HOw do you decide between need, want, treasure - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 02-23-2005, 06:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We are getting rid of "Stuff" at our house but I'm having a hard time deciding between needing it, wanting it, and treasuring it.

How do you decide what you can live without and what you can't. We've been living in someone elses house for 7 months now and have never really unpacked. I can't hardly go with the "not used it in 6 months" rule right now.

Single Mom to 2 amazing little men. T(7) and B(5)
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#2 of 10 Old 02-23-2005, 07:21 PM
 
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Need it - Items you know you've used regularly in the past. If you were to get rid of it you'd just buy another. It's not broken and completely useable.

Want it and Treasure it could be one in the same- you want it because you've used it, it's not broken and still in usable and really good shape. You cherish the good* memories it brings to have it. You will have it out on display to share it with others in your home or will pass it down in the family because it's an important piece of family history.

Get rid of anything that is - Broken, you think you will use but have not ever used it yet, anything you're keeping just because it was a gift but you don't really care for it much, anything you know you will not use, anything you say you'll repair someday but haven't gotten to it, anything that you can not display somewhere to share with others, anything that brings bad memories or makes you feel bad.

This list could go on and on.
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#3 of 10 Old 02-23-2005, 07:26 PM
 
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From time to time, I carry a big box around the house chanting.."beautiful or useful?" . It's amazing how many things flunk the test.
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#4 of 10 Old 02-23-2005, 07:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'd say I've gotten rid of 1/3 of what we did have before we moved. NOw I think we need to cut what we have in half. I just went upstairs and got 3 garbage bags of clothing that is just mine to get rid of. Now I get to tackle dh's closet. I'm finding the hardest thigns to part with are those that remind me of my pregnancies or the boys as babies. Like I have this gigantic grey sweatshirt jacket. It isn't attractive and is too big but I wore it the entire time I was pg with Bryce and Tracy, But I put it in the give bag....

I called dh and he was willing to get rid of some of the stuff he held on to the last pitch fit we had.

This is actually fun!

Single Mom to 2 amazing little men. T(7) and B(5)
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#5 of 10 Old 02-23-2005, 08:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by its_our_family
I'd say I've gotten rid of 1/3 of what we did have before we moved. NOw I think we need to cut what we have in half. I just went upstairs and got 3 garbage bags of clothing that is just mine to get rid of. Now I get to tackle dh's closet. I'm finding the hardest thigns to part with are those that remind me of my pregnancies or the boys as babies. Like I have this gigantic grey sweatshirt jacket. It isn't attractive and is too big but I wore it the entire time I was pg with Bryce and Tracy, But I put it in the give bag....

I called dh and he was willing to get rid of some of the stuff he held on to the last pitch fit we had.

This is actually fun!
I love to declutter and get rid of stuff! Laugh.

If you have something that you really cherish but know you'll never use it again take a picture of it and put it in a photo book with why it was important and what good memories came from it.
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#6 of 10 Old 02-26-2005, 01:52 AM
 
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Whne I'm having a hard time letting go of something, i visualize myself in a world without it. Am I likely to want it? Would I be kicking myself if it wasn't around? If I suddenly found a purpose for it, would I be able to find another? Most of the time I'm keeping stuff around for what if... moments that never come, or will be easily dealt with if they do. ie, What If I develop a hobby that required many fabric scraps/old jeans or nylons/fake flowers? All these things are quickly available through friends, shops & freecycle, so if I'm not using them now, why bother? If I don't look at it and smile, i don't need it. Somethings, like my ochre stick (a twig I dipped in an ochre pit on our honey moon) are completely valueless, but everytime I see it I smile. Sometimes it goes the other way. Most of the time the problem isn't that I want it in my life, it's the act of giving it up & accepting that I spent money foolishly, others spent foolishly on me, or I've put in a stupid amount of time and space collecting something. Keeping it around doesn't erase mistakes, tho. *shrug*
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#7 of 10 Old 02-26-2005, 12:59 PM
 
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Sometimes I'll take a specific item (or several) and put it out where I'll see it all the time for a few days. That reminds me think about it's place in my house, without feeling like I have to make a snap decision on it. After a few days of cleaning around it, chances are one of four things will happen:

1) I'll think of a use, or at least a place, for it (keep it)
2) I'll be sick of cleaning around it and vaguely annoyed (toss it)
3) I'll find I'm still sentimental about it (keep, but try to think of a use. If I can't, put it in a corner of the attic dedicated to "things that have no use but I like" and review it again when that pile gets too big for my taste. My threshhold for things in that catagory is pretty small, amounting to two or three boxes.)
4) Talia breaks it :LOL Problem solved!
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#8 of 10 Old 02-26-2005, 01:08 PM
 
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6 month rule??? The rule I use is 2 years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by philomom
From time to time, I carry a big box around the house chanting.."beautiful or useful?" . It's amazing how many things flunk the test.
i love that.

10 - boy
5.5 - girl
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#9 of 10 Old 02-26-2005, 01:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scoutycat
... Keeping it around doesn't erase mistakes, tho. *shrug*
Thanks scoutycat - that's what I needed to hear. I couldn't articulate it & that makes such good sense.

I have such a hard time throwing things away & in a weird way, I feel like I'm shaming myself (for spending too much, for the time invested, keeping it because it's from x, etc) & keeping it around keeps that alive & well.

I think I just need to say, 'yeah you made a mistake, live & learn.'
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#10 of 10 Old 02-27-2005, 05:36 PM
 
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I don't really have any "treasures" other than family photographs. Everything else in the house is useful (in theory anyway :LOL )

I HATE to waste stuff. I look at it this way: If this is in my house, not being used, when somebody else could be using it, then it's being wasted.

I totally Freecycle: as soon as I decide I don't want something, I can post it on the board and it's usually gone within a few days- blessing somebody else with a newfound "treasure" and blessing my house with space. It also eliminates the "what if I need it someday" syndrome- I know that if I need something at some point in the future, I can get it via Freecycle- so I don't need to worry about giving this stuff away right now.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19, Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 13(homeschooled)
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