The stuff I’ve chosen to give away had swamped the corner of the house I’ve been storing it in until I could take it to St. Vincent de Paul or Goodwill. I decided to try Freecycle (a service like “Craig’s List” but everything is free). It was amazing! Once I learned the mechanics of how to make a post, I received 5 inquiries in the first 5 minutes and probably 25 all together. The neat thing about Freecycle is that people come to YOU to pick up the stuff and there’s no haggling over price because it’s all free. (I’ve done plenty of bargaining when visiting developing countries and it’s a pleasure not to have to negotiate prices.) Almost all my 150+ items were swooped up in two days.

As I learned what people were looking for, I added a few items that I hadn’t yet decided to give away. Those plus my time responding to e-mails and answering the doorbell added up to at least seven items this week. I was also impressed to learn that a lot of people are giving a lot of things away. Some of my freecyclers were mainly middlemen/women who have a number of needy families or schools that they distribute the stuff to.