There are some things in our home we feel obligated to have because, well, you have to have them but how many of them get used?
To get serious about decluttering your home and reclaiming your space it's time to say goodbye to those items that aren't pulling their weight.
Feel free to donate or repurpose your items so they get put to good use somewhere else and stop wasting your valuable space and time it takes to dust them.
Instant specialty appliances take up a massive amount of space in your kitchen cupboards and require care and cleaning, even when they are not in use, it's for food after all, hygiene is really important here.
You know the machines I'm talking about, the popcorn maker, the hot dog steamer (with bun warmer), the ice-cream maker, the cake-pop mould, the 81-piece chocolate fountain, the banana keeper, the egg poacher, the egg counter. At the time you thought, 'It's too good to be true' and while you might have used it for a week or two, the novelty soon wore off and you demanded your bench space back.
Reality is this, you can easily heat hotdogs in boiling water, pop popcorn in a saucepan, hand shape cake-pops and poach eggs without a poacher, surprise, surprise, you probably can keep count of your eggs without help too. If you use your appliances regularly and are happy with the results, by all means, continue, especially if that encourages you to make healthy choices, like organic fruit ice-creams, if you forgot you even had a cordless, electric wine bottle opener it's time to clean up and declutter those cupboards and drawers.
Of course, you live in hope your lost storage containers and lids will make their way home for a tearful reunion, after all, they can't have gone too far. The truth is if a set hasn't come good by now, they never will. In the meantime your containers and loose lids are rattling around getting in the way, accumulating dust and taking up space.
Once you admit that your Tupperware parts are single and embrace this you can find new purposes for them, perhaps in the garage, pet storage, garden items or a kid's room. If not, free up space by sending them to the recycling and feel more organised and tidy instantly.
Utensils for specific foods
When you go to get a fork do you need to dig behind the fondue fork, crab fork and nutcracker to find one? There is no use holding onto specific cutlery for that once-in-a-decade time when you actually might need them.
The same goes for buttering toast, you don't need a great big flat butter knife to do the job since we are no longer carving into a giant slab of hard butter set in the middle of the table on a special platter, food technology has made the job of spreading butter a breeze. Just like cloth napkins and sugar tongs, the need for a grapefruit knife is no longer a polite necessity to have at the breakfast table so you can simplify the utensil drawer and breathe easy.
Big fat dictionary
When was the last time you went to the shelf and looked something up in the dictionary? As soon as computer information technology came in the encyclopedia series went onto the recycling heap. While the big old dictionary remains as a home staple, the truth is it's no more useful. We are only shelving the idea that we are worldly and intelligent, the bigger the dictionary the smarter you are! Or maybe you are smarter if you have more space for books you will actually use?
As a kid, a great way to save up for treats was by hoarding loose change in a decorative box. Not only is loose change hard to come by in our cashless world, but it's also adding up to less and less; gone are the days when you could buy a bag of mixed lollies for a dollar. While money boxes might look cute and seem practical you are much better off getting hold of a finance app that will help curb your spending, stick to a budget or roll your credit card 'change' into an aggressive savings account (i.e. RAIZ).
In reality, the only thing you are holding onto is dirty money and sentiment. Put your money into a bank account (where it will do some work) and say hello to the modern world by putting that piggy bank to rest.
Just thinking about discarding some of the items on this list might make you feel a little icky, just know that the discomfort is short term, in the long run, it's well worth the effort and freedom. If you are squeamish about letting go of 'must-haves', try gathering them up and putting them aside for a while, like in the darkest part of the laundry cupboard or on a garage shelf. Set a reminder on your phone to check on them in six months and decide if you have missed them at all, I'm bettering not.