22 Things I’m Appalled You Haven’t Gotten Rid Of Yet

May 14, 2014

This list is longer than a grown man’s ski in reality. Consider this an installment, in no particular order:

Read and declutter. And then forward on to all your friends.


1. Every income statement since your inception into the professional realm…twenty-some odd years ago.


2. Books you’ve never cracked the spine of and have no interest in doing so.


3. Things belonging to or used by/with your ex.


4. Specifically, linens.


5. Grocery store salad bar/ restaurant take out containers. These do not qualify as “tupperware.”


6. Ink-less pens & eraserless pencils.


7. Dried up glue sticks. And highlighters. And paints.


8. Free perfume samples from that trip to the mall in ’07.


9. Tools and supplies relating to activities you haven’t done in ten years and have no intentions of taking back up.


  1. Scuba gear
  2. Camping gear, including: sleeping pads and bags, tents, lanterns, those make-shift camping kitchen things
  3. Scrapbooking supplies
  4. Other elaborate crafting and documentation projects


10. Things inherited from deceased loved ones that you have no personal connection to/memory of/purpose for.

(Note: acknowledgment of loaded issue; more on this later).


11. Gifted items you loathe.


12. Art that’s been tightly rolled up and tucked away in the back of a closet for the last decade that you can’t reasonably identify a place for on your walls.

13. Every cardboard box that’s ever come into your possession.


14. Ditto every retail bag.


Read those last two again.


15. Earrings missing their mate.

It’s time to call off the hunt. It’s been two years, after all.


16. Every 3-ring binder that’s ever crossed your path.

None of the small humans know you’re slowly erecting an Office Depot, anyhow, so having them back-to-school-shop your stash seems unlikely.


17. That dress/shirt/pair of pants/belt you would never, under any circumstances consider purchasing today, let alone don in public.


18.  Old reading glasses with outdated prescriptions that no longer do anything to help you see.


19. Sad, defunct, long-ago retired electronics.

(help with that way back here and also here).


20. See also: floppy disks.

Whatever’s on ’em, it’s almost certainly been at least seven years since you even considered their existence. I know: the intrigue! The possibilities! But really? You’ve been just fine all this time without knowing or having, so keep doing that–officially.


21. Beanie babies.


22. Rocks.


Have, hey at ’em, wouldjya? One is as good a place to start as any. Which is it going to be?

Image credit: Mandojana 





Annie Traurig was born with the ability to see order through clutter. As a child, she spent playdates organizing friends’ closets and packing their duffle bags for summer camp.

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  1. Maurine on May 14, 2014 at 7:13 am

    Ha ha this list is perfect! Especially number 5.


  2. Kate S. on May 15, 2014 at 5:12 am

    AMEN! Great list – I’m working through a few of these. Thank you.

  3. Donn on May 16, 2014 at 11:59 am

    Oooooohhhhh, how did you see my binders from all the way over 🙁

  4. Alli on June 12, 2014 at 10:46 am

    How about old disposable cameras that you’re actually scared to know the contents??

    • Annie on June 13, 2014 at 3:33 pm

      HA! Completely!

  5. Jo on July 16, 2014 at 9:04 pm

    Gosh,,,, so many …. my bad!

  6. Jill on September 22, 2014 at 10:07 am

    I’m embarrassed to admit it, but in my hall closet I probably have every box from Amazon I’ve ever received! We use them for shipping birthday and Christmas presents. I also hoard plastic bags! My only defense is that I’ve never had to buy bathroom trash can liners . 🙂 I’m glad I’m not the only one guilty of these organizational crimes!

    • Annie on September 22, 2014 at 5:57 pm

      Girl, it’s time to Live Simply with that stuff! But no, you are certainly not alone. 😉

  7. Tina on October 13, 2014 at 5:17 am

    I have a few Beanie Babies. And rocks. How did you know? lol

  8. Leza on August 1, 2015 at 1:48 pm

    Somebody’s been using a drone to spy on me!!! For shame, for shame! :- (

  9. Kathleen on March 9, 2016 at 7:35 am

    With regard to your first item: income statements. DON’T ever, ever throw away your W-2s! They’re so little they don’t take up much space. I’m a purger so after awhile I got rid of mine and when I filed for Social Security one of the companies I worked for back in the 70s had entered my income incorrectly (too low). I have not been able to prove that it is a mistake. The company got rid of their files when they were seven years old (legal) and sadly, I didn’t have my W-2 to prove to the gov’t. that it was incorrect, hence my S.S. income is lower than it should be.

    • Annie on March 13, 2016 at 11:44 am

      Thanks for clarifying this, Kathleen! I am definitely referring to income statements from your employer–which can always be discarded AS SOON AS they’re validated with a w-2–the documents to keep.

  10. Anthony on June 21, 2018 at 1:06 pm

    Started decluttering a month or 2 ago, but my biggest problem is getting rid of my bushcraft gear. HELP what should I do? I have multiple cook sets but they were so expensive and their driving me nuts I just move them from bag to bag HELP…. ANTHONY.

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