What a year, Budget Voguers, what a year. If you are like me, you’ve been around your “stuff” a lot more than you ever thought you would — your dishes, your slippers, your couches, your rugs.

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You’ve undoubtedly spent more time in your home than you’ve ever done before. And is that a bad thing? In my mind, things could be infinitely worse.

Alas, if you have grown weary of your surroundings, your possessions and are looking to revitalize, today’s column is how to depart with your goods.

First of all, most things you will never, ever miss. And, if you do? You know you can replenish. But if you’re looking to donate, to purge, here are a few simple rules to help those on the receiving end:

1) If it’s junk, do not donate it. Use a real dumpster, not the Salvation Army or Goodwill.

2) If you are holding onto something because you think it’s “valuable” or “your kids will want it,” chances are, it’s not and they won’t. Let it go.

And if you’re curious of the value of your Hummels, do some homework, check out what the going price is on eBay, call a local antique dealer.

3) If it’s broken, do not donate it. I know, I know, “someone might want to fix it,” but, chances are, they do not — unless it’s a diamond bracelet — maybe THEN they will fix the clasp. But a vacuum that no longer does the job, a broken zipper on a jacket, shoes with no treads — find other venues to purge your junk.

4) Those towels and blankets that have been your cocoons over this past year? If they are no longer soft enough for you, feeling like your Uncle’s unshaven cheek? Let them go — but not to a thrift shop, animal shelters are always looking for bedding. And those puppies and kittens adore the warmth.

5) Finally, clean it up before you say goodbye. Years ago I saw a brush WITH HAIR IN IT at a yard sale. It was $2.00. No. There ought to be a law. If I were running the world, there would be. Clean your stuff before you sell, before you donate.

And Budget Voguers? You deserve some nice space, some room to exhale, some liberation from that cracked mug you’ve sipped tea in for the past twelve months. But, as in all things, be kind as you donate. Think of those who unpack. They be will grateful you did the right thing. And as for the brush? Toss it, dear Budget Voguers, toss it.

Susan Dromey Heeter writes and teaches on the Seacoast. Contact her at dromeheet@comcast.net.