2011 in 2011: bed, bath & beyond the pale

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When I first moved out on my own back in 1999 (“in the olden days”, as my six year old likes to say), my favourite thing to buy for my new home was baskets.  Go figure.  I started my adult life with very little – a bed, a dresser, some clothes, and some kitchen things shared with my first roommate and oldest friend. I have no idea why the siren song of baskets always seemed to be calling my name, but I purchased my fair share of them over the last 12 years.  First it was to organize personal items, cosmetics, towels, napkins, you name it.  Then I got married and had two kids, and I started using baskets for other things – storing cloth diapers, onesies, kids’ clothing, and, of course, toys.

Getting rid of a lot of stuff from my home, I’d been left with a bunch of baskets with nothing to put in them.  I had some luck a few months back selling baskets on craigslist (who knew there was a resale market for wicker baskets?!?!?!), but I haven’t yet unloaded any of the plastic storage containers that I’d been using to store everything that wasn’t in a basket.  Seems I’ve managed to declutter enough to part with my Pottery Barn baskets, but now I need to get real and start taking a closer look at the things that live in the bigger plastic containers.

So pretty. So useless. "Beyond the pale" is an old term to describe being "unacceptable, or outside of the standards of decency." Pretty sure the number of wicker baskets I used to own was "beyond the pale."

I’ve still got half a dozen large storage bins in my apartment (we don’t use the storage locker in our building, nor do we have storage anywhere else), and needless to say, these bins take up a ton of room (about half of the floor space in my closet).

What lives in these plastic behemoths?

  1. Bin of off-season kid’s clothing
  2. Bin of clothing that my six year old has outgrown but that my three year old has yet to grow into
  3. Blankets for winter
  4. Christmas ornaments / decorations
  5. Paint for home improvement projects
  6. Tools and other miscellany for home improvement projects
I’m pretty sure the last two bins are off limits to my decluttering efforts (I’ll be leaving those for my husband to address), but the other four are definitely up for consideration.  The kids’ clothing needs to be whittled down – I’d love to get down to one bin from two.  As for the linens and blankets, I’m still of the impression that I need to let go of some more of the smaller fleece blankets I managed to accumulate upon having child number two.  I did gift half a dozen of these little blankets to a friend who just had a baby and was happy to take them, but I’ll have to see what’s still left and decide what to do with them.  Finally, there’s the seasonal Christmas stuff.  We have a small, reusable (so green!) Christmas tree that we’ll be decorating when the holiday season rolls around this year, but for some reason we have an overabundance of decorations.  The only thing we decorate is our tree (other than the fact that we have a giant light-up Vancouver Canucks sign – ack) so we really don’t have a huge need for all those decorations.  I’m feeling like this is not something I want to tackle right away though, so I’ll probably procrastinate until the end of November arrives.

Another thing I need to stop doing is buying gifts for children in my life (for other peoples’ kids, not mine) and hanging onto them for an entire year.  Of the things left in my home now, there is not much that is being “stored.”  Most items are actually being used – clothing, shoes, jackets, basic furniture, and things used in the kitchen.  However, I do seem to have accumulated quite a few things this year with friends and family in mind and suffice it to say, I can’t wait until it’s Christmas this year and all these things get to leave my house.  Let’s just say I have issues with buying things in advance.  Like the fact that I do it, and I probably shouldn’t.  Oops.

The moral of this story is don’t buy too many storage bins or you just might end up filling them up with stuff you don’t need and don’t want to come live in your home.  The end.

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2 responses »

  1. “The moral of this story is don’t buy too many storage bins or you just might end up filling them up with stuff you don’t need and don’t want to come live in your home.”
    And don’t, under any circumstances, leave them out where the Squirrel in your life can see them!
    You are so right about storage bins being a very dangerous thing! Good luck with your Christmas decorations. As luck would have it, my kids have become very attached to the tackiest ornaments.

    • Thanks for the well wishes – I’m not looking forward to tackling the Christmas ornaments, but maybe it’ll be easier than I think. A girl’s gotta dream.

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