Some people do spring cleaning; we're having a spring purging. Since we moved in 2.5 years ago, we've managed to unpack about half of our belongings. The rest has been stored in the office and basement. Last week, we "weeded" the office and our closets, resulting in a HUGE Goodwill load. According to the little worksheet they give to help you figure out the value of your donation, we gave about $250 worth of stuff, and I didn't even account for it all.
This week, we tackled the basement.I really should have taken a before picture. about 2/3 of the basement is a finished family room. The other 1/3 houses the furnace, hot water heater, broken water softener, a pantry, my backpacking gear (2 shelving units), tools (1 shelving unit), uniform wardrobe, 2 fake Christmas trees, 3 shelving units of crap, and a couple other rubbermaid container stacks of crap. Obviously that's quite a bit of stuff, but crammed into a roughly 8 by 20' area it was getting really bad.
We managed to get rid of at least half of the "crap", which resulted in the shelving units not even being full. I got rid of lots of decorative stuff that I'd been collecting over the years (it's amazing how much my tastes have changed in 3 years!), some kitchenwares, some old stuffed animals, and a few blankets. Shayne got rid of more than me, and I don't even want to know what it all was. I'm a packrat, but he can put me to shame! I know that organization experts say to get rid of things that you won't display, but some things I just had to keep. Old journals, programs from musicals I played in during high school and college, and a few meaningful gifts just had to stay. That stuff is personal, and reading through it reminds me of where I've been and how I've become who I am. Also, there are two rubbermaid containers full of "decor" items I'll be using as we finish various rooms.
We'll probably be getting rid of the water softener, since we don't use it, and I need to reorganize my backpacking gear and the tool cabinet. Still, we made a BIG improvement, and the utility side of the basement looks much, much better.