Bling donation
Decluttering, Donations

What do I do with all my bling?

I don’t know about you but I used to buy jewelry and shoes and clothes like I was in the fashion industry. Thousands upon thousands of dollars of famous label clothing, I had jewelry designed for me by a local jeweler, and I loved having a pair of shoes to go with each outfit, and then some! Fast forward 30 years and my how things have changed! Due to an injury, I no longer wear shoes with any heel and the jewelry I had designed and made for me no longer fits my fingers. Yes, I could get them resized but my tastes (and my skin tone in relation to wearing silver or gold jewelry) have changed a lot in the last 30 years. Thanks mid-life!

I figured out how to eliminate the famous label clothing (it didn’t fit either) and had a “sisterhood of the traveling pants” group where we exchanged clothes. For the remaining clothes, I donated them to Suited For Change, which is a great organization! Shoes were also handled in the same manner. But what about the bling?

Why not sell the real pieces of gold and silver for their value by weight? Good idea! So I gathered up all the pieces I had to sell, went to my appointment with the jewelry rep and they told me which pieces were real or not. Then they divided them by category (14K, 18K, sterling) and I walked out with jewelry I didn’t wear anymore and almost $400 in my pocket! Sweet! I was so incentivized that I came back home and started going through even more jewelry, opening boxes and discovering sterling silver flatware STILL IN THE PLASTIC SLEEVES from almost 30 years ago – clearly that was not a high use priority – so I made another appointment and walked out with almost another $400! That was $800 I had lying around my house serving no purpose but to take up space. I still had costume jewelry (new in boxes) from a foray into selling costume jewelry a few years back, and because it was such nice costume jewelry, I didn’t want to throw it away! What I was unable to sell via Facebook, I donated as well to Suited For Change and received a tax donation receipt for it! Excellent!

What do you have lying around your house that you haven’t worn in decades? Or maybe you don’t look good in silver or gold anymore? Why not sell it for the price of the metal, especially when its value is so high. Take the money you make and get yourself something you need or want. Have costume jewelry, accessories, purses and such that you no longer want? Why not donate those (plus any nice work attire clothing) to Suited For Change?

Recycling and deconstruction
Donations, Recycling

Help! What do I do with the leftover building materials from my contractors working on my home?

Have you taken on or had a contractor take on a project at your home and then have either removed or leftover building materials? Most major cities now have a place to donate “deconstructed” materials. (If you need to find a location, try google search for “deconstruction” or “deconstruction companies” and then contact the companies to find out where they take their deconstructed materials.)

In the MetroDC area, my favorite location is Rebuild Warehouse ( They opened on St. Patrick’s Day in 2009, right as I was beginning a major project at my home. I had seen fliers for the opening and went to visit them and was HOOKED! One of the founders, Paul, was a real sweetheart of a man and had this dream in his heart from having owned a deconstruction firm, that there was a missed opportunity to recycle materials from businesses and homeowners versus filling landfills. The other part of his dream was to use the funds raised to train workers in the deconstruction industry. Sadly Paul passed away unexpectedly but his wife and his business partner are continuing to keep Rebuild Warehouse going. They are located in an industrial park and currently are only open two days a week, unless an appointment is made. I have been an avid supporter of this business and thanks to their vision/dream, I was able to purchase materials to build 600SF, two level, geometric cut flagstone patio – with only $600 spent on the flagstones! Wow! (I reused pulled up brick for edging and for lining the second tiered patio). When I was done, what was valued at $25,000 by our insurance company for under $6,000 – and that included new siding for a shed, a new large gate installation, a smaller gate installation, grading the entire backyard, laying sod, plants and mulch. (Note to self: if you spend that much time, labor or money having an outdoor room built – aka a patio – you should get it covered under your insurance in case anything were to happen.)

I stopped by there last weekend since I had a few items (new in box) that I wasn’t able to sell on Craigslist of Facebook yard sale pages, so decided I would donate them (you get a tax donation form), and I stopped by one of my clients and took two sinks that had been removed during her current kitchen remodeling job. I picked up two bricks for $.25/each for a project at home – that a home improvement store or garden center would have charged more for each brick. They had a French door stainless steel refrigerator, plus an antique tiger oak wash cabinet, you know the one with the towel bar on the back side – even with dovetailed drawers – for $150.

Check out their website, plus their Facebook page and if you’re in the MetroDC area, stop by and see what goodies they might have for purchase or projects in your home.

donation pickup

An Even Easier Way To Donate Goods

I try to stay “in the know” but clearly I missed out on this little gem of information about an online resource for scheduling donation pickup from a variety of organizations – including the next day! Who knew? Clearly not me 😦  Yeah, just a wee bit embarrassed…Anyway, THANK YOU to my friend and neighbor Nora, who told me about GoodDonor!

GoodDonor coordinates pickups with various charitable organizations and in one easy – and I mean easy – step after you setup your FREE account, you can schedule pickup of items from your home and pick the date – even schedule pickup the next day (which I just did since I had to test it out and hubs just cleared out some clothing Friday night – perfect timing babe!).

Just follow these easy steps to get started:

1. Go to the GoodDonor website and fill out the information to set up an account – remember its FREE

2. After entering your information and hitting the Next button (it also says to schedule a donation), you get the choice of scheduling a pickup BY CHARITY or BY PICKUP DATE — I checked both options out and I’m going to make an assumption here that the charities listed are based upon the zip code you entered – again this is an assumption but I spent many decades in IT development/business requirements so I’m feeling pretty confident in my assumption.

3. After you select either option, you then click on the type of item donated

4. Fill out the remaining fields on the form and submit the request! SO easy. And FAST!

Within nanoseconds I received an email thanking me for joining followed by an email letting me know which charity would be picking up my hubs items the next day.

5. Put your items in boxes or bags and clearly label them based upon the charity you either selected or that was listed in the confirmation email.

6. Place the items outside in the designated area by 7AM on pickup day – you’re done!

7. If you need receipt information, you can also get this information via the website.

Awesomeness and WAY TO GO GOODDONOR!!!

Now go clean out those closets and no excuses for not having time to drive to a donation center or having to wait until a charity is in your neighborhood! Let’s get purging!!