When I used to watch a lot more TV I really liked to see the TLC station’s home improvement shows like Trading Spaces. There was another show called Clean Sweep that always impressed me. For those that haven’t seen it… The Clean Sweep crew would show up at someone’s house where they would show us two rooms crammed full of junk. It was the kind of junk you would expect a Cheap rubbish removals Melbourne team to spend an entire day sorting through! With barely enough room to walk through. And I would gawk at all that stuff and think I would never let my place get that bad. The CS team would completely clear the rooms and then a designer and carpenter would come in and paint and redo the rooms with closet organizers and lableled bins, furniture, etc. and turn it into a functional space again. Meanwhile the couple would be out on their lawn with all their piles of stuff. The host and a professional organizer would then help them sort through all of it to Keep, Sell or Trash. The organizer guy (with a cute Australian accent) would lay out a little section of tarp and allow them to keep only what could fit on it. Then the homeowners go through excruciating distress trying to part with grandma’s treasures and all the unused wedding gifts they received…etc. After they sort through it, they hold a yard sale. What isn’t sold is donated to a charity. In the end, the host brings them back into their house to see the new rooms: pristine and decluttered. They are always stunned and delighted and most of them cry. Sometimes I cried too.
You can probably see where this is heading now. I am getting pretty close to having one of those rooms. I rent a 2-bedroom apartment – it’s 1/2 of a house actually. We’ve been here about 2-1/2 years. Prior to that we lived on the East coast for a year for my husband’s clerkship. We stored most of the non-essential things we didn’t think we’d need that year in my sister’s garage. When we moved back all that stuff ended up in the second bedroom – which was supposed to be a guest room/office. It was fairly well organized when I unpacked it but I was determined even then to get rid of a most of it because if we didn’t need it for that year we probably didn’t need it at all. Due to my
blogging addiction busy schedule, I never got around to doing so and as time went by, more and more stuff ended up in that room. We have an exercise machine in there too now. So I think about 80% of the floor was covered.
A few weeks ago, my job cut me to 50% time. Now I have 2-1/2 days on, 2-1/2 days off. Pretty nice. That is giving me the time I need to tackle this project and get a lot of other things done as well. (and hopefully more blog time too – but I gotta play that cool for now)
One of the first things I wanted to do was get rid of our eWaste – old printers, PC towers, floppy disks, etc. I found out that our city was having an eWaste pickup the last weekend of April so I made it a priority to sort through that first. As I went, I came across a lot of other things that I wanted to get rid of. Many items I were holding onto for sentimental reasons. I realized that it was time to let go of them now. So I decided to post everything on our local Freecycle group. I’m also on a neighborhood list so I posted there too. I set it up like a yard sale, except everything was Free. A lot of people replied to my posts to the group and requested particular items. My Magic Bullet Blender was the most requested – I never would have guessed. I set aside the things people asked for and put the rest out on tables in our driveway. Surprisingly everyone showed up for their stuff. My neighbors dropped by too. I gave the next door kids some stuffed animals that my ex-boyfriends had given me. I was glad to shed those memories and the kids were delighted with their new toys. So that was a win-win. A lot of my interactions were like that. People were so happy to have what I was giving them – it was something they wanted or needed – and I was so happy to unload it. I highly recommend Freecycle.
Here’s a list of all the things that I Swept away that weekend – including the eWaste (which I significantly reduced with the giveaway).
3 old cell phones
3.5″ floppy disks
CDs w/old software, games, etc
Dead hard drives – smashed for privacy
ViewSonic 19″ Computer Monitor (CRT) w/ drivers and documentation
HP LaserJet 1200 SE w/ parallel port cable, power cord and drivers (Win 95, 98, 2000, Me, NT4.0, MacOS 8.6.9).
Canon Multipass C5000 All-in-One Fax/Scanner/Printer w/ power cord, manual, and some ink. No parallel cable.
50 blank 3.5″ floppy disks w/case
Floppy disk “wallet”
3 Computer Mice – one w/USB connector; one w/6-pin round connector, one wireless
various Parallel/Serial port cables and adapters
NetLine Wireless Broadband Gateway w/ CD Documentation and Wireless PC Card w/Driver
Adobe Elements 3.0 Video editing software w/User Guide
3 Stereo Antennae
SW Bell Freedom Phone – cordless w/answering machine and power supply
Lots of telephone cords
3 12″ modular to spade line cords for telephones
TV-VCR signal splitter
Hot air popcorn popper
GE Refrigerator Water Filtration Cartridge (new) SmartWater Model: MWF
Cookie cutters – Christmas and Cowboy themes
Magic Bullet Blender w/ all attachments
Pool Cue – “Player’s” purple, 19 oz.
Bag of 8 softballs, 5 baseballs – good for batting practice
Bag of Wire hangers
5 wood pants hangers
Folding card table with 3 matching chairs (circa 1960?)
Folding table/night stand (also mid 20th century)
Humidifier – Never used. 4-Gallon Honeywell HCM-2000
Car Radio – for Honda Civic (2003) w/CD player
Men’s Rockport Shoes – Tan leather penny loafers. Size 10.5 M Never worn.
JVC Video Camera “Videomovie GR-M5”. Uses VHS-C tapes. w/case, battery, battery charger, cables, remote & Manual.
Bowling Ball – Reddish-pink, 12 lbs. w/ maroon bag.
3 stuffed animals
Rich Aurilia (SF Giants) Bobblehead
Ah – very satisfying but there is still significant work to be done. I have to deal with my husbands junk too. I will give an update when I’m done – with before and after pictures. Carry on with your day!
~♥~Please don’t recommend the Pony Party.~♥~