Monday, August 25, 2008


I know I've said it before but the Freecycle Network is a great thing. In the past week I have given away a mound of stuff that wasn't really being used and it all went to people who actually want it.

It is a constant battle against stuff here. For one thing we live in a flat with limited storage in the garage. And that limited storage is filled with tools for our business. It is a two-bedroom flat, with a formal dining room, but that second bedroom was an office/sewing room before the little one came along. So it is quite cramped here and I'm still saving a lot of toys and clothes and baby stuff in case we decide to have a second one.

For those who don't know how Freecycle works, it is pretty simple. People give things away to others with no string attached. No selling or trading. It is international and set up by city or region with bulletin boards, ours is on Yahoo. People post items they are offering and, to a lesser extent items they want. You communicate by email entirely, or at least at first to make pick-up arrangements. I have had pretty good luck with people showing up. The hardest part is choosing who will get your stuff, as there are usually a lot of responses. Choosing the first responder is discouraged.

I have received two things, but I try to limit that for obvious reasons. It does feel good to get something you need for free and know that you kept if from being thrown away by someone else. I placed a "Wanted" request for spinning supplies twice, but no-one responded. I was a bit irked when two days later someone offered a spindle, and then gave it away immediately to someone else before I even saw the ad. You are supposed to check previous "wanteds" before posting an "offer". But then I can afford to buy spinning stuff and if it went to someone who can't, then that's great.

I still give things to Goodwill and our Daughters rummage sale, but for very specific items I enjoy giving them away. I have given away a few things I was on the fence about after seeing "wanted" ads. So next time you are cleaning out your closets think about using Freecycle.

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