to live beautifully

The Great Purge: The Junk Drawer

I have to admit, I was dreading the junk drawer clean out. You would think after tackling the red room of pain, I would have no problem with just one drawer.
But it was one heck of a drawer! Don’t shake your head at me, I bet you almost anything you have one too. If my mom, the queen of cleanliness, has a junk drawer, you have one too!
I really do think that most households need a “junk” drawer. Perhaps not full of junk, per se, but full of those things that just don’t have a home. Elastics, batteries, safety pins, they all need a home. The problem occurs when they become a free-for-all, the way mine had. Old birthday cards, product manuals, craft supplies I hadn’t put away properly. There were times I could barely cram it all in the drawer and shut it. It was clearly time for a change!

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I started by pulling it all out and placing similar stuff together. I could not believe the amount of useless garbage that had been kept for “some good reason,” much like the bread tags!
The best way to tackle your junk drawer is to use small baskets and corral similar items together. Those safety pins don’t help anyone if they are scattered all over the place. If you don’t want to spend extra money on baskets, you might be surprised what you may be able to find that you already have on hand! You can even cut the base of boxes down to size and use those as baskets.
The other thing I have to stress is to be ruthless! That birthday card with a quickly scrawled signature may hold less sentimentality than you think. Do you remember which birthday it was for? Does it even say anything meaningful? How many years did I hang onto the “Cindi with an i” birthday card my husband gave me just because it was from him? In reality, I totally hated that card when I got it because I wanted something sappy, but still I kept it?!?!

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So chuck it! Chuck that five year old receipt for items worth $5. Throw away that random rusty screw. If you haven’t needed it in three years you probably won’t need it now. And this shocking store called the hardware store can sell you a new one in the rare event that you did need it.
So pour yourself a glass of red and brace yourself, and then just do it. Clean up that junk drawer so that it no longer deserves that name!
I think mine now looks like anything but junk!

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