January Clutter Update

Wow, you all have blown me away with your excitement for this challenge!  2010 is sure to bring fewer things in our homes, cluttering up our lives.

Remember, you’re setting your own rules and goals. I’m trying to rid my home of an average of 2 items per day this year.  Maybe you want to get rid of a few bags of clothes, or clear out one room a month.  Whatever your goal, let’s all strive to make our homes more peaceful and manageable with less stuff.

If the challenge seems daunting; if you find it hard to part with things, keep focused using Rachel’s Clutter Emergency Card idea. With each item, ask yourself

  • How long has it been since I used this?
  • Do I like it?
  • Does it work properly? Is it broken?
  • Do I have more of this kind of thing? How many do I need?
  • If I keep this, what will I get rid of to make room for it?
  • Can I locate this information somewhere else (probably on the internet) if I need it?

As for me and my clutter goal, I’m off to a decent start.  While taking down Christmas decorations, I focused more on each item.  Do I need this?  Do I even like this?  Next year’s Christmas decorating will be a joy with fewer items to sort through!

More recently my husband went digging in our basement for a particular book (we have boxes of them that were never unpacked when we moved 3 1/2 years ago) and found a large box full of nic-nacks from my classroom.  Because the emotion is mostly gone after nearly 5 years of not teaching, I was able to part with some of those things as well.  Here’s my tally so far.

1.  A set of window icicle lights.

2-22.  Christmas decorations, trinkets, and nic-nacks that I no longer care to dust around.

23.  Portable bath spa.  This is one of those maybe we’ll use it someday items that has been taking up space in our home for 7 or so years.  No more!

24-30.  Random assortment of things that never had a place in our home.

31-51.  Teaching gifts and what-nots that I no longer need.  (***Hint:  I never really needed most of them.  Cute, yes.  Functional, only a few.  Get your teachers some gift cards!)  😉

All of the above items have been labeled and packed away in sealed garage sale boxes for this spring.  I also have a stack of clothes that need counted and delivered to the consignment shop.  Adult clothing doesn’t sell well for me at garage sales, so I gather it and take it to the second-hand store when they are accepting items.

An official tally of 51 puts me at a slowish start, but I haven’t yet counted the clothes or the random items that made it to the basement just this morning.  Perhaps I’ll blow you away with next month’s numbers?

Is the clutter decreasing in your home? Are you finding the challenge easy, or are you struggling with letting go?  I have a feeling things may get a little dicey around here when I start purging the kids’ stuff.  I’ll have to nudge my hubby along, too.

Link up with your decluttering triumphs and challenges so we can cheer each other on! If you didn’t write a post, leave a comment so we can read what you’ve been up to.

1. The Happy Housewife ~ Slow and Steady
2. Mika
3. Lenetta @ Nettacow (40 Bags in 40 Days for Lent)
4. The Money Jar – Making Progress
5. A Slob Comes Clean (Decluttering is What I’m all About!)
6. Eoforhild
7. Rachel @ Frugal & Simple Living
8. Sherry @ Lamp Unto My Feet (Over 100 & Goals, too)
9. Zizzie Happenings
10. Young Wife
11. Bronwen
12. Family Balance Sheet (Garage/Mud Room/Pantry Area)
13. Stacy @ A Safe Haven
14. Jami @ An Oregon Cottage (A good start)
15. Shibrone
16. Buttercup @ This Woman’s Work (10 things a day)
17. Phoebe @ GettingFreedom
18. Jackie @ Blessings Overflowing
19. Candi (I’m a Hoarder in the Kitchen)
20. Nancy @ Southern Blessings
21. Andrea 🙂
22. Joyce
23. Judy @ livingsimplyforhim
24. Tammy’s GoodPlans ~ 61 & the Blessing Bag
25. DeAna @ Balancing Act Basics
26. Jennifer @ Mama’s Got Wings
27. april
28. Grainne (Thirty-one, Thrifty & Thriving)

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  1. I had to laugh while I was looking at your box, I was thinking, oh- that’s cute, I’d like to have that, lol!
    Maybe we shouldn’t be posting what we are getting rid of, too tempting!

  2. I’m making progress! It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon!

  3. Amy, do you want us to link back here? I linked up a post I wrote last week for my Lent challenge. I don’t think I have the endurance to make it last all year. :>) My Bible study group will be talking tonight about details that we’d like to tighten up and I’ll be posting about that later this week, I think.

  4. I commented at the beginning of Jan. that I challenged my sister to join me; nothing like some friendly competition. 368 items out of here! I packed some away for a garage sale, donated things, freecycled a few things and pitched others. Iwas ruthless, lol! Most of this came just from my laundry room & the storage shelves in it! That area of my home is looking great now! 🙂

  5. Good job on decluttering! And getting rid of old teaching stuff. I always get my boys’ teachers something edible…a coffee card…and a Bath and Body Works hand soap. Those are things that I would LOVE to receive as a gift. I figure if I can’t use it…or even like it…why would they? It makes me nervous for when I am finally a teacher…I don’t want a bunch of apple stuff!

  6. I set my goal at 500 and I’m pretty sure that I have reached but there was NO way I was counting everything in the more than 20 bags/boxes of garbage and 10 bags of donations…I feel so much better knowing all of that “stuff” is no longer here (my husband is out delivering donatables right now!) but I’m sure there is still plenty that can go. Guess I’ll join you at 730 (or more!).

    Thanks for the great idea!

  7. This has really got me going. I’m excited about decluttering this month, too! 😀

  8. I am pretty decluttered already but there are always things that can go. Thanks for the inspiration:-)

  9. The sister challenge is working great. I know longer have to think about if I want to keep something. If it’s been sitting for 6 months or longer it is out of here! My January total is 583. Most of my items have come from old teaching stuff. I started off with Kindergarten but now I am with 5th grade. All of my kindergarten supplies are out of here!

  10. Even my husband is helping!

  11. wow! It’s going to take me some time to reach some of the items counts already reached! Well done everyone 🙂
    I’m plodding along, the heat of summer (Austalian blogger here 🙂 ) is slowing me down. And school only started back yesterday after our 6 week summer holidays, it’s always a challenge to declutter well with 4 little ones under my feet! Only 2 at home now, so maybe I’ll start making some faster progress!

  12. I LOVE to get rid of stuff (almost to a fault). I recently cleaned out my dresser that holds socks/slips/hose/work-out clothing/t-shirts etc. I was able to fill an entire black bag of stuff just from this area. No wonder the drawers never shut properly! It feels good to open a drawer and see what is it!

  13. This is a great idea. I may have to join up to this party, albeit a little late

  14. Great job, confirms that I am right in giving teaches gift cards. They are to a popular coffee chop and even if it’s not a large amount they add up and are a welcome treat to looking for change for a coffee. As far as clutter goes, I keep a tote in the back of the van and toss items that I don’t want in there. When I am driving by a drop off point for a thrift store I pull over and empty it. Chances are if I never went in the car looking for it, I don’t need it.

  15. Andrea :) says:

    I am looking forward to getting rid of lots of junk around my house this year! Thanks for the challenge. It’s a perfect goal to assist my other goals this year.
    I’m off to a late start, but I know I can catch up in February.
    Andrea 🙂

  16. I am so excited to have found you. I am definately joining in on the challenge. Thanks for the decluttering fun 🙂

    ~ Emily N. from “too Blessed to Stress”

  17. Thanks Amy for such a great idea. Really enjoying the challenge.
    I’ve managed to pitch one hundred and seven things so far (that’s up to Sunday the 7th Feb though).
    Well done you for sorting through your old teaching stuff – I really need to sort through all my uni teaching stuff (about six years and counting of closed up boxes and sad memories), you might just have inspired me yet again.

  18. I just started a blog to hold myself accountable (okay, I really thought public humiliation might be a motivator to clear it out! 🙂 )as I try to simplify our home and get rid of the extras. Then I found your challenge-what a great help!


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