Also, paperwork. School projects, old utility bills, tax returns, you name it. Unfortunately, no-one in our family is one of those admirable "everything has a place and everything in its place" kind of people.
Which is why the plastic crap and the paperwork have taken over. I have begun to think of our home as England and the clutter as William the Conqueror. But unlike old Billy, the clutter will not assume the throne.
Which is why I made a decision that 2011 is the year I will declutter our house - starting with the computer room-slash-repository for stuff that we may one day need but have nowhere to keep.
(And this doesn't even begin to represent the entire junkness in all its glory)
I remember the days when I was so proud that I could move houses with just a car and a trailer. I had no accumulation of stuff. No kitchen appliances I had never used (I'm looking at you, expresso machine), no three lounge suites, no eight doonas (and only three beds), and no kids - the biggest crap magnet there is.
What's making my quest difficult is that my mother is also constantly decluttering her house. But being a child of World War II and rationing, mum throws NOTHING out. Which means her idea of decluttering is to pass her crap on to me. Over the years, I've acquired used linen, old airline bags, second hand crockery and cutlery, wall hangings, ornaments and socks.
The latest offering includes a pillow, a stapler, two boxes of staples, a hole punch, a highighter pen and about a dozen pencils.
Not surprisingly, at the grand old age of 42, if I didn't possess all of these items already, I have the wherewithal to but them.
I used to try and refuse these "gifts" but I soon realised it was easier to say yes, then box them up for St Vinnies myself.
Maybe I need to take a leaf out of mum's book and "donate" my used crap. Now to just fnd some unsuspecting soul....