When One Will Do

When One Will Do - Decluttering Stories from

My daughter will turn 9 next month.

That’s crazy talk.

Since the party-planning has already started, I looked at this randomly-appearing item with my anti-T.P.A.D glasses on.

(T.P.A.D. = Time Passage Awareness Disorder = a totally-made-up-by-me condition)

These cute little party favor boxes were from her birthday party two years ago. I know it was two years ago because we only do parties every other year.

As always happens, I needed ONE more box than the package held, so I had to buy two packages. They were cute, so my daughter kept the extras. She has used them.

Important Treasures at

Important stuff.

But she has used them. Like, used them all together. They move from place to place and are put to use for various reasons, as one unit.

When I saw them and realized they’d been floating around the house for two years, it hit me that while it did make sense to keep one, it didn’t make sense to keep them all.

This goes against my natural if-one-is-good-I-should-probably-have-twenty mentality.

But I did it. I pitched all but one. Purpose still served, slightly more open space in my home.

Decluttering Stories at

Slight. But more.

Yay for me.



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--Nony get-how-to-manage-your-home-without-losing-your-mind-wherever-books-are-sold


  1. 1

    Hi Nony!

    I am a new reader — like just found you from I heart organizing – The Spring Cleaning thing! I have been reading backwards, and I wanted to tell you how much I love you! You have helped me so much already! I have been trying to do the dishes every day – I have failed a few times, but I just start again, and its never as bad as that first day!! KWIM?!? The next step is the massive laundry pile! I am still trying to figure out how to best make this work for me — I work FT, and have a 5 and 2 year old boys!! Maybe they can help me sweep the kitchen floor?!!? Hmm…!!!

    WOW — I am soo impressed that you just threw those away — I would have hemmed and hawed, and debated using them for the upcoming party, and then I would have been shopping and seen new ones soo cute that I had to buy and then I would have had a 2nd tower of gift boxes floating around my house!!! Kudos – I tip my hat to you!! 🙂

  2. 3

    While reading this a LOT of excuses to keep them went through my head. *rolls eyes*
    I’ve still got a looong way to go. (I can’t believe your daughter is nearly 9! Just a few months ago she was at home with you and you were starting a blog – or so it seems to me 🙂 )
    And TPAD might not be a recognised condition but it is totally a thing!

  3. 4

    TPAD – oh, yes – Now I have an acronym for my disorder.
    and I reacted similarly to Stella – there must be something else you could use these for.. oh, you could use them as dividers in vanity cabinet or for crayons, or for taco toppings or … And what if one gets dirty or bent, they you will wish you had another one, but …hmm, NO!! You are right – just get rid of them. I have too many ‘floaters’ in my house too. Thanks for pointing out the obvious.

  4. 5

    Haha! We have had so many left over party goods over the years. I was holding on to some from 6 or more years ago. When I moved last year I finally tossed them realizing I was not going to use them again like I thought I would lol!

  5. 6

    This made me smile. 🙂

  6. 7

    Those little boxes reminded me of four skinny, square plastic popcorn containers I had (reminiscent of old-fashioned ones you see in movies). Even though they stacked nicely, I kept moving them from cupboard to cupboard because I don’t have that much shelf space. And UN-like your daughter, we didn’t use them even once (stacked or otherwise) – in three or four years. I finally got rid of them. Cute as nostalgic stuff is, if it’s not something you will display on a shelf, and it’s not something you actually use … what’s the point of keeping it? Now I just need to apply that principle to a few more things in my house. 😀

  7. 8
    KellyJMF says:

    We had a Girl Scout event for the 100th birthday of GSUSA where we invited everyone to bring in those last few napkins or plates from a themed birthday party that everyone holds onto, just in case. The girls enjoyed the huge variety and finding “napkin buddies” who had chosen the same design. The only downside was the huge number of leftover paper-goods, but I made them fit in a single tote bag and my troop has been slowly using them up.

  8. 9

    I received (in a swag bag) a handle for those squeeze packs of apple sauce and baby purees. We have no use for it, but I kept it to give to someone with a shower gift. The bottom of it has come open, so I felt uncomfortable gifting to someone. It has been on top of my daughter’s dresser since November. Today I could someone use it? Yes. Would I use it? No. thanks for your constant encouragement and sharing to know that I am not alone.

  9. 10
    Vicky Kelley says:

    As a stack, though, there is more structural support. The one by it self will now fall apart as it is moved around.

  10. 11

    Leftover party supplies – I don’t keep these for even a minute! Why? Because I’m a teacher and I take them right away to the staff lounge. Teachers who are hosting a classroom party, a tutorial with snacks after school, an impromptu team meeting – will appreciate plates, bowls, snack containers, napkins, utensils… when these are donated, we don’t have to pay for them out of our personal funds.

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