When I got back to the city after the Holidays, I brought in a suitcase full of wonderful gifts from loved ones...which also means more things to fit into this my little apartment. I'm naturally a pack rat. I can't throw things out for fear that I'll need them again in the future, plus I don't like being wasteful, so the idea of something going to a landfill after I toss it just doesn't sit well with me.
Despite these reasons, I knew that I had to get my act in gear and do some careful sifting through everything. For every item that I am bringing in the house, I need to get rid of 1-2 in its place. I decided to sort the piles into: Trash, Give and Donate. Some things were destined for the garbage can, but others were still in good condition and could be useful to family and friends. Those which I didn't think anyone I know would like, went into the Donate pile.
Needless to say, the majority of the stuff being kicked out was clothing. I may love my worn out jeans, but I only wear them around the house these days, so what is the point of keeping them? Going through everything also reminded me of things I want to mend, hem and replace.
Another big pile is just full of books. I read a ton - some purchased new, others given to me, and a few picked up from cheap bargain bins. Again, I sorted through them to make Sell, Give and Donate piles. Anything that I think someone I know would like, I'm passing on. Everything else I will try to sell on consignment at a local bookstore, and what they won't take, I'll donate.
I've already dragged a box of stuff out of the apartment and I'm looking forward to cleaning out some more. In the material world we live in, its nice to lose some of the weight. Less stuff also means less to clean, which I'm always game for!
To keep this clearing out going, I've also gone through everything in the kitchen and bathroom too. Here is how I'm tackling everything:
Makeup: Anything that I haven't used in a year is going in the trash. Its amazing how long we keep that stuff!
Medicine: Going through all the bottles to see what is past its prime is a also a great way to see what you need to stock up on too.
Pantry: I'll admit that there were a few expired cake mixes in there! Anything that is up in the next few months I wrote down on a piece of paper and taped it to the inside of the cupboard. I'm hoping that this will remind me to use these up while they're still good.
Freezer: Now that I'm back, I wanted to go through everything in the freezer and take inventory. I like to store leftovers to have ready-to-go meals for late nights at the office. Keeping a list of what I have helps me remember to use stuff I already have and not let things go to waste.
Using up what I have, giving/selling/donating what I don't need and tossing what its ready to go, will not only save me space, but save me money as well. It feels like a great way to start the New Year!