Saturday, May 7, 2011

100 Things in May Update

I'm deeeep in the thick of this massive decluttering project in la mia casa. So many clothes (so many clothes and yet I mysteriously have nothing to wear), so much good china. So much kitchen stuff. Too many toys, too many books. It's a ridiculous wealth of stuff, but I don't feel rich. I feel like I'm drowning. I'm particularly loathe to get rid of books, and some of them have been useful in this project. 

The Joy of Less is where I read my current mantra for the week:


On the topic of storage systems, Francine Jay writes,

But while the containers made my house look shelter magazine-tidy, they didn’t bring me the serenity I’d hoped for. Even though everything was arranged neatly in pretty boxes (cloth-covered, wooden, wicker, plastic, etc.), it was still there.

In reality, all those lovely boxes, bins, and drawers served no higher purpose than to hide my junk. At some point I realized that I wasn’t organizing my life; I was organizing my clutter.

My advice to anyone who feels they need to get organized: declutter first. If you have to, declutter for a year before you start buying fancy boxes and squirreling things away.

Then think long and hard before you put something into a container (especially if it’s not something you use regularly). Because once you give something a warm, cozy abode, it can be hard to get it to leave.

As I go through these boxes we brought with us when we moved here in September, I realize just how much needs to be given away. Today I'm grateful for strong coffee, a sunny morning, the kiddo at the park with his dad, and the energy to get the clutter out.

At the end of this project I will have given away well over 100 things. Maybe I should change course and strive for a goal of only owning 100 things, a la Dave Bruno. Now that's some serious minimalism.


  1. I did the 100 things project last year. It was rejuvenating. It's about time to tackle it again.

  2. You should list your unwanted books on Amazon Marketplace to earn a little money to replace items in that now sparse wardrobe. I did that about three years ago.

    I don't even miss any of the books I sold. I really don't. Once they're gone, you stop thinking about them.

    Sounds like a great and productive weekend!

  3. You may find, like I have, that once you start doing this de-cluttering, it doesn't stop. I pause from time to time but I always get back to it. This month is going to be a busy one for me as I prepare for a huge garage sale--it is my goal to get rid tons of stuff. What doesn't sell is going straight to Goodwill.

    I loved the "Joy of Less"--great book! I did Project M-31 (Dave Damron) in November--that helped me to really get motivated to start de-cluttering. My cousin recently bought 30 Day Clutter Bootcamp ( and said it was very good too...kind of wish it had been around in November as I appreciate a woman's perspective on minimizing more than a man's (I mean really, they carry a wallet, wear no make-up, and tend to be a little less sentimental than we are). Enjoy the journey!! xxBliss

  4. The first book to have this sort of impact on me was Clearing Your Clutter with Feng Shui. Interestingly enough, it's not heavy on the Feng Shui, but rather the author got me to think about why I collect and keep particular things. After reading this book, I purge a huge amount of books. It was utterly liberating! Continue on!

  5. Hey gals! Thanks for your comments.

    Kristi- Yes, I love a yearly purge. I'm really overdue for one since we didn't do it before our easterly move last summer. Off topic, I have your book and I really enjoyed it.

    Luxebytes- great idea! I should try to make a little cash while I'm at it.

    Bliss- I had never heard of M-31 or Minimalist Packrat. I checked out both web sites and, yes, the MP (women's perspective) idea looks great to me.

    Gina- I like the idea of Feng Shui and figuring out why I keep things around. I will see if my bibli has that book.

    I *need* that liberating purge feeling. Thank you all for the inspiring feedback!

  6. Thank you. I commented on an older post that you may not have seen that I had printed out your IFG from FC years and years ago and have it saved in my chic files. I felt most connected and closest to yours, even over the talented Marline's! It was definitely an inspiration in creating my own. thank you. K

  7. This is a great idea you shared. I'm drawn to the whole pretty-box thing, I've just not been wanting to splurge on it. Perhaps the reason is I need to declutter first.

    I hope your decluttering is going well!


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