Decluttering: Random Household Objects

I was going to save this post until next week but, honestly, I feel like I want this summer-long project to be done in July. In August (which is only 8 days away, eek!), we’ll get back to regularly scheduled programs re: budgeting, savings, etc. Until then, the remainder of this month’s posts are going to chronicle the rest of my massive declutter and purge. Here we go!

This was the toughest part of the process, so far, because it involved more than just the inspection of a few shelves and drawers. To truly declutter all the random household objects in my apartment, I had to open up 3 unpacked moving boxes that I’d shoved into the back of closets and tried to forget about. Remember that I lived in 3 different apartments in Greater Vancouver in 2013, so I’ve literally just been picking these boxes up and moving them from place to place. What was inside? Well, a lot of useless cr@p that was really easy to get rid of.

Box #1 contained 30 DVDs, 30 CDs and 1 tape (yes, like a cassette tape – MC Hammer, to be specific). I took out all the DVDs and started to go through them. For most, it was an easy decision to put them back in the box and donate everything: Twilight (don’t judge me, ok judge me), a few seasons of Supernatural, some old surfing documentaries, etc. What a random collection! I loved them all once, and watched some of them repeatedly, but I don’t even own a DVD player now and believe everything will be digital soon (oh wait, it already is). So, back into the box they went.

I did get tripped up on a couple DVDs. How can I get rid of the 1964 version of Rudolph? That’s my favourite Christmas movie! Or The Little Mermaid? I neeeeeed to keep that and give it to my future daughter! Umm, what!? These are the thoughts that make us keep “things”! I had to remind myself that I hadn’t watched the DVD copies in years, that they’ll always be available online and I don’t actually need to keep moving them from place to place. Bye DVDs. I’m donating all 61 entertainment items in that box.

Inside Box #2, I found more entertainment items: specifically, an XBOX 360, 2 old modems, 1 old digital cable box and 14 random cables/cords! I don’t need any of them, so that’s another 18 entertainment items out the door. I sold my XBOX 360 yesterday and put the money in my “Shopping 2015″ savings account (woo hoo!) and the rest of the items will be donated. Finally, in Box #3, I found my yearbooks, diplomas, degrees, old pictures, photo albums, etc. There were 5 random items I tossed into the donate pile, but I packed most of this box up and put it back in the closet.

Aside from just going through those boxes, I also walked around my apartment in search of any clutter I could remove. Truthfully, it wasn’t easy – this is seriously what my place looks like all the time:

cait-dresser

On top of my dresser, I have a print that one of my old co-workers designed, a small mermaid, a penguin, a shell my parents brought home from Tahiti, a small pot another friend made and a vase.

cait-side-table

Beside my desk, I have a side table with the two drawers I keep my paperwork in, which also holds a poster (ignore the blurred out words, it’s not safe for work), two more vases and usually a candle.

cait-cork-board

My cork board is probably the “messiest” thing in my apartment. So, I organized that (say hello to the Vancouver firemen) as best as I could and kept some of my favourite reminders up there.

In walking around, I did pick up and toss a few things into bags: there were actually 4 more vases (apparently I like vases), 3 candleholders, 1 old duvet cover, a set of 5lb. weights (too light to do anything) and 16 tote bags. SIXTEEN! And I’m keeping 8 good ones, which means I actually had 24 tote bags! Where the heck did they all come from!? Bah! It doesn’t matter… they’re gone now.

And finally, I set aside a camera I’m going to try and sell.

In total, I removed 110 items from my apartment. This weekend, I’m going to take all the bags and boxes seen in the picture above and drop them off at various spots (donation boxes, the library, etc.). I also finished going through the kitchen and bathroom last night (hence the 361 item total) and have to bag/box that stuff up now too. I’m not really sure what to do with some of it, but we can talk about that next week.

Inventory

When I started this process, I had 190 decor/entertainment/furniture/random household objects. Now, I’m left with 80, which means I removed 58% of what I had from my home. Here’s what’s left:

Approved Shopping List

While I couldn’t identify a single book, desk or office accessory I would need to purchase in the next year, there is one thing I’m finally going to buy myself in the furniture category: a new bed. I’ve been talking about this for… well, just way too long. Mine is now 13 years old and seriously needs to be replaced. So, at least that’s a 1-item-in-1-item-out situation? Anyway, I added it to my approved shopping list.

Next week: I’ll tackle the kitchen and bathroom, and be done with this massive declutter/purge!

What’s hiding in your closets right now?