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Keep It or Toss It? What to Throw Away

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It’s spring cleaning time! You’re likely going to come across a lot of junk that you don’t want, don’t use and don’t need. Here’s what you should get rid of and what you should do with it instead. 

 

Memorabilia – I’m not talking about your security blanket from your childhood. I’m talking about old moth eaten t-shirts that still smell like your ex, that poetry binder and mix tape. If you have an old box of stuff from your ex that you’ve been hanging on to since high school, sorry, but it’s time to get rid of it.

Makeup – If it’s older than six months, ditch it and buy new stuff. It’s likely teeming with germs and bacteria. Cosmetics are supposed to enhance your beauty, not give you an eye infection.

Shoes – It pains me to advocate throwing out shoes, but if you don’t wear them because they give you blisters, it’s time to get rid of them. There are plenty of good shoes out there that don’t tear at your flesh. Same with purses and handbags you don’t use.

Clothing – If you bought something that purposely didn’t fit because you told yourself you’d lose the weight to fit into it, but it’s been hanging in your closet for two years, it’s time to get rid of it. Buy clothing you can wear now. If you do lose weight, reward yourself with some new duds.

Greeting Cards – I am such a hoarder when it comes to greeting cards. Obviously someone cared enough to spend time, effort and money to get the card and then they went to the Post Office, stood in line and paid for postage to send it to me. Or sometimes they came with a gift and have something very nice written inside. I don’t want to get rid of them, but if you are no longer on speaking terms with that person, get rid of it. You especially need to get rid of it if it’s from an ex.

College Crockery – If you’re still using the same dishes you used in college, buy new ones, please. Those green plastic glasses have served you well, but it’s time up upgrade.

Junk Mail – Credit card applications, old catalogs, old newspapers, political advertisements, expired pizza coupons, old grocery ads, etc. Take a few minutes every day to go through it. Keep the important things like bills and the like and the rest, recycle it. Repeat weekly.

Underwear – If they’re holey or look like cheese cloth, have stretched out elastic or are stained get rid of them. You don’t have to wear sexy lingerie every day. Lord knows I don’t, but what you wear under your clothing can make a difference. Your underpinnings should be stretchy, comfy and flattering. If you have things in your drawer that don’t meet that criterion, toss it.

Books – If you know you’ll never read it again or have no use for it, it’s just something you have to dust so get rid of it. Reserve space on your book shelves for books you absolutely love.

Also, don’t just throw out clothing, shoes or books. Donate them instead. There are so many great places around town. There are Salvation Army drop zones at Cashwise and Coborn’s. Clothes Mentor will take your clothing and shoes and give you store credit in return. It’s a great place to take your work clothing that has gotten too big. You can get something smaller instead and it won’t cost a fortune. Used book stores will take your old books and also give you store credit in return. If you have a trip coming up and want to bring a book along on the plane or in the car, you can get a few books for the price of what you would pay for one new. The Goodwill and Catholic Charities also take gently used clothing, shoes and bedding. The Goodwill sells things in their retail stores at a discounted price. Catholic Charities gives it to those in need.

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