A month ago I set myself the challenge of getting rid of one bin bag full of household clutter per week until Christmas. And some other bloggers have taken up the challenge of the pre-Christmas clutter clear out too, as you can see over here.
So what's the latest? Are we living in an oasis of clutter free calm yet?
Er...not quite. But I have made it as far as the back of some seldom-visited nooks and crannies. As I was delving into the dust bunnies at the weekend, look at what I found at the back of a cupboard:
Bootleg tapes of gigs. That's how we did it before YouTube, kids. I went to that Smiths gig in 1986 at the Whitla Hall in Belfast. The Smiths played Belfast three times in their career, at a time when very few bands did, and I went every time. This isn't clutter, it's heritage.
So that's staying.
Instead, this week's big clear out came courtesy of an on street front of house sale. Garage sales are pretty common in the USA but not so much in the UK, where we prefer the communal butt freeze of the car boot sale.
One of my neighbours came up with the fantastic idea that we could all have a pop up front of house sale, so at 1pm on Sunday a bunch of us opened our doors and rolled out the cast-offs. It turned out to be a really wonderful event, with people chatting to each other and wandering up and down the street to peruse the stalls.
I managed to clear a bin bag's worth of stuff and made £26 in the process which is going into our Christmas fund. I didn't sell everything, but the good part is that I've now got all that sorted out so I can bag it up for the next charity shop collection. That's three bin bags' worth in one fell swoop.
Since I started this at 15 weeks to Christmas, that makes my goal 15 bin bags in total, of which I've done 9 so far.
I still have plenty of toys that the kids have grown out of which I can't bring myself to part with - mainly because it was stuff I would've liked myself as a child. A psychologist could have a lot of fun with that. It's no secret that the stuff we surround ourselves with externally is a mirror to what's going on internally.
So when I'm 15 bags lighter (and I'm dertermined to see this through), what difference will that make?
How is your pre-Christmas clutter clear out going? Please join us in the #Xmasclutterclear linky which is located at this link.