Spring is for...Moving!

We signed the papers and Jeff and I will officially be moving to Westboro on April 1st. Uh - say what? April 1st is only 8 days away? Guess I better start getting down to business...

Right now, Jeff and I live in a small condo that has two floors: carpet, two bedrooms, a computer nook, two bathrooms and an open concept kitchen/living room. We've been living together for about two years, and I have one question to ask:

..how in the heck have I accumulated so much STUFF?

I read a quote that said: "The things you own end up owning you". I started doing some research on living a more minimalistic lifestyle, and this really started to resonate with me.

Why do I feel the need to save the boxes and bags from every single designer purse, watch or article of clothing I've ever purchased? Why am I so attached to my broken old Mac computer that hasn't turned on in years? Why have I kept every single gift bag and piece of gift wrap, so intent on reusing it?

And it goes further then that. I'm a book hoarder, a clothes hoarder, a "thing" hoarder. I have an ashtray collection (I don't smoke), multiple "memory boxes" (old receipts don't qualify as memories...), the list goes on.

So I went through my house one room at a time and I thought: What is this item used for? When was the last time it was used? Where, in my new space, will I put this?

If I didn't have a concrete answer for all of the above, it went in the trash. 
(Or the overflowing donation bins I've been putting together.)

So whether you're making a move from a 1300square ft space to an 800 sq ft space like I am, or you just feel the need to purge your life, here's a friendly list to help you do so:

- Clothing: If I hadn't worn it in a year, it got donated. If it doesn't fit TODAY, it got donated (no more, oh it WILL fit in 6 months once I hit the gym!). If it has rips and holes, it got donated (no, I won't get around to patching that up).

- Decor: If it was not "unique", it got donated. I can only have so many dollar store glass vases and candy dishes.  If the frame/piece didn't fit in my new colour scheme, it was donated. There will always be more frames to be had! Those half burnt candles? Garbage.

- Beauty products: This was a big one. Any sort of old cream, facial product, etc that had not been touched in 6 months was thrown away. I have become more aware as to what's in my products recently, so if it contained parabens, toxins, etc. - garbage! Old makeup that's crusty and from my first year of college? Garbage. Perfume bottles that had less then 3 pumps left? Garbage. And the hair products! I decided to make  a big bin for my family and friends to fight over, as I had such a collection. Everything else? You guessed it. Garbage! Only keep what you use on a day to day. The rest is taking up space!

- Books: I am big on building a library. However, Jeff and I have a HUGE book collection. Knowing we're big readers, friends and family are always giving us the newest book we just 'have to read'. Most were fantastic, but if we had absolutely zero interest in the topic, we decided we would put together boxes to donate to our public library. 

- Craft supplies: This is a bad hoarding issue for me. I love little odds and ends that I may be able to glue and include in my scrapbook. That being said, I went through all of my gluesticks, threw out the dried up ones, consolidated all of my paper into one shelf, tape and scissors in one bowl, odds and ends in a box. Cutlery organizers are fantastic for keeping all of your paper clips, pens and sharpies nice and organized. Old shoe boxes keep my pictures from being bent. Throwing away any additional packaging and getting things organized and in their own place saved me a lot of space.

- Kitchen: you'll be so surprised at how many salad dressing and boxes of crackers you have in your cupboard that have expired. I went through every single bottle and box and chucked everything that was coming close to expiry. If a box of cookies was half empty, I consolidated it with another box. Or I ate the rest. Whatever works. ;). Tupperware had to have  a matching lid, or else - garbage. Any of my cutlery that was rusted - garbage.
So now I am leaving my little old condo with less then half of what I originally owned. And, I feel light. Honestly! I feel like I can breathe in my home, knowing that there isn't anything that isn't going to be useful or beautiful. Knick knacks - be gone! I don't need you anymore. I can't believe it took a move to get me to accomplish this.

To get a bit deep here: I think keeping "things" gave me a sense of safety. Oh, if my new Macbook ever breaks, I can repair this old one! What if I forget a birthday? I may need this ripped tissue paper last minute!  This bus transfer has sentimental value because it is from the day I did _____ (fill in the blank with irrelevant event). Truth is, I love shopping for gift wrap and I'm rarely unprepared for a birthday. I'm careful with my electronics, and god knows I would probably never be able to go back to my old Macbook circa 2000. I'm so much happier being surrounded with white space, helping me think more clearly and giving me less to clean up and store.

So now, I have 8 days to do some last minute tidying and make some big decisions: do I keep my green artificial Christmas tree, or the white one? As you can see, my life is really difficult these days. I also need to prepare the kitties for the "big car trip" to the new house. They didn't like that one so much the first time around...

Happy Spring!

The (un)Organized Mind + Blog design by labinastudio.