Covid-style spring cleaning
While it happens to be spring, the cleaning out of closets I’ve been doing over the last several weeks isn’t really related to the season. It’s a direct result of two realities, both specific to covid-19. The first is that, in quarantine, with very limited real estate work I am able to do, I can’t use the excuse that I don’t have time to do things around the house. The second, more significant reality, is that donations of clothes, toys and other household goods are and will continue to be in great demand. With so many people economically hurt by the closing down of businesses, many are and will be in a difficult financial position. With no spare cash, people will need donations of all kinds of items.
Clothing is the first line of attack for me. It’s fairly easy to go drawer by drawer and then to the closets and take out clothing I don’t wear. If there’s something I think I might eventually wear, I keep it, but am trying to be more honest with myself. If I haven’t worn it in a couple of years, I figure it’s not ever going to see the light of day again if I don’t give it away. After your clothes, don’t forget how important sheets and towels are and go through your linens.
Next is “stuff”. If you have kids, I’d recommend going through toys, games, books, art kits, abandoned instruments, dress-up clothes and similar things. Note: in the hopes of having grandchildren one day, I have certain books and toys that I have set aside. As long as you have space, I think keeping the really special ones is wise. Just divest yourself of the ones your kids don’t enjoy anymore. Same thing for the “meh” ones, things that won’t stand the test of time, or are very common and easy to replace.
Next, I advise tackling the kitchen. You may have things you’ve received as gifts you don’t use, like a salad spinner, wine decanter or any number of gadgets. You may also have extras of certain things. I know I seem to have mugs that reproduce in the cabinets. How many mugs do you really need? Any extra dishes pots and pans or other cooking vessels you don’t use much? Someone will be very glad to have them.
Equipment and tools
If you have an unused weed whacker or an extra drill, you can be sure someone would be happy to take it off your hands. How about a vacuum that you haven’t used since you got the Roomba, or a computer that you’ve recently upgraded from? You might even have an extra bicycle or piece of exercise equipment that hasn’t been used in a long time–use a critical eye to consider what you might be willing to part with.
Small way of contributing
Many people are making cash donations, delivering or ordering meals for others, making masks, and otherwise supporting their fellow community members. If you are looking for a way to help that doesn’t involve spending money (which is not unreasonable in any case, but particularly with the current economic situation), donating things you aren’t using anymore is a great option. And, of course, you also end up with a lot less clutter and a more organized home, with fewer unused and unnecessary items.