A New Challenge – Keep Only What You Love

I’ve been reading a decorating book lately.  The author says we should discard anything we don’t absolutely love.

This arrangement and urn were teetering on the edge of Mr. Dumpster (or a donation bin).  I’ve never loved it.  I wanted to, and I tried to, but it just never happened.

Old Urn Planter

I’m no floral artist, that’s for sure.  I accumulated additions to the fake flowers over the years and continued to stick them in this urn – sort of like “building” an arrangement.

Haha…sort of like more of a mess!

I don’t know.  There was nothing wrong with the urn itself.  But the flowers just didn’t do it for me.  Can you relate?

It’s just like I told you on Sundayabout being true to who you really are.  With decorating our homes, only keeping the things we truly love is a small piece of finding and being who we are.

I removed the fake flowers and painted the old urn with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in pure white.

The first coat covered pretty well.

Painting Old Urn in ASCP Pure White

After the second coat, it was nice and pure white (except this picture turned out blurry – ugh).

Painting Old Urn in ASCP Pure White

The bow detailing still doesn’t thrill me, and I can’t bring myself to put the fake flowers back inside. If I don’t find some love feelings for this urn pretty soon, it’ll be sent away.

This “keep only what you love” idea has me seriously thinking about things.  I severely need to purge in every room.

Do you have anything at your house you don’t absolutely love?  Couldn’t we all come up with several (or maybe a trunk full)?




  1. Donna says

    Your post really struck a nerve with me. I have so many things that have been given to me or they were someone else’s and I feel obligated to keep them. Not getting any younger here and I’m thinking of the houses that we emptied after a parent passed. Besides if there is all that stuff in the house, it looks (and feels) cluttered. I have several charity boxes started and now’s the time to fill ’em up!

    • says

      I’m with you, friend! This has been on my mind all weekend, so I’m starting to “see” things differently. And, yes, you hit the nail on the head. We feel guilty discarding “not-our-thing” treasures given to us by treasured people.

  2. Libba says

    Kim, I know people don’t think alike, but that urn is beautiful in my eyes. If you don’t want it in your house, have you thought about using it in the cemetery at a special grave. I have one that looks about this size at the foot of my parents grave. A plot is marked off , next to them, for Joe and I. We have mulch on it and have a really large urn in the center of that space. Joe’s sister also has one on a plot that is marked for her in another cemetery. We love them and change flowers 2-3 times a year. In fact, I have planted live flowers in our big one, but it’s a lot of problem to keep them watered if we don’t get much rain. I know you’ll come up with something for this pretty urn. I really like that chalk paint on it too. Just throwing in my two bits!!!!!

    • says

      That is a great idea – and two bits worth a lot! Thanks for sharing it so that I (and others) now have another option. 🙂

    • says

      I understand completely. I’ve been thinking of ways (and what) to discard, but it’s so hard to imagine letting go of things that bring sweet memories and reminders of special people. Yes, absolutely eventually!! Ha!

  3. Dad says

    The only way to purge around here would be to get rid of PAM but, you said to keep only what you love.

  4. Jaybird says

    LOL Dad!!!!!!
    I’m in the same boat as Donna…maybe I don’t LOVE an item, but I do/did love the giver, and I feel so hesitant about getting rid of the item. I have many things that belonged to my grandparents, parents, and in-law parents….
    Thank you for the nudge, but maybe you had better make it a command :^)

    • says

      I’m searching my brain for some rationalization that might help. So far, I’m coming up empty. If somethings comes to me (even a justifiable command), I’ll be sure to share it. I hope your week is off to a fabulous start!

  5. says

    Painting it was a great first step Kim! Why don’t you put it outside and plant something in it? I am trying to declutter and purge, but as a blogger you just never know when you’re going to need that something! I like the thought of getting rid of what you don’t love though, I recently cleaned out my closet with that in mind and ended up with 4 huge bags of stuff, yikes!
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    • teresa says

      That’s what I was thinking, it would be a great outside planter! Or perhaps in the kitchen with some basil. It would also look beautiful filled with hydrangea.
      My problem is I love too much! Easy to collect (shy do I love charis?), hard to eliminate.

      • says

        I may use it on a porch for a planter at some point. It’s gotten so hot this week that I’ll be focusing on keeping my current plants and flowers alive! Yes, hydrangea would be so pretty in that since it’s nice with anything or nothing at all. 🙂

  6. says

    This post is a great reminder of letting go.
    I’m beginning to look at everything and ask. If the house were burning would I grab that and go?
    Or ideas less dramatic, if I were moving would I want to pay to pay and move it?
    Do I want to pay for storage and visit it ?
    The second one has helped me let go of alot of stuff. Stil I have too much and need to keep going.

    Sometimes it’s only a drawer at a time to clean out. Other times I’m gang busters cleaning out larger areas. I use craigslist, donate to several non profits and facebook in our area has several groups who sell items. At one time I even had a booth at the local vendor mall to sell stuff – this helped alot until I found myself buying to stock the booth – then I pulled the plug.

    • says

      Those are great suggestions! Thanks for sharing your techniques for thinning out your possessions. 🙂