‘Tis the season for cleaning and decluttering

Get rid of unwanted items by donating or holding garage sales

It is officially spring, and excitement is in the air. The thought of shedding heavy winter coats and boots brings everyone sheer happiness. Spring is also the time to get our spring-cleaning mojo on, and everyone has a different method.

Leslie Wiens, a Westwood resident, says, “I start my cleaning by emptying the living room, and as I put things back I declutter, and I repeat the same process in every room.”

Nadine Riopel, who resides in Spruce Avenue, is taking a strategic approach. She explained she tried to deep clean her entire house in a week while her son was at camp. It was too much. “This year, I’m going to try a method a friend of mine uses where you tackle just one room every weekend until the whole house is done. That seems much more manageable, but we’ll see!”

She adds, “I prefer to avoid the need to purge by being very minimal about what comes into my house. However, I do try to go through all my clothes twice a year, once in the fall and once in the spring, to get a sense of what I have and what still works for me before going out and buying anything else. That often involves getting rid of some old things.”  

Amanda Nielsen, co-owner of Norwood Dental Centre, was inspired by watching Tidying Up with Marie Kondo on Netflix.

Tidying Up recommends you begin a wardrobe purge by putting all your clothes in a pile, and then sort it item by item. With each item, you are to ask yourself, ‘Does this item bring me joy?’ If it doesn’t bring joy, it’s time to let it go,” says Nielsen. “Decluttering was exhausting for me because it took me over a decade to get to it. I recommend decluttering as an annual process.”

Donating is a good way to declutter.

Riopel says she donates most of her old goods to Value Village, and she also shops there.

Nielsen is donating her clothing to a clothing swap. “We are hosting a Women of 118th Clothing Swap on April 4 [at Alberta Ave Community League], and that’s where all of my old clothes will be going. There will be some fabulous finds in my clothing donation. I hope to see many women from the Rat Creek district at the swap so we can all declutter and live simpler lives together!”

Some businesses get in the spirit of spring cleaning. If you have new or gently used building materials or household goods, Habitat for Humanity ReStore Spring Cleaning donation drive is from March 1 to April 30. Donate items at any of their Edmonton locations or request pick up service by calling 780.477.4057.

From March 6 to April 20, Value Village is holding a 40 Bags in 40 Days decluttering challenge. The concept is to declutter one area of your home a day for 40 days, then donate those items for a fundraiser. Contact your local Value Village for more information.

If you want to make some money while freeing up space, a garage sale may be a win-win situation. According to the City of Edmonton website, there is no official start date for garage sales and no requirement to get a licence. However, you are limited to three sales per calendar year in one location and for no more than three days at a time. Any longer than that, and you do have to get a business license. Check edmonton.ca and search “garage sales” or call 311 for more details.

Some local leagues are also holding sales. Spruce Avenue’s garage sale is May 3 and 4; Parkdale is having one on June 1 and Alberta Avenue on June 15.

Meanwhile, take some extra time to spring clean and enjoy the weather while doing it.


Featured Image: There are many ways to approach spring cleaning. | Pixabay

Sharee Aluko

Sharee has a Masters in Business Administration and is passionate about sharing information. She currently works full-time in the banking sector.

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