The Great Cleanout

Oh! I forgot to tell you! I started the great clean out the day before yesterday. I went through my books and got rid of a third of them. I wandered around the downstairs and did an initial sweep, getting rid of some obvious things. We went through the movies and music as well. Exciting! My bookshelves look ravaged, but I feel lighter.

I took two bags of the books and the movies and music to a used bookstore that does all three. They took almost all of it and now I have a ton of credit for anything I want to buy there. Whoo-hoo! I’m not going to spend it all at once though. We just got rid of a bunch of stuff, we don’t need to immediately go out and get more. The credit never expires so we can take our time. I have more bags of books bound for a different used bookstore. And another couple of bags of things bound for the thrift store. We got rid of a ton of stuff and there’s more to do. It feels great.

We’ll still have a bunch of stuff but it’ll fit better and there will be places for all of it to be put away. That will feel great! I actually took a few things out of the thrift store bag. They were decorative pieces and I realized that the shelf looked naked without them. I liked them and so, out of the bag they came. One of the principles of minimalism is to surround yourself with things that serve you or that you find beautiful. Those pieces complete the shelf and make me happy.


I had gotten rid of the urns and lions. They balance out the shelf and the urns hold flowers usually. I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but they make me happy. There was no way I was getting rid of Winged Victory.

We have a couple of little setups like this around the house. I am so conflicted because I know the little statues and such are nothing but dust collectors, but we find them nice. Minimalism or simplicity can’t mean that we get rid of all the things that make us happy, otherwise it’s nothing more than deprivation. So, they stay. There are plenty of other things we can get rid of.

We’re getting rid of things that have been stored forever. Mostly it’s been things that have been on shelves and in boxes. We’re cleaning out storage space. It’s not all terribly visible, but we’re clearing space for the things we save to be put away properly.

I finally just got fed up and went and started getting rid of things. I’m trying to be strict in my judgment of what stays and what goes. Some things we just haven’t even looked at in a couple of years and those are easy. That’s mostly where we’re starting. We’ll eventually find a happy settling point. It feels good to have started.

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5 Responses to The Great Cleanout

  1. bmary says:

    I love clutter! Sort of. I have a hutch full of old shaving supplies (my fiance collects them), old dishes (one from my great grandma dated 1924!) and other odds and ends I’ve mostly gotten for free. Interesting bottles, shells, rocks (yes, I even pick up interesting rocks off the ground!) mugs, you name it, if I find it interesting I am keeping it! I keep most of it organized (somewhat) and displayed. I am really jealous of your winged victory right now… I personally love looking at things, even if they are a bit of a hodgepodge! Now, I do discard papers and stuff like that, but I love to display my little collections and I love admiring other people’s odds and ends. I try to be very careful and not buy things new, I thrift or get them for free. I can totally understand getting rid of it sometimes. It was a bit weird when I brought my rock collection to my fiance’s house. “You…collect…random…rocks?” Well they make great book ends and are pretty harmless! Only keep things you truly love! 😀

    • My problem is that our clutter isn’t of the wonderful variety. It’s just random junk gathering in the corners and flat surfaces of the house. Getting around to clearing that up and sorting through it for things we want to keep is part of the Great Cleanout. I love seeing other people’s collections. We just don’t have display space really. And, I’m afraid that if I started collecting things we’d need another house to hold it all. 🙂

      • bmary says:

        Oh! I totally got the wrong vibe, I got distracted by the picture! I can totally get that! Best of luck! 🙂

      • My fault, I very carefully cleaned up that portion of the room before I took the picture. Quite a bit of what I got rid of the other day was decorations that were really just clutter. Baskets and such. The actual clutter is a mix of junk laying around and just too much stuff. We need to get rid of both.

      • bmary says:

        Ah, I know exactly what you’re talking about. Yeah, that’s a tough and daunting task. Maybe have a yard sale? Or just get it gone, tough choice! 🙂

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