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Our Journey To Simplicity: Part 6 – Possessions

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Chris Rock said something on SNL back in November that was pretty timely both for the time of year and for what we are going through…

“Jesus is the least materialistic person to ever roam the earth. No bling on Jesus! Jesus kept a low profile and we turned His birthday into the most materialistic day of the year.”

Wow. I could end my post here and let you all soak in that.

But I’ll continue.

One thing I had a jump on while reading 7, was possessions. Jen and her family rid their home of 7 items each day for the month. During the month, they donate 7 things per day for 30 days. That’s 210 things. Totally doable, right? Since I had been reading Radical and other blogs about minimalism, I had this one ready to go!

My number seems to be 12. I chose 12 foods to live on for a month week, and I had 12 items of clothing/accessories for a month. So instead of doing it the way Jen did it, I did something I called the 12-12-12-12.

Every day I would find 12 things to throw away, 12 things to donate, and 12 things to put back where they belong. Guess how long I did it for? Yep. 12 days. It was incredible how quickly my house was put back in order! And honestly, it didn’t take all that long. I would get after it for about 5-15 minutes per day. Absolutely worth it!

I’m not going to waste time telling you about every single item we gave away every single day, but I’ll give you a taste so you can be thinking about items in your house that can go!

1. We went through our kitchen. It’s incredible what accumulates! How many spatulas does one kitchen need? What about sets of measuring cups? My brother the bachelor earned himself a whole box of kitchen items!

2. I eliminated 40+ undergarments from my drawer! It’s okay if your taste changes over time (oh, and if things fit differently after having kids!) You should see the space there is in that drawer now!

3. Gave some friends a few pairs of jeans for her daughter and a pair of my own jeans to another friend.

4. Donated LOTS of kids books to the public library and church nursery. Remember, we only keep what fits on the shelf!

5.  Took several items of kids clothing to a local organization for donation.

6.  Took several coats to our local coat drive. This is a great learning experience for kids! Dave took Adelynn along when he dropped off the coats. At age 4, she was able to understand the concept that not everyone has the coat that they need for the winter. We have extras that we don’t need, so we can share ours with them. It’s an embarrassingly easy concept to understand. You know how sad you feel when you see a kid who isn’t dressed properly for winter. I hope to encourage everyone to go through their coat closets and donate!

7.  I went through all of my books. Some of the books I own just do not apply anymore. Or I read them and I know I won’t read them again, why have them collecting dust when someone else could benefit? I won’t get rid of 7 though because it’s digital 🙂 Check out your local library and see what your options are for used books.

8. Over a dozen pairs of shoes! My feet grew when I was pregnant with Ava. You think your feet are one size forever… and you’re wrong.

9. Our game closet. There were so many games we hadn’t played in years – or had never played!

10. Lotion/ Makeup/ Perfume/ Jewelry – so often this stuff gets shoved away and it ends up being forgotten. I found all kinds of lotions that needed to be tossed, perfumes that lost their original scents, makeup in horrible colors, and jewelry that went out of style long ago.

11. Bathroom drawers – oh my! So many random cotton balls, expired medications and products that are no longer used.

12. Paying it forward with birthday party decorations! I was gifted some party decor and it felt great to pass it on!

What can you throw away or donate?


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