Mini Mission Monday ~ Nooks and Crannies

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 takes the guess work out of decluttering and makes it easy and “fun” for you to achieve some quick decluttering.

This week for our mini missions we are going to visit little nooks and crannies around the house which may have, up until now, remained untouched by human hand or the vacuum cleaner for that matter during our decluttering efforts. I will list seven places I have thought of below but if you have already taken care of these areas or you don’t have them in your home make some up for yourself. Don’t just declutter these areas give them a clean up as well.

Monday – The bottom of your linen closet.

Tuesday – A corner of your garage or basement.

Wednesday – The cupboard under the stairs.

Thursday – Under your bed or any other bed in the house.

Friday – The cupboard/space under your laundry or kitchen sink.

Saturday – The top shelf of the pantry.

Sunday – A blanket box, shoe box, toy box or tool box.

Good luck and happy decluttering

Today’s Declutter Item

This old transistor radio has been keep for emergencies for a long as I remember, so long in fact that it has died of old age.

Transistor Radio

My Gratitude List

  • Something that inspired me to go above and beyond ~ My annual house inspection, there is never any fear of not passing with flying colours but it is good motivation to give attention to every area of my home. My house is pristine right now and it feels good.
  • Something Awesome ~ Chilli, cinnamon hot chocolate.
  • Something to be grateful for ~ Sleeping in, I have had some interupted nights the last couple of days so it was nice to make up for it by sleeping in until 9am on Sunday.
  • Something that was fun ~ Riding on the back of a motorbike for the first time in nineteen years.
  • Something I found satisfying ~ Getting the ironing out of the way so I don’t have to do it later in the week.

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

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About Colleen Madsen

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


  1. Hi Colleen! Where is your declutter item for today? As for this weeks mini missions, I may have already tackled some of them but I will not let myself be stopped 😉 . Keep you posted on my progress.

  2. Hi Colleen,

    I am new to your site and I am working hard at decluttering my house. I was wondering though if you have addressed anywhere what you are supposed to do with the stuff you know you don’t want anymore but don’t think should be thrown away.

    I have given tons of clothes to Goodwill and taken a couple of trips to the dump. But yesterday I came across a kid’s watch in a drawer and ended up throwing it away because no one will wear it and I couldn’t sell it. I felt like that was such a waste!

    Some of the areas you are talking about, like the garage, are my husband’s and I wouldn’t know where to start clearing those out and he wouldn’t want me to. So I can’t do the garage one. I need to do the others, but have so many things like quilts my mom made that have sentimental value and I don’t want to get rid of them. We have also received some things from an uncle that died that we don’t really want (like a bunch of teacups) but I don’t want to throw them away either.

    So what do you do when you clear everything out of an area and there are things that aren’t trash, but you know you need to get rid of them? Or if there is sentimental value to them, but you aren’t using them or displaying them?

    • Hi Chelle,
      to answer your first question, there are limitless ways to deal with your unwanted stuff some will be location specific but most options are fairly generic. Anything that is still useful and in working order can be donated to charity or sold. You could have sent the watch you mentioned to Goodwill along with the clothes, I am sure they take household items and all sorts of stuff. Visit a Goodwill store near your home and see what kind of stuff they sell to give you and idea of what you can donate to them. Check out where you can give your stuff away to other people who might want it, this site is great for good stuff that the charities might not sell and for items that maybe able to be repaired by an enthusiast. I have given away a broken guitar amplifier, a lamp that needed rewiring and the top half of a TV cabinet through Freecycle to people who can fix or used them for parts. Just make sure you say what condition they are in. I also put larger items out on the street with a FREE sign on them(I live on a reasonably busy road) and people will just stop on their way past, pick the item up and take it away. Some items can go in the recycling like if you are decluttering paper files, magazines etc but of course some things just belong in the trash.

      I am slowly putting together a page about how to dispose of your unwanted stuff, you can find it here. As I said it is a page in progress so it is limited but there are a couple of great web sites mentioned at the bottom with lots of wonderful ideas.

      Now for your second question ~ So what do you do when you clear everything out of an area and there are things that aren’t trash. If you can find a better home for these items where they can be on display or used that would be great but as you are only getting started you may not have got to a point where space is opening up so just put them back where you got them from for now. During this process you will revisit areas over and over again until everything finds its rightful home or is decluttered so don’t feel bad about not dealing with something the first time you come across it.

      As for sentimental clutter ~ Now that is a subject I have tackled over and over again. I suggest you go to my home page. Scroll down on the right hand side and you will find my Tag Cloud click on Personal attachment and a rather large list of options of blog posts will pop up at the left. Just work your way through them and when you get to the bottom there is a message that reads PREVIOUS ENTRIES click on that and there are even more. You can also use the Google search bar above the Tag Cloud to define your search to something specific you are looking for. You will find a common theme among these post which will help you decide what is truly meaningful to you that you absolutely wish to keep and what you are just keeping out of obligation to someone or someone’s memory. I think it is important that you only keep things that you truly want and not because you think you should keep them, but that is for you to decide.

      Good luck Chelle and I hope you find lots of useful tips and thoughts among my post. Don’t forget to use the Google search bar it is quite useful.

  3. phew, lucky me! No linen closet, no cupboard under the stairs, no pantry, no garage … just a basement AND an attic (gulp). But for this week I am determined on the paperwork anyway. And this time I really am!

    • Hi Ideealistin,
      I give you my wholehearted permission to take this week off from the mini missions to concentrate on your paperwork mission instead. Forget any other clutter in your home and give your paper project your undivided attention.

  4. Hi Colleen,

    Thank you for your answer. I am particularly interested in one post I found that you had written about scrapbooking. I made 13 albums before we moved to our present house and none since. I have been carting around the materials and two years ago, a friend convinced me to get back into it by starting with the current year. I had just been on a trip with my husband for our 21st anniversary and I bought a beautiful pink creative memories album and a bunch of new supplies (ouch!) and did exactly five pages. It has been sitting there ever since, along with the expensive supplies, taking up space.

    I do NOT know what to do about this album. I have no desire to finish it, but I got five pages done of the trip and the rest are kind of just sitting there. I want to sell or donate all of my scrapbooking supplies, but I need to figure out what to do about this album first and I am going around in circles. In the meantime, I started shoving all the memorabilia from the kids’ schools into the same bag and now have quite a mess of scrapbook supplies, albums, equipment, and lots and lots of photos, honor roll certificates, band concert programs, etc…

    Today, I was going through old school photos of the kids and portraits that we had taken when they were little. I decided to keep one copy of each school photo and throw the rest away. I have created a “family photo wall” in my family room and we are hanging up our favorites, but I still have a stack of portraits that I do not know what to do with except to store somewhere.

    And then there are the boxes of pictures in the basement that I don’t know whether they are doubles of pictures in albums I already have. I know there are pictures that never made it into albums and there are probably three large boxes in the basement with pictures. How do I even begin to tackle that and what do I do about storing the pictures I decide to keep? I have considered scanning them, but I don’t know if I have enough computer memory on my extra hard drive or the time to actually do this.

    This is so overwhelming, but I am slowly going through things and chucking stuff that is just taking up space, donating, and getting rid of. It feels good, but I keep realizing how much I still need to do!

    Thank you again for the suggestions and I will be snooping around your site for more ideas. If you have any idea on what to do about the unfinished scrapbook album (with 5 really pretty finished pages), I would love to hear it!

    • hi Chelle,
      my story is much the same as yours. I have only made two scrapbooks since moving to my new home and they were both for someone else. I have several albums that wouldn’t have more than six pages completed in and you know what – I don’t care, I am fine with that. I have declutter a huge quantity of papercraft supplies lately but I still have plenty left if I decide to continue on with this hobby later on. I am satisfied with what I have decluttered of it so far and I will probably declutter more later on but there is no hurry.
      I have never forced myself to declutter anything until I am good and ready but with everything I do declutter I get enthusiastic to declutter more and that is what urges me on and make me more ruthless. So whatever it is you need to declutter just keep plugging away at the overall task and you will eventually feel ready to deal with the things that you are reluctant to face now. You have inspired tomorrows post so please read it and let the idea sink in and then let me know what you think.

  5. When I read this, I remember how small my apartment is. I think I’ll simply enjoy my apartment during the week and in return declutter more books in my more chaotic second home. (It’s really faszinating how often you can declutter books if you start with about 2000. I have about 300 now.)

    • Hi Sarah,
      your apartment sounds like an oasis from clutter to me. Few people get to experience both situations at the same time. It must be quite a learning opportunity for you. As for the books I have had a similar experience, although we didn’t have that many to begin with we have, in stages, slowly dwindled them down to two shelves on a medium size book case. I am going to attack them again this week and see what we are left with after that.

      • I have a house up for sale that has been decluttered. I have the house I will move to that has all the “extras” that were removed from the house for sale. It is delightful living in the decluttered house, although I do find I overdid it in some respects and need to bring a few things back that I find I need. Some day the second house will be comfortably decluttered, too.

        • Hi Pansy17,
          I am intrigued as to what you think you overdid it on. Stop and think if there is an alternative to replacing those things before you do because if you thought they were worth decluttering once they may be something you can live without. I love improvising when there is something that I could use but don’t have it is like a game to me to work out another way around the situation without adding anything to my house.