Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Cleaning and Fresh Starts

Just like everyone else I love spring - the first few chances to shed the heavy jackets, feel the sun shine and that undeniable "fresh" start feeling.
This year, when it came time for spring cleaning I decided to give my closet an over haul. Due to my weight loss this year I had a feeling many of my spring/summer clothes would be a bit too big for me to wear this year and lo and behold - I was right.

Didn't realize I'd be this right:

Going through the clothes, I no longer felt I needed to hold onto things that I bought at fancy stores, or in European countries (there will be some happy folks at Goodwill soon, let me tell you!), no, it was more important for me to get a "clean slate", and find some air and space to beautify and lighten up my surroundings.

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to empty out the closet that much (as you can see below - it's still pretty full.) I had hopes of revealing a cavernous empty closet in which I could quickly refill with smaller sizes. Alas, I had saved many things from when I was smaller - and thus will focus on giving them a second chance.

Living with a cluttered closet made me kind of crazy. I could never find anything - everything had to be ironed because it was so squished in there. No wonder I was stressed out all the time! Can you imagine combining the stuff from the "Goodwill" pile into my current closet? Bad, bad, bad. Cluttered, cluttered, cluttered.

And when my space is cluttered? So is my mind!

I will be trying the "if something new comes in, something else must go out" concept from now on, but it does seem kind of hard.

I plan on going back in there in a few days and rethinking each piece again. I'm sure there are still items I never wear. Unfortunately, there were several items I ended up bagging up for donation that still had tags on them! I just never got around to wearing them, and now they're too big.

Hoping I can be more careful when shopping now - it seems like I tended to buy things like "going out" shirts - which are pretty much disposable. If I could go back I wouldn't have spent so much of my income (when I was really making a large one) on such frivolous things. Now that I save, pinch pennies and work from home, I don't have as much need to shop. I have been able to replace some jeans and pants (because the others were literally falling off), and have taken to tee shirts and tank tops from Target that are both cheap and easy.

But the best part of having a nice cleaned out closet is the time it saves when you need to get ready in a hurry, and keeping the door open makes our bedroom seem larger. I was even able to use a lamp from my old office - giving it a new life and allowing it to be used again. This helped me to let go of the negative feelings I had toward that job. I really like those lamps and was sad that I hated them because they were a reminder of that time.

"Why not consignment?", you might ask - well, I just don't have that kind of free time, and after doing a little research they train those clerks to be relentless. Only top brands (forget trying to sell your Banana Republic, J. Crew or Gap stuff), and even if it's Anthropologie, London brands like Jigsaw, Whistles or designer labels, they will critique it and make you feel so bad about it that it's just better to give it away and hope that someone who really needs a break gets to find it first. I don't need the headache. And for the most part - it wouldn't really be letting go, or keeping with the "fresh" start feeling now would it?

Now onto another thing to tackle this spring: Procrastination.


  1. Have you thought about donating them to a battered womens shelter those women often leave with just the clothes on their back and I am sure you have nice clothes that they could use for job interviews and such. just an idea for you. Love your big sister

  2. That's a great idea Monica - I'll find out where I can drop off stuff for them.


  3. If you haven't taken them already make a list of what you are donating. It does add up at tax time. I know it is a pain to list everything but it is a nice decuction.