Friday, May 18, 2012
My personal challenge to remove 100 items from my house is up today.
Are you dying to know how I did? are you waiting on the edge or your seat to find out if I made it to 100? I am sure you are... (ha!) But before i talk about results i want to talk a little about the process.
So how was it? Was it hard to part with things?
It was for me at first. Well, honestly when I started the challenge I had in my mind a list of the things i wanted to get rid of, so i felt confident going in. And then I gathered up those things and wrote them down... and I had 12 things. And I have to say, I was a little disappointed it wasn't more. How would I ever make it to 100? What was I going to have to 'give up' that I wanted to keep, simply to make this goal? And I started to get all needy and possessive and selfish about my stuff--
It's silly to get rid of this stuff that has value, or this stuff that I am not using now... but might some day. I need this stuff... I paid for this stuff... I have earned this stuff.
And then somehow, I heard this self talk-- and I was appalled.
That is exactly what got me into this over-stuffed house to begin with. That is the opposite of living simply and content. It is the exact opposite of living gratefully. And I do not wish to be that selfish, ungrateful person telling herself she earned all this. YUCK.
So I started cleaning and sorting and getting rid of things. Some stuff was junk--trash-- that I held onto for sentimental reasons. I carefully logged the memory in my mind, or wrote it down in a journal if it was important, then got rid of the item.
Some things I found in my wardrobe were things I didn't even like or couldn't wear, but I had held onto them for the brand name, the status, the fact that I liked seeing 40 pairs of pretty shoes lined up in my closet even if I only reasonably wear 4 on a regular basis. People don't give a crap what brand name is on the pants that fit you poorly, Valerie. It was time to get rid of those items and those delusions.
Some things, I started cleaning out, and realized how much excess we had. Really. We have 2 beds and 10 sets of sheets in our house. 2 adults and 16 bath towels. Over a hundred pairs of socks between the two of us. That is entirely out of control. And does nothing but encourage me to do laundry less often. Our excess was harboring laziness in our house, and it was time to get rid of it.
This week I cleaned out our linen closet, my spice cabinet, half of my wardrobe (the other part didn't make the deadline), my jewelry box, and several boxes in our storage area downstairs. Do you want to know what items left our house?
1 box full of old magazines
1 large tub of books (there were probably 40 or so there, I didn't count them)
1 Baby Bullet we aren't going to use
1 folder full of recipes I printed off and never tried
6 sheet sets
1 fitted sheet
5 pillow cases
1 comforter set (comforter, bedskirt, shams, and decorative pillows)
5 hand towels
10 wash cloths
1 kuerig storage tower
1 grilling basket
1 pizza spatula
1 basement throw rug
1 chipped salad plate
1 folding desk
1 folding chair
1 melted tupperware bowl
2 plastic tub/boxes I kept jewelry in
1 plastic jewelry pouch
30 pieces of jewelry in good condition
10 pieces of jewelry that were broken beyond repair and thrown out
3 hair accessories
16 clothing items
15 baby clothing items
8 bottle of baby products sam can't use (dang allergies!)
1 baby play gym
3 picture frames
4 empty shoe boxes
And 17 bottles that were duplicates/expired in my spice cabinet.
So... did you do the math? That is 173 items removed from my home.
WHEW! I have to say I am exhausted after a busy week of cleaning, sorting, and getting rid of stuff... but oh my word, I feel better.
Really. It's been kind of freeing getting rid of this stuff. And cleaning out all the excess, trash, and uneccessary makes me feel like I have better access to use and enjoy the things still in my house. Also cleaning and getting rid of stuff is kind of addictive. I got started and then it felt so good I just kept going and going. And I am not stopping today just because it is the challenge deadline. Admittedly, I might slow down a bit, but I am going to keep working toward storing and holding onto less stuff.
Becuase at the very beginning of this challenge that's what I said I wanted, right? LESS STUFF. I am happy to report I achieved it, and it feels great.
So how did you do? Did you make your goal? What did you get rid of? How do you feel? Tell us about it all in the comments! :)