Declutter Update

It isn’t often that I give you an update on how the decluttering is going in my home. You would be forgiven for thinking that by now I have run out of things to declutter and spend my spare time nagging at you, my lovely readers, to get your clutter under control. Well that just isn’t the case unfortunately.

Recently I participated in a radio phone interview. I had to move to the patio to record the interview because my living room had a slight echo which didn’t sound good during the sound check. Nevertheless there are still things in the living room that I want to declutter. Yes those pesky trophies are still collecting dust because I haven’t got around to photo documenting them yet. I made a pledge to Loretta in a comment yesterday to deal with them before the end of April. There are still too many books and paper craft magazines cluttering up the bookcase. And I hope to empty the display cabinet altogether and move any glassware I don’t declutter from it into the empty spaces in the kitchen cupboards.

There are a few things that I have already moved to the garage with intent to declutter which hubby has listed for sale on the on-line bulletin board at work. There are also things in the garage that I am saving for our daughter for when she actually moves out on her own. My husband and I had a discussion on the weekend as to what Christmas decorations we want to keep and after I had a similar conversation with my son today I think the general consensus on this is none. There are storage containers starting to stack up out there that I never plan on needing ever again that can also go to the thrift store.

I think I can possibly still declutter more items out of the kitchen. The there is still some natural decluttering that is going on in my wardrobe. I did a count while ironing the other day and realised I own no less than 13 pairs of capris. If that isn’t excess nothing is.

I could probably come up with more stuff if I put my mind to it but I am starting to scare myself. I think I will be at this for a while yet but that is OK. The longer I take the more I am willing to part with so my cunning plan is still having the desired affect. I will keep on keeping on until I reach a point where I am content with what is left and I hope you will too. So get ruthless and happy decluttering.

Today’s Declutter Item

This incense burner is just one more thing I never use, another item for the thrift store I believe.


Things that made me happy, made me laugh, made me feel grateful, fascinated me or I thought were just plain awesome.

  • The feel of a freshly cleaned house around me.
  • All the lovely anniversary wishes I received from my readers Yesterday.
  • Catching up with an old friend.
  • Email – It is a great tool for having a conversation with someone when you don’t want to be interrupted or rebuked until you have finished having your say.
  • Being content with where I’m at.

It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow.



Continue reading with these posts:

  • Mini Mission Monday ~ This and that Mini Mission Monday is about finding ten minutes a day to declutter. To make it easy for you, each Monday I set seven declutter missions, one for each day of the week for you to follow. It […]
  • Day 223 Clutter weakness Everyone seems to have at least one clutter weakness. Mine was paper crafting supplies and magazines. Even when I was at the height of my paper crafting days I think I was more addicted to […]
  • Paper Problems ~ By Deb J When I began helping my friend, S, declutter, there were decades of paper archives: phone bills, utility bills, bank statements, medical papers, taxes papers, magazine clippings, newspaper […]
About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.

Comments

  1. I don’t think you ever get totally decluttered. Unless you have time to do a mad declutter in a week it takes time. It also takes thinking. I have to contemplate some things awhile before I get rid of them. Then there is the natural intake of things that others give you or that over time you realize you no longer need. So you just can’t get totally done.

    I have to report a neat thing that happened over the weekend. We have some wall decor that we have not used in 3 homes. To say that I am sick of it is an understatement. Saturday my Mom was talking about needing to straighten a portion of this and I said I was tired of it all. She agreed. I about fainted. Anyway, we are now trying to decide what we actually want up there (if anything). She has a hard time seeing a bare wall. I don’t. But at least we are getting rid of these things at the rumage sale that is coming up soon. Hooray!!

    • Hi Deb J,
      your Mum has been making huge leaps and bounds with the decluttering lately. How wonderful for you. Take full advantage of the situation and keep suggesting as much stuff as possible while that rummage sale is looming. Keep her focused on how much the unused stuff in your home could go to help people in need. Good luck!

  2. Great to hear how you are getting on personally. I wonder if anyone ever gets to a point of total decluttered bliss because no matter how careful we are, clutter happens!

    Good luck with all the things you still want to release and thanks for the update! Looking forward to when you say you now have 4 pairs of capris 😉

    • Hi Mrs Green,
      I don’t know whether to be pleased of appalled at myself that so little of the stuff has gone to landfill. On one hand I am glad that I have managed to rehouse or recycle so much of it but on the other hand that means that I had accumulated so much stuff the I just wasn’t using and that is bad.

  3. Thanks for the update colleen…and for the 13 pairs of capri’s confession,lol.

    Today’s mini mission was to declutter something that makes us feel guilty. Well, I think my clothes purge of last month probably covers every one of this weeks mini mission emotions. But to choose something new – I have gone for a green suede bag I have. It feels wasteful to get rid of it, but it has a huge ink stain on one side and it doesn’t have an over the shoulder strap, just hand holding handles. I have decided I only like bags I can sling over my head with a strap (or knapsacks) so haven’t used it in ages.
    I also feel guilty as it makes landfill – a charity shop would not take it with the huge stain on it.
    It also ties in with a past post of Cindy’s – it is one of a set so how can I just get rid of one? The other one I used loads (small for purse,keys etc) and yes, has a strap that goes over my head and runs diagonally across my body.
    The bag has been chosen today and is now out of the house and gone.

    • Hi Katharine,
      don’t feel bad getting rid of it sometimes accidents happen that renders things unserviceable and that’s just life. You could always try throwing it up on freecycle (with photos) first, there might be someone out there willing to put an appliqué or something over the stain and happily use it. Freecycle is great in instances like these, I got rid of an amplifier that wasn’t working and a lamp that needed rewiring this way so you just never know. Give it a try and let us know what happens.

      • thanks Colleen – unusually for me, this was one of the rare occasions where the item left the house within 10 mins of deciding it was going….

        • Hi Katharine,
          sometimes the bandaid approach is the best approach or else we could procrastinate forever, so good for you.

  4. Katharine, I thought I had no guilt clutter until I read your comment about the guilt of putting something in the landfill. Now I can identify quite a number of these (including several leather purses that are too worn to look nice, but are still functional – oh my, the guilt!)

    Colleen – 13 pairs of capris and NO Christmas stuff – at least you are balancing things out! LOL In all seriousness, it is comforting to hear that someone further along the road of decluttering is still grappling with things and that the slow approach continues to work.

    • Hi Jo,
      when I started down this road of one item a day it was really just about doing it the easy way instead of making it hard work and disrupting the house. Very soon into it though I realised the value of doing it this way, how I became aware of what stuff in my home I new I didn’t really want but wasn’t prepared to part with just get while at the same time there was plenty of stuff I was happy to deal with immediately. As I have gone along on my journey I have been able to release more and more stuff and I am loving it.
      Deb J said in her comment this morning “I don’t think you ever get totally decluttered. Unless you have time to do a mad declutter in a week it takes time.”. I have done plenty of these mad one week declutters before and there is no way they are as affective as the way I have gone about it this time. With the slap dash method you are almost unconscious of half the stuff that is next to useless and do not really deal at all with most of what you don’t need. At the end of the week you have really just gotten rid of the obvious stuff and six month later is has been replace by more stuff because you also haven’t learned from the experience. Give me slow decluttering any day.

  5. By the way, Colleen – is your interview on the internet yet? Do you think it will be?

    Please be sure and post the link if it becomes available!

    • Hi Jo,
      they siad it would be at least a couple of weeks. I am certain it will be available on the internet and as soon as it is I will let you know. Unless I come off sounding like a complete idiot, then I will lie to you and say they decided not to air it. Oops I just realised if they decide not to air it you now won’t believe me. 😆

  6. I had the same question too. There is a change that I will move in the near future, and I’m hoping to get rid of a lot by then.

    • Sorry Nurchamiel I am not sure what your question was as you didn’t add your comment as a reply to someone else’s. Was it about the radio interview? If so read my naughty reply to Jo’s comment. 😆

  7. Yes, thank you! The spare incense burner is on it’s way to the pile!

    • Hi Deores,
      It is so long since I used that incense burner even though I used to use it quite a bit. It is funny how we just seem to move away from things over time.

  8. This is really inspirational! I love the idea of your project, and I appreciate how candid you are about your work. I love how the decluttering/minimalist blog world is full of people at all different phases of work. Sometimes I feel weird about posting photos that don’t appear to be minimalist at all (even though I don’t claim to be minimalist), or even older photos of my “maximalist” decor (which I am still attracted to in home design books/magazines/web). But decluttering is, as many mentioned, always a work in progress, and it’s that we’re doing the work and sharing our experiences that makes us a part of this community! It’s really neat!

    • Hi Liina,
      I agree. It matters not how fast we go so long as we are not recluttering while we are decluttering I think is the most important component to this exercise. i would not have considered myself minimalist either but the further down this road I go the more it is starting to seem that way. What I am not is an overnight minimalist that just reeks of fad to me and doesn’t sound very sustainable.

  9. While I don’t think most of us can live with 100 items, or 200 items, I do think it’s helpful to count possessions, especially things like clothes. (Have you checked out The Zero Waste blog? Illuminating!) I realised my daughter had 8 prs of shorts (she probably needs 2-3) and 6 skirts (only wears them to church, with much nagging!) She won’t part with any of them though, so from now on, I’ll only buy her what she needs, instead of having a surplus.

    • Hi Loretta,
      that is my plan too. If I can go on vacation for a month with only 7 pair of undies, 2 bras, a pair of socks, 4 T-shirts, 1 dress, 2 pair of capris, 1 swimsuit, 1 light jacket, 1 pair of shoes and the clothes on my back then I don’t need a whole wardrobe full when I have a washing machine at my disposal everyday. I will leave the culling to natural progression though and hope they don’t all wear out at once.

  10. Decluttering is simply an ongoing process. I liked your comment about the more you declutter the more you see to declutter. I’m finding that’s true with me.

    Updates on mini missions: guilt declutter–I gave away a sweater that I knitted because it didn’t fit me and it fit my friend who loved it and coveted it :). I love the yarn and had unraveled it from another sweater I’d knitted several years ago, but I just didn’t want to deal with it all AGAIN. Sitting in my guest room in plain sight, that sweater made me cringe every day even though I loved it. I’m so glad it’s gone!

    outgrown declutter–I’m counting this even though it’s not really ‘outgrown’. We still have our old cell phones even though we replaced them 6 months ago. They had been sitting in a bag waiting for…something. I didn’t want to throw them away but wasn’t sure what to do with them. Then we received a notice in our newspaper about cellphonesforsoldiers.com. I called today and verified the address to drop them off; my husband and I put them in the bags provided, and they’re in the car waiting for our next trip to that part of town!

    • Hi Willow,
      when I lived in the USA Office Works and Best Buys I think both had collection boxes for old ink cartridges and cell phones. I believe the cell phone went to abused women so that they could hide them in the home and call for help if things got bad.

  11. You iron your capris? I think I’m more impressed by that than the fact you have thirteen pairs! I’m much earlier on in my declutter project than you, but this weekend was good — brought two very obsolete printers that have been sitting around for years to the e-waste recycling event. (They swear the e-waste stays within the country and is put to appropriate use. I sure hope so!)

    • Hi Jennifer,
      after last weeks ironing efforts I will be sure to be more choosy when buying clothes in the future and go for ones that don’t need ironing. I have 3 pair of capris that don’t need ironing but the rest do. Maybe I am just a little fussy though.
      What amazes me with printers is that it is often less expensive to buy a new one than it is to replace a full set of cartridges. The companies who make them are either taking a loss when selling them in the first place because they know they will gain back on the sale of cartridges or they are just robbing us blind on what they charge for the cartridges. Either way this situation is not good for the environment.
      I sincerely hope that the e-waste is put to appropriate use as it does become obsolete far to quickly.