The big pre-Rummage + pre-John purge

I’ve been delaying a little on the tales of this year’s gigantic Rummage sale up in Winnetka, and the beautiful haul of stuff I brought back with me, but before diving in I have to talk about the purging that happened right beforehand.

The last time we officially purged our apartment was back in January, and it was time to have another go-’round for two reasons:

1) Rummage was coming up and I needed to practice the “out with the old” part before the “in with the new” hit us hard.

2) My brother-in-law John was about to move in with us for the summer, necessitating an emptying/reorganizing effort in the 2nd bedroom.

My mom always used to say that guests are a great excuse to get organized and to clean, and I concur. If John hadn’t come, who knows how long some of this stuff may have stuck around, generally loitering in a useless sort of fashion? But John came, and the stuff was put into its proper place: bags destined to be carried out the door!

There’s no feeling like walking old stuff out the door–it’s like winning a race.

Not that I’ve ever won a race . . . the whole ‘running’ thing never clicked for me. But it’s what I imagine winning a race might feel like.

Anyway! Our first mission was to clear out half of the closet I use. Remember when I color-coordinated it earlier this year? This is what it looked like:

The right hand half, destined for John’s use, housed a ton of my clothes and at least three guitars. Everything needed to find a new place. Time to make a big pile on the futon!

I love big piles on the futon. There’s no better way to feel instantly productive than to yank a lot of stuff off hangers and throw it about.

Over the course of an evening (make that two) I purged a good amount of clothing, and put into storage (i.e. large plastic boxes inna stack) anything that was too wintry and heavy for the warm season, and anything I didn’t think my pregnant self could fit into for much longer.

Of course, we had to create this clothing storage space by purging what was already in other boxes. We opened two of uncertain contents and found . . .

. . . a horse!

Goodbye, beautiful plastic horse that I loved for so many years.

My husband headed up this box-emptying effort, getting only slight distracted . . .

. . . by a tiny guitar.

That’s a keeper–it’s just the right size for my American Girl Doll. Who (and whose possessions) shall not be touched by The Purge. I have decreed it.

This purging amnesty also extended to the little box of American-Girl-doll-sized food that I made with my own two hands many, many years ago. Tiny pizza!

Tiny apple!

Tiny . . .

oh wait! It’s my old glasses from 2nd grade. Let’s see how they fit . . .

. . . just right!

They give a wonderful yellow tinge to the area around my eyes, which looks quite attractive, eh?

Not. Into the trash with ye!

Then there was an old jewelry box from Portugal that I used to think was the most beautiful thing in the world . . .

. . . but has been broken for ages. Time to go, sweet sweet jewelry box.

Next up was the project of housing of all our DVD’s in binders, to clear the shelf. My husband manned this effort solo. Great job, honeybunches!

And the purging of our TV! Into the alley, for some foraging person to find.

At this point, the closet looked more like this:

Slowly but surely, we were getting somewhere.

Then the bags were taken to the alley:

This was our first purging session. A second one happened a few weeks later, culminating in at least that much stuff going out the door again (though sadly, Haul #2 was not photographed by yours truly).

And by the end, John’s room looked like this:

And the closet, like this:

. . . with a closet organizer (a sneak peak of one of my Rummage finds).

Soon, tales of the “in with the new” part of things!

Well, let’s make that ‘soon-ish’ so that no one gets antsy waiting.

14 thoughts on “The big pre-Rummage + pre-John purge

  1. Liz

    Yay for purging! The things that seem to take up the most space in the storage bins stuffed in my closet are a) one high school letter jacket and one jr.high letter jacket b) boxes of notebooks full of knowledge from college c) yearbooks from 1994-2008 d) tshirts from church camp, mission trips, Camp Fire camp, dance recitals, high school, college and sorority days.

    Why do we get attached to physical objects? They are just things!

  2. Veronica

    There’s going to be some happy rummagers in your neighborhood! Why did you trash your TV? Got a new one? Love the 2nd grade glases. Mine were lavender plastic frames-sish I still had them. LOL!

    1. Jenna Post author

      We trashed it for 2 reasons:
      1) We don’t actually have TV available (the digital air waves are too weak, and we don’t want cable), so we were just using it for DVD’s, which we can use a computer for
      2) It was humongous and we wanted to clear the space for John to have a bedside table
      And lavendar plastic frames sound EXACTLY like what I might have gone for in 2nd grade too! =)

  3. Tobi

    I think you should have kept the frames! I’m pretty sure they are back in now!! Good work letting go of things, though. I’m bad at that.

    1. Jenna Post author

      I had Kirsten too! And loved her. =) Even though after taking out her braids I totally destroyed her hair . . .

  4. Liz

    I finally came to check out your blog! How appropriate you talked about a purge. We are kindred souls! 🙂 Few things do I enjoy as much as purging & organizing. Fun post. I’m excited to follow..

  5. joanne

    And the good thing about keeping your American Girl doll is that it can definitely be used by that little girl in your belly! Those things are keepers for sure.,

  6. Megan

    Yay for purging! We’re slowly working on purging stuff over here too, but for us it’s more like dishes, books and papers……sooooooo many papers.

    1. Jenna Post author

      Woohoo! That’s awesome, Sarah. There’s nothing to get the juices flowing like a good purge.


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