Over on Love My Little Flower, the author has a Shaking Off the Bonds of Stuff schedule for the 40 days of Lent. The plan was originally written by Dale O'Leary, a freelance journalist and radio talk show host.
Here's how we've done for the past week:
Day 17 (Monday, March 12): Toss cosmetics that have expired.
I didn't have anything to toss because I did this at the end of December when I purchased a few new items to replace what I had in the drawer for a long time and/or had run out of and needed.
Day 18 (Tuesday, March 13): Throw away any books that you wouldn't want your family to read.
Rather than throwing away perfectly good books that someone else may enjoy reading, I donate books to non-profit organizations that can use them.
I went through the bookshelf in the living room where there are so many books that they don't even fit on the shelf - they are in piles in front of the bookshelf. I found 46 books there to donate.
Then, I went to a shared bookshelf upstairs and found 17 books there that could be donated. I asked the girls to take a look at their bookshelves one more time (since they already went through them in January) and see if there are any more books that they didn't want. They found 11 books.
Day 19 (Wednesday, March 14): Give broken rosaries to a ministry that fixes them.
I didn't have any broken ones. However, as I've been going through my Dad's office where he kept his personal and deacon-related items, I came across 8 rosaries. They all are ones that were sent to him in direct-mailers/fundraising requests. So, none had sentimental value.
Because the rosaries aren't broken, I gathered them together and will donate them to St. Therese Care Center (the nursing home where my Dad stayed during the last 3 months of his life). St. Therese is a Catholic nursing home, and there's a pastoral ministry team there. Perhaps they can use the roasaries along with some prayer books and "how to pray the rosary" guides that my Dad had in his office.
I'm going to visit my mom on Sunday at St. Therese (she's there for 5-6 weeks due to a cracked ankle), and will bring the rosaries to them at that time.
(As a side note: the Shaking Off the Bonds of Stuff guide listed two people who repair and send rosaries to missions. I'm not sure if they are still accepting them or if their addresses are still valid, but they are: Mr. and Mrs. Louis Alfrey, 23 Oak Avenue, Camp Hill, PA 17011. The other is Stephen Schmidt, 908 North College Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46202.)
Day 20 (Thursday, March 15): Bury broken blessed items and burn faded religious pictures. Each religious item displayed should be in good condition and beautiful.
I didn't have anything like this, so there was nothing to do today with Shaking Off the Bonds of Stuff.
Day 21 (Friday, March 16): Evaluate your collections. Give away those that no longer interest you.
When I think of "collection" I think of a mass quantity of some object or theme (e.g., coins, stamps, dog items).
I do have a couple booklets of coins that I collected when I was younger, but I want to keep those. I also have a small book with Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) that I collected a couple of years ago. At that time, I was making ATCs and swapping them with people all over the United States and world. The ATCs that are in the book are creative miniature works of art. It's an inspiring, tactile book to look at periodically.
What I do have that simply takes up space is quite a few CDs. I went through this collection and donated 9 to the second-hand store.
I also have quite a few stamps that I purchased for homeschooling and crafting purposes. Since the girls are learning about the United States, I want to go through some of the domestic stamps and find some that represent each state. They can add these to their geography notebooks as we study each state in the United States.
So, at this point, I am holding onto this collection. Once I go through the stamps then I can either sell them (as I've done through my shop on Etsy) or donate them.
Day 22 (Saturday, March 17): Go through old craft supplies and give away those that you don't have a reasonable expectation of using again.
I did not have a chance to do this project. The thought of going through my supply closet (which is used for both homeschooling, personal, and Harvest Moon by Hand) is overwhelming at this time. This is a multi-day project but one that I want to do.
What's happening this week? These activities:
Day 23 (Monday, March 19): Throw away all notices and announcements for past events and events you have no intention of attending.
Day 24 (Tuesday, March 20): Take all the address labels and notes, enter the information into an address book and throw away the originals.
Day 25 (Wednesday, March 21): Throw away all broken appliances. Give away or sell those that work but you no longer use.
Day 26 (Thursday, March 22): Toss curtians you have replaced because they were ugly, faded, or worn.
Day 27 (Friday, March 23): Get rid of or repair broken furniture.
Day 28 (Saturday, March 24): Go through all the magazines in your house. Sort them into piles:
- Keep for reference (only if you actually reference them)
- Toss after six months
- Toss each month
- Toss immediately