I have been in a serious decluttering fit lately. We just moved into a smaller townhome and we've had to seriously start to evaluate all the stuff/junk that we have been hauling around on these moves. Thanks to a kick start from Miss Minimalist's blog I have been going to town!
I find that being thrifty, frugal, and having a go at minimalism is an interesting balance. So, here are two tips that I've discovered so far.
1. "Tools of the trade" - I'm a baker/cook and homemaker. Any books or tools that help me out are things that I keep. Granted, I could get rid of a cook book or two, and evaluate the effectiveness of each of my tools, but I spend a lot of time in the kitchen. So, I have a lot of tools. The key is to keep them organized and if any are collecting dust, send them to the thrift store for another lifetime of use by someone else.
2. Keepsakes - I am the queen of holding onto memories. It was getting to be pretty painful with all the junk I've moved around in my lifetime - useless stuff that was just memory incarnate. Over the years I have been slowly letting go. The following trick, so far, has proved to be the best way (and the least painful) to get rid of memory objects. If I have something that holds a special memory, but isn't a family heirloom or is something that just sits around taking up space (usually in a box!), I take a picture. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but they don't mention that pictures also take up a lot less space! Once I take the picture, the memory is in effect transferred to the picture and I can get rid of the object without guilt or too much regret. Someday I might create a digital photo album full of discarded keepsakes and be able to flip through the pages reminiscing. I'm still in this memory "archiving" process and as soon as I get my camera back I think my wedding shoes will be the next to go...
Do you have any tips or tricks for being frugal, thrifty or cutting down on junk?