A New Decluttering Question

In general, my two decluttering questions are sufficient.

But last week, I came up with an additional question that I could use if I ever got stuck.

If this item broke, would I replace it?

You can probably tell from the picture above what helped me come up with this idea.

After putting some dishes away, I (shocker of all shockers) forgot to close the cabinet door.  So . . . there was absolutely nothing to stop the evidently-precariously-balanced pie plate from coming crashing down and shattering into (literally) a ba-jillion pieces.

As I waited for my 7yo to bring me some shoes, I thought, “Hmmmm, I don’t think I’ll replace that.  I never used it.”

I’m not exactly a pie-making-fiend, so the other glass pie pan I own should be more than sufficient.

Which means I should have purged it long ago. 

And here’s a free thought on parenting:  I do believe that God allows these things to happen to mommies for the purpose of making us more understanding when they happen to our kids.

I’m linking this up at Raising Homemakers and Works For Me Wednesday at We are THAT Family.


  1. Hi there,

    I think that’s an excellent question. Would I replace that which breaks? If it were the DVD player, yes! If it were a plate that a glass that broke, no.

    By the way, I know exactly what you mean about the idea of us making a mistake. It makes us humble before our children. I think our children should see that we aren’t perfect.

    Rebecca G.

  2. Melissa says:

    Glad no one got hurt!

    Love the new question – that’s a good one. Going to have to adopt it for my own use if you don’t mind. :) I can definitely recall times when stuff was broken and I was glad to throw it away (and felt no desire to replace it) – which is probably a sign that it should have been thrown out a long time before!

  3. You know…I need to do this as well. I’ll ask myself this question as I’m packing up my house. Maybe I’ll get rid of even more! :)

  4. Stephanie says:

    Love the free thought on parenting. I would have never thought of it like that!

  5. This is a great question! If you don’t love it enough to replace it, why hold on to it. I’ll have to remember this when I tackle my hall closet.

  6. Michelle says:

    The question in my house is this: If it breaks, will I be allowed to throw it away?

    My spouse likes to hang onto broken/damaged stuff, because you never know when it might come in handy! Drives me crazy… :)

  7. Fantastic perspective! I’ve never thought about items in those exact terms but you can bet I will now!

  8. That is awesome.

    Another question I learned from a professional organizer is to ask, “Do I love it, or does it love me?” Eg, I love my earrings. I do not love my vacuum, but it loves (as in, serves) me. If both of the answers are no, out it goes!

  9. That is an excellent question to ask. As were the original two questions–I wasn’t yet a reader in February 2010 and I just clicked over to check them out!

    Our basement flooded just a wee bit with all the crazy rain in the Midwest last week, and we purged a lot of stuff in the cleanup. Stuff we could have gotten rid of long ago!

    We’re now motivated to do our decluttering now, by choice, and not in the aftermath of a (tiny) disaster.

    Your site is great motivation!

  10. Normal Friend says:

    I don’t have to ask that question, since I’m weird enough to get excited that I have an excuse to throw something away! But in our house the kids feel no shame when they break something. Why? Because their totally unathletic, uncoordinated mother breaks things more than anyone in the house! Household Rule: Mommy isn’t allowed to throw or toss anything anywhere or to anyone. Household Rule: No one is allowed to throw or toss anything to Mommy. She will fumble it and either get hurt or break something! I’m not kidding.

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