The other items I struggle with throwing away or otherwise purging are books, keys (see early entries for reasons on keys), Christmas and birthday cards and dishes.
Books: There is something inherently wrong about throwing away books. We do everything in our power to avoid getting rid of them. The excuses are legitimate and wide ranging:
- I'll read that one again.
- I'm saving it for the kids.
- It's a classic.
- I loved it.
We have already covered the key issue, never throw them because you will find you need them after the are rusting away in a landfill somewhere.
Christmas and Birthday cards, I have no idea why I always balk at throwing them away, even several months after the commemorated event.
- The sender might stop by and see that their card is gone.
- The sender put time and effort into picking the perfect card and I am obligated to appreciate that.
- If I throw it away and the sender never sends me another one, I will have blithely tossed possibly their last written communication with me.
I have managed to get rid of a lot of stuff including:
- the kids' baby tub (I think we're beyond needing it now)
- 23 socks without mates (they're gone and not coming back and we have to accept it)
- VHS tapes of Rugrats (I'll buy the DVDs if they ever come out)
- 10 years worth of National Geographic (I had to go to confession afterward, and was absolved)
- 5 decks of cards missing more than one card each (and none I could blend to complete one)
- 4 board games with missing pieces (you can't really play mousetrap without the ladder or the cage part)
- 37 items of clothing that no one in the house has worn in more than a year
- a size 4T snowsuit (the youngest member of the household is now 11)