The Garage was Calling!

Life here has been busy. I am back to in-person teaching (that’s a series of posts I will probably never write!) Needless to say, I’m trying to stay afloat.

John, on the other hand, officially retired June 16th! He has been spending his time on his “Honey Do” list and rereading the Wagons West series of books by Dana Fuller Ross. I think he is on book 6 out of the 30ish books.

Some of the things completed on the Honey Do:

  • reapplying silicone around the toilets
  • installing the threshold between bathroom tile and hall/bedroom
  • installing trim along front edge of shower
  • reattaching fan cover in our bathroom to sit flush with ceiling
  • repainting our bedroom ceiling
  • replacing rollers in the sliding screen door
  • removing a huge bush from the back embankment
  • installing drip system for patio plants

We also decluttered a section of the garage shelves. Since we had a couple of boxes from my mom’s house, I needed to have a place to put them. It’s all the china pieces I don’t have in the house. I’m not sure how often I will need the coffee and tea pots as well as the many serving pieces and tiny coffee cups.

We decluttered 4 boxes of books, 3 camping chairs, and 10 medicine bottles!

MANY years ago we were going to have a vacation house with a library. Basically any book we ever bought we kept with the idea of putting them in a library. All these years later, our vacation home is on wheels and books are easily carried on a kindle/ipad/phone etc. Besides, I quit buying books about 6-7 years ago when I realized I needed to read the ones I had. I’m getting close to done!! These are the hardback copies that didn’t leave when we last decluttered books.

decluttering the desk drawer

How many of us open a drawer and shudder? I’m famous for overstuffing the drawers and stuff falling out the back when opened. Then you can’t close the darn thing. Here are a few things from the bottom desk drawer.

Now the cords make sense, but why do I have so many dissecting supplies at home? I haven’t done class dissections in years and I’ve never had a microscope at the house! Who knows how long they’ve been lurking in the drawer!

How many do I need?

Plastic and paper bags – those disposable bags that we had very few of prior to quarantine. Once California went into lock down a year ago, if you shopped, you could not use your own bags. Most stores are still not allowing you to use your own bags but with a decrease in COVID numbers, I’m hoping we can use our own bags again soon.

They pantry had reached the level of madness. I decluttered 60 of the cheapest, tears after you look at them plastic bags and 20 paper bags. I put another 250 plastic bags into bags of 25 or 50 (you know, those you can actually reuse). Why am I keeping them? Who knows! I even decluttered all the bags from the trunk of the car!

While I was dealing with the bags, kiddo #2 decluttered the rest of the pantry, consolidating open containers from when she moved in and just straightening up the shelves. Another 20 items gone.

100 items removed from the pantry!!

Spring Break Decluttering 2021

Spring break has sprung! John was off 3 March to 19 March. Barb was off 22 March to 26 March.

In the last 28 years, we have had spring break together TWICE! It will be nice to have spring break together next year. Why you ask – John is RETIRING in June! No more trying to coordinate schedules for holidays, vacations, etc!

Basically, all we did were chores around the house when we weren’t relaxing and taking a quick trip to visit the grandbabies!

And what is a spring break without some decluttering?!? Can you tell I was playing with the picture collage app??

  • a few clothes and shoes
  • knickknacks
  • books
  • computer case
  • puzzles
  • unused candle

Decluttering the Desktop

I spent 2 days decluttering this shelving unit on my desktop (and a shelf on the bookshelf and a drawer in the desk got a quick decluttering to allow for some stuff to be moved.)

John removed the top portion of the shelving unit and reassembled it.

118 items removed!! Still not perfect but so much better!

How many of you start decluttering stuff from one area only to find you are also decluttering another area when you decide to move something to a different/better location?

Before vs After

Some of the stuff

More stuff and books from a different bookshelf.

Decluttering School Documents

We recently went through the box with yearbooks and that sparked another education related decluttering.

John is retiring in June!!! He has agreed that all the extra copies of official transcripts can go. He has no plans to do anything that he will have to prove his college degrees.

We both got rid of the commencement programs – we have never looked at them since graduating.

I even found the extra graduation announcements in the same file – thinking we’re not going to mail them out!

22 more items decluttered from our house!

What about you? Are you keeping this kind of memorabilia?

Checkbook Registers

Old checkbook transaction registers – how long are we supposed to keep these? How many of these do you have?

I went into the cabinet drawer to pull out old tax documents from 2011 and 2012 to shred. If you only need to keep these and their supporting records for 3 – 7 years (or indefinitely if you commit fraud hahaha – see this post) , then it seems like we can declutter these.  

I must have decluttered the registers from before we got married since the earliest I found was for 1984, the year of our marriage.  

64 registers gone!  plus another 23 random medical documents.  87 items gone today!

Now I’m off to shred them! I know, it’s overkill but . . .

A little decluttering

We decided to do a little decluttering – just one box in the garage.

Hours later the box is empty and we have removed old yearbooks – yep, old yearbooks. When was the last time you looked at your old junior high/middle school and high school yearbooks? Ours had been in boxes untouched for at least 31 years. As we looked through them, some people who signed we remembered but most were unrecognized.

In the same box were 2 photo albums and several envelopes of pictures. My photo album had random pictures from junior high based on the house they were taken in. There was nothing that sparked “joy” or even any feelings when I saw them. They were decluttered.

John’s photo album was one his aunt put together when she took him on a cruise through the South Pacific when he was about junior high age. Most of the pictures were of scenery that he didn’t recognize. He also decluttered them.

Moral of the story – label those pictures! The label might spark a memory.