Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Decluttering slowdown

Back in July I posted that hubby and I were going to start the 150 Thing Challenge.  At the start of the challenge we had 231 items.  Remember, that we were pretty loose on our definition of item.  The purpose of this challenge was to identify things that we do not use or could live without, which has sometimes resulted in entertaining discussions and a new process for handling these issues.

For example, after a particularly successful decluttering binge, I found myself in possession of an extra end table.  While I was all for 'moving it on in life', hubby was less than thrilled with the idea.  So, I had to figure out a way to keep the table and to keep it out of my living room.  This led to the great closet reshuffle of 2012.  We have three racks in our closet.  Two of the racks are upper racks and one is a lower rack.  I moved all of our clothes to the upper rack which left an empty lower rack.  The 'extra' end table now sits under the rack (in the closet) and has become our decluttering staging spot.  Basically, everything that we have decided to declutter goes on the table and when it's full we make a trip to Goodwill.

In addition to staging the declutter stuff, it also has created a space for us to try things out.  We recently decided that since we have a dishwasher and a rather large sink that the dish drying rack was taking up valuable kitchen counter real estate.  So, we put the drying rack in the staging area and experimented with not having one.  After a week it became apparent that the drying rack was indeed not needed and off to Goodwill it went.  Now when we need to let something air dry we just put down a kitchen towel and prop the item up.

The 150 Thing Challenge is an on-going project.  I know that I initially hoped to be done by early September of this year, but this project gets harder and harder each day.  As we 'move items on' it gets more difficult to think about what we could live without next.  Below is our current inventory:

We're down to 200 items with 50 more to declutter.  On the upside, I'm pretty happy with where we are at.  The purpose of this challenge was to re-evaluate our belongings and their purpose in our lives, not necessarily to reach a specific number.  I will be reassessing the clothing situation at the end of the semester and determine what I haven't worn to work in the last few months.  Also, Hubby's laptop is currently on the chopping block as we're in the process of finding a new home for it.


  1. Replies
    1. We have actually gotten rid of a ton of things that I never would have let go of if we hadn't been trying to! For example we used to have a set of four ceramic jars which held (from smallest to largest) white rice, coffee, sugar and flour. Unlike the coffee jar the rice, sugar and flour jars were rarely opened (as in probably twice a month) and of course weren't big enough to hold a full five-pound bag.

      Wifey suggested we ditch three of the four jars and just take those ingredients out of the bag when necessary. We've saved a fair amount of counter space, lost zero functionality and have three less "things" to move with us the next time we hit the trail!