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I don’t know about y’all, but this time of year always has me itching to clear out the junk in my house. I grew up in a home that wasn’t usually tidy. Or if it was, it was fleeting. And I, in turn, am not gifted with natural tendencies towards organization. There was a long time when I let myself feel guilty about this, and although I don’t enjoy when my house is messy, I’ve learned to show myself grace instead. (Working full-time with four kiddos, and keeping the house spick and span on top of that is a tall order.)

I have a bit of a quirky, ideas-always-spinning personality and the cacophony of objects compiled in my home is a part of where my creativity comes from–and a result of it–which came first I can’t be sure.  (And I’m not just making this up, check out Elite Daily’s article on the psychology behind messy rooms–and their awesome 360° video.)

Looking at clean surfaces (and floors in my kids’ rooms) is definitely calming though. So I do try to weed things out at least a couple times of year. My kids’ rooms are most definitely the culprit in gobbling up the most stuff to sort through.

As a result of my semi-regular weeding, I often have another pile of stuff ready to haul to the thrift store. This pile lies out of sight, fortunately, and inside of a vintage wardrobe in my dining room. Ideally I’d only be using it to store the coats, jackets, and reusable grocery bags I also have in there, but I’m showing myself some grace there, too, for now. (Long-lasting organization is all about baby steps for me).

So I’ve had a giant mound of old clothes, books, and household odds and ends I’ve been saving to donate to Goodwill. I keep meaning to empty it, haul it out to my car and swing on by the closest Goodwill donation center near me. And Lord knows I’ve been to the thrift store a hundred times and have had every opportunity to clean out my closet. (I did a huge weed out of my clothes a couple years back.)

So when I stumbled across Amazon and Goodwill’s partnership to reuse brown boxes to send donations directly to Goodwill–free of charge–I was all over it. I’m an avid Amazon shopper during the holidays (and always)–I couldn’t tell you how many times their Prime shipping has saved my hiney.

I still had a stack of boxes left over from Christmas when I learned about this program. There are actually a number of retailer’s boxes you can reuse. The only stipulations are that you can’t send anything liquid, hazardous (duh), or electronics. Have some articles of clothing that are less than stellar? Many Goodwills recycle clothing that is not fit for the sales rack.

And if you’re smart, you can sign up to have your packages picked up for free as well. Don’t have a Goodwill near you? No worries, they’ll find the closest one to ship it to. And you can sign up to receive a tax deductible receipt. I’d say it’s a win-win overall. Check out all the details and print out your free shipping labels at

What will you be weeding out of your house in the new year?


Looking for more ways to get organized? Check out my Recycled Desk Organizer and a roundup of 12 Thrift Store Organizing Ideas.

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