This time of year, I pick up a heavy duty wicker basket from the thrift store (You can ALWAYS find them in good condition) and I got about my home building a nice basket to donate at my church. This year I came up with (all items unused) a hot pink towel and washcloth, one bottle of body spray, a box of olive oil soap, red scarf, grey sweater that never fit but I couldn't return, 1 pair of red flip flops and a small stuff teddy bear. I received a big bow at work on a gift of fruit from my boss and it was too beautiful to throw out so I arranged it around the outside of the basket. Each year, our church encourages this for a women's shelter. We only give nice, clean items. It's so much fun and a way to declutter and simplify my life even more. Now that I have so much less, I just keep an empty bin in my closet and fill it with the nicer things I have to give away at Christmas time.
Decluttering as a gift to others
My family's tradition for the Friday after Thanksgiving (no, we don't participate in Black Friday) is to go through the house to collect things for donation. Clothes, toys, kitchen stuff - whatever. Part of the original motivation was to make room for the anticipated influx of new stuff at Xmas. But it has deeper connotations - a feeling of abundance, that we have enough to share. We enjoy this annual purge.