Saturday, January 6, 2018

Less Is More {Declutter & Organize}

Two of my favorite things to do are decluttering and organizing! Give me a messy closet or a disorganized cabinet and I'm one happy camper. Over the past couple years, I've really been on a mission to simplify. Less is more. It can very much be an uphill battle with what feels like a constant influx of items arriving into our house and multiplying after they get here (it's like toys are rabbits!). As the kids get older and we go through different phases moving out stuff just makes our house feel lighter and easier to be in.

A new phrase in our house is "use it or lose it". I have one kiddo that hoards stuff he gets in a nice tidy way, but never actually uses it. Drives me crazy! As we continue through our January Spending Freeze I've encouraged him to use the things he has in his room or it's time to move them out.

Our other child uses her toys hard for 1-2 days and then never touches them again. We are also encouraging her to return to her once beloved things and use them or move them out.

If something hasn't been played with or used in a year, out it goes! Especially if it would cost less then $10 to replace it. We tend to want to hold onto those random little things in life we *think* we'll use again, but the reality is rarely do those items get reused. Most often they are forgotten about over time and just create clutter. 

I have a few avenues that we actively pass on our stuff.

I adore our local Buy Nothing group on Facebook. The Buy Nothing Project started as a way for people to give and receive items in their local neighborhoods. I love being able to gift things to the people in my direct community. And on the reverse side, receiving items this way is FREE. I can look around our house and find lots of awesome things we've been gifted from BN. If and when the times comes we'll re-gift them back to the community. It's a constant amazing circle of acts of kindness.

If I don't give it through our Buy Nothing group then it goes to Goodwill. I always have a donation bag in the garage ready for a quick drive through drop off when it's full.

Sometimes we have things that I determine are valuable enough that it's worth taking the time to sell it.

Our local consignment store is where I send any seasonal in new condition clothing and sometimes toys. I don't get a ton of money going this route. But it's easy and I usually turn around and use any money earned there on clothes for the kids.

We also have a local selling group on Facebook that is fairly active. Items go pretty quickly that route if priced correctly. Quick and easy to have a little extra cash flow that way.

Finally, Craig's List has worked really well for us, too. We recently sold two pieces of furniture within hours of listing them on CL. I had fallen in love with two new living room pieces that I really "needed" to have, but we hadn't planned on changing things up. By selling the ones we were replacing, it offset the cost of the new pieces greatly. Instead of spending $500 on the new stuff, we only spent $200. Totally worth it!

Less is more. Simplify, de-clutter and organize. I'm amazed that even after years of doing this there is always more that can go. Here's to going deeper with the items we have and moving on the items we don't need, want or use.

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