40 Bags – 40 Days


Last year I posted about wanting to get rid of half of my house and though I’ve made progress I’m nowhere near that goal. Laura/art2snow came over a few weeks ago and helped me clean out “my” room. I got rid of boxes of scrapbooking supplies (I brought them and organized them in my classroom for kids to use), about two boxes of demo babycarriers went to the new Anchorage babywearing group, and lots of old business supplies were given to charity or pitched into the recycling bin.

But momentum is difficult to maintain. Somehow my FlyLady emails restarted and I kept randomly reading decluttering testimonials. Neighbors have been moving and I’ve been marveling at what it would take to move 12+ years of accumulation out of this house if we ever needed to. And then I ran across a post and free PDF on a new-to-me blog, Sugar Tot Designs, that finally got me motivated to get back to work on my initial goal.

A quick Google search tells me that 40 Bags in 40 Days is a “thing” that people do as a decluttering challenge. It looks like a lot of people have done it for Lent and others are like me, just trying to have less stuff. So I set last Monday as my official start date and then promptly did… nothing. It’s Spring Break! We had tons of fun this last week, going out with friends, snow tubing, jumpy places, the library, skating, rock climbing, etc. But I did get back to work today and more than caught up. I’ve got seven bags ready and already filled out the online form from The Arc of Anchorage so they can come pick things up this week. I’m a bag ahead of where I want to be but want to pack up a few more tomorrow. It’s very cathartic to be able to just let go of the clutter and the emotional attachment to clothes, toys, purses, etc. that just aren’t needed here anymore. Someone else can use them and we can free up space and peace of mind.

I put some goals in a Google spreadsheet. Since “42” is the meaning of life and the age I’ll be this summer, I set my sights a little higher than the challenge.