Buy Nothing

As I’ve written in recent months, the worldwide pandemic has let me with plenty of time at home to organize and downsize. I was excited recently when nearby thrift shops reopened and I could take my discards there. I was also excited when the clothing donation bin in my building’s basement became active again.

I was still left with the lingering question of what to do with items that a thrift shop would not likely put out to sell. One such category was my scrapbooking paraphernalia. I put a bunch of unwanted items for sale on eBay, and some of them sold, but some didn’t. So I offered the rest to my organizing colleagues, and then to some friends. Eventually I was left with a few items that nobody else wanted.

One of my colleagues suggested that I use the Facebook collective called Buy Nothing. Have you heard of it? There are neighborhood-specific Buy Nothing groups. You post photos of what you want to give away and then people come over and get it. You can also place requests for things you want that others might be willing to give you.

I joined the group for my neighborhood, and once I was approved, I posted photos and descriptions of the scrapbooking items that I still had left. By the end of the evening, I had takers lined up. On the day that they were to be picked up, I left labeled bags with my doorman. Everyone came and claimed their loot. It was that easy!

Buoyed by my success, I started posting things that weren’t scrapbooking-related. Again, I got takers. Things I had been contemplating for months, if not years, were suddenly gone. I felt really good that I wasn’t throwing this stuff out. Instead, I was putting it in the hands of people that wanted it.

It has been so great seeing empty spaces in my closets and in the corners of rooms. I’m rearranging things to make better use of my space to and continue to make my home more hospitable.