In the summer declutter challenge purge items you really don't need like too many water bottles.

Summer declutter challenge

The Aim 4 Order summer declutter challenge will help you get rid of clutter that is no longer useful to you. In the next 45 days commit to removing things around your home that you can discard without even missing them. These are things that people stockpile or are obsolete. Either way, you can probably live without them.
  1. Fast food extras
    When you buy fast food or get food delivered, they often send along plasticware, ketchup packets, soy sauce or other supplies. The food stuff expires after a time, but dates are not usually marked on the packet. Get rid of them for your own health and safety.
  2. Plastic bags
    You probably reuse some plastic bags, but you don’t need to have an entire cabinet full. Get rid of at least some of the bags. In Baltimore County you can’t recycle them because they get caught in the recycling machinery. There are some stores, like Shoppers, that have a receptacle for returning bags.
  3. Resuable totes and bags
    If you go to fairs, festivals and other events, you often receive a goodie bag that can be reused. How many do you actually use? Same for reusable grocery bags. You can use your excess bags to donate some of the things on this list!
  4. Coozies
    Same as above, these are often given away by businesses. Keeping a few is fine, but you probably have way more than you actually need.
  5. CDs, cassettes and records
    Most people no longer have a way to even listen to these. If you do, just hang onto your favorites. Records might have value on eBay or consignment shops, but sometimes it’s easier to just donate them.
  6. Gift bags and wrapping paper
    The same gift bags and wrapping paper seem to be floating around and are given and received many times over. While you can certainly keep some of this on hand, wouldn’t it feel great to have these items take up less room?
  7. Old towels
    Tattered and torn old towels come in handy for cleaning and pet needs. But again, you probably have many more than you need. Purge some of them and see how much space you gain.
  8. Plastic containers
    We all have too many plastic containers. Get rid of stained, lidless or half melted containers.
  9. Water bottles
    Everyone seems to be carrying around a water bottle these days. But once again, do you really need a shelf-full of water bottles?
  10. Old cosmetics
    Cosmetics expire. Don’t keep them past their date. For the summer declutter challenge, toss cosmetics that you don’t use any more.
  11. Magazines
    You can switch to reading the online version of magazines and save a tree. If you prefer reading paper magazines, only keep them for a few months before you recycle them. If there is something like a recipe you want to keep, cut it out and save the recipe, scan it or take a picture of it with your phone.
  12. Books
    Most of us have too many books that we have already read or will never read. Clear out some space, donate what you don’t need and let someone else read them. (FYI: most charities will not accept encyclopedias.)
  13. Old T-shirts
    Old concert tees, sports team shirts and other T-shirts can be donated or cut up and repurposed into quilts or rag rugs. Don’t keep them for this purpose unless you are absolutely going to make something with them. 
  14. Dust collectors
    Nicknacks, bookends, figurines and other objet d’art can become more of a chore than a pleasure. If you spend more time dusting them than admiring them, it might be time to part with at least some of these pieces. Only keep the ones you love.
  15. Old tech
    Do you still have your old Palm Pilot? How about old cell phones? Old computers, external drives, cables, modems and more can accumulate in your home office. Dispose of them properly by recycling or donating them. Just make sure none of your personal information is on the electronics prior to donating.
  16. Old owner’s manuals
    Owner’s manuals for things you no longer own are just taking up space. Recycle them and make space in your drawer or cabinet.
Feel like this summer declutter challenge is doable? I know you can do at least some of these things in the next 45 days. Let me know on my Facebook page what you’ve accomplished! As always, I am here to help if you feel overwhelmed. 
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