It’s the end of 2014. Over the past year when I noticed things I no longer needed, I’ve put them in a plastic bin that I keep for giveaways. These items don’t really fit into any neat category and didn’t merit a trip to St. Vincent DePaul just for a few miscellaneous items. I was waiting to decide what to do with them.

Days 365+85 Misc - jacketsThen, a miracle happened. A Facebook post coincided with Christmas and my miscellaneous stuff. A friend who works at a Respite Center posted a need for items that the residents could use. I checked through my miscellaneous giveaway container and noticed that jackets, gloves, and hangers were needed. Jim had just placed 2 of his older jackets in the giveaway bin. I had 2 pairs of extra gloves and a bunch of hangers. Match.

I read that the Center could also use toiletries and buckets. That prompted me to look through my medicine closet and basement. Aha! I found:

  • Days 365+85 buckets17 small travel shampoos and reconditioning tubes – you know the kind that hotels provide. I usually take them figuring that I will use them on trips to places that don’t provide shampoo. But, I really don’t need 17. This is a better use for them.
  • 1 Chapstick
  • 16 hangers that had nothing to hang on them – a testimony to giving away unnecessary clothes. (I held back some hangers for guests. Full disclosure, I just went back to count how many empty hangers we still have and there are 57. No way do we need that many extras. Aarrgh! Now I feel guilty. Perhaps I can give them to a thrift store.)
  • 2 buckets. Actually our household had 4 large buckets in the basement but I figured saving 2 would be plenty.
  • Days 365+85 Rx & shampooIn the process I also found 9 outdated prescriptions (over 10 years past the expiration date). I don’t know how they eluded my earlier purge of expired Rx but maybe they were just under my generous 10 year criteria.

LESSON: If I keep my eyes watchful and my ears attentive, giveaways and places to take them will reveal themselves. This habit of giving away has attuned me to opportunities that I previously missed.

PS (5 days later): To assuage my guilt, I have now taken 42 more orphan hangers to a new home. However, it was more complicated than I anticipated.
Mediation needed:

My husband said he preferred the simple wire hangers to the sturdier plastic ones I wanted to keep for guests. We called in a mediator and negotiated.
Where to take the hangers:
I didn’t intend for this to be a research project, but to save you the work, here’s what I found out. (Local situations may vary.)

• Vincent de Paul only takes plastic hangers (most of mine were wire ones). They give the wire ones to a metal recycler.
Goodwill doesn’t take any hangers at all.
• Salvation Army was happy to take them to replenish the ones that their visitors take.
• Dry cleaners: Some will take them; some will not. The one close to our home does not.
• Misc. sources: Thrift shops, Craig’s list, retirement homes, hospitals, women’s shelter. Some people will take the hangers and even pay the shipping. Click here for additional ideas.
• Other uses: crafts, use to retrieve things from underneath furniture. Click here for other sources and craft ideas.

I just dropped mine off at the Salvation Army Center since it was nearest and least hassle.
I’m done with hangers for awhile.