Saturday, October 17, 2009

Join the Challenge: New Year No Stuff! (NYNS#1)

Are you sick of STUFF? Do you spend hours a week working to pay for new stuff? Constantly organizing old stuff? Tired of trying to find places to store stuff?

Meet the queen of STUFF!


In an effort to dethrone myself, I'm throwing out a challenge...join me in purging your home of stuff from now until the New Year.

Together, we'll challenge each other to explore all the scary nooks and crannies of the house. We'll think of creative ways to reduce/reuse/recycle, give away, and make money. (Let's also think about ways to simplify Christmas!)

You can decide how to calculate your household purge. I'm going to keep track with 12 gallon storage boxes. Obviously, those of us who are packrats, hoarders, organizationally challenged will have more to eliminate than others. No worries. It's a support challenge. Not a contest.

Wanna join in? Grab the button below and add it to your blog. That way others can join the challenge.

Sign in using Mr. Linky. Please link directly to the blog entry that describes how you want to join the challenge. Then other participants can visit you. I'll post an entry each week with new opportunities to link to your blog, reflecting on your progress. Please link back to my blog so others can join us. Let's create simpler, emptier homes!!! :) (If you don't have a blog, I'd love it if you'd post a comment to show that you are participating!)

If you're's what put me over the clutter edge...

For the last year, I've been working outside the home more than ever. For whatever reason, during this time it seems that while the stuff kept coming in, nothing was going out. Days filled with decluttering. Then, four months ago we added another child to the family. Ironically, he came with almost no stuff. And we had no "baby" showers. But somehow the "new kiddo" stuff seemed to eek it's way in anyway.

And then...

A month ago, 'LilDude started his first soccer season. He needed soccer socks. With three older siblings who've played soccer, I knew we had extra soccer socks. BUT DO YOU THINK I COULD FIND THEM? Nooooooooooooo! I would have bought new ones, but we've been so busy, that we just made do with what we had. (Too big church socks!) Today I start purging my bedroom, attacking the stacks that Anakin and Lizzi graced me with at the end of summer when they were decluttering their rooms. Lo and behold. Soccer socks. Multiple pairs. (And don't think I didn't ask earlier!)

Later, Lizzi and I were discussing a book that her friends recommended. I told her I'd also enjoyed it and that she could probably borrow it from her grandma, who owns it. Five minutes ago, while cleaning out our hall bookshelf, I discovered that I own it, too.

If these examples are non-issues for you, I alternate between wanting to kiss your toes and wanting to smack you.

And, no kidding, after watching my mom and her siblings shovel clean out my grandma's tiny duplex after her death...well, here's a cup raised to anyone who regularly purges stuff and saves their children the pain of doing it later!!!! :)

P.S. I'm starting the challenge with just me. I haven't recruited the family. Yet. (My three biggest are old enough to declutter if they choose. Or I can close my eyes when I walk past their rooms shut their doors. And I can slip stuff from the youngest two when they aren't looking. ;) )But if you want more recruits in your home, consider what Malia did at Homemaking 911. She offered incentives to the family, based on the number of items they decluttered. They removed 500 items in one day. Wow.

Saturday, I filled two bins for garage saling:

What else is leaving the house?

* bin #3 is half filled with new-looking toys to donate

* bin #4 contains several toys that my oldest kids have grown out of that my youngest kids will eventually enjoy. Although I could eliminate it as "stuff," I don't want to purchase again new...and I do have room to store it in the barn, as long as it's going to get use in the next several years.

*3 pairs of eyeglasses to donate. (Note: although I don't Wal*shop, I do drop in occasionally to donate eyeglasses at their Lions Club drop box. Even though the location is not listed on the link, I know they have a drop box. I also hear about community drives to recycle eyeglasses, cell phones, etc. So if you have them, you might make one box designated just for items that can be reused/recycled. I'll probably just put one small bag of glasses in the car for the next time I'm nearby.)


Maurine said...

Okay, I have no blog, but we bought NEW bathrugs yesterday, and I am having a hard time parting with the old ones; so before the kids descend to round up all the stuff and decide these fine old specimens would be fine coffin liners.....

There must be a use for those soft old rugs. They look and feel fine on top, even though my dh says there are holes wearing through through the rubber backing. They would be great for a pet house, in case we ever get a pet. One I placed in a shelter where I put food for the local cat hobo when she drops in for a morsel. I need a home for two more... Would your cat like one?

richmomma said...

Yep, the cats will love them. In the shed. Unless of course they're better than mine. (Which is highly likely!) In that case, mine go in the shed and yours go in my bathroom!!!! ;)

Anonymous said...

Heard about your post on the Holt Forum--I don't have a blog but I am joining the challenge as well! Looking forward to reading more great tips on keeping to the New Year No Stuff challenge!

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