Friday, January 2, 2009

Uncluttering, Part 1

I am a packrat. I save everything. Old movie ticket stubs (even the ones I didn't like), old pots and pans, every card that has ever been mailed to me... the list goes on. I guess I save these things A) out of habit and B) because I know that the INSTANT I throw something out I will have an immediate need for it. And so I save everything. It's in boxes, bins, and bags all crammed into every last square inch of storage space we have (which is not much in our 900 square foot apartment).

But on the 18th, we're going from our 900 square foot, one floor apartment in Baltimore to an upgraded two story townhouse in Laurel. A townhouse with the same square footage and much less closet space. Which means some of my crap will have to go.

So today we started the long process of going through the house room by room to throw stuff away. At this point, it's our 4th move in the last 3 years and I'm sick of lugging stuff around. This afternoon we hit up Target to get some packing tape (for the boxes I took from work) and some Rubbermaid bins. Let me tell you what - those friggin bins are expensive. So we loaded up the cart with a bunch of huge bins (not only for moving, but to store stuff in our outdoor closet at the new house) and went on our merry way figuring that we needed to buy them so we might as well bite the $12.99 bullet. As we were leaving the storage section, Ryan stops me - "Hun, look at these" :: cue angels singing:: Christmas-colored Rubbermaid bins on sale for..... $4.99!!!! Rock on. We swapped out the clear ones for the Claus ones and saved ourselves about $30 (cause at this point, every little bit counts!).

Our current place consists of quite a number of rooms for being so little:
Master Bedroom
Den (or second bedroom if you are ok stuffing your kid in basically a walk-in closet)
Hall Closet
Family Room
Dining Room (it's on seperate room, as opposed to a huge space that will hold a couch and table)
HUGE walk-in closet right outside the bedroom
HUGE walk-in closet in the bedroom
BIG ENOUGH closet in the den

Today we tackled the closet outside the bedroom and the hall closet. The game plan was to just go through everything and throw away what we didn't need (or sort it out to take to Goodwill). We ended up getting rid of a TON of stuff, which will be amazing when we go back through to actually pack. No more packing up stuff because I "might need it" or because throwing it away "might make (insert gift-giver here) sad if I give it away". I want our new grown-up 2 floor house to be as uncluttered and organized as possible, and I don't want to pack up stuff from this house just to move it to the next house to put into storage.

I'll admit, going through the closet was stressful and I could feel the urge to keep things "just because". In the end though, I know it's for the best. Plus, the amount of t-shirts, old jackets, and shoes we're taking to Goodwill tomorrow makes me feel good!

I'll tell you what - I am NOT looking forward to the den. Right now that room is used as one big closet in which I happen to have a desk to pay bills, and I really can't imagine what I'm going to find in there. Ew.

Up tomorrow - the den. Double ew.


lisastassforth said...

I found your blog by clicking Next blog. Keep up the good work in cleaning out your stuff. I can relate. I have been using Freecycle the last couple of weeks. Stuff goes to people who want it. I also live in 900 square feet with one bathroom and two, I say, two teenage girls, and a husband, poor man. I will keep reading your blog because, well, it sounds a lot like me. :)

Kate said...

Thanks for reading!!! I have heard of Freecycle and it's my next step - I've CraigsListed a few things that I thought I might be able to get some decent money for and dropped off a TON of stuff at Goodwill in hopes of a tax write-off... and there's still more stuff to get rid of!!!! How is this possible!