19 Comments

  1. Emily

    I totally drank the Marie Kondo Kool-Aid. I like how she approaches decluttering with compassion and a sense of humor.

    Also, here’s a tip: If you have clothing or other textiles that are too beat up to sell or donate, you can drop them off at any H&M to be recycled!

    • Yes! H&M is awesome for doing that. We have a charity organization that comes and collects clothing like that too. I’m not quite sure how the financial component works, but essentially they get money for selling my clothes to turn into rags. LOL Whatever works!

  2. 27 items is still excellent! However I can relate to the panicked feeling at the end of the month, when you’ve committed to making it a priority. I’ve been cyclical in my decluttering over the last few year, with many months at 0 items (which as you know is not a good sign with two young kids since they are constantly growing out of items).

    This year I decided to make it a priority and although I’ve not been tracking every items, January was off to a good start with kids items and office stuff but February was rather slow. Then I finally did a full Marie Kondo (or Cait Flanders since reading “The Year of Less” was my ultimate motivator to do it this way) and went through all my clothing/bags/shoes and got rid of 229 items! So happy, and finally excited to tackle the kids clothes in the same way. Feels like procrastinating on my own stuff was decreasing my motivation to get to the other stuff… like an actual elephant in my closet!

    Thanks for sharing these accountability posts, helps me stay accountable to my own decluttering goals for this year! You got this for those 2 full diaper boxes of clothes!

    • You will be so proud of me. Josh messaged me with a reminder that the month wasn’t technically over yet, so I actually parted with my two boxes and added a few more things. 99 items on the nose!

  3. We do sell some things, but oftentimes it’s just not really worth the effort for a couple of bucks. So we use our local “Buy Nothing” sites on Facebook. Not sure if it’s just a local thing near us or if it’s a national thing, but it’s a great site where you just post something, wait for a response, then leave it outside your door and somebody picks it up. Easy as that, it’s gone. Good luck with the continuous decluttering!!

    • Because we live in a weird boundary line area, we don’t qualify for either of the nearby Facebook groups! But Freecycle has been amazing. I also list things for free on OfferUp…and people come RUNNING that way!

      Really good reminder for anyone else who sees this and hasn’t given Facebook a shot. Thank you!

  4. I’m still holding onto work clothes, even though I work in a casual environment. They are taking up half my closet, but it’s hard to rationalize that I won’t need them one day. Or if I need to dress up for a meeting or interview.

    One exercise that I saw on another blog that I thought was interesting:

    Sit and make a list of everything you own. Set a timer. Then compare the list to the actual inventory. If you couldn’t remember an item, then it probably means you don’t value it that much.

    I try to resell if I know there’s value, but there’s definitely an effort to that and don’t begrudge someone for donating instead. The cool thing about living in a city and that you can keep stuff out of the donation bins by leaving things outside of your stoop. It all gets scooped up pretty fast!

    We also decluttered a bunch of free reusable bags, and I’ve decided that I’m not gonna take free stuff anymore unless I think I”m gonna use it. I’ve even thought that if I go to FinCon I’m going to bring few swag home, because I don’t need it.

    • Last FinCon was so tricky for me, but I declined everything except a Vanguard tote. And Vicki’s husband got HP a football from a vendor to play with at the pool.

      The good news is that a handful of vendors seem to have caught on and showed up with food instead. Woohoo!

  5. We are not the decluttering mode quite yet but the day we buy a home and move out of our place, we’ll definitely declutter many items that’s currently laying around at home. Me and the wife have already discussed what to get rid of and have created a list of the items we will donate, try to sell and simply throw away.
    With another baby on the way, we’re storing all of BwC’s old clothes in a few bags and a bin so it will be ready to be used again for the baby #2. No need to buy any clothes and cloth diapers for him!! Hand me downs FTW!!

    • I am so pumped that worked out for you with Baby #2. We just realized that we are getting to the point where we need to make a decision with our family. HP will be two over the summer, and if we really think he’s an only child, I think we’re going to go back and donate or sell a lot of what we packed away.

  6. I ALMOST emptied out my for-sale bin but I both got sidetracked with the notion that maybe I should at least TRY to sell some of my old business pants that hardly got any wear and realized I was almost no longer able to lift the huge sack they send us for donations. I’m giving myself a couple of weeks pondering whether I’m going to spend any time on those pants as a short breather. I’ve also sorted and shredded two piles of old terrible-quality photos. PiC sorted through half of his large bag of clothes to decide whether to donate or sell so we made progress!

    But this how I know I’m not done: even after two boxes of books and a huge sack of clothes and odds and ends are gone, it still just feels like a giant clutter room here.

  7. Sarah

    I just went through our linen closet with a really critical eye and had a stack of stuff that I felt was too beat up to donate to a resale shop but I contacted our Humane Society and they said they would be grateful for the donation 🙂 Pups don’t care if the towels have bleach stains and the seam of a comforter has popped lol It felt good to know that things were going to get a bit more use before hitting the landfill

    • This is incredible, Sarah! We’ve donated towels in the past, but I’m definitely going to call about an old (OLD!) comforter that I’ve been hanging onto.

  8. We’re still working on decluttering. It has never occurred to me to track the number of items we get rid of. Honestly that seems a lot of work! And I’m so NOT a numbers person. I’m kind of judging it by boxes/bags leaving the house, and space opening up in the house. I alternate between thinking we’re making great progress and feeling like it will never end.
    Since the last time you posted about decluttering and I commented we took one very large box of clothes to the post office to send to Thred Up, took a large box of books, movies, and CDs to UPS to ship to Decluttr, and took a few big shopping bags of books, movies, and CDs to two different used bookstores. We sold what we could and used the cash toward debt repayment. We also ended up with a little bit of store credit, which we’re saving until we actually need to buy a book. We put everything they wouldn’t take in the free bins outside one of the stores. We probably could have sold a few of the books or movies on Ebay or something, but it just didn’t feel like it was worth the time involved, or keeping them in the house for longer.
    I’ve been working on filling another box to send to Thred Up. The goal is to finish up this weekend, and take it to the post office next week. I know you mentioned last month that you haven’t had great luck with them. I don’t really either, but I don’t buy expensive clothes to begin with, so I don’t expect to get much back out of them. The thrift stores here seem to be inundated with clothing, so I don’t think it actually helps to take the clothes I’m getting rid of there. I kind of feel like I at least get something out of sending them to Thred Up, and it’s low effort (which is key for making sure I actually do it). I’d probably feel differently if I bought more expensive clothes or shoes to begin with. I think cosmetics and skincare are to me what clothes and shoes are to you.
    I feel kind of dumb asking this, especially since from the comments it seems like I’m the only one who doesn’t know, but what is H&M?
    I’ve sold a few things on Ebay, too; mostly cosmetics that came as part of sets, and I only wanted part of it to begin with. Those don’t actually take up much room, so I’m not sure how much it actually helps in the decluttering process.
    I’ve also started trying to work on organizing the freezer and chest freezer. I threw away some very sketchy fruit, and some shrimp that had expired (that was really annoying!). I don’t really have a good plan in place for the freezers because they’re really full and not even remotely organized. I’m mostly just kind of pilfering around looking for anything that obviously needs to go, or that looks like it needs to be used soon.
    Hubby has been diligently working on decluttering the desk. I really have no idea what he has gotten rid of. He seems to generate about 1,000 pieces of paper for every one I do, so the desk has largely been his domain. I don’t feel bad, since I’m the one dealing with the freezer. We can actually see some desk surface now, so whatever he’s doing seems to be working.
    I just got one of Marie Kondo’s books from the library, so I’m hoping that will help us speed the process along.

  9. Tre

    I need to declutter TT’s room,.He has outgrown just about everything this year. I had the brilliant idea that it would be a good life lesson to have him sort his own stuff out. Yeah, that was a BRILLIANT idea. Let’s just say my teenager decided to get rid of two old t-shirts on the first try. When he was sent back into his room he decided he would just drop everything except his favorite clothes into the bag.

  10. Kate

    If you have a bunch of reusable bags that you don’t use/need, one of the best places I’ve found to take them is a local food pantry. I have one a few blocks from me and started taking some extra food there occasionally (especially peanut butter, oatmeal, and coffee – their top wish list items). The staff would always ask hopefully if I was going to be leaving the reusable bag that I was using to transport the food. They told me that it’s one of the things their customers are always asking for. So now at conferences, I have a habit of picking up the branded reusable bags and dropping them off at the food pantry, where they are always VERY gratefully received.

  11. I’m working on a little bit of de-cluttering myself. I used to live in a 2400sqft house and moved to a 700 sqft apartment. The house was too much house for two people. I plan to move from coast to coast and I want to be able to move in fell swoop. It’s a challenge, but I am slowly working that way. I’m trying out a new rule, for every 1 new thing, I need to get rid of 2! Keep it up!

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