This Week's Best Stuff on the Internet


Happy Sunday! This video is equal parts adorable and heartbreaking, and simply reinforces how fast life moves and why you should appreciate all the moments you get do whatever it is you love-- the little stuff, like cooking, hiking, biking and dancing. PS doesn't she look a bit like Rihanna? In the earlier years, obviously. 


Yay to this person for figuring out how to live in 90 sq feet... but also yay to me for living in Minneapolis! One of the many reasons I love living in a smaller-ish big city. Room to sprawl, real kitchens, unshared bathrooms and parking spaces, all for less than this is chick pays to live in a closet with a sink. 

I am for sure seeing this documentary about a Scandinavian women's volleyball team. The youngest lady is 66, the oldest is 98! Watch the trailer and your heart will grow 3-to-4 times in size.


My life and neighborhood just got 100000 times cooler


A great essay on how quitting your job will f#$% up your life, but it's probably worth it. 


Telling your friends how much you make: do or don't? Check out why Meredith Bennett-Smith thinks it's a do


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What It's Like to Play Capoeira for the 1st Time

Brazilian martial arts dancing? Sure, why not!

Brazilian martial arts dancing? Sure, why not!


I couldn't feel my legs after the first 10 minutes, which made the next two hours... complicated.


But I figured I better pay attention through the pain, because in an hour, I had to do this:
 


It's called capoeira (cap-oh-wear-ah... you're welcome. Those guys make it look graceful. Me? Not so much. 


So how did I get here. Great question. My pal Levi wanted to try it, and as new things go, they're almost always more enjoyable when you enlist a buddy. As you know, I am usually down for anything. Even something as horrifying as this.


As a comedy writer and improviser, Levi has zero issues getting on stage. However, he’s secretly always wanted to try dance and martial arts. I guess he feels self-conscious about doing something with his body that isn't about getting laughs. So, we decided to dedicate the second Hey Eleanor webisode to killing two birds with one stone: trying capoeira.


Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian mash-up of fight, dance, rhythm and movement. It’s sort of like Karate Kid meets West Side Story. Before Levi and I are unleashed into full-on capoeira class, Caruja—the director of Omulu Capoeria in Minneapolis—taught us the basics.


Within seconds, our thighs were on fire. Who knew capoeira was basically doing a permanent squat for an hour?


Caruja taught us the moves we’ll need to know: Ginga, which is essentially home-base. There’s esquiva and nagativa, which you use for ducking under kicks.


 Wait… what? Are we going to be getting kicked at?


As it turned out, yes.


Fortunately, capoeira isn’t a contact sport. They talk about it as a conversation between two people, where you basically play fight. But don’t be fooled. Kicks occasionally land where they’re not supposed to. Like your face.


After an hour of instruction and 30 minutes of conditioning drills, Levi and I are let loose in the final roda (pronounced ho-da... like Kathie Lee's co-host on the TODAY show). We circle up with a dozen much more experienced capoeira players. The drums start, then the birambau (which is that weird boingy, bowed instrument). Next everyone begins singing. And then we're supposed to hop into the roda and start kickin'.

What happens next? Watch the video & enjoy the awesomely awkward moments. 
 


I’d say entering the roda is intimidating, but it’s not. Everyone is so welcoming, encouraging and respectful. It’s a collaborative environment that thrives on setting up your partner for success. In fact, it’s a lot like improv, except for more sweating.


It was actually really fun. I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. And neither could Levi. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if he's already been back. (Have you, Levi?).


Taking a capoeira class tapped into one of my biggest insecurities: looking foolish in front of others. But as I've learned over and over again, nobody pays as much attention to you as you think they do. Get over it, nobody cares! And few things are more enjoyable than watching a person try something you're passionate about (fact: I don't think there are any people who are halvsies into capoeira. I could be wrong, but everyone seemed super passionate about it!). 


What's actually way more embarrassing than trying hard and failing is not committing. You have to own it to sell it, and when you don't own something, it's horribly awkward for everyone. 


So try something new. Own it. Who cares if you make an ass out of yourself. Find a supportive environment and go for it. Trust me, when you stop caring what other people think, everything becomes a lot more fun. 


Huge thanks to Omulu Capoeira in Minneapolis for guiding us through our first class (and not kicking us in the face). And by all means, sign up for one of their classes!


Two thumbs up for Levi's bravery. Check out his podcast, The Pratfalls of Parenting, & Comedy Suitcase, his theater dedicated to comedy for all ages. 


And of course, I big shout out to Matt Houchin and his whip-smart editing skills. Need a video? Hire him. 
 

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Question: what have you always wanted to try, but have been too embarrassed? Share in the comments! 

PS Remember on the last Hey Eleanor webisode when my Uncle Whitey made his wife dinner for the first time? He's made her dinner since (meatloaf is his new specialty!) and even helped my dad cook dinner for our entire family. Nice work, White One! 
 

I Hiked All 2,185 Miles of the Appalachian Trail

Hey from the top of the world!

Hey from the top of the world!


Most of you are probably familiar with Cheryl Strayed (or at least Reese Witherspoon playing Cheryl Strayed in Wild). Her story introduced me to thru-hiking, basically hiking a long-distance trail end-to-end. To me, this sounds equal parts terrifying and exciting. To Katherine Denemark (trail nickname: Roots), it sounded awesome. The State College, Penn. assistant preschool teacher and her husband Eric decided to hike the entirety of the Appalachian Trail, which only took six months and a day. Here's their own wild story. 


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In 2014, you hiked the Appalachian Trail. Why? How long did it take?

“Why” is really hard. In the simplest sense, I wanted to hike it because it’s there to be hiked and it got into my imagination. I also really needed a break from normal life. I felt burnt out and confused, and I wanted time to think and breathe. Also, my husband promised he’d get me a puppy after. It took us 185 days, or six months and a day.

These guys look way to chipper to be hiking 20+ miles a day.

These guys look way to chipper to be hiking 20+ miles a day.


Have you always been a big fan of the great outdoors? Had you done a lot of hiking previously?

Yes. Growing up my family did most of our vacationing at state parks in our pop-up camper. Outside was the background to my childhood. My husband and I both love hiking and backpacking and do it to the exclusion of almost anything else during the season.


The Appalachian Trail is 2,185 miles long. How did you prepare physically? Mentally?

It’s really hard to prepare for a thru-hike unless you’ve done one before, because you just can’t fathom what you’re getting yourself into. At least I couldn’t!

Physically, if you do too much training ahead of time, you risk your body interpreting that as additional miles on the hike. The only real way to prepare your body for fifteen daily miles over a few mountains is to hike fifteen daily miles over a few mountains. So we used the first month or so to acclimate slowly and get in shape for the rest of it, rather than rush out of the gate. We did, however, do lots of weekend trips the summer before so we could test and refine our gear and systems.

As for the mental preparation, we were planning our hike for a little over a year, so during that time, if I was cold or hot or it rained on me, I treated it as practice. I did a lot of imagining and daydreaming, both about the challenges and the sweetness. I thought long and hard about why I was doing this and what I wanted to get out of it, so I’d have that to fall back on when the going got tough.


Did people help you along the way?

YES! One of the best parts of the hike was experiencing the goodness of people. I tend to be pretty down on humanity, but on the trail we regularly experienced incredible help from complete strangers. People left coolers of soda at random road crossings. They picked us up when we were trying to hitchhike into town even though we smelled really, really bad. They took us into their homes and fed us and did our laundry. A UPS driver met us at a road on his day off to hand me the new pair of shoes I’d accidentally sent to the wrong place. My mom sent us boxes of food every week or so and let me sob on the phone a few times. We definitely did not thru-hike alone. No one does.
 

Almost there!

Almost there!


What did you eat and drink along the trail? Did you camp every night? Can we briefly discuss bathroom and showers?

I was nervous about eating incredibly unhealthy trail food for six months. To get some quality fuel in, we dehydrated all of our dinners for the hike ahead of time, so we ate chicken, tuna or chili with veggies for dinner every night, and that was glorious. For our other meals, we tended to stick to the same things for awhile until we got sick of them, and we were limited by what kind of resupply spot was available in town. Sometimes we had to eat for a week out of a gas station. Lunch for the longest time was cheese and summer sausage, and for another long time, a large bag of Combos. There were lots of bars, Pop Tarts, Nutella, peanut butter, bagels... whatever was light, calorie dense and struck my fancy. We filtered water to drink from springs and creeks, unless we happened upon a trail magic soda or beer.

We camped pretty much every night in our tent, though the AT has three sided shelters that some like to stay in. We’d go into town every six to ten days to get more food, and sometimes we’d stay the night in a motel. When we got to feeling really run down, we’d take a zero day, a day when you hike no miles. That meant two nights in a motel!

Bathrooms were the woods for me. Most shelters have privies. But the privy was way more disgusting in my opinion than a spot in the woods. As for showers, there are none. If we camped by water I would splash off my face and armpits and whatever else I wasn’t too tired to clean. Sometimes I rinsed out my shirt if I thought it would dry by the time I had to put it back on. But real cleanliness only happened in town.
 


Six months is a long time to spend with just one person, even (especially?) if it’s the person you’re married to. How did you handle the inevitable ups and downs?

It’s funny, people always ask me about this, but being with Eric (my husband) all day every day was one of the best parts of the AT. Before the hike, I’d be bummed every morning when we had to go off to our separate jobs. Eric was a huge support for me on the trail, never a drag to be with. I did ask him to shave his beard by the time we got to New Hampshire because I couldn’t stand looking at it anymore. And we did get a bigger tent after about 800 miles. I can count on one hand the number of times we were annoyed at each other enough that one of us hiked out of sight of the other for awhile. Being together was good.

I read Wild, so I know bringing excess crap is a big backpacking no-no. What items ended up being more useful than expected? Did you get rid of anything along the way? What non-essential items did you bring with anyway?

I was surprised by how much my sleeping bag and our tent functioned as a psychological comfort, not just shelter and warmth. I LOVED crawling into my downy bag inside my own little bubble at the end of the day. We sent back a few little things, like attachable lenses for the iPhone, bug headnets, and warm clothes during the summer, but we went out there pretty light. I’ll admit it was me who brought most of the non-essentials. I carried an extra shirt to wear in camp and for sleeping. For the first half of the hike I had the smallest Nook, so I could read at night. Once we were hiking till dark and I was too tired to read at night, I sent that home. The silliest thing was a little satchel of lavender I kept in my sleeping bag. Very worth it, though, to smell something nice and mask our stench.


Scariest moment on the trail? Most gratifying?

The scariest acute moment was when we startled a bear who charged right at us before he realized it and turned just a few feet away. The scariest time period was in Vermont and New Hampshire, when my body and energy were really starting to give out and we were afraid I wouldn’t make it. The most gratifying was easily when we summited Katahdin (the finish line).

It was also amazing to get to the Grayson Highlands in Virginia and see the wild ponies there. I’d been looking forward to that for so long!

Oh my god, there are ponies!

Oh my god, there are ponies!


What comforts of home were you surprised you missed? What did you not miss at all?

I missed being comfortable all the time, of course. We both missed drinking out of cups instead of a tube. It’s a lot easier to list things I didn’t miss: all my stuff, stress, driving, cement, being inside all the time, going to work.


The three biggest lessons you learned on the trail.

I can accomplish and withstand a whole lot more than I think I can.
I don’t need or even want much more than what I can carry on my back.
There are breathtakingly generous and good hearted people out there.
 

Before

Before

After

After


What was the first thing you did after you completed the hike?

Recover. I slept a lot, took baths, ate and ate and ate, and just did as little as possible.


Advice to someone looking to do a long hike, like the Appalachian or Pacific Coast Trail.

Give it at least a month. I saw so many people quit early on because they were slammed with the reality of what they’d undertaken, but just stick with it for a month, no matter how much it sucks. It takes time to adjust, and for me there was definitely a period where I sort of panicked, thinking I’d never be able to do this, before I started to believe I would.

Make sure you have enough money, more than you think. It’s hard enough without worrying about getting a motel room when you need to rest or buying food in pricey Connecticut. It’s worth it to wait one more year and save some more. Also, find someone who has done it to talk to. I’m totally available!


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Read more about Katherine & Eric's epic adventures on her blog and via Facebook. In case you're wondering, her hubby DID get her that puppy and his name is Monson.

You can check out my other Everyday Eleanor interviews in the archives. You know you want to.

Are you an everyday badass? Do you live and work on a ship? Or make a living as a professional jockey. Maybe you're one of those amazing people who works in hospice. I want to share your Everyday Eleanor story. Email me at heyeleanorproject@gmail.com.

7 Excellent Ways to Get Rid of Your Unwanted Crap

Why do I have so much crap?

Why do I have so much crap?


If you've read Hey Eleanor before, you probably know I have a thing about de-crappifying. 


Or decluttering. Whichever term you prefer. 


I grew up in a house full of crap. This would be my dad's house, not my mom's. Her house was always nice and clean without a lot of crap. But at Dad's, nothing ever got thrown away or put away. My dad also has never met a garage sale, Menard's end-of-season-sale or memorabilia store he walked away from empty handed. I used to love tidying up his house when he was at work, cleaning out the fridge, pantry, junk drawers, you name it. 


As I'm writing this, I'm realizing what strange behavior this was for a 12-year-old. I mean, does any middle schooler you know even make their bed without asking, let alone toss all the fridge's expired or donezo condiments? After school, I'd sort through unopened mountain of mail on our kitchen table. Under that, eight or nine unread newspapers. Under that, who knows what you'd find.


I wouldn't call my dad a hoarder, it's just that he literally does not see clutter. And it doesn't seem to bother him, either. Meanwhile, I was always embarrassed to have friends over because it looked like I lived in a frat house, not in a real house.


I'm still incredibly self-conscious of clutter at my own house. I am bad at putting things away on a consistent basis (you could call me a tornado. I'd be cool with that), but then am ashamed by my explosion of crap. I've found I can get rid of most clothes/books/toiletries all day long... but as soon as something has a bit of sentimental value, I have a hard time parting with it. But sentimental crap is still crap, and really, most of it actually means nothing to me. 

 

When you have less crap, there's less mess to deal with. I'm also consciously trying to buy less stuff-- clothes, gadgets, books, movies, everything. Less mess makes me feel so much better about myself. It makes me feel better about everything, really. 


I know a lot of you also want to de-crapify your lives. I also know you're torn about what do to with your castaways. So, what really happens to your stuff when it's donated to charity? Are garage sales worth the work? And why isn't the consignment store taking your perfectly good threads? Let me explain.


1. Donate to a Local Charity Shop.

I don't know about you, but I find dropping off bags of crap at Goodwill to be incredibly satisfying. That said, I completely understand it's my way of covering up the truth: that I'm mostly giving someone else the responsibility of throwing away crap I didn't have the balls to throw away myself, banking on the chance that someone else might want it.

I know what you're thinking: But Molly! I am sure someone will want to wear your perfectly good donated clothing/VHS copy of Captain Ron. I agree! Except for one thing: Charities only resell about 10 percent of the clothes you drop off. They're getting too much crap. The rest is either shredded and sent to textile recycling companies or shipped overseas to be sold by a used-clothing vendor in Sub-Saharan Africa.

But that sounds okay still, doesn't it? 

Kinda. I don't think it's a long term solution (this Slate article does a great job of explaining why). By one estimate, used clothing is now the United States’ number one export by volume, which is pretty darn horrifying.
 

Obviously NONE of this is trash... right?

Obviously NONE of this is trash... right?


Until there's a better way, I will continue to drop off my unwanted items at Goodwill (or the Epilepsy Foundation, who will literally pick it up from your house). However, I am no longer disillusioned that most of my stuff will end up ticketed, hanging in the store. It's probably insulating someone's house or waiting to be sorted somewhere overseas. If no one wants it there (which is happening more and more), what happens next? I have no idea. 

 

2. Give To a Friend, With Intention.

With clothes, books or kitchen gear, I often find myself thinking, "I'll bet so-and-so would love this garlic press/sundress/crockpot cookbook!" This method of repurposing is ideal, especially if you truly think someone will like your stuff. 
 

I gave this super cute suit that I wore twice to my sister-in-law.

I gave this super cute suit that I wore twice to my sister-in-law.


That said, it's rude to just drop off a bunch of unsorted crap at a friend's house, basically saying, "You get rid of this for me. Bye!" That's what Goodwill is for! (I kid, I kid... kinda). And just because you think someone might like your 15-year-old homecoming dress doesn't mean they will. So if someone wants what you're giving away, awesome! If not, don't push it and don't act offended. Remember, you don't really want said item(s), either. 

 

3. Consignment/Retails Stores

I love the idea of making moolah from the clothes I thought I'd wear, but never really did. There's a Buffalo Exchange down the street from my house that gives you cash on the spot for nearly new clothes. I once made $150 selling there (!), but that's definitely an outlying situation. 

It's pretty darn annoying to hem and haw over what to sell, to only have a salesperson at a consignment store want none of your goods-- except for literally the ugliest thing you brought in. Or at least that's what always seems to happen to me!

On my last trip to Buffalo Exchange, I asked for tips on how to sell clothes with a higher success rate. Here's what I learned.

  • Sell on the weekdays, not weekends. Sales associates are less busy and aren't stressed about getting through a 10-person long line of sellers.
     
  • Be mindful of your born-on dates. Sure, trends and brands matter at resale shops, but often times not as much as how recently the clothing item was made. Nearly everything article of clothing includes a tag stating when it originally hit store shelves (it's usually a while tag that says something like SPR14... aka Spring 2014). These guys want stuff that's fairly new-ish, in good condition. Problem is, those are probably the clothes you are still wearing, not the stuff you want to get rid of. 
     
  • If it's fall, bring in fall/winter things. If it's spring, don't expect these guys to buy your sweaters-- no matter how nice they are.
     
  • Keep in mind where the resale store is located. For example, my local Buffalo Exchange is in a fairly young neighborhood. They always seem to buy stuff from Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Forever21 or any other store fit for a 20-something. Professional clothes aren't a big thing here; maybe take your old suits or dresses to a resale store in a nearby 'burb. 
     


4. Dress for Success & Other Specialty Organizations

Speaking of professional clothes, you can always donate nice professional clothes to Dress for Success, Career Gear or another organization helping people make a good first impression at a job interview. Dress for Success asks that all items donated are freshly dry-cleaned / laundered and ironed, not more than 5-years-old, and suitable for wearing to job interviews. 

Other great organizations: Winter coats can go to One Warm Coat; shoes to Soles for Souls; special occasion gowns to the Glass Slipper Project; toiletries to Hope and Comfort. There are plenty of places who desperately need what you're getting rid of.


5. Yard Sale/Garage Sale

Ah, yes. The garage sale. It always seems like a great idea... until you start working on it. Sorting through your stuff, pricing it all out, displaying things so they look pretty enough to buy, haggling with your neighbors over a Marilyn Monroe mug someone re-gifted you in college... ick. By the end, as you're counting the $93 you made in exchange for 20 hours of hard work, you're thinking, why in the hell did I do this????

However, garage sales can be really fun. 

Micheladas and hula hoops! Oh, and a garage sale.

Micheladas and hula hoops! Oh, and a garage sale.


I did a fabulously successful one-day garage sale a few years ago. The key: teaming up with a bunch of friends and making a party out of it. We each brought stuff we wanted to sell to my house (which happened to be the best location for foot traffic). We organized clothing by theme and displayed jewelry on a screen door we found in the garage. We even made a cute changing area with mirrors to encourage people to try stuff on. 

And then we offered cookies and coffee (and later, mixed micheladas just for ourselves), blasted music and hung out all day. It was actually pretty fun because we turned it into a social event. And since I had a few higher ticket items (a couch and a rug), I walked away with about $500! Definitely worth the time. 

However, if you're just selling clothes, books or a hodgepodge of junk nobody really wants (I'm looking at you, VHS tapes!), will the potential income make the time investment worth your while? You won't sell everything, and most things you'll sell will be purchased at half-price.

What's your time worth? Figure out how many hours you'll put into the sale, then really think about how much you'll potentially make. Is $7 an hour worth the stress? What about $20/hr? $40/hr?

Do you not really care, so long as you're drinking bloody marys and hanging out with your friends? That's perfectly fine, too.  

 

6. Clothing Swap.

I arranged one last winter and it was so, so fun. The gist: invite a bunch of friends over for snacks, wine. Ask them to bring clothes that they like, but don't wear anymore. 

My friend Kate suggested we each do a show-and-tell with all of our stuff-- why you love a certain piece of clothing, but don't want it anymore (example: I always loved this dress, but haven't worn it since having a baby; I love how this sweater fits, but I think it's itchy). I thought it was a weird idea, but ended up being rather helpful in seeing potential in what would've been just a big ass pile of clothes on the floor.

As the party host, I offered to bring all unwanted items to Goodwill... which means our casted off goods are probably smashed into a cube somewhere in Detroit right now. :(

 

7. eBay/Craigslist

Listing things on eBay or Craigslist takes time, but can be great for higher ticket or specialty items. I know it's obvious, but always list Craigslist items with photos and only accept cash payments. Oh, and extra obviously, be careful who you're meeting from Craigslist. Make sure you're not home alone when they check out your Bjornskoog shelf from Ikea (totally made up that Ikea name, but it probably exists). 

For eBay, you'll probably be able to get a higher price (you're reading a global vs local audience), just remember you'll need to ship the item, so add in appropriate shipping costs.  


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I know a lot of you are apprehensive to get rid of things because of how much they cost or the fact that your donated goods might end up in a landfill. I totally, 100-percent get that.


However, I will leave you with this:
 

So let's say you drop off a bunch of stuff at Goodwill and it ends up as rags, or shipped around the world where it might just end up as garbage. That sucks. But does it suck more than having it sit at your house, unused, taking up space UNTIL you eventually throw it away?

And who cares how much something cost if you aren't using it? Sell it to someone who will use it and get it the heck out of your face. If no one will buy it, get rid of it anyway. 

Sort of related story, I have an uncle who used to eat ALLLL of the leftovers because he didn't like to see food "wasted," even if he didn't want to eat it or was already full. Even if it had been sitting out all day and had mayo in it. At that point, what's the difference between throwing it away and eating it? I will tell you: one makes you fat/gives you food poisoning and the other doesn't.
 

So... How do you get rid of your crap?


PS Here's how I got rid of a bunch of books, plus check out my awesome before & after closet makeover

PPS Like this article? Share it!

 

This Week's Best Stuff on the Internet


Happy Sunday! I found a lot of great stuff on the Internet this week, but this manatee video takes the cake... mainly because I know I'd act the exact same way. 


Benjamin Percy's essay about Man Camp isn't really about man camp. It's about how guys connect (or rather, don't connect). Percy thinks a lot of guys kinda suck at making friends, himself included. I tend to agree. Thoughts?


This guy made over $2,000 selling his clutter. I'll have what he's having!
 

This grandma video will melt your heart. I'm not crying, it's just allergies!


Sweet, yellow, red, green and shallots. What in the hell is the difference between all these onions?! Mel J explains in this comprehensive all-about-onions post, plus lots of other helpful onion factoids.

Have to admit I am pretty interested in making these paleo pumpkin raisin cookies. And since we're on the subject, is there any way this grain-free rosemary flatbread could taste as good as it looks? I doubt it, but I want to try!
 

Please tell me you watched the Sizzler promo video? Like, has our taste improved this much in 25 years? I can't believe a company ever made such a thing, though I am thankful they did.


Thinking about getting a blender? Don't. Do this instead. Cheaper, easier to deal with and more flexible. Plus it takes up less space!


A little dark, but worth the read: why Dr. Justine Lee thinks you shouldn't let your pet die at home.
 

And lastly, I don't have anything against Jennifer Hudson, but I've simply never given her much thought. Then I watched this video and now I kinda love her. 


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I Organized My Wardrobe Using the KonMari Method

Yes, I am really folding my socks and underwear these days.

Yes, I am really folding my socks and underwear these days.


I recently overhauled my bookshelves using the KonMari method of tidying up. The gist: only keep things that give you joy or are useful, and get rid of everything else. Japanese organizational guru Marie Kondo believes you tackle one category of items at a time (like all books at once, all clothes at once, all toiletries at once), physically piling all of said category on a table/bed/floor. Then, pick up each item, asking if it "sparks joy."


I know that sounds hokey, but once you start doing it, you realize some things do spark joy, while others do nothing for you.  


Since my book project went so well, I decided to tackle my clothes.


First stop? Socks, underwear, swimsuits and bras. Here's everything, piled on my bed: 
 

Not sexy at all. 

Not sexy at all. 


Now can socks or underwear spark joy? Of course! I own some underwear that I love wearing and others that I find to be uncomfortable, ugly or just downright old and embarrassing. Get rid of any pair you're ashamed to own (you know... like the ones leftover from high school), really cute ones that you never touch because they always give you a wedgie, or are simply worn out. You deserve to wear underwear you love, even no one else sees it (and especially if someone else is seeing it!). 

Now do the same with your socks (holes? Who cares if they're SmartWools, get rid of 'em!), bras/undergarments and swimwear. 


Done? Great. Now it's time to get folding. 


Yes, you're going to fold your underwear. Trust me, it's going to be incredibly satisfying. I could explain how to do such a thing, but I'll let Marie Kondo show you instead. She's a folding boss.
 


See, isn't that satisfying? Here's the final product:
 

In retrospect, I should've cleaned off my dresser. Oh well, I am just a real person over here.

In retrospect, I should've cleaned off my dresser. Oh well, I am just a real person over here.


Next, it was on to t-shirts, tanks, jeans, sweaters, workout and lounge gear.... including off season stuff I'd stored in the basement during the winter. Kondo wants you to go through ALL of your clothes in your entire house at the same time. She also encourages you to keep off-season stuff in your closet (like sweaters) so you can stay reminded of what you have. I kept everything in my closet except extreme winter things, like my parka. 


Here's about half of my crap:

Clothes, clothes and more clothes. 

Clothes, clothes and more clothes. 


I held each item, asking if it brought me joy. Here's what I ended up with.


Long sleeved t-shirts, light sweaters, shorts and foldable skirts:
 

Do you see my jorts???

Do you see my jorts???


Workout t-shirts and tanks, plus regular t-shirts and tanks. 

Can you spot the F#$K 'Em Bucky shirt?

Can you spot the F#$K 'Em Bucky shirt?

Sweaters & sweatshirts on the left; pjs, workout pants and long sleeved gear (like long underwear) on the right.
 

My clothes look like burritos!

My clothes look like burritos!


Lastly, here are my hangables and shoes. 
 

Everything all in one place.

Everything all in one place.

Shoesies!

Shoesies!


And even though I just got rid of a bunch of clothes last fall, I still had this much clothing that didn't spark joy. 
 

Goodwill, here we come!

Goodwill, here we come!


I did this project about two weeks ago, and while folding does take a little more time, it's helped me stay organized. I love opening my drawers and just marveling at how tidy and pretty my stuff looks. It's the little things! 

Next up? The kitchen. *gulp*


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Have you tried the KonMari method? Thoughts? PS here are my before and after photos from my book overhaul, plus pics from the last time I cleaned out my closet. I've come a long way, baby!