Toss 150 pieces of junk in one month

With the infamous Spring Cleaning mode setting in, I wanted to share this terrific tip that I read about and put into action. 

The only requirement is commitment: “I said I would do it and I will!” To begin, glance around your home, yard, and garage to determine if you have things to chuck. 

This seems ludicrous, especially if you have lived in the same place for a number of years, however there are minimalists who toss all of the time and so they really might struggle to locate an adequate number of expendables.

Next, create you rules. For example, does a pair of shoes count as 1 item or 2? Does throwing away three old, dusty hats that have been stuffed in the corner for years really add up to 3? 

Or is it just one as the hats themselves make up a series? Does repurposing something like taking that old mug that you’ve thrown coins into being transformed into an herb planter satisfy the rules? 

Does giving the odd pile of books, games, and toys to children and grandchildren to clutter their homes work? I definitely say yes to that! 

Is it admissible to keep odd treasures that no one uses now and which are absolutely meaningless to the next generation just because…? For example, in the 1930s my dad coached and taught at Central Valley High School near Spokane. 

I have a picture of him in his sweats and I even have the original sweatshirt. He died in 1971 – before I married and before I had kids so the significance is lost.

Yes, I used to wear that old thing but it is threadbare and would disintegrate in the washer if I laundered it. I love it and wanted to provide you with some leeway in this toss-away endeavor.

I started in a bit of a willy-nilly manner. I wandered aimlessly and identified potential dumpster-abilia. Of course, those first few days were easy with one gem April 1st, 2 on April 2nd and so on. 

On Day 7 a friend asked if I really thought I could do it to which I bravely nodded yes. It was at that time that I decided that while meandering worked, it lacked focus. Plus I found I’d have to go back to the trash and re-count – just to keep myself honest. Silly, aren’t I? 

On Day 10 I dedicated my attention more precisely. Sunday I dug in the hall closet; Monday I excavated mine. 

The latter proved a challenge as several months ago Allison purge my wardrobe and since then I have determinedly donned anything I saved — well, except a couple of “valuables”: a dress Lynn gave me about 35 years ago, my old cheerleader outfit from Eureka, a gown my mom made me, a 1990s Lowry sweatshirt. Memories certainly interfere with clean-up maneuvers.

At Thanksgiving, Allison also rummaged through bookshelves and glass cases. I refer to her example to aid my current process. 

She set numerous nuggets on the bed then quizzed me as to why I coveted each one. From “My college roommate Ann gave those candleholders to Mama. 

I’ll buy candles for them” to “Well, I am thinking about actually adding water and floatable candles to light and display when we have company.”

I kept them – in fact, I sort of hid them until she left – and then I permitted them to crawl back into their former home. Have used either of these or any of the other stealthily guarded pieces? No, but I feel pretty sure I will. Someday.

To help me succeed I plan to save the storage room mélange and garage disaster until the 20s. 25 tosses here and 28 there should be rather uncomplicated. 

While over the years I have tried to keep each of these locales fairly ordered, I accept that there is trash to go. Two cars have always owned their personal spaces and various boxes of bric-a-brac have spots on shelves, but I know I can meet my quota with their heaving assistance.

Writing this in advance of publication, I admit I am doing well. April 30 will reveal the truth. I’ve met every daily deadline and while the dent in my mess appears negligible, boxes and drawers are getting organized; closets have some breathing room; I sense some satisfaction each time I place something in the grandkids’