a lot smaller than what I had before, and I make WAY less money than I used to, so the feeling of scarcity is coming back in full force. I can't throw away some stuff I've had for over a year and haven't used, and will 90% most likely never use in the near future, but I literally can't bring myself to throw it out. Because I paid money for it, and I feel so "poor" now I'm convinced that in the unlikely event that I *should* need it later, it will be too much of a purchase on my limited budget.

I find it ironic that this mindset was hardly present at all when I had no job and no money coming in and no other job lined up, but now that I have a poor-paying job I feel poorer and can't let go of things. Most of my stuff is still in boxes because I'm avoiding clearing things out because I'm struggling so much to make decisions on the first box.

Ugh. I'll start churning through the rest of the thread and see what I learn...

PMG

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2273 on: July 26, 2015, 09:41:40 AM »

Ugh. I'll start churning through the rest of the thread and see what I learn...

babysnowbyrd,
Starting at the beginning is great, but in the last several pages of thread there have been some great conversations and resources about the emotions and psychology behind keeping and leting go.  The entire thread is littered with these things, but the recent conversation might resonate with you.

 As for me... I just put the deposit down on a 290sq' studio apartment in a city 3.5 hours away.  It looks so much smaller than my current 400 sq'.  I'm panicking a little.  I know that my belongings will fit, but I don't want them to squeeze in!  I'm doing some packing this weekend.  I haven't found much to purge.  Feels good to know what I've got to work with.

I have about ten dinner plates.  I never use ten dinner plates at once.  They are mismatched hand-me-downs from my great grandmother, so I might keep them all but every time I open that cupboard I wonder why I have so many plates. 



wintersun

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2274 on: July 26, 2015, 01:00:04 PM »
Thanks for the ideas on what to do with investing papers.  I am dumping all except the latest and the earliest.  The company who manage our investments have copies.

I am feeling so FREEEEE after getting rid of so much this week including a huge donation to a charity where the staff were over the moon to receive the stuff.  What a great feeling to know that it will be used and appreciated. 

And another person came over and remarked on how clear and open the house feels now. That makes about 4 people who have commented.

Every time I feel close to the end I realise that there is a box or two hiding somewhere else.  But I am definitely on the winning stretch.  The big final parts will be going through the sentimental papers and then scanning. 

In total, more than ten car loads have gone to the dump in the last year, and ten have gone to charity. 

Once the final scanning is complete I will do a quick overview of each room and closet and chest to see if anything else is begging to leave.










riverffashion

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2275 on: July 26, 2015, 01:17:38 PM »
One book & T-shirt donated. One pair of shorts beyond repair to trash.& one super scratched pair of sunglasses trashed.

A second book, a sunglasses case, a dress donated. An old baseball hat trashed.
And all while still on vacation!
Looking forward to continue clearing out the clutter at home soon.... :)

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2276 on: July 26, 2015, 06:54:34 PM »
I normally don't buy stuff to pour into another, decorative container. I just use the original container. But a few years ago family gave us a jug for olive oil.mimhad been pouring it into the jug. The jug was opaque and I never knew how much was in,it.

Today I just got tired of re pouring, and I tossed the jug. Now I'll use the olive oil in its original bottle. We use it up fairly quickly so there never was a real need to keep it refrigerated.

Feeling rather embarrassed now. I'd been thinking about asking for one of those bottles for my birthday later in the year!

We buy olive oil in 4L tins (cheaper in bulk), then re-fill a supermarket bottle, but the bottle wasn't designed to be refilled and it's quite an art to detach the plastic pourer.

But, with this in mind, I shall do the mustachian thing and persist!

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2277 on: July 26, 2015, 06:59:34 PM »
On a separate note, some relatives are getting together for a combined garage sale later this year.

I know I have more to cull but I've been a bit disheartened by eBay, so this is the perfect motivation.

Last night I put a bag in our spare room and dropped a couple of things in it straight away.

They won't have the sale till the weather warms up around here, so I have at least three months to gradually go through all our drawers and shelves and cupboards and shed another layer.

Zaga

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2278 on: July 26, 2015, 07:26:32 PM »
I normally don't buy stuff to pour into another, decorative container. I just use the original container. But a few years ago family gave us a jug for olive oil.mimhad been pouring it into the jug. The jug was opaque and I never knew how much was in,it.

Today I just got tired of re pouring, and I tossed the jug. Now I'll use the olive oil in its original bottle. We use it up fairly quickly so there never was a real need to keep it refrigerated.

Feeling rather embarrassed now. I'd been thinking about asking for one of those bottles for my birthday later in the year!

We buy olive oil in 4L tins (cheaper in bulk), then re-fill a supermarket bottle, but the bottle wasn't designed to be refilled and it's quite an art to detach the plastic pourer.

But, with this in mind, I shall do the mustachian thing and persist!
I use an old honey bottle for my olive oil.  Since I buy in Costco sized containers this is a container that's easy to refill, has a flip top lid and spout for easy use, and fits in my hand for easy lifting and storage near the stove. 

Just another idea.

horsepoor

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2279 on: July 26, 2015, 07:46:07 PM »
I normally don't buy stuff to pour into another, decorative container. I just use the original container. But a few years ago family gave us a jug for olive oil.mimhad been pouring it into the jug. The jug was opaque and I never knew how much was in,it.

Today I just got tired of re pouring, and I tossed the jug. Now I'll use the olive oil in its original bottle. We use it up fairly quickly so there never was a real need to keep it refrigerated.

Feeling rather embarrassed now. I'd been thinking about asking for one of those bottles for my birthday later in the year!

We buy olive oil in 4L tins (cheaper in bulk), then re-fill a supermarket bottle, but the bottle wasn't designed to be refilled and it's quite an art to detach the plastic pourer.

But, with this in mind, I shall do the mustachian thing and persist!

sriracha bottles make awesome oil bottles.

My car is full of more eBay packages.  I finally tossed a pile of old work shirts today.  Can't give them away with the agency logo, I never need them for work and they are too big anyway.  Also finished a little sewing project that's been sitting out for several weeks.  Ferreted out a pair of shorts and a top that I never wear and started a new donation pile.

bluecollarmusician

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2280 on: July 26, 2015, 07:55:30 PM »
We also have the giant olive oil bottles from Costco, and my wife refills a fancy looking bottle of olive oil that we got at big lots for a few dollars...

HappierAtHome

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2281 on: July 26, 2015, 08:18:33 PM »
I normally don't buy stuff to pour into another, decorative container. I just use the original container. But a few years ago family gave us a jug for olive oil.mimhad been pouring it into the jug. The jug was opaque and I never knew how much was in,it.

Today I just got tired of re pouring, and I tossed the jug. Now I'll use the olive oil in its original bottle. We use it up fairly quickly so there never was a real need to keep it refrigerated.

Feeling rather embarrassed now. I'd been thinking about asking for one of those bottles for my birthday later in the year!

We buy olive oil in 4L tins (cheaper in bulk), then re-fill a supermarket bottle, but the bottle wasn't designed to be refilled and it's quite an art to detach the plastic pourer.

But, with this in mind, I shall do the mustachian thing and persist!

We do the exact same thing.

HappierAtHome

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2282 on: July 26, 2015, 08:21:58 PM »
Dropped off a  car boot-load of stuff for charity on the weekend.

I'm pretty sure at this stage that we will have at least another boot-load to give away after we finish moving house, but I'll report back at that point :-)

Melody

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2283 on: July 26, 2015, 10:53:52 PM »
Got rid of a towel due to natural attrition (it tore in the washing machine) which will not be replaced. I have way too many towels still, but struggle with getting rid of them due to the inevitable natural attrition. It's easy to get rid of clothes as you can not like them anymore or they don't fit, but towels never go out of style ;-) ditched a cardigan, I was going to mend it but decided it was in such poor condition it wasn't worth the time to mend it in order to get a few extra wears from it. Also I have enough cardigans.

iowajes

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2284 on: July 27, 2015, 06:28:21 AM »
Sold off the rest of my Shakeology (just 5 packets), so that is out of the cabinet!

And I found out my neighbor likes Photography/Scuba so I am going to bring him the pile of magazines I've been trying to get to move on craigslist; I hate to just throw them in the recycling.  So that's 25 magazines gone tonight!

Mrs.LC

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2285 on: July 27, 2015, 07:00:04 AM »
Got rid of a towel due to natural attrition (it tore in the washing machine) which will not be replaced. I have way too many towels still, but struggle with getting rid of them due to the inevitable natural attrition. It's easy to get rid of clothes as you can not like them anymore or they don't fit, but towels never go out of style ;-) ditched a cardigan, I was going to mend it but decided it was in such poor condition it wasn't worth the time to mend it in order to get a few extra wears from it. Also I have enough cardigans.
Old towels make great rags so put them to use.
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plainjane

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2286 on: July 27, 2015, 07:19:46 AM »
I have way too many towels still, but struggle with getting rid of them due to the inevitable natural attrition. It's easy to get rid of clothes as you can not like them anymore or they don't fit, but towels never go out of style ;-)
Old towels make great rags so put them to use.

At a certain point though, I generate more rags than I finish using them.  Old towels are currently being saved for winter use as window snakes, but I'm hoping after we replace this window, we won't need that any more either.

This weekend I threw away an embarrassing number of chopsticks from takeout meals and some bad quality napkins.  I have no idea how long they've been there, I haven't gotten takeout Asian food on a regular basis for probably five years.  I probably brought them home from work.  I considered leaving them in the office kitchen, but that drawer is already too full.  There are still some plastic utensils and napkins which I feel like I should keep for travel or picnics.

Also went through a drawer and found that ipod charger I had been searching for, four pairs of headphones (so threw away the two pairs currently in rotation which were being held together by tape and one pair of dead headphones that was in the drawer as a backup), some blank notepads (brought into work) and some misc trash. 
Using procrastination to my advantage since 2001.

Melody

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2287 on: July 27, 2015, 07:38:16 AM »
I struggle with the "should keeps" as well.. the stuff that you use but frankly have far too much of. For me one of these was stationary so I gave half to my dad. I still have too much but it's no longer so silly. I also have too much plastic cutlery, must remember to offer to bring it (and paper plates and napkins) for our next "bring a plate" event, as it will save the hostess from buying them.

Melody

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2288 on: July 27, 2015, 07:47:04 AM »
I struggle with the "should keeps" as well.. the stuff that you use but frankly have far too much of. For me one of these was stationary so I gave half to my dad. I still have too much but it's no longer so silly. I also have too much plastic cutlery, must remember to offer to bring it (and paper plates and napkins) for our next "bring a plate" event, as it will save the hostess from buying them.

Popped a bunch of expired medication in my bag to drop off at the pharmacy tomorrow also. Making slow but steady progress. All the obvious "junk" went when I moved into this apartment a year ago and I have been declutttering pretty hard out for a month or so now.

sstants

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2289 on: July 27, 2015, 07:53:02 AM »
I recently dropped a load of running shoes off at the goodwill. Maybe they aren't perfect anymore for putting miles on my injured knee, but they were all in great shape and could definitely be used by someone else.

I didn't realize how many old pairs of sneakers I had hanging around, when I really only need one at a time! I also dumped all my crappy flip flops and sandals and now just have one nice leather pair. I love the idea of keeping one nicer (albeit more expensive) item around than a bunch of crap!

I still have a long way to go with sweatshirts and some other stuff, but it's a start!

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2290 on: July 27, 2015, 09:05:31 AM »
Another good weekend decluttering-wise. The bathroom feels amazing since I really purged all cosmetics and toiletries. I have got rid of a whole chest of drawers, and everything now fits on one shelving unit and in the airing cupboard.

I rearranged everything which was stored on some open shelving - handbags, fabric and sewing supplies for dressmaking, patterns, one large box of sentimental stuff. I didn't feel ready to actually tackle the sentimental stuff, but I had a quick scan through and found the following:
1) most of it is photos. That's easier to deal with than other stuff because I can keep the best one / throw out any that are blurry or duplicates etc.
2) In a box in the box were some tools (don't know why they were there!) which we have been looking for for ages.
3) Removing the box of tools gave me enough room to put all our wedding cards and a copy of the programme etc in this sentimental box, so I truly only have one sentimental box now.
4) I was hilariously cringe-worthy as a teenager.

And I did throw out a few things that I had no memory of. A cheesy 'You're such a special friend' book mark isn't so sentimental when you have no idea who gave it to you. Also, a stray 21st birthday card from 'Emma'? Could have been any number of people. Gone.

When everything was back on the (cleaned) shelves it took up far less room visually, is better organised, and definitely less dusty. Hopefully dust won't be a problem any more as everything is well used and it is easy to clean there now.

Pared down some the handbags again, and put some fabric aside to be sold. I also threw out some scraps which were maybe big enough to make something small, but wasn't the nicest fabric and would have taken a lot of thought and mental energy to come up with something to make.

Since all surfaces were clear, I decided to dust and hoover whilst I was at it. Took 5 mins at most.

I rearranged some kitchen cabinets so they are only one thing deep. Previously to get a large glasslock container (which we use instead of tupperwear) you had to reach over the small ones. There is a lot of 'wasted' space but it is so much easier to unload the dishwasher or grab what you need.

The space has come from eating up food supplies and not replacing. I am determined to carry less 'in stock'. We are wasting far less food as well.

And finally a note about getting partners on board... I've told you before I am doing this just with my stuff. 1400 things gone so far, and probably 50 of them have been offered up by my husband (I have not got rid of a single thing of his).

He commented on how we are getting along so well at the moment, and we agreed a lot of it was to do with having less stuff around and more space. 'His' areas of the house (dresser, bedside table etc) are looking incongruously stuffed with items but I am resisting the temptation to mention it, and still just focussing on my stuff. I can feel a change in the mood of the house though as we have both got a lot of me decluttering. So don't think you can't change anything if you're the only one into it.

sstants

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2291 on: July 27, 2015, 10:31:51 AM »
The Kondo book finally came in at the library so I downloaded it. Forgive me, this lady sounds mildly nuts. Keep only things that spark joy? My spatula does not spark joy. Objectively, I need the spatula. This is kind of silly.

I thought that too on my first read through. Ditto my cheese grater doesn't make me super happy. But I definitely love being able to cook nice meals. I think sometimes you have to think one step beyond the item and think about what the item allows you to do for her method to make more sense. If the answer to that question is, "it allows me to do the same thing that my other spatula does" then you've identified something that is duplicative or excessive and can be donated or discarded. Thinking about things like this helped me get down to more of a 'one of each' situation for a lot of my kitchen and bathroom stuff.

She definitely comes off as a little nutty and extreme, but in a really lovely and organized way! I looked at some pictures of her before/after for clients and it is a beautiful thing.

plainjane

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2292 on: July 27, 2015, 11:04:35 AM »
The Kondo book finally came in at the library so I downloaded it. Forgive me, this lady sounds mildly nuts. Keep only things that spark joy? My spatula does not spark joy. Objectively, I need the spatula. This is kind of silly.

I think this is another reason to start with clothing as she recommends.  Sparking joy is more obvious there for most people I think.  (I used my can opener yesterday and it definitely sparked joy - I recently replaced an old one and this one is so much easier to use and it helped me make my lunches for this week which will save me lots of cash and will be healthy.)  Her specific mindfulness techniques might not work for you either, but something else might.  I'm pretty sure I've seen research that counting your blessings in some way or another does make you happier.

Objectively it is silly.  But so much of decluttering is about dealing with emotions.  Just like success with weight loss generally isn't objective, and ditto saving high % of your take-home pay.  It's like people who pay down a small debt even though it isn't the highest rate.  If you don't have a problem with clutter, then take the ideas that work for you and discard the rest.  In fact, at one point she says to discard the book if it isn't working for you and bringing ongoing joy.  :)
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madgeylou

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2293 on: July 27, 2015, 11:32:36 AM »
A week ago my husband and I left Pittsburgh with only what could fit in our Honda Fit (plus some sentimental stuff in a 5'x10' storage unit that's only 1/2 full).

We've been on the road 1 week and 1 day and have already got together a big box of stuff that we don't want to keep with us, to ship back to Pittsburgh.

Normally, traveling makes me want to buy things, but in this case I don't have anywhere to put it! So it's curbed those shopping desires.

So far, we are both 100% in love with having very little shit, and being able to pack up our entire lives in less than an hour.

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2294 on: July 27, 2015, 05:35:31 PM »
Another good weekend decluttering-wise...
And finally a note about getting partners on board... I've told you before I am doing this just with my stuff. 1400 things gone so far, and probably 50 of them have been offered up by my husband (I have not got rid of a single thing of his).

He commented on how we are getting along so well at the moment, and we agreed a lot of it was to do with having less stuff around and more space. 'His' areas of the house (dresser, bedside table etc) are looking incongruously stuffed with items but I am resisting the temptation to mention it, and still just focussing on my stuff. I can feel a change in the mood of the house though as we have both got a lot of me decluttering. So don't think you can't change anything if you're the only one into it.

Great work!

Your husband has obviously noticed the changes in your home, so hopefully by leading by example he will voluntarily get on board with decluttering.

NoraLenderbee

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2295 on: July 27, 2015, 05:43:07 PM »
I love this thread. It's inspiring me to deal with my own "stuff." Thank you, everyone, for sharing your stories and journeys. I hope to share mine soon.

The idea that everything you have/use can be something you actually like--not just something you happen to have--is like a revelation. You mean all those coffee mugs we've accumulated, I don't HAVE to keep? I could actually have every cup in the house be *pleasing*?? 

One issue for me is visual clutter--we don't have places to put things away, so everything is out all the time, which I am starting to realize makes me feel stressed.

I've dealt with clothing a lot in the past, and I can manage that fairly well now--I still sometimes feel like I have a full closet and nothing to wear, but I'm able to take some rational steps when that happens.

A big thing for me right now is non-clothing stuff and things that I didn't ever choose, I just happened to end up with, and that are now tangled in a web of emotions. Furniture from my parents that I never really liked, but didn't want to part with because it was *theirs*, oh and it's good quality so I don't feel right about donating it, but it's in the way and not pleasing me. Other stuff from parents and even grandparents that got packed in a box and sent to me fairly randomly. I've been used as a repository for stuff no one else wanted. Kondo says in her book that younger sisters often end up with lots of stuff they don't like because they get so many hand-me-downs--that's definitely the case in my family, just with things instead of clothes.

We have a dining room with a lovely table and chairs (which we use every night), a sideboard or two, and THREE pieces of furniture we just ended up with, which are just standing around taking up space. One is a cart that we no longer need in the kitchen because we installed a cabinet. My husband wants to keep it there because he likes looking at it, even though it's useless where it is. He's just as bad as I am. WTF.


riverffashion

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2296 on: July 27, 2015, 06:13:54 PM »
First day home. 2 more dresses, another t-shirt, and small decorative boxes out. Large box of tea's that I don't drink to my SO. Several other items trashed, including half used supplements that don't agree with me & expired eyelash conditioner, etc.

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2297 on: July 27, 2015, 08:00:18 PM »
The idea that everything you have/use can be something you actually like--not just something you happen to have--is like a revelation. You mean all those coffee mugs we've accumulated, I don't HAVE to keep? I could actually have every cup in the house be *pleasing*?? 

It's eye-opening!

Clothes, homewares, everything... if I don't love it, I get rid of it/don't buy it in the first place.

I've been burned too many times in the past by buying the cheaper or not quite right option, then regretting it. It's worth taking the time and buying things once.

riverffashion

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2298 on: July 27, 2015, 08:05:00 PM »
The idea that everything you have/use can be something you actually like--not just something you happen to have--is like a revelation. You mean all those coffee mugs we've accumulated, I don't HAVE to keep? I could actually have every cup in the house be *pleasing*?? 

It's eye-opening!

Clothes, homewares, everything... if I don't love it, I get rid of it/don't buy it in the first place.

I've been burned too many times in the past by buying the cheaper or not quite right option, then regretting it. It's worth taking the time and buying things once.

In the past, I would purchase or even just take castoffs of clothing that wasn't quite right- because I am so picky it's hard to find the right things. So much wasted money & space. Needless to say, no more. And it's all since been donated.

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #2299 on: July 27, 2015, 08:23:21 PM »
The idea that everything you have/use can be something you actually like--not just something you happen to have--is like a revelation. You mean all those coffee mugs we've accumulated, I don't HAVE to keep? I could actually have every cup in the house be *pleasing*?? 

It's eye-opening!

Clothes, homewares, everything... if I don't love it, I get rid of it/don't buy it in the first place.

I've been burned too many times in the past by buying the cheaper or not quite right option, then regretting it. It's worth taking the time and buying things once.

In the past, I would purchase or even just take castoffs of clothing that wasn't quite right- because I am so picky it's hard to find the right things. So much wasted money & space. Needless to say, no more. And it's all since been donated.

You know what I've found? I'm getting a clearer picture of what I like and why, especially when it comes to a capsule-ish wardrobe.

I feel like it took me till the of 28 to start learning how to dress myself. :/