For the past 3 years, we have taken part in the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge.
It doesn’t cure cancer, it doesn’t make us skinny, it doesn’t feed little children with distended bellies in foreign lands and it doesn’t give money to Sarah McClachlan to rescue puppies.
But it does make my house a safer, cleaner place to live, which in turn makes me a happier person, therefor making me less likely to physically assault people. SO consider it a public service!
And it’s 100% free. Hell, you might even MAKE money doing it!
It is a challenge spanning a forty day period in the spring (coinciding with the 40 days of Lent) where you focus on cleaning one area per day. In this one area, you challenge yourself to declutter, simplify, decrapify, and get rid of things you don’t need. The goal is one bag (or box, any size!) a day… but you can have more or less!
The challenge begins February 10th, so grab a fish sandwich and get on it!
I’ve been through the rundown before, so I invite you to skim through the real nitty gritty of the challenge in my previous post about the challenge: Our first 40 Bags challenge!.
2014, our first year was our most “successful.” We managed to purge:
- A Desk
- A Treadmill
- A Drum set
- 1 King size mattress, box springs and frame
- A CAR!
- A Lawn mower
- A Weed whacker
- An older programmable thermostat
- An Xbox Kinect (we used it a grand total of one time in the year+ we had it. And the weird shadows creeped me out!)
- 13 JUMBO contractor sized bags of clothing and shoes & coats (donated to Goodwill)
- 2 large boxes of misc stuff
- 3 pieces of “house ware” (I forget what they were, that’s all that’s marked on my Goodwill receipt)
- And this HUGE pile of crap that came out of the shed that went to bulk pickup. Coolers, a recliner, vanity mirrors, broken tvs, vacuum, carpet cleaner… etc.
While we were in no way out to make a profit, we still banked over $1,500.00 on our purging of gently used items, which prevented them from going to the landfill! We do the best we can to recycle and give away what we can, but we have lots of second-hand or hand-me-down items that have seen their better days and those items ended up on the curb. Which still ended up getting picked through by dumpster divers.
In 2015, we got rid of mostly clothing. We have 10+ donation slips from our local thrift store! It wasn’t nearly as impressive as 2014, but it still made a huge difference in our closets.
We had made a huge dent in our basement, however once the holidays rolled around this year, it turned into a booger den again. (That was my mother’s favorite word for the state of my bedroom as a child.) Then we moved a lot of stuff from the finished side of the basement into the utility side so Travis could set his office up down there, and now, well… it’s just never been the same since. So the utility/laundray side of the basement is BACK on the damn Decrapifying List.
And surprise, surprise… the master bedroom is still on the list. Ugggghhhhh!
I really hate cleaning, guys. But last year my motorcycle sort of took over my life, Travis started his own business, we revamped our spare bedroom, gutted a camper, built a mausoleum, built a homemade stand up paddle board (The Pink Death) for our family’s whacky boat races, planned a bachelor party, and there have been some freaking awesome video games in my life lately. (We just got a XBOX One in November)
I know, excuses, excuses… But at least there’s no longer a lawnmower in there, right?
I feel that since we only have 980 square feet of home to work with, we just keep moving stuff from one place to another. I think this year we’re going to look into attic access.
But in the meantime, I can’t WAIT to get started giving things the ol’ heave-ho for the 40 Bags challenge. And I invite you to join in on this exciting journey!
Clean out the fridge, the garage, a filing cabinet, your pantry, your tupperware drawer! Dig through those boxes of crap from high school in the back of your closet! Maybe you’ll find your retainer from 8th grade?!
Last year we found my Furby… Those things are terrifying. And approximately one million notes from friends over the years. With the invention of cell phones, do kids even pass notes anymore?!