I’m in a major summer toss and purge mode. So, to keep it interesting, and to model some good clutter free lifestyle habits for the boys–I am involving them in the bag-a-day challenge for June. It really can be fun, slightly addictive, and the results are always beyond satisfying.
At our house, I promised we could go to the splash park (that I’ve already got my Groupon for) if we can manage one bag out of the house a day. A bag means any of the following:
1. Bag of clothes to give away, or to the school nurse (kids clothes–they always need them).
2. A bag of recycled stuff (that pile of magazines from last summer, and the egg carton you are not really going to ever turn into that cool caterpillar thing you saw in the parenting magazine…)
3. bag/box of toys for the preschool
4. collection of clay pots in the garage to the school for their plant sale
A “bag” is a bag’s worth of stuff–loosely. So it also means:
5. The outgrown kids bike to the family down the street
6. the eight paint cans to the school drama department (call first) for next year’s sets
7. The ugly chair. You’ve always hated it. Donate it, or put it on the curb a free sign for a few hours and save yourself a trip.
8. Have the kids each pick out ten books they are done with. Put them in a box, and donate to the library book sale, the head start program, or their own school.
9. Do we really need nine soccer balls? Two soccer balls and one winter coat is worth a bag.
10. Take turns filling a bag. Do more than one in one day, and take a day off. But stick with it for a month.
It’s like putting your home on a diet for a month, and like dieting (if you believe in the practice) it makes you much more reluctant to pull over at the yard sale and bring that nifty plant stand home if you just spent thirty days trying to pawn your treasures off on someone else!
Think of it this way: If someone dropped thirty bags or boxes of stuff in your living room and asked you to merge them into your home you’d decline–I mean who has the space for all that?!?
I’ll try to remember to check in with our weekly list as we go along.
Day 1: Bag of a few remaining very small Marcel things, two baby blankets and a few books for colleague with new baby at school.
Day 2: Summer clothes I didn’t wear last summer, and won’t wear this summer, two soccer balls, and two stuffed animals the kids never ever notice that went in the Salvation Army collection bin today.
Have any inspired words of letting it go wisdom? Pass it along! Come back to this post, and tell us about a bag you got out, a corner you tackled, a difference it made.
This is awesome. I can only imagine what this place would look like with 30 bags less of too many of this and too many of that. I have about two armfuls of coats that I am planning to take down to the thrift store. I have been planning this ever since I opened the box that held them, and they have been patiently waiting on top of the opened box. Thanks for the reminder to get a move on, so they can find a new home!
YES! I love it. It really is cathartic–one bag a time. That is all it takes. Maybe E can fill a bag with stuff for her school? After a year of K, and Sam coming home in a new shirt or shorts because of this or that I get that there are never enough clothes at the nurse’s office too…
This is very true! There can never be too many extra’s at school. Clothes are just the greatest most sharable thing. I have a friend with an older daughter who loves to be out with the old and in with the new. Ever so often, they will go through her oldies and they become a big bag of goodies for Emma! Now, if I could push more than clothing out the door 🙂
Just what I needed to keep me motivated. I take a box to GoodWill once every month. The problem is I always go in and buy more stuff to bring home. This month’s box includes a large toy and two pairs of shoes I bought from GW in February! Have you heard of the 27 Thing Fling? You collect 27 things (in one fell swoop) to get rid of. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t but it’s fun and great counting practice, too!
My mother took some of Jupiter’s old clothes to the school nurse last fall (she subs in the building)….and then Jupiter needed pants one day and came home in one of the pairs of pants that got donated. Last fall my mother donated her old encyclopedia set to the school for a rummage sale fund raiser….and last week Jupiter went to the book swap at school and came home with one of the annual encyclopedia volumes (the year 1982) that my mother donated last fall. The stuff keeps finding its way back!!!
I’m into this big time!!! Two of my kids have birthdays this month which usually means a ton of new stuff. I already have a couple of bags ready for the Vietnam Veterans to come pick up. I love this idea. I find de-cluttering to be insanely therapeutic.