I have too much stuff. There is said it.
I know I have too much stuff because I finally got around to organizing my office this week, and as I looked at the pile of things I hadn’t used in years, I tried to remember why I thought I ever needed them in the first place.
Some things were just old items that I didn’t need anymore, but a lot of it was excess. Like the 200 sheet protectors or the 6 packs of dinosaur themed thank you cards. I’m sure I had a project in mind for those sheet protectors at the time I bought them; it’s just eluding me at this moment.
That pile of junk has inspired me to take a deep hard look all around my house at the things I hold onto that have no use or hold no meaning to me.
You know what? I have A LOT of things like that. I bet you do, too.
121 Things You Can Throw Away or Donate This Week
Some items are tough to get rid of.
I don’t know why, but I still have a few of my old notebooks from college. Half of the pages are notes, but the other half are purely doodles. I don’t know which I’m more proud of, actually.
I’ll probably keep those forever.
My children also like to keep everything that comes home from school.
I’ve had to keep a box in the kitchen to catch all of those papers and at the end of the year we go through it and they choose which ones they want to keep. By looking at the pile of old tests and drawing we have kept, I think we may need to lower the number of papers they can keep from day one.
Things to Just Throw Away
Here are some things you can find around your house to simply throw away. If you’re anything like me, you will be able to basically use this as a checklist! 😀 Of course, please recycle anything that you can!
- Old drawings
- School papers
- Old paint cans
- Tiny pencils
- Plastic containers missing lids
- Lids missing containers
- Really old financial files – the general rule is to keep them for 7 years
- Excess rubber bands
- Broken things
- Ratty clothing – If your underwear has air conditioning, it can go.
- Nearly empty glue sticks – They’ll probably dry up before you get to use that last little bit anyway.
- Board games with missing pieces
- Old pet toys
- Broken shovels and rakes
- Nearly used up crayons
- Dried up pens/markers – Do a full house sweep, there are more than you think.
- Toys from kids meals
- Cardboard boxes
- Expired food from the fridge and pantry
- Expired/unused medicine – You can take them to your local pharmacy to dispose of.
- Hair brushes/combs that are missing bristles or teeth
- Dead batteries
- Dried up or chunky nail polish
- Junk mail
- Expired coupons
- Clothes hangers from the store
- Plastic to-go cups from restaurants
- Old makeup
- 3+ year old sunscreen – Typically the shelf life is 3 years after purchase.
- Take out menus – If they post their menu online now, you don’t need the hard copy anymore
- Non-stick cookware that has scratches on it
- Hose or tights with runs in them
- That vacuum that doesn’t work anymore that you’ll never repair
- Old laptops/Computers
- Halloween candy you never ate
- Super Glue that’s completely glued shut
- Store loyalty cards – you can look these up with your phone number now
- Promo stuff like mini calendars from local merchants
- The phone book
- Plastic bags
- Electronics that are broken but you still have around anyway
- Bottles of anything that has just a little left in it.
- DIY projects that were never finished
- Paperwork saved on items you don’t own anymore
- Worn out luggage
- Old spices
- Clothes you keep “just in case” you can fit into them again
- Anything too rusted to fix
- Old cleaning supplies
- Dead plants – That herb garden was a great attempt. I wish I had a green thumb.
- DVD cases- Get a CD/DVD binder to keep them all in one convenient spot and free up some shelf space.
- Extra pieces from things you assembled yourself
- Condiment packets
- Outdated electronics
- Electrical cords with cuts on them – fire hazard!
- Expired lotions
Things You Can Donate (Tax Deductions!)
- Toys the kids have aged out of
- Excess pot and pans
- Books no longer being read
- Lesser used appliances- Do you really use that strawberry slicer often enough to keep it?
- Picture frames
- Excess plates
- Number of toys to match the number of toys received for Christmas or Birthdays
- Baby clothes
- Anything baby related once the kids are grown
- Mismatched/extra forks, spoons, knives
- Collectible souvenir cups
- Outdoor toys
- Sports equipment
- Shoes that don’t fit or you just don’t want anymore
- Coffee mugs you don’t use often
- Seasonal decorations you haven’t used within the last two years
- Glass jars
- Any clothes you haven’t worn in over 2 years
- Musical instruments
- Unused pet equipment
- Hotel toiletries
- Pokémon – If your kid is a pro, he doesn’t need or want those old low level cards anymore. At least that’s’ what I’ve been told.
- Baseball cards
- Magazines – Nursing homes/ schools and rehab centers use these for craft time or projects.
- Half colored coloring books
- Extra buttons that come on new clothing
- Gifts received but never used
- Old cell phones
- Miscellaneous cords
- VHS players
- CD players
- Samples – perfume, lotions, deodorant, etc
- VHS tapes
- Candy dishes
- DVDs you don’t watch anymore
- Scrap items from remodel projects – You may not want those cabinets, old fan or door knobs, but someone will.
- Coupons that are still good but you’ll never use – Take them with you to the store, and leave them on the shelf next to the item. Like a couponing fairy 😀
- Old postcards
- Fitness equipment you don’t use
- Hair styling equipment – nursing homes always need this type of stuff for their residents.
- Perfume – shelters and nursing homes will take these also.
- Bathing suits
- Hair accessories you rarely wear
- Tools you have multiples of
- Outdated gaming systems
- Flower vases
- Baseball caps
- Gadget parts – Did you get rid of that beard trimmer or vacuum already, but still have the bags or extra trimmer heads in storage?
- Seats – old stools, couches, chairs, benches
- Educational materials – once the kids age out, pass these on to another family
- Anything duplicate you don’t need, really
- Video games
- Vacation trinkets – Like that mini surfer dude statue with “Myrtle Beach 2001” written on it. 😀
- Anything left over after a breakup – Anything and everything. Just send it all to the local charity house.
Make it a Habit
It felt so good to get rid of all the extra stuff I didn’t actually need!! It needs to become a tradition. Hopefully one year I won’t need to do it. (That will be the fictional year that I don’t accumulate useless junk)
If you can make a regular purge like this into a habit, you will feel so much better. I found that with every item I got rid of, my true passions became clearer. I didn’t need all the things on this list. They were just keeping me from having a clean home and cluttering my line of sight at all times.
I’ve vowed as a mom to focus on gratefulness this year. And these items definitely didn’t contribute in any way to my gratefulness attitude. Only my family and friends and faith can do that. This has been such a refreshing exercise.
Do you want to throw away or donate 121 things with me? If so, comment below and let us know your commitment (or even better, that you actually did it already!)
Do You Prefer to Sell Things Instead of Tossing/Donating?
I didn’t technically donate every single thing on my donate list. I sold about five of the items. It was so stinkin’ easy! I barely had to do any work at all. I used the LetGo app and Facebook to advertise for free, and the items practically sold themselves!
Having a hard time deciding how to start? Check out 15 Things to Sell for Quick Cash
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Come check me out over at my blog www.lazygeniusmom.com
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