A few years ago, a friend of my mother’s inherited a gigantic, gorgeous house in Atlanta, complete with ballroom, manicured gardens, solarium, and…tons and tons of stuff inside it- too much stuff for her to ever use, but stuff too nice to just toss into a Goodwill bag.
So, as part of her redecorating, she made an entire basement room filled with nothing but shelves. For the next year, as she moved in, she carefully organized and filled those shelves with the extra contents of that home. For every year since, she has given gifts almost exclusively from that room, and they are famous for their quality and thoughtfulness.
While few of us will ever inherit such a house, most of us have acquired things over the years that, while perhaps not useful to us, could be perfect for someone else. What if we found a special place in our home where these extra treasures could be organized and stored until the rightful owner came along?
Lest we be accused of simply re-gifting our junk, we can also use this storage area for gifts we purchase throughout the year. If we have a place to put it, we can buy it now and always be prepared for any birth, birthday, or illness – for a fraction of the time and cost.
My “gift storage room” the space under my basement stairs, and my “shelves” are a series of large, labeled bins, and are organized according to type of giving opportunity: Boy Birthday; Girl Birthday; Baby; Illness (lots of Tupperware here!); women’s shelters (jewelry, toiletries, unused makeup, etc); kid’s school (used books and stuffed animals for the annual fundraiser; extra school supplies…); family (Birthday and Christmas gifts go here).
You get the idea- each of our categories will be different, as will be each of our organization and storage methods. But regardless, by taking this extra step of organizing our surplus rather than hastily donating a mixed bag of unmatched items to Goodwill or regifting in a pinch, we can ensure that nothing we have goes wasted or unappreciated. Rather, it will simply find it's true home.