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2021 Decluttering Thread

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    #76
    Originally posted by disneysteve View Post
    Please do your loved ones a huge favor and declutter now while you're alive and able to do it. And stop saving crap you don't need!
    I wish I could convince my wife of this... It's an uphill battle, and most of the time I feel like I'm definitely losing. Our house isn't overwhelmed by junk, but we just have SO MUCH random stuff, most of which doesn't get used. She's the sentimental sort, and has plastic bins filled with keepsakes from her childhood. With kids, it's way worse -- toys, clothes, random school papers, "saving it" for future kids.... ugh.... I've yet to find anything reliable to motivate her to go for any sort of decluttering purge, except perhaps visiting her (definitively hoarding) mother's house, and each time we move with the military.
    "Praestantia per minutus" ... "Acta non verba"

    Comment


      #77
      Originally posted by kork13 View Post
      I wish I could convince my wife of this... It's an uphill battle, and most of the time I feel like I'm definitely losing. Our house isn't overwhelmed by junk, but we just have SO MUCH random stuff, most of which doesn't get used. She's the sentimental sort, and has plastic bins filled with keepsakes from her childhood. With kids, it's way worse -- toys, clothes, random school papers, "saving it" for future kids.... ugh.... I've yet to find anything reliable to motivate her to go for any sort of decluttering purge, except perhaps visiting her (definitively hoarding) mother's house, and each time we move with the military.
      What I'm finding in my cousin's case is an abundance of unnecessary paper. For example, he kept every auto insurance policy dating back 15 years. Me? When I get the new one, I shred the old one. I only keep the most recent active policy. If he got a bill that came with a return envelope for your payment, even though he paid electronically, he still saved that return envelope along with the bill. He also saved any flyers that were in with the bill advertising other services. So he has every bill just as it came. Me? I pull out the actual bill and toss everything else in the recycling bin right away.

      He has all of the paperwork from purchasing his last car (not his current car), and the one before that, and the one before that. I even came across the paperwork from his 1975 Ford purchase. I realize he may have kept that one for sentimental value as it was probably his first car purchase.

      He had a Vanguard account, as do I. Buy like my mother, he saved the monthly, quarterly, and year-end statements. Me? When the quarterly one comes, I shred the monthly ones. When the year-end comes, I shred the quarterly ones.

      So yeah, there will be lots and lots of shredding happening and very full recycling bins.
      Steve

      * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
      * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
      * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

      Comment


        #78
        Today's declutters:

        DH traded in 3 old golf clubs that have served their purpose and got a really cool pair of golf shoes.

        My mom gave me a gift of a bracelet that I gave to her 30 years ago. And she gave me a piece of family silver to ship to my sister as a gift. My sisters & I asked her to stop buying gifts for us and instead give us items of hers that we like or consider family treasures that she no longer uses.

        I hauled a huge tub full of stuff from mom's place to Goodwill, after persuading her that I did NOT need to leave it for her to "look through one more time." Now that we're both at maximum protection from COVID and I can get back in to her place to resume the decluttering efforts, I've surveyed the new piles, developed a plan of attack, and dusted off the Serenity Prayer. disneysteve I'll see your 2012 car purchase papers and raise you by every bill and receipt from 1996 on.

        Comment


          #79
          Originally posted by scfr View Post
          disneysteve I'll see your 2012 car purchase papers and raise you by every bill and receipt from 1996 on.
          Oh it goes back well before that. I found the car before that (2000 maybe) and I'm not all the way through that file yet. Did you miss the part about the papers from the 1975 car purchase? I'm guessing I will ultimately find every car he's ever owned in there.

          He moved from Philadelphia to Florida in 2011 but there is still a ton of paperwork and bills and such from his old house. I can understand taking some of that with him when he moved because it was still recent at the time, but he still has it 10 years later.

          He's got paperwork from accounts like banks and credit cards that he closed 10 or 15 or more years ago.
          Steve

          * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
          * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
          * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

          Comment


            #80
            I've now been at my late cousin's house for 9 days with decluttering being my full time job. I've made a great deal of progress, which I have to keep reminding myself of, because when I look around, I see there is still so much to do.

            I've thrown out 7 bags of trash, 4 recycling bins of paper, 10 cartons of documents to be shredded, 6 bags of clothing plus several cartons and multiple loose items to the thrift shop.

            Today, among other things I spent some time going through his photographs and threw out probably 80% of them. I saved the people pictures and tossed most of the places and things photos (random beach, fish at the aquarium, etc.). I suppose this is less of an issue know that we're all digital, but still, take pictures of the people in your life. When you look back, that's what will hold the most meaning to you - not the photos of the sunset or your hotel room or a bird you saw.

            After my walk tonight, while I was already sweaty and disgusting, I spent a little time in the garage and tossed a few small items, got a couple of things set aside for the thrift shop, and brought in a couple of cartons of stuff to go through, most or all of which I suspect will get tossed/recycled. I'll sort through it later while I watch TV.

            My wife commented yesterday that hearing everything that I'm doing here has motivated her to work on the clutter at home. I don't know how much she's done but I suspect once I'm back home, I'll be doing the same.
            Steve

            * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
            * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
            * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

            Comment


              #81
              So I ultimately spent 4 full weeks at my cousin's house. I left there Monday morning for the drive home. I took I think 9 carloads of stuff to the thrift shop, donated 80 trophies to a youth sports ministry, threw out I don't even know how many bags of trash (I'm positive I went through at least 25 trash bags), sold numerous items on Marketplace and ebay, shredded 10 cartons of paper, and recycled a couple hundred pounds of paper.

              My wife did start working on some stuff at home while I was gone and continues to do so. I've been taking a little time to get settled but have already done some work including just today going through several files and eliminating a substantial stack of papers that I really don't need to save. I also packed two bags and one box full of stuff for Goodwill. I'll get it over there this weekend.

              The whole experience with my cousin's house has really changed my outlook and made me realize how very much stuff we have that we simply don't need to have. It serves no purpose and we will never need to refer to it in the future, so it's all on the chopping block.
              Steve

              * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
              * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
              * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

              Comment


                #82
                We have a large collection of Disney collectibles. Little by little, I've been starting to thin out the collection and find new homes for items that aren't meaningful for us. Today, I gathered all of our small plush and beanie Winnie the Pooh characters. We decided to get rid of 20 of them, keeping just a few that we particularly like. I was going to put them on ebay but unfortunately the postage cost would be a deal breaker as it so often is, so off to Goodwill they go. That cleared one entire shelf in our collectibles room as well as little spots around the room where some of these items lived.
                Steve

                * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                Comment


                  #83
                  Cleared some stuff off of my desk. I realized that there were a number of items always there - glue, envelopes, etc. - that we do need but don't use nearly often enough to have them taking up desk space. They now reside on a shelf across the room.

                  I went through our stationary shelf and tossed a bunch of random greeting cards that came from various charities. We will never use them. I tossed some very old thank you notes that will never get used. There's also a stack of thank you notes from our wedding (1992) that I will ask DW about before tossing those. I don't think we've used one since the wedding presents.

                  I had 2 boxes of 500 envelopes in the closet that I think came from my old office. I don't remember for sure. But we have another box of 500 on the shelf. We will never need 1,500 envelopes so I listed the 2 unopened boxes on Marketplace. If they don't sell in a week or two, I'll list them on the Buy Nothing Group.
                  Steve

                  * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                  * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                  * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                  Comment


                    #84
                    This morning, I took 2 bags of clothing to Goodwill and took 2 old bbq propane tanks to the hardware store for disposal. They've been taking up space in the garage for years. It cost me $20 but it was well worth it. I also asked DW about those old thank you notes and they just went into the recycling bin.
                    Steve

                    * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                    * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                    * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                    Comment


                      #85
                      My wife and I just browsed one display case and removed 10 items that neither of us care about and are willing to part with. Add that to the 20 plushes we removed the other day.

                      I then spent a bit of time in the basement. Threw out a number of items, added a bunch to a box to give away, set aside a few to sell, and put some paper in the recycling bin.
                      Last edited by disneysteve; 06-27-2021, 10:16 AM.
                      Steve

                      * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                      * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                      * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                      Comment


                        #86
                        Two items sold on ebay today.

                        I started thinning out my tax return files, keeping just the returns themselves and recycling or shredding all of the supporting paperwork. I know I probably don't need the returns either (beyond 7 years) but I'm okay keeping a pretty small file that is maybe 10% of what it started as.
                        Last edited by disneysteve; 06-27-2021, 07:09 PM.
                        Steve

                        * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                        * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                        * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                        Comment


                          #87
                          May be OCD for some, but after we got fiber installed for internet, I went through and removed all the old coaxial cable. It falls in the the mental decluttering category for me!

                          Also we ended up renting a storage unit for all the clutter from the kids moving in and out. A lot of temporary things we know they'll need once they're out on their own.

                          Comment


                            #88
                            Originally posted by disneysteve View Post
                            I started thinning out my tax return files, keeping just the returns themselves and recycling or shredding all of the supporting paperwork. I know I probably don't need the returns either (beyond 7 years) but I'm okay keeping a pretty small file that is maybe 10% of what it started as.
                            I've continued to work on this this morning and I've discovered that I actually have a bunch of duplicate paperwork. When our previous accountant retired, he gave us back all of the original documents that he had held on file. That meant we had both our copies and the originals. I'm in the process of getting rid of all of that now.

                            I also put a few of the collectible items we cleared out yesterday onto Marketplace last night and one sold this morning. She is supposed to come for it this afternoon. More space and more money - gotta love that.
                            Last edited by disneysteve; 06-28-2021, 05:28 AM.
                            Steve

                            * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                            * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                            * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                            Comment


                              #89
                              Spent a couple of hours in the garage this morning. 3 bags of trash. Some boxes broken down in recycling. And a bunch of stuff ready to give away or sell. It’s pouring here so no Goodwill run today. And I’m going out of town on Monday so I’m not starting any online sales until I’m back.

                              I also went in the attic yesterday. I was looking for something I didn’t find but while I was up there I took down a few boxes for items we no longer own. I need to spend some more time up there when the weather permits as a bunch of that stuff needs to go.
                              Last edited by disneysteve; 07-02-2021, 10:14 AM.
                              Steve

                              * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                              * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                              * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                              Comment


                                #90
                                My father had a large stamp collection including thousands of first day covers, assorted envelopes, and postcards. I've recently started going through them with the intent of eventually taking them to a dealer to see what I can get for them. Unfortunately, they weren't stored well and many are damaged as a result. So I'm sorting through them, tossing the damaged items, and separating the postcards from the envelopes. I've sold a couple on ebay and have a few others that I will list as well. I've also found a number of postcards sent to my family from friends and other family members so it's been neat to see those. This morning I went through another stack of them.
                                Steve

                                * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                                * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                                * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                                Comment

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