This Week, A Decluttering Task For You

by Katy on October 8, 2012 · 19 comments

Decluttering is a harder task than it should be. Why? Certainly not because it’s physically difficult, but it’s just So. Much. Decision. Making.

What to do with this, shouldn’t I be holding onto that and can’t give that away because it was a gift. It’s enough to drive a girl to drink decoupaging.

However, there’s one significant deluttering task that’s both easy and takes away the mental taxation of decision making.

Return everything in your house to its rightful owner!

That’s right. Drop those books off at your friend’s house, return all you can back to the library and stop waiting to bake cookies to return your neighbor’s plate. Even if it means boxing stuff up and  mailing it across state lines, it’s time to get rid of everything in your house that belongs to someone else.

For me, it will mean mailing out the last giveaway books; returning my mother’s garden loppers and Rat Zapper 2000, dropping a tool at my in-law’s and gleaning the house for library books.

This is the easiest decluttering task you can undertake, so let’s all make a little more breathing room in our homes. After all, every solid object in your home means there’s less circulating air to breathe. And breathing is good.

Are you in?

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without”

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna October 8, 2012 at 8:40 am

I’m in! Just SOLD an old baby exersaucer this morning, and am strangely sad about it. 🙁


Katy October 8, 2012 at 8:52 am

Just remind yourself that it’s better that the exersaucer is with someone who will use it.



Anna October 8, 2012 at 7:31 pm

I’m over the sadness and instead focusing on how proud I am of two young people who are trying to buy USED for their first child. They could afford all new, but see no need in it. Very good example they are setting in our small town where they both teach. 🙂


Megyn @Unstuffed October 8, 2012 at 9:08 am

LOVE IT! Definitely linking this to my vlog!

As for us, I generally have piles for things to return, and I’m usually pretty good about it. However, we’re *almost* done with all of our home renovations, which means we have a garage full of stuff to return to my generous FIL. When I got it all together to give back to him, he was too flustered to take it as his garage is overflowing. I may just have to walk it the block over and stick it in his garage. I appreciate all of his kindness in letting us borrow his things, but it’s not my fault he has too much crap lol!


Susan Marsh October 8, 2012 at 9:29 am

I’m in! Although it isn’t the only source of clutter we are dealing with, I will be sorting and compiling a list of our daughter’s belongings which haven’t made it to her new home which is 800 miles away. I will have her review the list and designate which things she would like to have and whatever she no longer wants with be my next pr0ject. Every time we visit, we try to take some of her things on our journey.
I have a friend who, after having to sort through her late parents belongings, decided to tackle her own possessions on a daily basis. Each and every day, she rids herself of one thing. She either donates, recycles or discards one thing per day. She even keeps up with the schedule by dealing with this in advance if she is going away on vacation or on business trips.


Renee CA October 8, 2012 at 12:05 pm

Having to deal with your parents things is a huge motivator. I don’t want to leave my children with what I have had to deal with. And compared to some people, I had it easy. Still tough.


Krystal October 8, 2012 at 9:30 am

This is the best advice ever!


Reese October 8, 2012 at 9:59 am

Too bad all my clutter is my own. Can I just randomly show up at people’s houses with random oddball items and try to pawn it off on them? 🙂


Katy October 8, 2012 at 12:04 pm

Please do. Let me know how that goes. 😉



Karen October 8, 2012 at 10:23 am

Agree with Reese’s first sentence. Just had a charity come pick up two bags of stuff today. Will concentrate this week on returning things to the rooms they belong in.


Diedra B October 8, 2012 at 12:39 pm

The crocheted blanket by my night table rightfully belongs to a beautiful baby somewhere out there. . . but I have to finish it before I can send it off. . . crocheting as fast as I can!


Kristen | The Frugal Girl October 8, 2012 at 1:58 pm

Oooh, I just gave three things to my mom today! So I can cross this off of my list.

I’m doing the annual clothing switch today as well, so I have a ginormous bag of too-small clothes that are getting the boot.


Ruby J. October 8, 2012 at 2:53 pm

After helping an elderly friend organize her apartment over the weekend and discovering she had four times the amount of stuff that would fit in the closets, I did a ruthless closet dejunking today at my own house. The results of it filled two contractor trash bags and a moving box, which are going to the thrift store tomorrow.


Lou Rodriguez October 8, 2012 at 3:05 pm

What a timely post! It just happens to be that Kelly and the kids left on Wednesday for her sisters wedding to Minnesota. They arrive late tonight and I took those 5 days – not to watch football, not to have “alone Daddy-time”, but to DE-CLUTTER!

For me, there is no decision making or wondering what I should hold on to. I made 3 trips to the local goodwill, piled 6 bags of useless trash and paperwork for tomorrows pick-up, put a second hand chair that we’ve had on the side in the foyer for the last month to the curb and watched it get picked up in 20 minutes which made me happy, and…I’ve left the house spick and span so when Kelly gets home tonight, she will forgive me for my De-cluttering transgressions! 🙂


Hannah October 8, 2012 at 4:48 pm

I’m in this exact same frame of mind as fall winds down, but before the snow falls! I returned everything (almost) that wasn’t mine, started to sell things that I NEVER use (still waiting for bites on CL), and went through all my “save this for a project” and recycled what I know I’ll never use. I also finally went through all my clothes and gave some to friends and family. I have a bad habit of saving up clothing that’s in great shape, but I never wear it. Luckily, I found a great consignment store and I’ve made $55 so far! That’s a lot of coffee or a few nice dinner dates. 🙂 The other great reason to de-clutter is it really helps clear our your mind, too. We’ve been going through some tough stuff in our community lately, and I found cleaning out my mental and physical eves to really help. Great post!


Paige October 8, 2012 at 6:25 pm

Tried doing a little of that last night and made my husband mad. UGH!!!


Jo@simplybeingmum October 9, 2012 at 12:18 am

I’m pretty sure that everything in the house is now mine, and as you quite rightly point out that makes it harder!
A couple of years ago you replied back to one of my comments that has stuck with me. Highly paraphrased it was that creative people see potential in seemingly worthless items. You were spot on. Where I struggle with ‘clutter’ is I keep items to upcycle…but you can only have so many projects going at one time. It’s knowing what to cull and what to keep so that you don’t drown in stuff.
As for driving a girl to decoupage, *ahem* I have 3 boxes on the go currently!


Jill W October 9, 2012 at 11:19 am

I just did this yesterday! The husband and I tore apart the storage closet. But then I used that energy gained to purchase a new pair of glasses; I need them and purchased them online at a discount site, but still.


Anna October 11, 2012 at 8:12 am

Question –

Have any of you ever scented your homemade laundry powder detergent? How do you it? I love the smell of lavender Gain, but love making my own soap more. Help! Thanks!


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