Interesting prompt today. What are 11 things you don't need in 2011, and how will you go about getting rid of them?
This, for someone who is slow to let go of clutter, is a scary one.
However, I've recently realized that my emotional attachment to some things is much lower than it used to be, and my tolerance for clutter, also lower. My kids are getting older. This is an excellent combination, though not if you're a toy-story level sap and think giving away old raggedy ann dolls and fisher price play houses is bad.
Meanwhile, I think you need to do this too. Take the challenge - what eleven things don't you need in 2011?
1. 10% of the kids' books - kids' bookshelves need to be purged, now that the youngest is reading competently. There are some books I have been holding onto just so she has things that she feels confident about reading. Seeing as how she can successfully navigate through chapter books now, and I have a huge selection of picture books I simply *can't* get rid of, I think there's a middle ground of easy readers I can purge. I have recently done this with the grown-up books in the house, though I think I could do some more. Not easy readers for adults, though that would be funny. Just regular books.
2. Speaking of grown-up books, when I did the family room bookshelves a few weeks ago, I made a pile of "might be worth something" books. They are mental clutter. By the end of January I need to either list them on Amazon to resell or just DONATE the darn things. I tend to hold onto things too long thinking I can wring a few more dollars out of them if only I could sell them, but honestly, I need to let go sometimes. (However I welcome your tips for resale as I do have a number of other things on this list that it sure would be nice to actually make a buck or two from.)
3. Jog stroller - craigslist or buh-bye.
4. Same for the Schwinn tandem bike stroller. Note to self: Teach the 7 year old to ride a two wheeler, she has confidence issues and fear that she needs to overcome but she'll never overcome it if we don't spend the time out on the driveway on the bike.
5. All the crap over my desk in the kitchen. I've been on a big purge streak this last week, literally have spent all week cleaning off that desk some of the kitchen drawers. I could probably do a better job of the whole "a place for every thing and everything in its place" business if I had some SPACE in the HUGE cabinets above the desk. Now they're jammed full of, among other things, a box of paperwork that is at least 7 years old, ever bubble envelope I've ever received that I thought might be reusable (I can keep those but they don't have to be stored so centrally), a bunch of old video tapes from the video camera that I hardly use anymore seeing as how all our cameras and phones can record video, blank greeting cards, thank you notes, a bucket of sharpies and permanent markers, a number of pieces of cameras, I even found a small 35mm camera up there which I've already put in the giveaway bag. Time to let it all go, particularly while I'm in this "pitch it or donate it" mood, I've learned over the years to take advantage of these fleeting moods.
6. 5 lbs. 'Nuff said.
7. The Lego Mindstorms RXT robot that I got for DS with the best of intentions (used on ebay last year) but which we've never been able to get the software working for and which is not supported by lego anymore and which he just doesn't show interest in yet. Next year when he's old enough for the Lego Robotics team, maybe, but...sigh. Not this version since it's out of date.
8. The old Dell laptop, a Windows 95 machine, and all the video games on CD-Rom that came with. Anyone want a Windows 95 machine? It works fine, but nobody plays on it anymore, all the games are geared younger (Dora, Blues Clues) and, well, I'm sick of seeing it on my desk.
9. The eleventy billion notecards, torn pieces of paper, post-its, and other places I've stored random story ideas, concepts for an in-progress story, blog post ideas, etc. They need to be consolodated into one place and then the bitsy pieces of paper PITCHED. The visual clutter they lend to my desk makes me crazy.
10. Kids' schoolwork and art projects from last year, within reason. I have a bin I keep it all in over the course of the year (recycling some as I can, garboflauging the rest in the trash under coffee grounds just in case.) I haven't gotten through the 2009-2010 school year bin yet, though, so 2010-2011 stuff is teetering on top in unsightly heaps (while all the heaps are tucked away in a closet, I still need to get this done.)
11. Do a Great Technology Purge. I know all of my list items are purge-related, pretty much, but that's where my head is at right now. I feel like the early years of raising children were filled with needing to hold onto things for the next child to reach developmental stage A (or for the cousins or visiting friends) and thus it created a general mentality of holding onto things. I'm sooooo over that, but to really be over it I need to spend the time going through things. So, to that end, technology is one of those things I don't think about often (because most of it is stored somewhere behind a cabinet door of some sort or another) yet I have an unreasonably large stash of. Something about being general tech support for the whole family also means I'm the Technology Graveyard. Need to find the local tech recycling programs and just take a carload over there, after first giving the kids some screwdrivers and letting them take things apart.
I showed you mine, what's on your list of 11 things to get rid of in 2011?
Image courtesy of Morguefile, no attribution required but I do it anyway because I feel guilty otherwise.