I hate being a hoarder, but sometimes you just have to hold your hand up and acknowledge your shortcomings. I hold on to clothes because some day I ‘might’ wear them again. Last year I wrote a blog post featuring some items that I was finding to hard to let go of, one of which was a raclette set, (which is a grill for melting cheese and flinging it over potatoes, so that every mouthful boosts your cholesterol by 50%.) The French eat it after a day on the slopes, I don’t know if we can justify it here in Belfast. Anyway, I still have the set. It’s upstairs, in a dusty box.
Now, should someone say to me, ‘Helen, I’d LOVE a raclette set!’ I’d say: ‘Take it! Please! Off you go.’ But they haven’t, and thus still it languishes.
Here are three places where you can direct some of your stuff if you are trying to declutter:
Bras: Here’s the link. You can just have a look at this without any any of my rigmarole, and thanks to my friend Eleanor for alerting me to this brilliant initiative.
Bicycles: go and visit Brendan from www.bikeaidafrica.org. He will fix up your knackered old bike and have it shipped out to Madagascar. Contact him on 07788 108727. I decided that I wasn’t going to get my older daughter a brand new bike this year. They end up all rusty and lying outside and to be honest, my nerves can’t take it. I bought her one for £15 from Brendan and he was so thorough, urging me to come back should it need tweaked in any way. What a dote. You can donate any bikes or scooters or tricycles to him, and he’s situated just off Sunnyside Street, on the alley way that connects to Whitehall Gardens.
Tools and electrical goods: Opposite Brendan’s premises you will find Tools for Solidarity. They take old sewing machines, repair them and send them to third world destinations to help local businesses. My father in law bought a one from them for his wife. Anne sadly passed away last February, and Paddy later returned the machine to them. He’s like that, Paddy: he has a heart the size of Brazil. They will also take other tools and bits and pieces and distribute them to those in need.
So what I’d love to ask you good people, is do you know of any other groups who take ‘random stuff’ to use for projects?
Corks, for example. I can’t throw out corks. I have a drawerful of corks, which reminds me of my alcoholic tendencies every time I open it. While in Galway recently, I sipped a chilled Pinot Noir (yes, a chilled red, and mighty fine it was too) in The Kasbah Wine Bar. Should you EVER visit Galway, I urge you to go. It serves fabulous wine by the glass. It was an Aladdin’s cave of delights on which to feast the eye. Did Aladdin have a cave? I can’t recall, but it sounds right. Anyway, some creative soul had created a love seat made of corks! It felt cosy and insulated upon the back. Please, don’t make me leave, I asked my friend Brenda.
The aim of this Do One Thing Campaign is to encourage people to make one small change to enhance lives for the better, be that through reducing our carbon footprint, minimising what we send to landfill, and as a result, feeling a bit better about ourselves. If you run a charity organisation and are collecting any specific objects, I’d love to hear from you. If you have any ideas or photos, please tweet them or pop them on Instagram, with the hashtag #do1thing.november.