January purging part 4: 111 things in 1/11

Here it is folks: the final installment of the January purging (111 things in 1/11 initiated by Jenny over at Words on Wendhurst). You can hop on over to parts 1, 2, and 3 if you missed my thrilling tales of trashing socks, underwear, and a Lazy Susan who just hadn’t been pulling her weight in our household.

After getting rid of 30 things for the past 3 weeks, technically I only had 21 things to go. However, I’m OCD, which means I also had to get rid of 30 things this week. I’m sure you understand. At least some of you–the ‘weird ones.’

I’ve always loved the weird ones. They are my friends because I am one of them.

So this week I finally faced the fact that we have about 50 cassette tapes hiding behind a row of novels on the bookcase. And we haven’t listened to them since we were teenagers, so it was time to purge that area.

While I only got rid of 13 tapes, the rest of the mixed music tapes will be listened to one by one over the next couple weeks, probably while I cook. If I hear a song I love and must have, I’ll jot it down and purchase it on itunes. Then, the tapes will go the the tape cemetery to make room for the digital age.

Some expired and dried-out make-up products went next:

I think I’ve had that CoverGirl powder for . . . nine years.

Also due to go were a couple books, one of them a very disturbing and depressing French novel from my college days. I have no idea why I’ve kept it around for so many years.

It was also time to let go of some jewelry, in particular this silver horse that I treasured dearly when I was younger.

Yes, I was a typical horse-obsessed human girl. Posters, figurines, Breyer plastic horses, jewelry–I collected anything to do with these majestic quadrupeds. I’ve shared this picture before, but my dreams all came true on this day:

Horse. Check. Flowing gown. Check. White gloves. Check. Long hair. Check.

An oversized, unflattering black sweater and a black scarf went as well. They kind of look like an amorphous cloud of darkness in the picture, so you’ll just have to trust me. The most mangled of my mangled old bras is hiding underneath, and don’t worry–that went straight to the trash.

And that belt. It just wasn’t working.

And now, I feel compelled to examine my head and heart and see if I’ve learned anything from the experience.

-I’m too attached to stuff, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Just like I exercise my body in yoga, I can exercise my will and let go of things. Each purge is like stretching that emotional muscle that will allow me to hold the things of earth loosely.

-Purging is a great way to free myself not just physically but also emotionally from my possessions.

-A life lived in subservience to the stuff you own is no life at all. It can be emotionally crippling to think you ‘need’ stuff.

-Freedom, freedom, freedom, ooo-oooh freeeeeedoooooom! *in Aretha’s voice*

Aloha! Adieu! Auf Wiedersehn! I’ll catch you guys on the other side of this weekend.

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20 Responses to January purging part 4: 111 things in 1/11

  1. skippymom says:

    These are fun posts.

    [check mark in the “I am a weird one too” column]

    You should continue to do this – think of the possibilities.

    Can I have your horse necklace. Please. :D

    • Jenna says:

      Skippymom, I would totally pop it into an envelope and send it to you–except that last Sunday I gave it to a little girl at our church who’s taking horse riding lessons and is possible more obsessed than I was.
      And yes, I agree–I should continue to purge on a regular basis! And blog about it, because you guys are so encouraging. =)

  2. Lyndsey says:

    I checked the “I’m a weird one too” column too. Where do you have that photo of you on the horse hanging? It is perfect!

    • Jenna says:

      Lyndsey, the photo of me on the horse is hidden away in an album (I wrenched it from the album to scan it for y’all =). I love it though, because I remember how glamorous and wonderful I felt on that pony!

  3. Ah, the horse obsession. I still love horses, but I no longer feel the need to decorate every surface of my home with them. Thank God. :-) Now I just watch horse-y movies to get my fix. Secretariat anyone? Seriously though, nice job on the purging! Doesn’t it feel great to have gotten rid of so much stuff?!

  4. surlykitchen says:

    Nooo, don’t get rid of that horse necklace! it’s too precious. i would totally buy it from you; my sister would love it.

    ahh, mixed tapes, i know i have a whole box of those lurking around somewhere. i like the idea of just jotting down the songs to load on itunes. but all the hours that went into making the “perfect” mixed tape, all wasted now.

    i’m the same way with make up, my cosmetics bag is disgusting. i feel like such a hoarder after reading this post series.

    • Jenna says:

      Wow–this horse necklace is proving quite popular! =) Anyway, as I mentioned to skippymom, I gave it to a little girl that goes to our church. If I turn up any more horse jewelry though (I think there are some earrings kicking around somewhere) I’ll have to give it away to one of you guys!

  5. My parents still have a ton of cassette tapes, which doesn’t seem that weird considering my car doesn’t have a CD player… but still, no one ever listens to them!

  6. Sarah says:

    again, great job! (and i’m weird too)

  7. Circe says:

    I love that picture of you on the horse, The pointed toe is the finishing touch, very oh-la-la

    have a great weekend

  8. Daniela says:

    Thanks for your comment on my blog! Oh, how admire your de-cluttering ability! I started to declutter a few years ago and it was one of the best things I have done. I have to keep up with it (making determined choices not to re-clutter and purging as things become outdated, old or no longer useful). I think you are better at it than I am, plus I love how you document your successes! Great idea. You have inspired me to continue with renewed enthusiasm. Thanks!

  9. This Italian Family says:

    Oh goodness, I should get rid of some of the cassette tapes I have from when I was a kiddo…

  10. Joanne says:

    I bet my mom still has cassette tapes sitting in our house. I should tell her how freeing it would be if she purged them. Or maybe I should go over there and purge 111 things for her…she might not even notice!

  11. Jen says:

    Wow. You’re amazing. I stand in awe that you powered through and got rid of those extra items. You’re also brave. What if, after all, you some day find that you really want to read a depressing novel in French? What are you going to do then? I suppose I could just send you my Unamuno book that I purchased a year ago and have yet to even attempt to read.

    • Jenna says:

      Haha–I don’t think I’ll ever want to read a depressing novel in French ever again. There were way to many of those in undergrad as it was . . . though if I do get the urge, I’ll contact you for the Unamuno book. Thanks for the kind offer. =)

  12. Weighting For 50 says:

    Hi Jenna, I’m so inspired by your purging. We’ve been doing the same, and you’re right, it DOES feel really good. have a GREAT weekend.

  13. Cait says:

    haha i love this post! i recently cleaned out my own closet and ended up giving away 3 bags of clothes! it’s so nice to de-clutter and feel ‘free’ again :)

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