So I thought in the spirit of being helpful, I would share some of my newfound knowledge.
Tip #1: Ask a military mom
I have a bunch of good friends who are military mommies. Here’s something I’ve noticed about them. Every year (whether they receive orders or not) they start getting twitchy. Like they know a big move is coming and it might be someplace like Okinawa, where you can’t bring anything that weighs more than 60 pounds unless you have its birth certificate. So they start paring down. And they’re really smart about it. Some stuff gets sold, some donated, some tossed. So when I needed help on what to get rid of and how to get rid of it – those were the first calls I made.
Tip #2: Assess your level of desperation to get rid of stuff on the time/money spectrumThe whole cleaning out process – whether it’s one room or your whole house – represents a big chunk of your probably non-existent free time. So you have to figure out up front how much of that time you’re willing to invest and what you really hope to accomplish. Some examples might help.
I had a friend named Charlotte who had a closet full of fancy shoes in size 7 that she could no longer wear because no one told her that if you get pregnant twice in two years bizarre things happens to your body. Like your feet swelling to a size 8 and then staying that way. She also had an enormous collection of hideous ceramic people that she hated and were under constant threat from the grubby fingers of her two small children. So she took her time and carefully sold all her old Jimmy Choos and large eyed ceramic collectibles on eBay and a month later got a check for almost $3,500.
I had another friend named Kate who had one day off of work and had to get her house cleaned out or else her head would explode. So she filled up twelve hundred garbage bags and hauled them out to the curb and then had three glasses of wine and two Advil. The end. [Editor's Note: It was awesome. -Kate]
|Can I get WOOT WOOT for Mommyshorts? She took this chart from whack to mack with her mad skillz.|
She wrote all about "The Gift of Awkwardness" & the Bugaboo stroller. So you already know she's bad ass.
Tip #3: “Just get it all out of my house today or I will lose my Schmidt”.If your priority is getting rid of unwanted stuff as fast as possible, I have a couple of suggestions.
- Put it on the curb for Big, Enormous Crap Pick-Up Day.
- Call your friend with the pick-up and offer him (or in my case her) a case a beer (or in my case keg of beer) to haul it to the dump for you.
- Call or click on a charity (like GoodDonor.org) that will come pick up your stuff ASAP. Sometimes they can get there sooner than the garbage man which is an epic WIN as you get rid of it all super fast and you get to feel all warm and fuzzy and tax deduction-y.
- Or failing all of that you could just start a fire. To be clear, that was a joke.
- Local kids consignment stores will buy stuff directly from you for about half of what it’s worth. But it’s easy – pack it up, drive it there, they look it over and buy what they want. And you leave with a check and less crap.
- Consignment sales are great but more work for you because you have to go through each item you want to sell and tag it. You have to make careful lists of what you’re sending to the sale and fill out paperwork, and half the time I end up buying more stuff than I’ve sold. But if you have a high end item like a Bugaboo stroller, you can sell it for what it’s worth and not have to worry about shipping (eBay) or creepy strangers coming to your house (Craig’s List).