Clutter Update

by | Apr 3, 2009 | clutter | 7 comments

After my Goodwill haul on Monday, I did a thorough combing of the baby bins and took two huge bags of boy clothes to the 16-month-old across the street, and another big bag of clothes that would be too small for him went to Goodwill. I added a bit more to the bag of special girl clothes that is being saved in the hopes that one of my two good friends who is currently pregnant will have a girl (you know who you are! it’s a fight to the birth!). I also made it to the consignment shop to drop off all the jewelry I cleared out a week or so ago, thinking of Christina the whole time, because I was actually moving the clutter beyond my own personal property and into the hands of someone else.

Best of all, last Saturday at 3:45, Dave announced he had to bring some wood to the dump. We had only 15 minutes to get there before it closed, but as we were gathering our brood and throwing coats and hats on them I rushed down into the basement and grabbed the two broken bouncy chairs that have been languishing there for months. One was broken beyond repair, and the other was marginally usable but only if you’re ok with your baby bouncing next to some odd wires sticking up. On our way to the dump I suddenly had a pang about getting rid of these bouncy chairs, the ones we’ve used for all three kids, and the fact that they’re too big for bouncies already. When we got to the “Household Goods” bin and I was about to throw them in, I wondered if any part of me would regret getting rid of them. And then, as I threw them in, it felt like a literal weight was lifting off my shoulders. Regret? Hell, no! Elation! Getting rid of the bouncy chairs is not getting rid of my bouncy chair memories, but it is getting rid of two monstrous space hogs that don’t even work in the first place.

It made me feel like I may need to re-Freecycle the crock pot and the juicer. I like them but they don’t really get used enough to justify the space they take up. I’m still slightly on the fence about this, but leaning toward getting rid of them.


  1. Anne

    I’m kind of having that back-and-forth about our high chair. I have loved our high chair, but Sam doesn’t want to use it anymore, so that’s fine. I listed it on Craigslist, and so far the only person to respond offered me $20 less than what I was asking, which made me all indignant so I never got back to her. Which I now regret, because the chair is still sitting in my basement, making me wistful whenever I see it (awwww, no more baby, this was such a great chair …). But really, I should have just taken the offer and unloaded it. FAIL

  2. Christina

    haha- I am glad I inspired you to get if off of your property. Now if I could only inspire myself! The baby stuff is the hardest- I keep a lot of it of course for future babes- but we still have too much- so I try to weed through- but then second guess everything “maybe a second baby would use/wear this even though Nora didn’t…” But truth is I’d probably never even remember that we had it and never miss it…
    Anne- I’ve done the same thing with Craigslist offers and then kicked myself.

  3. Lisa van Oosterum

    You are nuts! I know it is in the name of decluttering, but Crock Pots and Juicers are things that are supposed to be used sparingly…you will regret it!!

  4. Julie

    Lisa, maybe I just need some kind of appliance garage, or hydraulic storage closet or something.

  5. Christina

    I agree with Lisa- especially about the crock-pot. We don’t have one but I am going to get one when we move and have more space. I dont know about the juicer though. Does Kitchenaid have a juicer attachment for the mixer? That might be easier to store.

  6. Annette

    Julie you are the wind beneath my wings with this post. I got slightly off track with a few business trips but I’m ready to get down and dirty with the clutter in my house. For me to keep something it has to pass these tests: 1. I must love it, 2. find it useful, 3. really need it and 4, be able to store it neatly. The hardest is making time to do this hard work. But I keep trying to stem the tide of new things coming in. That helps. Be well! – Annette

  7. Julie

    Yes, Annette, especially the storing neatly part. I was able to carve out a big cabinet spot for the juicer, but I noticed a big empty spot on the shelves in the basement, and I think I’m going to move it there. And my choices for birthday and Christmas gifts for the kids is usually 10% what I think they might want and 90% if we have a spot for it.

    I was just drooling over this home spread in the latest issue of Ready Made and there was a phrase about the homeowner strongly editing her possessions, and you could totally tell. Her house wasn’t sparse and empty, it had a lot of things, but they were clearly edited and looked like they were each in their proper spot. Reading it made me immediately Freecycle some things that a relative had sent to the boys for Easter. The boys would love a musical Easter snowglobe, but it was just so not something we need in our house.


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