Preliminary Purge

Even when plans for our departure from Houston were in a vague, sometime-in-the-next-year-or-two phase, I was bothered by the piles of crap I’ve accumulated. Now that these plans are in the still-vague-but-sometime-in-the-next-month-or-two phase, I need to get cracking. I hope documenting it all will help motivate me.

The sorting process is paralyzingly intimidating, so I decided to start with the stuff that I already know I don’t need.

Thrift Store Donations

Most of this came from a friend who moved to Vancouver. I saved a few things, and then I added some clothes I never wear (including quite a lot of brassieres), a few trinkets that were taking up space on our mantle, some yarn (this hobby never really took), and that charming candle-holder some one gave us as a wedding-present. I have several that are similar, and I’ve never used any of them. Yes, I feel a little guilty about discarding a gift, but I must be ruthless in order to succeed, and I’m sure it won’t be the last that gets the axe.

Broken Things

This part is pretty embarrassing. That chair looks fine, but I assure you it is not. The rungs are all detached, and several of them are split in places. We tried several times to fix it (notice the white bandage-like wrap on the left-most rung), to no avail. The coffee-maker became trash when I broke the carafe and realized the whole apparatus cost almost as much as the price of shipping for a new carafe. All things considered, it lasted a really long time. The rice-cooker leaked profusely, which is a scary habit for an electronic device. The vacuum-cleaner was a contributing factor in our decision to have hardwood floors in our next place. Behind the vacuum-cleaner are the remains of some-assembly-required items that I was unable to assemble. I blame shoddy design and shoddier manufacturing for these failures. It’s not me; it’s them. And it’s been over between us for awhile.

After learning that the only place that takes these things for recycling was 30 minutes away and only open on Tuesdays and Wednesdays during business hours, I talked my husband into going with me to the municipal trash depository. Though they don’t recycle this sort of thing, the guy who worked there did seem pretty sure he could salvage the vacuum-cleaner, which made me feel a little better. I was expecting a more stereotypical dump, but it turned out to be surprisingly clean and nice, not that it’s my next picnic destination or anything.


The depository does recycle glass and plastic and such. This is a more or less standard haul for us (curbside recycling in Houston might be the subject of a future post) and does not qualify as decluttering per se.

I’m going to miss Saint Arnolds.


We had a drawer full of orphaned adaptors, airline headphones, and the like. I even found a 3.5-inch floppy disk in there. My husband graciously helped me pick through all of it to make sure we didn’t discard anything important. I brought all of it to Best Buy, who recycles this sort of thing.

I hope this is only the beginning. I have high hopes for next weekend.


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  1. #1 by margaretlaramee on June 15, 2014 - 4:47 pm

    I’m trying not to take a box of orphaned electronic thing-ies to MY next destination. My husband is NOT going to help me pick through all of it, graciously or otherwise. But the cue @ Best Buy is priceless: THX

    • #2 by movingmatters on June 16, 2014 - 3:07 am

      If you don’t have on hand the items to which the adapters may or may not belong, it can be hard to weed through these things. That said, a lot of adapters can be ordered online in the event that you throw one away in error, but it’s more likely that the thing to which it belongs will just languish uncharged until you get rid of that, too, which might not be a bad thing! 🙂

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