Exploring what life could be like if we weren’t buried in clutter, burdened with too many possessions, and surrounded by chaos.

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Entries from December 28th, 2012

Inching up to the new year

December 28th, 2012 · No Comments · Decluttering, Excess of Possessions, Trash Disposal

……and we all know that means: Time for “Throw out the old year, make way for the new!” In the 70s, in Naples, Italy — a city of three to four storey apartment buildings built up around the ancient villas and castles — throwing out the old year was taken as seriously as throwing  that […]

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The junkless Christmas tree

December 25th, 2012 · No Comments · Decluttering, Excess of Possessions, Minimalism

Merry Christmas everyone! Here’s our minimalist earth-friendly tree, in the living room where we hauled it in for its third Christmas with us. Purchased as an infant in 2009 at Portland Nursery, it is now 23 inches tall. We picked a slow-grower on purpose so we’d be able use it for as long as possible. […]

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Packrat motives

December 22nd, 2012 · 6 Comments · Excess of Possessions, Multiple use, The Packrat Mind

Here’s a perfect example of the kind of thing I save. I mean look at this! It snaps apart and back together. It came on a carrot peeler, holding the merchandise tag onto the product. Does it not look like the most useful thing in the world? It could easily be made into a little […]

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Silverfish: enemy of the packrat

December 20th, 2012 · No Comments · Decluttering

As promised, and as pictured here, the mother of all motivators: silver fish. Paper? They love it. And if you have it around, you’ll start having them around. Not so much with nice, new-ish books upright on the shelf. My theory is that they like lying-down paper the best. Except for musty and moldy paperbacks […]

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Paper: the worst thing to collect

December 19th, 2012 · No Comments · Decluttering

The most depressing of all the junk a packrat can pack is: paper. And all things made of it. If you want a recipe for squalor, save stacks of newspaper and have a lot of cardboard boxes and brown paper bags around. Paper decomposes faster than any other material — and did you know that’s […]

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The Christmas gift for the minimalist

December 18th, 2012 · No Comments · Minimalism

Here’s the perfect gift for the One Who Wants Nothing. Or the One Who Needs Nothing. A endearing story called “The Gift of Nothing” by Patrick McDonnell. Though it’s allegedly a children’s book, it doesn’t matter. Any adult with “nothingness” inclinations would enjoy this as much as any child. The illustrations are enchantingly simple and […]

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What to do with your used camping equipment

December 17th, 2012 · 2 Comments · Excess of Possessions, Selling your stuff

I just got rid of my camp stove from the 70s. At the time, it was THE camp stove — the lightest and most compact one available. A Svea, made in Sweden. This is an example of something you can’t just toss into the Goodwill bin. Most people wouldn’t know how to use it. Plus […]

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Inside the Mind of a Packrat

December 14th, 2012 · 1 Comment · Packratting, Re-using, The Packrat Mind

  That thing you see on my finger? It’s a twisty tie, which just turned up in the Miscellaneous drawer. Why had I saved it? For its beauty. Obviously. For one thing, it’s gold. For another, unlike ordinary twisty ties, it’s wide and flat instead of narrow and twisted. As if that were not fantastic […]

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Casting Stones in a Glass House

December 13th, 2012 · No Comments · Philosophy, The Packrat Mind

As for the rest of us, the ordinary, run-of-the-mill Packrats, we should refrain from pointing and staring at the Hoarders (e.g., watching that show), and recognize that when we do that, we are indulging in one of the lowest forms of human entertainment, namely, seeking out people “worse” than we are, so that by gawking […]

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What if you have the hoarder problem?

December 12th, 2012 · No Comments · Hoarding, Packratting

If, with the aid of my last post, you have diagnosed yourself as being beyond Packrat and into the realm of Hoarder, I’m afraid I have to tell you that that’s not really the problem I’m addressing in this blog. If you are in the habit of conserving dudu and other things of vile nature, […]

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