Yearly purging project: version 2013

For the third year running, I’ve been a-purging. The first year I made this an intentional New Years project was 2011, when I purged 111 things. It was so liberating and practical and awesome that I repeated the experience in 2012, purging 112 things. This year, though I haven’t reached 113 things, we purged a solid 76, with some hefty bags that made their way from the back closet to Salvation Army. Here’s a pile of the first wave of items:

Clothing was a big one, but I also threw away some old make up, got rid of CD’s from high school that I haven’t listened to in years, and books that I never plan on re-reading (i.e. The Jungle–most depressing book EVER).

Are any of you doing some out-with-the-old this year?

It’s a great feeling. In fact, have you ever noticed that the high of freeing yourself from possessions you don’t need is kind of similar to the high you can get from shopping? Hunh. (There’s probably some smart psychological explanation for that . . . anyone?)

I’ve been thinking it would be a really cool project to involve Alice in every January (and any future siblings of hers–yes, I have the baby crazies and want them ALL. ALL THE BABIES). The goal could be to get rid of at least as many things as they were given for Christmas, and more if possible. Teaching her that letting go is a healthy part of life is an important lesson, especially following on the heels of a holiday that has frankly become quite materialistic–and no matter how we choose to “do Christmas” in our household, some of that will inevitably leak in.

Of course, for now she can’t quite get a handle on purging given that she has just recently figured out that her hands are part of her body. But in years to come, once her motor skills are a little more established, we’ll revisit the idea.

5 thoughts on “Yearly purging project: version 2013

  1. Patti

    I’ve been steadily purging for the past 3 years too, and I love it. My home is starting to feel less cluttered, and more peaceful, and when I buy things I know that I’ll be able to find a permanent home for them.

    But you’ve inspired me to do more, I’ve got another drawer at home that could be emptier, so I’m going to have a go at it this weekend.

  2. Layla

    I love how you were able to flex the 113 things project to adapt as you needed! That’s a fault of mine I’m learning, I felt I had to follow the rules, which this year seemed too exhausting (snapping pictures of everything and keeping track of how many things I got rid of), so I ended up not blogging about any of it! I could have, since I did get rid of a lot, if only I realized I was the only thing holding me back. I’m glad what started as a blogging project has turned into a nice tradition for you!

  3. Tobi

    It’s so good to purge, I love the feeling! I’m on spring break, so yesterday I went through clothes and got rid of a couple of bags worth. I should do jewelry and books too. How great is it that you want to teach your kids to purge! I think it’s really a healthy thing 🙂

  4. Kimby | a little lunch

    Jenna, my closet is STILL color-coordinated and organized, thanks to your purging ideas! By the way, if you haven’t gotten rid of that red purse and/or pestle (I do believe it’s the “pestle” half of a mortar and pestle… or a tomato mill de-seeding device of some sort?), I’d be happy to take them off your hands. 🙂 Alice is just the CUTEST lil’ snow bunny — nice family photo!

  5. Twinky Satterthwaite

    I believe I had intended to purge earlier in the year based on your inspirational purges of these last 3 years, but woe, it has not happened. Better said, I simply haven’t done it. Purging is great, but when I think about what you will try to instill in Alice and other children that may come your way, holding back on buying is even better, albeit harder in this modern American culture where money is pretty plentiful and stuff is even more so! The marketing is geared to make us think we NEED things that are not truly necessary. I am just as guilty as the rest for being lulled into consumerism as a way of life intead of living simply, even choosing to do without.

    When I think of what Laura Ingalls Wilder used to play with, or even the activities we invented to entertain ourselves as kids, it makes me want to NOT buy Alice all the cute toys or dolls or whatever! But will I? Yes, some anyway, I suppose….. I would rather she come here and dig in the dirt and build little stick and mud houses for little Twig people who sleep on flower-petal beds and eat honey suckle nectar, or run around the woodland walks dressed up & imagining herself a fairy fleeing the evil monster, or helping her Mama Twink eat cherry tomatoes straight off the vine in the garden!


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