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10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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celebrate the next Discardia, from 19 Mar to 5 Apr


Recent activity

NikitaI didn't discard as much as I should have

but I did manage to get through some more boxes that needed sorting and have 3 bags of trash/recycle to take out now, 2 more bags of clothing for charity and a couple more boxes of stuff either for charity or a garage sale. I’ll re-add this goal for the next discardia.

All in all I feel pretty good but I know that had I not been in the middle of job change drama and my son’s musical I probably would have gotten a whole lot more done. 6 years ago


I’m disappointed in how little I actually discarded during my first Discardia, but maybe I’m just a late bloomer. I will do better next time – for sure.

I did manage to discard a box of junk from the kitchen, a large box of textbooks, two bags of clothes, all the refuse that had been rattling around in the trunk of my car for ages, and even a few pounds to boot!

I also discarded a couple of habits, including watching Law & Order reruns at 5:00 a.m. instead of engaging in any number of healthier/more productive activities :o)

So I’m marking this done for now, but I’ll be back for the next Discardia holiday, in June! 6 years ago

Contemplative JennQuantifiable discardia

I am not a quantity person. I have trouble measuring success by the amount of something, or other quantifiable means. But when I look at our efforts over the past couple of days, I can’t think of a more meaningful way to represent them than the 9 contractor-sized garbage bags sitting in our garage awaiting discard, and the two awaiting delivery to Good Will. There is also a sizeable pile of games and toys earmarked for donation to a local shelter or children’s hospital. I will have to do some research, however, before deciding where these should go and making arrangements to get them there. My quantitative focus on what we have tossed may be due to the fact that the areas that have given up their possessions are none too tidy yet. We’re getting there, but slowly. The closets look OK, but the basement looks ransacked, like the hero’s apartment in one of those movies where the evil spies are searching for the microfilm. The rest of the house is none too tidy either, like some odd sort of conservation of messiness has occurred, my children actively strewing, perhaps, while my SO and I desperately try to dig out from 11 years of material build-up. Perhaps the old adage, “it has to get worse before it gets better” applies here. Hope abounds. Onward. 6 years ago

Contemplative JennProgress Report: Oh look, a bison!

With tons to do around here, two key closets crying out for my attention, piles and stacks and clutter everywhere, the realtor coming soon, and the Discardia spirit in full swirl, I did what any driven, empowered, Discardiac does: I made soup. And lots of it! ;) OK, so the obvious sense of ADHD in this post is not lost on me. Need to clean, need to clean, HEY LOOK, a ham! Make soup, make soup …. Procrastination is not always about goofing off. Avoiding the task at hand can, I have found, yield some delicious and beneficial results. Case in point: one pot of split pea soup (my SO’s favorite), using the leftover Easter ham. And the leftover roaster from Wednesday’s dinner begged for a broth-yielding swim, so I made a batch of my southwestern chicken vegetable soup, with some leftover cilantro and chiles (healthy, and yum). I rationalized my shifted focus as efficient, making dinner in advance for last night and other nights as well (soup freezes well, after all).

As for the closet in question, even given the diversion, I managed to kick its butt. Two contractor’s bags full of detritus went from the closet to the curb (I had no idea the closet could even hold that much, as it is nowhere near empty now), and I earmarked half a bag for donation to Good Will. The closet is now neat and tidy. Woo hoo! I also managed to clear two corners of our bedroom of items that belonged in the closet but had not previously fit. Which clears room for organization of my closet, the next act of discardia celebration. I love the way one act of organization paves the way for others.

My daughter came down with stomach flu this morning, so our day’s plans have been cancelled, which means ON TO CLOSET #2, mine, which is also in dire need of an overhaul. That will be today’s discardiastic effort, and then on to the basement playroom. By the time we’re done organizing and improving, we may just want to stay. ;-) 6 years ago

Contemplative JennToday

I have my work cut out for me. I have a day. Well, part of one. My daughter’s walk-in closet, which doubles as our storage closet, looks like a war zone. Today’s discardia will focus, or at least begin, there. For some reason I am anxious about this task, my battle with time and space, and progress, perhaps. The listing agent comes tomorrow. And the babysitter. God this place is a mess. Better get to it…. 6 years ago

Rintin35Weekend Discardian

Well, it’s Wednesday and again this week, I’ve not done any real discarding. I haven’t figured out a way to ditch my purse. I have become one of those people that always used to make me scratch my head wondering “why would anyone want to cart half their shit around with them?”. Now I know – I love my shit, and having it with me everywhere I go is, at times, tremendously convenient! I love having hand lotion, lip balm, gum, a greenbag, my little day planner, and my camera right handy whenever I need them! So my decision to discard my use of a purse might not be realistic, even though I would still like to leave the house unencumbered, as I used to do.

Because I really wanted to recognize my first celebration of Discardia DAILY, I’m going to recommit myself (there are still 11 days left, for goodness sake! All is not lost!). Tonight I hope to take half an hour or so to go through my old textbooks. It pains me to let beloved books go, but the truth is, I never refer to my old textbooks anymore. When I want answers, I turn to Google, like everyone else! Most of my texts are ten years old now, and because so much changes with medical research so quickly, I just don’t trust most of them to give me the most current information on most subjects. So out they will go.
sniff, sniff

I haven’t had much success in getting dinner on the table before 6:30 yet either, except for twice – on Friday and Monday. However tonight’s dinner is all planned, and half prepared. Y’day morning I boiled the noodles and defrosted the butternut squash cubes, so our yummy mac and cheese casserole will be ready to pop in the oven by 5:00ish. Yay!

How’re you doin’ on this, Jenn??6 years ago

Rintin35Today's progress

I’ve gone through my wardrobe and purged a two large garbage bags worth. One bag is going straight to Goodwill, and the other is now marked “Discard Mar/09”. This bag contains all clothes that I love but that I no longer fit into. I couldn’t quite bring myself to purge them, but I did set limits on my keeping them:
1. Only items of clothing that currently fit me can remain in a drawer or closet.
2. Of the clothes that don’t currently fit, I could keep only what would fit in one standard size blue bag – no more than that – in the hope that I shed these extra pounds this year. I’ll keep the bag tied shut in the basement.
3. Any clothes left in the bag that still don’t fit in one year (cycle of seasons) are going out. I won’t even re-open the bag.

After I’d pulled out all my discards, I could really see space open up in the closet and dressers – I actually emptied two sweater cubbies and an entire dresser drawer!

(WARNING: the following story contains graphic descriptions of anal retentive, super-geek behaviour)

Then, I listed each garment in one column of a spreadsheet, followed by columns for category, colour, style, season, and purpose (work, casual, at home, exercise, or dress up). I know this sounds ridiculous, but I have NEVER put together a wardrobe, and I really don’t know where else to begin but to look carefully at what I have, and from that draw out what I need to purchase in order to complete a bunch of different coordinated outfits.

Anal though it may be, this exercise revealed some interesting trends in my existing wardrobe:
  • 80% of my long-sleeve tops are t-shirt style/fabric (not work appropriate and therefore of too little use to make up such a large proportion of tops)
  • I have NO spring or summer foot wear (made a list of what exactly to look for when shoe shopping)
  • I have a ton of clothes I don’t wear because I have nothing to match them with (this led to another list, of course)

Because I find the whole business of shopping for/trying on clothing and trying to look appropriate and fashionable extremely daunting, I am really pleased to now be armed with a pretty specific list of items that I need to complete several spring outfits, and particularly for work and my summer placement. I believe this plan will save me money, because it incorporates everything I already own into the wardrobe I’m trying to build, and because I’ll be less likely to buy garments that I like but that I can’t match to anything. Plus, it’ll save shopping time and frustration – I don’t mind a little browsing, but before long I’m just eager to find what I need and get home.

I’m looking to discard more than some old clothes here. I’m trying to discard an old habit born of lack of confidence, laziness and frustration. Exit the ragamuffin; enter the … hmm… guess that remains to be seen! 6 years ago

Rintin35Confession time

I’m doing lousy with this so far. I’ve brought home empty boxes, and that’s it. I haven’t managed to have dinner before 7 p.m., and I’m still carting around a bulky and over-filled purse (was supposed to be my discard for the 20th).

Jenn!! How are you doing with this?

Maybe I’ll try to purge clothes from the closet after my shower this aft. Little bites… :o) 6 years ago

Contemplative JennSo I'm actually going to do this

I am on a mission. And now, thanks to my soul sis, Rin, I have a partner! This goal meshes nicely with so many of my other recent additions: “get over it,” “kick butt,” and “help my family thrive in the face of change.” Getting rid of emotional and possesory baggage is just the ticket for my life right now. Before we can list our house, let alone move, we need to get the space in shape, and that can only happen through discard of eleven years worth of the unneeded, unused, and unnecessary. I find that the act of discarding literal baggage often leads to the discard of emotional baggage. Granted, this won’t be easy. It will take time, effort, and the unearthing of dust and memories. It very well may involve a verbal or physical tug-o-war with my children or SO. It may involve tears, and a certain shedding of skin that may, at times, be painful, but at others will be blissful and freeing. It can be as easy as throwing out a box of old papers and as difficult as relinquishing a cherished, if less than healthy, mindset. Either way, fulfillment of this goal is necessary and healthy.

Thank you, my sweet, for the invitation. I accept! Let’s get to lightening…. 6 years ago

Rintin35Happy Discardia Everyone!!!

You can’t believe how I’ve looked forward to today’s arrival! I don’t actually expect to discard much today, but I am going to take empty boxes home, for some weekend purging. And I decided this morning that I’m discarding the late night dinners that M prefers but that I dislike for several reasons. Instead, from now on I’m planning meal time for between 6:00 and 6:30 most nights, and by no later than 7:00 p.m. on Nia nights.

Last night we pulled together a simple, yummy and mostly nutritious meal despite our agreement that there was “nothing in the house”. I think I enjoyed it most because we didn’t cave & order in, and because it was so EASY!! I need to keep track of these successful (healthy, cheap, easy to prepare, easy to keep on hand) meal ideas because 90% of my failure to cook at home is now attributed to my inability to come up with an idea.

This Discardia holiday happens to be 13 days long and in celebration of it, I plan to discard at least one habit, item or idea each day. Today, day #1, I celebrate with a dinner time that suits MY body, my lifestyle and my wishes. 6 years ago

Rintin35Can't wait!


“Discardia is celebrated by getting rid of stuff and ideas you no longer need. It’s about letting go, abdicating from obligation and guilt, being true to the self you are now. Discardia is the time to get rid of things that no longer add value to your life, shed bad habits, let go of emotional baggage and generally lighten your load.”

After we get the office moved next week, there are going to be many large, sturdy boxes emptied and up for grabs. So, partly inspired by Shimmergirl’s division of her home for the purpose of getting organized, I’ve divided our place into five zones. I’ll bring five boxes home and over Discardia will do my best to STUFF one box with clutter from each zone.

Spring must be in the air because the urge to purge has taken hold!! 6 years ago

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