I find it hard to clean out the basement

My friend Ann has no trouble throwing things out.

These items, ignored for such a long time, need to be thrown out.

Reading this post might be like my neighbor says- “Watching paint dry.”

Slated to get a much needed new furnace installed and an updated electrical box-

so the pressure’s on to clear the place.

Buying new lights to illuminate the boxes of junk was a start.

My problem is I think about all the different lives the things represent.  Matthew suggested photographing the junk.

I was able to get another one of those construction bags filled to go out to the curb. Two bags of items for donation

But a dusty electric skillet lined with probable-poison-coating when heated, no lid or plug? Immediate disposal.

No problem!

electric fry pan

plastic groceries

Remaining plastic groceries from the little yellow shopping cart with the orange wheels, a tea party cup from at least 30 years ago.  Half a wooden lemon, a fake muffin.  Garbage.

Christmas decoration

A little felt elf, found in a Christmas tin. My mother used to put these on our stairs, wrapped them around the banister.

Probably purchased at a Church Bazaar in the 60’s.  He was looking at me.  Couldn’t throw him out. His sequined eyes looked at me.   Better than that Elf on the Shelf.

basket and badminton

A ratty basket in the shape of a duck and old badminton racquets.  Easy to pitch these.

cigar box with parts

Will I ever need these parts in this old cigar box?

science fair trophy 1988

Mark’s old trophy.   Erika saw this on FB when I posted and said it was a great item to stay in Pittsburgh!

I don’t even have a record player anymore

I don’t even remember who gave this to me

Can't remember who gave this to me

And then I found my dad’s old trench coat, black gloves in his pocket.


I washed it, hung it out.  It had a presence as it hung on that hanger

Going to donate.    Steve said he’d wear it.  Made me feel a little less sad but I think it is too big on him.

Steve in my dad's coat


Laura rhymes.  Yellowed paper booklet . Yucky.

Old workboots.  Owner unknown.

Work Boots

19 thoughts on “I find it hard to clean out the basement

  1. Great photos Ruth. I loved the old records – we purchased a record player and my husband is converting them so we can listen to them again 🙂

    • Oh that sounds like a sweet plan! I avoid doing this work as you can see by the age of the items kept. Thanks for your visit and nice comment.

  2. I would keep the Cat’s Eye Marble from the box of hardware and the Burl Ives album, of course . . .and the duck basket.

  3. Know you are going to love your new furnace and electric box- just for themselves! but also for this blog!! 🙂 I can relate to needing to both throw out and give away!!!

  4. You’re on the right track by recycling your items. I look at my ‘stuff’ and think how nice it would be for someone else to have them in their home. Sell them at a yard sale or donate them. You will be amazed at how wonderful your home feels afterwards!

  5. I would think the old cigar boxes are worth a mint! BUT all the things from your childhood and stuff that your parents had and that belonged to your kids when they were little mean the most in your heart. Hard to part with. Get some huge plastic containers and re-store the things you can’t part with. A lot of my stuff I sold and some I gave to Goodwill, and I STILL have a lot of STUFF I can’t part with! Good luck in picking and choosing and making room for your new furnace and electrical box!

  6. I couldn’t possibly classify all those LP’s as junk – I can see a couple of absolute gems there and I don’t doubt that there are many more excellent albums hiding in the pile! Choose what you discard carefully because once it’s gone you’ll never get it back.

  7. I performed a similar exercise in the weeks leading up to the visitation. Funny how at first, with weeks to go before her arrival, I gave each item careful consideration. As time wore on, the amount of consideration grew appreciably less — and the charity resale shop bags filled and multiplied.

  8. Good job donating/removing items! I know from your old “Keep or Pitch?” days that clearing content from your home can be a challenge – this is great progress!

    • Thanks RoSy. Good to see you visiting on the blog today.
      I haven’t made much progress on the basement.
      The furnace guy starts next week so this is the weekend to get serious.
      Thanks for thinking of me and for the hugs.

  9. Looks like you need some plastic tubs to put your stuff in so you can buy more stuff — or so the commercial suggests. I don’t envy you in cleaning the basement, but if you’re like me, I’m sure you discovered you have possessions you didn’t even know you owned. LOL.

Thanks for your visit. It's always good to hear you stopped by.