The Great Purge of 2012

My wife and I recently helped her parents clean out their office. We threw out truckloads of junk. It felt really good, and we decided we wanted to purge our own home. We decided to do this room by room, starting at one end of the house and working towards the other.

So far we have completed the living room and dining room, and I think we are both a little shocked at the quantity of stuff that we’ve thrown out. It isn’t like we are big hoarders or anything, but we’ve filled all three of our trashcans and have to wait until next week to resume our purge. This is some of the stuff we’ve tossed:

  1. DVD and CD cases. We’ve decided that it is silly to keep stacks and stacks of DVDs and CDs in their original packaging. We aren’t proud of our purchases. They aren’t trophies to be displayed with pride on a shelf. Heck, the CDs are never even removed from the case once we rip them to MP3. So the discs were moved to storage cases and the packaging was tossed.
  2. Magazines and other old mail. Sometimes a magazine comes in the mail and it looks interesting, so we set it aside with the intention of reading it later. A few months go by and suddenly we have a foot thick stack of Popular Science and the Ensign that we are never going to read. All this was tossed. We also tossed (or appropriately filed) old mail, cards, and random papers.
  3. Knickknacks. Like most people, we have lots of random junk that isn’t actually usable but that we have sentimental attachment to. For example, I have had a Geico piggy bank. Becca won it for me at Harborfest in Norfolk when we were dating (I think), so I’ve kept it. It is just a piece of plastic, and it actually fell apart when I picked it up to toss into the trash. We weren’t able or willing to get rid of all of our knickknacks, but we pared down quite a bit.
  4. Toys and games. We tossed a bunch of games that we don’t actually play. We tossed some old toys that we’ll never use. Some of these things went into a re-gift pile that will save us from buying gifts in the future for random birthday parties.
  5. Original packaging. For example, Becca had a bunch of chargers in the original boxes. These are basically round plastic plates. There isn’t any reason to have these in the original packaging. Tossing this cardboard saved us a bunch of space.

Anyways, we still have a long way to go. We’ll be getting rid of clothes, shoes, scrap wood, food we no longer want (or is expired), an old mattress, and whatever else we can find that we no longer want. It feels good to clean house.


  1. Way cool! We desperately need to do the same, thanks for the inspiration. Throwing out knickknacks can be difficult.

    • Knickknacks are definitely the hardest. I’m constantly surprised at how emotionally attached I’ve become to some items that I haven’t used in years.

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