Holiday decoration declutter diary: Operation Cedar Chest

I forgot how utterly despondent decluttering makes me feel.

All this stuff. All this stupid, worthless stuff.

I’ve been putting off decluttering my holiday decorations for years. Part of the problem is that I don’t even know what I have. Our decorations are strung out all over the place: In the cedar chest in our bedroom, in the basement, in unused closet space. But yesterday evening, I was like, “You know what? I am STRONG. I am BRAVE. I’ve, like, given birth TWICE. I can totally clean out the cedar chest and make the hard decisions in an hour and a half.”

Ha ha ha. I’m hilarious.

I forgot to take a before photo, and I didn’t end up taking an after shot, either, because THIS IS NOT DONE. But here are a few from during:

Um … not delightful.
I spy with my little eye something that is Goose.

I ended up making four different piles: One to donate to next year’s holiday bazaar, one for the June rummage sale, one for my mother to look through, and one I will take to work today to see if my co-workers want anything. And at the end of all that, I STILL had a bunch of stuff I didn’t exactly know what to do with … and didn’t want to deal with any more. So I put those things back inside my cedar chest for another day.

(I’m honestly wondering if I just forgo all piles, toss everything in the car and take it to Goodwill. That would get it out of my house ASAP and that way, I wouldn’t have to look at it or think about it ever again.)

So not only do I NOT have a cleaned out cedar chest (my fondest desire: To store quilts in there), but I have NOT even made very many hard decisions. All I’ve done is reminded myself that I have all these holiday decorations … and I don’t even decorate the house anymore.

Ickkkkkkkk. I’m kind of remembering why I’ve put this off for so long. 😉 To be continued.

7 thoughts on “Holiday decoration declutter diary: Operation Cedar Chest

  1. Chris N says:

    That’s a lovely cedar chest. I can see quilts in there or at least blankets. Did i see a ‘valentine dish’ in there??? ahhh, if it was me, I’d just bag it up and take to goodwill. People are like vultures at christmas time looking for ‘treasures’. The idea of the piles is good except it delays the getting rid of. I didn’t see in your photos much that deemed worth saving(of course maybe you were hiding the pictures of the ‘good stuff). Sharing is good but I’d go the Goodwill sharing this time around.


    • Trisha Walker says:

      Oh, God, there’s all kinds of crap in there — Halloween, random framed photos, spring/Easter stuff … the whole nine yards. And it’s a gorgeous chest (got it when I graduated from high school. It’s slightly trashed from 7 moves and 2 kids, but it’s just a great piece) — totally made for quilts and blankets, not all this garbage.

      The more I think about the Goodwill option, the more I like it. It’s a trip to the next town, but it would be worth it just for my mental health.

      And after THIS project, I’m tackling a hidden cupboard above my wardrobe! I can’t even remember what’s in that thing, so that should be exciting on multiple levels.


  2. SarahN says:

    I have things I get ‘stuck’ on decluttering too. The only thought I’ve had is listing them all down, and seeing if I can unpick what about getting rid of them I’m hung up on. I have a small cardboard lid/tray with a collection of items that are a year or so old. Things like: a solitary earring, but silver, so of ‘some’ scrap value to a jeweller; a bottle of cream someone gave me (who was decluttering), a windscreen clip for a toll tag, an alcohol wipe sent with the toll tag, a sachet of flower preserver etc etc. It’s all inherently useful at it’s one needed time, but mostly not. An uber I was in had sticky taped his toll tag and I was SO tempted to offer my surplus one to him – of course the clips/tags aren’t universal, and then I assumed it’d be a wash :/

    Good on you for starting. For trying. Keep chipping at it when you have some energy/inclination.


  3. Jenni says:

    At least you did something towards the main goal, I think if you get rid of what you have decided to get rid of (however you decide to do it) you will feel better about going back and doing a bit more, like taking a deep breath and starting again. I have a drawer under my bed that I pull out and look at and push back without touching a thing. That’s how awful and sentimental it is.


  4. Roberta says:

    It sounds like you’re making progress! You didn’t declutter your house in one go, and this is the same way — you’ve taken off the first layer. And maybe after you declutter the rest of the holiday decorations, you can move some of these into wherever those are stored, freeing up space for your quilts.

    Decluttering isn’t a one-time event. But it gets better (and easier!)


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