I know that Joshua Becker recommends clearing out before Christmas, so that you have the opportunity to give things away to others who might need them and clear some space for the inevitable gifts that you will receive. (I say inevitable, as we have not managed to eliminate them completely in favour of experiences- despite our best efforts at Christmas Lists! I would hate to offend those family members who want to give them, so we try to put useful things on our list to guide them).
With that in mind, I was spurred on to have a clear out- also prompted by a number of items breaking down. I wasn’t organised enough to take pictures, so it will have to be a list.
- Broken telephone (inherited from my grandparents and was no longer functioning properly)
- Wallpaper steamer (unfortunately a bad purchase as did not last, as we could still use one). However I have found that a re-fillable spray bottle works as well if not better.
- 3 ceramic tiles- found in our garage- hideously 1970s, but maybe cool and retro now?!
- 2 Laura Ashley dresses ( I purchased a bundle on eBay for a really good price, kept the ones I liked and donated or sold the rest. I made back twice what I paid, so a good purchase!)
- Ironing board hanger (bought it with us from our last house, just incase it might be useful. No it wasn’t- should have left it behind! When will I learn about those ‘just in-case’ items?!
- Coat hook rack (taken down from our current house, left by the last owners. We just don’t have enough coats for 2 racks, even with visitors- talk about overkill).
- 2 books that my OH had bought in charity shops and finished reading. We send them back and don’t keep them.
- 2 DVDs (again we buy second hand and send them back once we’ve watched them).
- Retro/ cool 1970s light fitting (or not!)- left by the previous owners, not something we wanted to keep.
- Probably some more miscellaneous small items that I’ve now forgotten, that I found on my clean up mission.
I actually sent all of this to the charity shops, incase someone wanted items for re-use, parts or crafting. I have now decided to keep a charity bag on-hand- since unfortunately despite my notice, we still get 2 or 3 a week put through our letterbox. I turn them inside out and use them for any charity- silly, but I don’t want to offend them by bringing another charity’s bag. I put items straight into it which helps with the out of sight, out of mind thing. If I can’t see them item or don’t go to retrieve it, then I don’t need it. Once the bag is full, I can just take it and donate it.
I also cleared out a cupboard of old papers, so we have a lot more free storage space now. Last weekend, I traded in a box full of old CDs, DVDs and books that we have finished with to We Buy Books. They had a 15% extra code which was my incentive. We use charity shops and CEX like a library as it’s cheaper to buy them than rent from our local library. After using them, we trade them in or sell them on eBay/ Amazon. This nets us some cash to watch/ read something new and often we get back more than we paid! Win, win.
I’ve been selling a bunch of stuff on eBay- my motto is to try and sell it first, then donate. So packages have been going out several times a week.
I’m also really happy that now it’s December, I can start wrapping and giving gifts I have bought for others which also frees up space around my home.
My decluttering/ Minimalist efforts continue…