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Dear FlyLady,

I am a new fly baby, but doing pretty well, and happy and at peace about my new mostly clean, de-cluttered home. Thank you. My dilemma is a little complicated and very frustrating. My mother is a talented artist, and my father and grandfather are woodworkers by hobby. All three of them love me and they are constantly blessing me with their latest project, which is usually something that I don’t love. I enjoy decorating my 700 square foot apartment, and resent their “contributions” to my home decor. I feel selfish and ungrateful, and extremely guilty every time they give me something new. Most of the stuff is displayed in my home, but the stuff that is not, haunts me. I appreciated your advice to throw away things that make you sad, etc., but I know I would feel even worse throwing away (or even blessing others with) these handmade gifts.

Within a few months we will be in a much larger apartment, and eventually, in a house, so I will have more space to put decorations, but that doesn’t solve the fact that I don’t love a lot of this stuff. Nor does it soothe my nagging guilt. Please work your FLYing magic on my little dilemma.

Dear Friend,

Here is the rule; if you don’t love, don’t use it and don’t have a place for it; it has to go. Now I know you are afraid of hurting their feelings; but you can give the stuff back to them and tell them to bless someone else with their gift. Tell them right now your home is not big enough for all of it and that you need to get rid of your abundance. There are many wonderful charities that love to take hand made items and sell them to bless needy children. Check with our local hospital auxiliary. Maybe they could volunteer to help these groups on a regular basis. A lot of love goes into these items and they need to be loved by someone. One man’s junk is another man’s treasure. Pass it on and be blessed; but you are going to have to be honest in a loving way and help them to help others at the same time. Keep only the ones that you adore and give the others back to them so they can bless others.

– FlyLady

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