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Topic: ultimate packrat  (Read 3488 times)
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« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2005 03:42:12 PM »

I'd say put things into piles. Buy a bunch of the clear Rubbermaid containers and use those. Start out with clothing in one pile, paper in another, books in another, toiletries/makeup/hairstuff in another, and random junk in another. This step helps you get everything in a category together so you can put it all in one place.

I'd suggest messing with papers first, recycling/throwing what you won't need and put the rest in folders in a place where only paper should go.
With beauty stuff, throw the old and get rid of what you don't use. Set aside until path is cleared to put away Smiley
Organize clothes by what you do wear, to repair, and give away. If you haven't worn something for over 8 months, it's prolly not worth keeping. Wash all donatable clothes and put them in a place where you can find them later, and decide if you've really missed wearing those clothes.
Donate old toys that you don't want to collect, and put the others in boxes and put away somewhere.

With all the other items, decide on a certain amount of stuff you want in one area. Bookcases for your books and CDs, Desk for papers and computer stuff, drawers for clothes and toiletries and other things you're not interested in displaying.

Remember to organize your stuff every once and a while, once a week at the least. Move it out of the way at he very least. For 15 years, I struggled with keeping my room clean, and this is my base system. Take what you will Smiley

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« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2005 01:06:07 AM »

Oh man, I am so glad i found this thread. Every time i go into my room, i feel like crying when i see the junk everywhere. Most of it is like stuff i NEED, like i have a large bag overflowing with my dance gear and whatnot, but i just hate it.
I'm going to start doing the 15 minute thing. 15 mins EVERY day, cleaning up my room, creating more storage space. I'll need to invest in help from the man of the house, RE shelves etc. but I am sick of my mess.
Hopefully, i will no longer be wallowing in crap.

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« Reply #12 on: March 21, 2005 12:03:20 PM »

Have you ever seen the show Clean Sweep?  Well it is where they clean out this extremely cluttered rooms and reorganize ect..  They just take everything in the room outside and lay it on sheets or tarps or whatever.  Then they sort through everything and put the stuff on one of three tarps:  either sell, toss, or keep.  Everything in sell they try to sell in a garage sale, toss is just trash they throw away, and keep is what goes back into the room.  But you could try this with a couple of friends or husband or something and use three piles for donate, keep, and toss, so you would have to have a garage sale.  You could sort through everything one day, and then the next rearrange and carry everything you keep back indoors.  All of the other stuff can be carried off by one of your friends or husband while you are reorganizing.  This seems like a simple way to clean an entire room out in only a few days.  I hope this helps a little at least.  Smiley

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« Reply #13 on: March 25, 2005 06:18:46 PM »

I come from a family of packrats. My dad has stuff in our attic that he refuses to organize and sell in a yardsale (but we easily have at least $2000 worth of stuff to sell in a yardsale, and that's at yardsale prices) in our home. My mother's craft room, and Lord knows I'm going to be shunned for saying this, HAS to be gone through with a garbage bag and string for tying up old magazines to be chucked. She has, no lie, just about every Family Circle and Women's Day and their special craft issues since around '86. She has crapola that she hasn't seen or used in YEARS, and I do mean more than 7 years. I inherited the habit, but this time I'm CRACKING DOWN. I've hauled about 7 bags of trash, and 5 boxes and 2 bags of yardsale items out of my room. I also sent two bags of clothes to the church rummage sale, along with a bag of shoes that I bought, wore three or four times, and decided were uncomfortable or out of style and sat in my closet. More of it is on the way (we have a room across from the master bedroom FULL of clothes, and it's the same size as our kitchen).  So my dad and I put up a closet rod instead of the track hanging shelf I had before, and as soon as I get rid of the old dresser in my room, we're putting up a new stylish shelving unit. My design, hopefully.

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« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2005 05:36:33 PM »

I'm doing the same cleaning as you weaselfeet!  My last cleaning was just my craft and fabric stash, now I'm doing my whole room (since I had to move back to my parents house and have to cram four years of living on my own stuff into my old bedroom).  The rule that has served me best so far is - have I used it in the past year?  If not, it's gone - with exception to some of the specialized camping/backpacking equipment I've just been too busy to use.  I've managed to haul out three bags of garbage, 2 of recycling, and five of stuff to donate to the local salvation army (no time or inclination to do a yard sale, plus a lot of it was clothes).  It's so liberating!
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« Reply #15 on: April 07, 2005 08:03:05 AM »

It's so great to find other packrats.  Grin  I am a huge packrat, and boyfriend teases me about it all the time, but of course it makes no difference.  I am particularly bad at keeping anything and everything that I think I could "one day" use in a craft or sewing project.  This means that I have bags of old clothes that I can't give away "in case I need them for a future idea."  Unfortunately, this belief has been confirmed from time to time, when I can dig into one of the bags and find something (for example, a plain black dress to decorate) that I would otherwise have gone to the thrift store and spent money on buying.  Having succeeded in recycling a few items from my piles of junk just makes it that much more difficult to part with them.
There is also the issue of money for some packrats, including me.  It's very difficult to get rid of an item and "lose all that money that I spent on it," like a pair of $50 shoes that I never wear, or $30 worth of thrift-store clothes that I thought I would alter to fit me.  I feel like I'm throwing money down the drain.  However, this is a fallacy and just another excuse to hold onto that junk.  The fact of the matter is that you're paying mentally and emotionally by letting it clog up your life.

Here are a few tips that I use to try to keep control of my packrat habits:
- I have used the 20-minutes-on-the-timer method with great success for many years.  It helps whenever you're feeling overwhelmed.  (Set it and then just organize, put away, fold, dust, vacuum, throw away, whatever, until the timer sounds.)
- Storage, Storage, Storage.  I cannot stress this enough.  You must have as much storage as you have items!  Otherwise it will be an endless & futile battle.
- Make sure it's the right kind of storage for you.  Don't just buy a sweater organizer because it has the word "organizer" in the name.  Think about whether you would actually use it (I do, but I own lots of sweaters).
- Don't feel discouraged.  I think for all of us packrats, it is EXTREMELY emotionally and mentally draining to try to dejunk!  Just stick with it.

Having said all this, I will admit that I am much better at talking about dejunking than actually dejunking.  However, I am going to move to a new city in 3 months and I know that I will have to get rid of a LOT of stuff, no discussion.  It seems like packing and dejunking are two activities that could combine really well into one super-effective method of getting my life organized.  Any advice on combining packing and dejunking from others that have done it?

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« Reply #16 on: April 07, 2005 08:24:33 AM »

I'm a packrat too, but there are a couple of things that help me to keep it under control. 

First- every time any form of charity calls because there is going to be a "pick-up in your area" - I always say "yes."  I have at least one charity pick-up a month.  If you don't have these folks calling you like I do, then just pledge to take a load of stuff to charity once a month.   Knowing that they are coming, I keep a plastic bag over the doorknob of the laundry room.  Any clothes that the kids have outgrown or just aren't right any more go into the bag.  Then on charity day I just pull it off the doorknob and put it out for the pick-up. 

Also I keep a big box in a corner of my closet for misc. items to donate as well.

 Books that we've read go to the library - they have a drive-through donation box for books and magazines!  Isn't that great? 

Of course, my big issue is craft and sewing supplies.  So, to minimize crafty clutter I make a list of the "Next ten projects" that I intend to work on.  This is on the computer and I update it almost every day as I complete each design.  If a supply or item isn't necessary for something on the list then I put it away - out of sight in a bin in my garage.  About every six months I go through the bins in the garage and get rid of whatever I can.   

Now, I'm still a packrat and my methods have not resulted in a perfectly organized home, but they do help me and I hope they help you too!

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« Reply #17 on: April 07, 2005 09:04:46 AM »

There are some great ideas on here, God knows I need to utilize some of them.

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« Reply #18 on: May 23, 2005 09:07:04 PM »

I'm so glad that there is a post here for packrats.  I used to be REALLY bad, as in I had kept all my schoolwork that I did from when I was in kindergarten.  HUGE stacks of papers, etc. in my closet.  Most of it is tossed except for the art I made when I was a kid.  Now I have the problem of hoarding things that I believe I can use later--relating to art projects.  I have lots of cans of Krylon, lots of fabric, yarn, wire, untreated canvas, stretched canvases, markers, colored papers, fake flowers...  ugh.  Step by step I'm getting rid of things. 
And okay, this is going to sound really stupid, but I just gave away my alarm clock that I had had since I was in first grade.  It was my first alarm clock, my symbol of being a "big girl".  And I had repainted it a couple of times and finally it just was not working well.  I had to press that alarm setting button (for the time to scroll) and basically guesstimate what time it will be when I let go because the numbers went too fast.  This year (I just graduated from college) I FINALLY bought a new clock.  And I seriously was entertaining the idea of keeping the old one just for posterity.  But not even using it.  Just having it.  Well I chucked it into a bag and hurriedly dropped it off at a local thrift shop.  I really thought about turning around my car and getting it.
So yeah, getting rid of stuff is hard, but it's worth it.  Otherwise I'd have a clock in an area where I could put more balls of yarn Wink

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« Reply #19 on: May 23, 2005 09:52:21 PM »

babble05, I love Clean Sweep!  I'm thinking of doing my own home version for my craft room.  My daughter will go to grandma's house, and my husband and I will toss everything onto the patio.  Sounds like fun!  Really, I can't work on anything the way it is now. Cry 

Here's a great thread for lots of organizing tips:  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Miscellaneous Craft-Related Discussion / Re: Attempts at crafty organization

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