This Is Much Harder Than I Thought It Would Be

November 18, 2012 at 10:14 PM 4 comments

This week I decided to take a stab at the plastic containers full of baby clothes and toys in my basement. My original intent was to donate most of my son’s stuff to a local charity. Although I’m pretty sure my husband and I will try for a second child it seemed kind of silly to hold on to everything. After all, we don’t know if the child will be the same gender or born at the same time of year.

So I started the great dig on Friday. Only moments into the first box I realized this was going to be a lot harder then I ever imagined. I started with my son’s earliest items, the clothes and blankets he wore during his very first days on this earth.

Of course, I wanted to keep the onesie and blanket we brought him home in. Then there was the little hat a friend knitted and the swaddle blanket we dressed him in on his first day. “Okay, okay,” I thought, “those were no brainers. Now let’s find some things to donate.” The problem is that every little outfit brought memories flooding back to me. Every little terry cloth sleeper, every blanket, every little onesie made me smile. I can’t believe how much my son has grown in a year and every time I pulled an item out of the box I stared in disbelief at how little he once was.

A friend of ours is expecting a baby in April. So I dug through the boxes and found a few sleepers and onesies that were super cute, but no where near favorites of mine. I found enough items to fill a large gift bag.

My husband’s cousin is visiting this week and their son is a few months younger then my son but much smaller in size. I bundled up a few items that might fit him. Again they are super cute, but not really favorites of mine. Some of them were actually hand-me-downs from a former coworker of mine and a bunch of the items were never worn by my son.

I didn’t get rid of nearly as much stuff as I expected. Despite the fact that I’ve taken thousands of photographs of my son in these clothes I couldn’t bear the thought of getting rid of them just yet. I’m not normally sentimental about stuff, but it was clear that this wasn’t going to be an easy process.

I did decide to donate a bunch of holiday related clothing. Friends and family provided us with lots of Thanksgiving and Christmas gear that is really too cute to sit inside a box waiting for our next child.

I also pulled out everything that I didn’t absolutely love. My son was given a lot of clothes from friends and family and then received a ton of hand-me-downs. If I felt a special affection for an item I kept it, if I didn’t think much about or thought it was cute, but not ridiculously adorable, then I donated it. All in all I ended up with three grocery bags full of baby clothes sized newborn to twelve months.

I managed to cram all of the remaining baby clothes into one large plastic container. I also kept a smaller container with sleep related items like baby blankets and sleep sacks. It still seems like quite a lot of stuff, but my heart isn’t ready to pass it on to another family just yet.

Entry filed under: baby, charity, organization. Tags: .

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jerry  |  November 19, 2012 at 11:02 AM

    I know how that is! We saved SOME things from our first daughter and we ended up having another daughter and i”m glad we kept some of her clothes because they were nice and sentimental to us. It leads to saving money, too which is nice. I think your insurance for saving money over all, however, is buying used at garage sales and thrift stores. They grow out of them so quickly.

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  • 2. Ellen K.  |  November 21, 2012 at 9:32 AM

    My Lane cedar chest contains zero adult sweaters but three mesh produce bags (awesome for organizing; gourmetseed.com) filled with favorite sleepers, onesies, and outfits from my twin daughters’ first few years. (They just turned 4.) If the house is on fire, once all the people and animals are out, I only want these bags. Screw the wedding album! I am happily married, but 20 photos in a heavy, old-fashioned album that gathers dust on a shelf versus 3 lightweight bags of baby clothes and little seersucker dresses that my husband and I still coo over? No contest.

    You won’t receive nearly as many gifts for a second child, so it’s smart to keep some things — particularly sleep sacks, which are so useful and rather expensive. I think the best policy for baby clothes is to keep everything that you are especially fond of, and every so often, reconsider them.

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  • 3. anexactinglife  |  November 26, 2012 at 6:03 PM

    I think one bin of clothes is very reasonable! I kept way too much, then I remembered that when I was having my child, the nurses told me there were moms in nearby rooms who didn’t even have one outfit to bring their child home in :( So that made it easier for me to donate!

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  • 4. » Saying Goodbye To My Past One Frugal Girl  |  November 26, 2012 at 10:30 PM

    [...] Last week I wrote about my struggle to rid my home of sentimental clutter. Thankfully I received a bunch of great suggestions on how to pare down the mess. Among my favorites were picking out the very best items, removing duplicates and limiting the amount of stuff so that it all has to fit inside one small tote. I followed a similar set of rules when figuring out which of my son’s clothes to donate. [...]

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