Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Getting Rid Of STUFF

Last night was my breaking point. We have too much stuff. I am sick of tired of living like a spoiled kid, hoarding stuff when people are in need in this world. In the coming weeks and month we are going to do some serious cleaning of the house. Here's my current list of things to go:
  • Cookbooks: I know my wife is going to struggle a bit against this one, but how many do we really need? My plans for this is we start heavily on creating a family cookbook, copying the recipes that we enjoy out of the other books and then say goodbye to them. If we're needing new recipes, there are so many on the Internet and at the local library, we shouldn't need to have them in-house.
  • Movies: I'm thinking of going the route of a "Top 10" or "Top 20" to reduce our shelves. I'm counting 15 shelves worth of videos right now. Can't we just rent a movie again if we want to watch it again? If we sign up permanently with Blockbuster or Netflix, we're looking at $240/yr for them to manage our video library. I don't know if it's as much as we spend right now on movie entertainment, but it sure would reduce our stuff level.
  • Bowflex: Received as a gift from a business client, we used it probably 20-30 times in 2 years. It would be helpful for our health to use it, but we're not. It's a high-level model, so we could probably sell it for a good chunk of change, then use that to go to a gym membership fund for my wife (I prefer the outdoors, biking, swimming, etc.).
  • Snowblower: Received from my dad's junk, we have maybe 50 feet of sidewalk to clear, not worth having this huge hunk of machine in our house (or building a "house" for it outside).
  • Hardware odds and ends: 2 years ago we made a foolish choice to help my father out by fixing up his house to sell it. I bought lots of random things to help with the project but didn't keep receipts and didn't return the unused items. They've been a burden and we just need to get rid of them.
  • Teas: We have probably 40 different kinds of teas and they're just rotting away in the drawer. Teas aren't supposed to be kept forever, we've got some that are 10 years old. When buying a tea next, we will look at as "Are we going to drink this twice a month, every month for the next year?"
  • Nick-nacks: I don't want to go to heaven and when asked "When I was hungry, where were you?" and I'll say "I didn't have money to give since I bought all those lovely nick-nacks."
It all comes down to priorities. What are my priorities with the money that God has entrusted me with? Is it the widow, homeless, those in need or is it building a larger container to fill? I hope at the end of my life I can say that my priorities were with people, not with the stuff I bought.

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