Wednesday, February 17, 2010

what i want wednesday - clutter free house

i am not catholic but today i came across a blog post about what some people are doing for lent.  and though i won't be doing it for lent, i think i may do this anyway.  i'm constantly saving stuff to SELL on craigslist or ebay - and it is piling up in all corners of the house.  i have no time to photograph it - much less post it and take it to the mailbox.

so maybe what i need to do is to pass it along to someone who needs it.  you know, give it away.  i have no job, i have no prospects of a job, i need every penny i can earn, but maybe what i really need to do is give these things away and say a prayer that the Lord takes care of those less fortunate than me (and us).  because, truthfully, we have enough.  plenty enough.  (the lord is my shepherd, i shall not want!)

here is the blog where i found it.

here is the premise (copied and pasted from her blog):
Every day during Lent this year, empty one bag of 'stuff' that is no longer needed from your house, totaling a loss of forty bags of stuff!

1.) Taking a look at the size of your family and household, with an acknowledgment of how much 'stuff' is present, make a prudential choice on the size of bag to be employed during this challenge. Bag size should be small enough that the goal of 40 bags during the season of Lent is able to be accomplished, while not being too big that you are left with nothing. We must still live in the world, after all!

2.) If smaller children are a part of your family, a 'gauge' may be helpful to keep them engaged and help them keep track of progress. As part of your preparations, make a 'paper chain' of forty numbered links. As each new bag is started, place a new link in the bottom of the bag. This way, as the chain gets smaller, there is a greater sense of accomplishment.

3.) This challenge necessarily involves sacrifice. Each member of the family should be encouraged to give something to each bag, or there could be designated bags for each member of the family.

4.) Instead of just throwing things away, recycling is a great way to encourage good stewardship of the gifts we have been given, as it symbolizes that we are passing along our gifts to others. Families with children are encouraged to pass along clothes that no longer fit or toys that sit dormant in a closet to families in need instead of just throwing them away.

5.) Units of count need not necessarily be trash bags, either; however they should be equivalent. For example, a box of gently used toys or clothes could equate one bag off the chain. A stack of books donated to the parish library is another easy equivalent.

As the family accepts this challenge together, bonds will be created that will last a lifetime. Lessons are also learned not just by saying, but by putting it into practice. Here, the simple lesson will last throughout life that having fewer things can lead to a greater contentment in life.

(Credit due to the Archdiocese of Cincinnati for this handout on vocations and family faith formation)

i don't even know when lent starts but i'm going to guess soon since easter is a little over a month away (and since it is 40 bags and 1 per day... that makes it sometime in Feb. when it would start...).

so i guess now the hard part is finding people to take the stuff i want to give away!?!?!  i wonder if that will be as hard as selling them!  anyone know someone in need of baby clothes? what about anyone that knows how to fix up sort-of broken bikes to be given away?  we have a couple that could be used except for flat tires and a chain that is "off the hook" so to speak.  ha!

well, anyone else want to do it?  who else is outgrowing their perfectly large house???

(p.s., i'm going to use small bags for my measurements!  i am pretty good at keeping stuff cleaned out!)


  1. Sounds like a challenge. I love challenges. I bet I can sell/donate/trash more than you can in this time period. Of course (coarse, for you) I have way more "stuff" than you. Stacked odds, but I'm game. Are you game? yo.

  2. Lent starts today, Ash Wednesday. This is a nice idea. I'm not sure what exactly I have to get rid of, though. Probably something.

    I do routinely donate stuff to the SA or Goodwill; recently, I donated some stained glass and jewelry (from ex husband) to the symphony for their auction.

  3. Dude, it's a week full of holidays! Washington's Birthday on Monday, Mardi Gras on Tuesday, and Ash Wednesday today! (Which, as Mrs. B. said, is what starts lent). And, now you see another reason why I've chosen not to "invest" in a house putchase... I'm all in for spring cleaning on my perfectly small, overgrown apartment...



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