Mary Mary and Martha · My world · Simplicity

40 Trash bag Challenge: update as I go

As a bit of introduction to those who are just seeing this.  My house suffers from my horrible habit of letting “stuff” accumulate.  I started the 40 trash bag challenge to help me focus my de-cluttering efforts and to provide a bit of accountability while I work away at the “pile”.

I am using standard size kitchen trash bags, I am also figuring that one “book box” is the rough equivalent to a bag since some things just don’t work well in bags.

Willa has started the Trash bag Challenge.   She is in the process of organizing her home and it is an inspiration to see the before and after pictures.

Mary Alice has started working on eliminating some of her excess stuff.

If you are doing the Trash bag Challenge and want me to link to your site so you can inspire others please leave a comment or email me.

40 of 40 bags so far.

The last bag — A bag of bags and shoes.

Week Eight: The finale week.  After letting myself fall a bit behind can we make it?  We’ll see.  So far so good.

I really started on the children’s clothing.  One bag of little girl things.

I hopped down to the basement to pull up the summer clothing boxes.  After sorting through three of the boxes I have one bag.

Make it two.

no, three.

A bag of toys.  Mostly things like happy-meal toys and little things they get here and there and play with for a few days then never look at again.

A box of books.  I mean serriously I don’t think I am going to need Weddings for Dummies any time soon, and that Introduction to Microcomputers published in 1987 might not be so useful today.

A bunch of stuff from the office supplies storage shelf.

I tossed a bag of old coloring books and other assorted papers from the kids play area.

a bag of toys.

A bag of broken toys, old drawings, broken crayons and other “trashed” play things.

One bag of little boy things.

A bag of toss away stuff from the boys room.

A bag of coats.

Week Seven: This is another catch up week but we are off to a good start.

Another bag of towels from the bathroom linen closet. My mom got me new towels for my birthday but I never got rid of any of the old ones.

A bag of linens and towels from the bathroom linen closet.

Yet another bag of stuff from the the office.  I hang on to way too much paper, and I need to remember that junk mail will in no way be less junk just because it is a month old.

A bag stuff from the the office, mostly paper and old books.

Another bag stuff from the office.  Old notebooks, paper, and some random things that were lurking in a couple boxes.

Continue reading “40 Trash bag Challenge: update as I go”

40 bags of stuff. · Homemaking · Mary Mary and Martha · My world

40 Trash bag Challenge


So far I have managed to get about 17 bags of stuff out of my house for good.  Most of this is old clothing and sheets.  In part because I haven’t even gotten out of the bedroom closet area.  Today I am heading into the bathroom and then on to the girl’s room. 

I was about to write that I hadn’t learned anything insightful so far, but that isn’t true.  When Kyle and I were going through the closet (I didn’t want to toss anything of his without his input) one thing we both noticed was how ofter we said “Wow, I forgot I owned that”.  We have some items that we more or less store in our closet and somehow things we like had dissapperead behind things we didn’t and before long they were completly forgotten.  So, the lesson I take from this is pretty straight forward.  Don’t store things you rarely use with things you use all the time.  Seperate them in some way.  Put them in a storage bag or box, move them to a storage area in your home, but sperate them in some way.  This lesson was reiterated with the linen closet.  Things had more or less been put back in a rather haphazard manner and so it was difficult to find sets, pillow cases had taken to hidding in the oddest places and a good portion of this problem was simply that there were too many items not regularaly used mixed in with the items I need every week.

40 bags of stuff. · Mary Mary and Martha · My world · Simplicity

40 Trash Bag Challenge: week one

This is week one, day one, of my 40 trash bag challenge.  If you remember the goal is to get rid of 40 bags of stuff from my home in eight weeks.  A somewhat daunting task if I think about it, but no where near as daunting as the fact that I know that it can be done…. that there is that much “stuff” poked into corners, shoved into bins, stuffed into closets, draws and Lord know where in my house making my life more complicated every day. 

40 bags of stuff. · Blogs I Know

40 bags of stuff


I was hit by a bit of inspiration last week over at  “In the Heart of My Home“.    That empty box says so much: Elizabeth has been busy getting rid of stuff.  I can’t help but want to follow her lead being that I am overwhelmed with stuff.  So I am issuing a challenge to myself (and anyone else who might care to join in) 40 bags of stuff out the door in 8 weeks.  It can be donated, tossed, handed down, recycled or otherwise disposed of, but it can’t stay here.  It can be clothing, papers, toys, things of any sort, but not the usual trash.

While I was thinking on this I figured that the size of the bag is up to you (I will be using the big kitchen size).  Some people have less stuff to de-junk and others have more so if you want to play along you might opt for a different size trash bag.   That sounds perfectly reasonable. 

I hope you join me and have fun.  As often as I can I will be posting updates here on my progress.