Throw Out Fifty Things: Clear the Clutter, Find Your Life

Little Free Library E17
by Gail Blanke | Other |
ISBN: 0446505781 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingPoodlesisterwing of Walthamstow, Greater London United Kingdom on 5/8/2016
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
5 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingPoodlesisterwing from Walthamstow, Greater London United Kingdom on Sunday, May 08, 2016
Bought online at Alibris for the International RABCK Sweepstake March/April winner.

Released 3 yrs ago (5/9/2016 UTC) at International RABCK Sweepstakes, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- United Kingdom


On its way to the winner, label travelling separately.

Journal Entry 3 by wingbookfrogsterwing at Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, May 17, 2016
Yay! It's arrived safely in Edinburgh. Thank you Poodlesister!

Journal Entry 4 by wingbookfrogsterwing at Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Saturday, May 28, 2016
This was interesting, because unlike a lot of other books about de-cluttering, it is not just about the physical stuff, but also the mental clutter. I can't decide if the author would be a bit annoying to know in real life as she is so dynamic and upbeat! LOL.
Thanks very much for this Poodlesister, i really enjoy books on this topic. I have another reader in mind for this one.

Journal Entry 5 by teapot at Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Sunday, June 12, 2016
Given to me by Bookfrogster at a meeting! Thank you very much. :-)

Journal Entry 6 by wingkirjakkowing at Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, May 16, 2017
Got this from teapot a few days ago at my first Edinburgh meet-up in Patisserie Florentin, Stockbridge. They do things thoroughly over there, the meeting + release walk + sitting in another pub took 8 hours! We might have found a new bookcrossing pub as the owner of Barony Bar had put up a bookshelf and was trying to persuade me to take some books along in true bookcrossing spirit - except he had never heard of bookcrossing. He was so excited of the idea he completely forgot we had come into the pub for drinks and some light refreshments...

Journal Entry 7 by teapot at Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, May 16, 2017
I realised I forgot to review this...

It started of pretty well and actually motivated me to get rid of a bunch of stuff, but the second half of the book went downhill for me after that. Just succes story after success story of people who "throw away" negative thought, traumatic memories or bad attitudes. I don't believe for a second that those names and stories aren't all completely made up! Also there was much too much personal stuff about the author and her family. Is it a self-help book or a memoir? It didn't mesh together very well for me.

Thanks again Bookfrogster and hope you enjoy Kirjako!

Journal Entry 8 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Wednesday, January 08, 2020
Note to self: I've tagged Annimanni with this book, will be my next read once I've finished with my current read.

Journal Entry 9 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
Began reading this. I had to de-clutter a great deal last year as our block-of-flats was given to the mercy of East-European plumbers... I am currently living in a dollhouse (24m2), have been here a little over a month and will probably get my own flat back in March. Visited the renovation site today and noticed they were putting the plumbing on the surface and not inside the wall as they were supposed to... Have to e-mail them tomorrow.
What I love about the dollhouse is the fact that I have a view and I can see the sunrise. Where I normally live I only see the house opposite.

Journal Entry 10 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
I thought the de-cluttering would kill me. I had lived in my flat for 29 years. A LOT of stuff gathers up in 29 years. But I also found some "treasures", like this autograph of Wayne Gretzky from 1982, I think. We had ice-hockey championships in Helsinki and I was watching one of his games there.

Journal Entry 11 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
More treasures: I have been asked once to a farewell party at the Soviet Embassy. Nowadays an invitation card would probably have to have one's whole name, not merely "Miss Kaisa", but security wasn't such an issue back then (1991). The person leaving was another dog owner and he didn't know my full name.

Journal Entry 12 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
What about these soap bars to commemorate the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer? I was leaving Britain that day and listened the wedding ceremony from a bus radio travelling from Dartmoor to London town (29th July 1981).

Journal Entry 13 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
What about the time I saw the real James Herriot, Alf Wight, opening the vet Congress in Harrogate in 1989? That was also the first foreign congress I attended. Can't toss away this either...

Journal Entry 14 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
This was my most puzzling find: a box of bullets from my kitchen! Mom had passed away almost a year before and I still had some of her stuff which I hadn't even gone through yet. Mom most certainly didn't know she had bullets, but when giving my brother the third degree it turned out that Dad had kept his father's old hand gun but didn't have a license for it, so it was given to a hunter friend when Dad passed away (in 2001) but they had obviously overlooked the bullets which had ended up in my flat.
How does one get rid of bullets? This is where Facebook comes handy. I posted a picture of the bullets and my cousin once removed answered they had found much more and bigger ammunition from their cellar after her mother died - almost 30 years after her father the soldier had died - so they merely called the police who came rather quickly to fetch everything. Great! I had just emptied my cellar as ordered by the plumbing company, I could call the police and say I found the bullets from there, not from my kitchen, which still was rather disorderly. Had I stuck to the truth they might have thought I was somewhat weird, which of course would have been a wrong diagnosis...
So, I waited until the following morning and called the police who came and checked over the cellar and said these things are often found in old houses like this (built in 1908).
If it hadn't been for this renovation operation, goodness knows for how long I would have had that box of bullets sitting on my window-sill. So perhaps it is a good idea to go through one's stuff every now and then...

Journal Entry 15 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
Something else from granddad's legacy... He was a drug addict, as during the war Germans gave our soldiers amphetamine to help them stay awake longer and he became addicted. For some reason Dad had saved granddad's glass syringes and that one I actually sold to a family friend who saw the photo in the FB. He would have liked to buy the bullets as well, but that is where I drew the line.

Journal Entry 16 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, January 12, 2020
I tossed away loads of bad photos or pictures of people or places I didn't even recognize, but this one I had to save...
A much younger me and a French Columbo look-a-like at a vet congress in Lyon in 1991.

Journal Entry 17 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Monday, January 13, 2020
Yard sales, booth sales, neighbourhood FB -sales groups and the Finnish equivalent of eBay - I've done them all. Lots of work, but you meet some interesting people, hear funny stories and - if you are very lucky, strike gold!

Journal Entry 18 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Monday, January 13, 2020
This old easy-chair weighed a ton and I hated the colour, but it was very comfy to sit. I decided to let it go and found a new Internet company ("Mjuk") which sells used furniture, comes and collects the stuff from your home, gives it a bit of a facelift if needed, takes advertising photos and sells it, while I do nothing. I got 60 per cent, they got 40 per cent, which I thought was a great deal. The chair was too big to fit in the lift and I live on the fifth floor... I would have died had I tried taking it out myself.

Journal Entry 19 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Monday, January 13, 2020
My jackpot. One antiques dealer said Arabia as a brand is out of fashion, another said she might get 150€ for it minus her comission (I didn't even ask how much that was). Sold it myself in the ("Finnish eBay") for 1085€! That was also the first item I put in there, so I thought this was easy... Only seven items were sold over 1000€ in that YEAR, this was one of them (I read that story from one of our tabloids, which had the picture of my jar on their front page!). No need to say that since that piece of beginner's luck I've only got pocket money from the things that I've sold there.

Journal Entry 20 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Monday, January 13, 2020
I had just thought this books appears to be younger than eleven years (publ. in 2009), but then she mentioned cancelled checks. Britain will probably never give up using squirrel skins and checks for currency, but do they still have checks in the US? Haven't you heard of plastic money? When your little machine tells you right away if the client's account is on the red, no need to wait that the check bounces. I would not go as far as Sweden, though, which has almost given up cash (Stockholm's main airport, Arlanda, is a cash-free zone. You can't even buy a cup of coffee with cash there!).
She also praised Steve Jobs, who was probably a narcissist, according to his family members. That is the scary thing, narcissists appear to be so wonderful.

Journal Entry 21 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Wednesday, January 15, 2020
Beth Comstock was bookcrossing material - when she passed books on she wrote notes why she had enjoyed them and why future readers might like them. But then she bought a Kindle to save room... The only reason I would prefer an e-book to a real book would be if my eye-sight was failing and I would need a bigger font.

Journal Entry 22 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Wednesday, January 15, 2020
A couple of things about flea markets: Those things you hate and think would never sell are often those which go first. You are probably also pricing them low as well, so that helps. Then I've noticed that things I might still like to keep I put a higher price-tag on (mental, I do not actually put price-tags on them), so they won't go cheap, but if they stay, I won't mind. Then there are those pieces which you know are valuable or which you think are great and nobody even looks at them - that actually hurts. And then there are those moments when the right person finds the perfect object for him or her. Last summer I decided to sell a framed pencil picture of a cat which had been a present but which I never quite liked. A man tried to read who the artist was and realized it was the former arts teacher of his wife's. He said they already have one picture by her and her wife will be so glad when he goes home with this. The price was low (I did want to get rid of it, remember?), but still I considered that the best sale of the day as it went to the right home. I sometimes even tell a ridiculously high price if I do not like somebody and don't want that person to buy my precious things... but that happens quite seldom.
Last summer I also sold two books of poetry and an old travel typewriter telling the books were written with it (they might have, there were several typewriters in the family). The buyer was thrilled, as she had written a self-published book (which I didn't buy, to her great dismay).
Then there was the New Testament which had belonged to Toivo Särkkä in 1918 (he had written his name and the year on the first page, beautiful old-fashioned hand-writing). Toivo Särkkä was a very famous Finnish film-director and the owner of Suomi-Filmi film company and year 1918 was the black year of civil war in Finnish history. Särkkä's grand-daughter was our client and as we have a small corner for second-hand animal books in our clinic she asked if we took other books, too.
"No we don't", I said firmly.
Then she said the dreaded words: "Well, I guess I have to throw them away then as I am moving to a flat."
"I can come and have a look" I heard myself saying. I just couldn't say no, if books were in mortal danger. I have since hardened myself. But I went to have a look and it was a big library of all sorts of books, mainly her late husband's who had been a diplomat. Political history, which I could not care less, books about Arabic cultures as they had been stationed in some Arabic countries, books given to them, books given and inscribed to Toivo Särkkä (it was first then I learned they were related and the house I collected the books from was on the same property where the once famous Särkkälinna ("Castle Särkkä") had been in Marjaniemi, but Särkkälinna didn't exist anymore) or owned by him, like the New Testament.
I think 42 bags of dusty books came to me to be rehomed. I kept the New Testament for a few years and thought of donating it to the Film Museum, but they were drowning of donations and had too small premises, so they declined. I so wanted the book to find a good home. I had taken it to the flea market with me, but didn't have high hopes. There was a young girl who picked the book up and asked what it was. It was small, with leather covers and a cardboard box as extra protection. I explained it was a New Testament, but not just any New Testament, it used to belong to Toivo Särkkä. She stared at me, saying nothing. I thought she was too young to know him and told who Toivo Särkkä had been.
She said she knew and asked how much the book was. 15€. She said she will think about it and left. I thought that was that, but she came back asking if she could get it for 12€ as that was all she had. I agreed and she said her boyfriend "will die" as he is a film director and she just can't believe she had found something which had belonged to the late great Toivo Särkkä. I was so happy I could have given the book to her for free! It had found the good home I had hoped for!

Journal Entry 23 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Friday, January 17, 2020
Still on the subject of flea markets. It is hard work, putting everything out there nicely on display, being overly social (grumpy does not sell, nor people who are more interested in their smart phones than their potential clients) and packing up at the end of the day is the worst part. You had made a decision to part with these things, so having to take them back - apart from an item or two you wished would not sell - is really depressing. I know, I have loads to sell next summer as well. But you meet interesting people, people who collect bizarre things, and you hear (and tell) stories. You might get to know those who come to sell there, if you happen to have your stalls next to each other more than once.
To a completely different subject the writer told, about cheating at school and how she went to confess. Good grief, practically everybody was cheating at exams in my class and nowadays they are allowed to use their pads and smart phones as remembering everything is not valued as much as knowing how to find the necessary information quickly, so we were actually just ahead of our time...
Lue Ann, not opening the letter she received from Sir Rudolf - so stupid I could scream! She deserved to miss her chance there.
I was a bit surprised how the book turned to be a mental self-help manual towards the end, but hey, they say that hoarding can be a sign of mental health issues...
Well, if there were no hoarders there would be less to put in museums and archives. Some awesome collections have once been somebody's obsession.

Journal Entry 24 by wingkirjakkowing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Released 4 wks ago (1/21/2020 UTC) at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland


Off to Annimanni as a wishlist tag. Surely you don't have clutter?

Journal Entry 25 by wingAnnimanniwing at Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Tuesday, January 21, 2020
I most certainly do, I'm afraid... Thanks for the book, maybe it will help rectify the situation :D

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