Guest Post | Keisha McKinney of Big Pitt Stop
Clean up and clean out. We all have to do it at one time or another.
My recent marriage brought with it a big move across the state. While excited about combining my life with my love, I was a little overwhelmed at all the “stuff” in my life. You see when you’re a single gal, it’s pretty easy to justify why you have everything you have.
But, when you have to tell a guy why you need 3 different sizes of kitchen spatulas or the difference between “pretty” baskets and “utility” baskets, words begin to fail you.
And then to justify it to the people loading boxes into a moving truck…you start thinking about all the things it might be time to get rid of. And, since I’m surrounded by loads of generous people in my life, my “things” I had collected while living on my own as an adult for 12 years were being replaced with new wedding gifts. Since I don’t really like waste in any part of my life, I wanted to do something beneficial with the items I was purging from my place.
Enter The Salvation Army Thrift Store!
The perfect opportunity to clean out my good things and give them to a good place.
I had recently read this article about Opportunity on The NWA Salvation Army blog and it was such a good reminder of the “new” life my “used” things could find. And, when I did a little research and found out that The Salvation Army Stores in Northwest Arkansas fund a free Alcohol Addiction Recovery Program in the area and that $.82 of every dollar sold in their stores are reinvested into the programs provided by The Salvation Army, I WAS SOLD.
As I cleaned out closets, emptied drawers and finally looked in those boxes in my garage, I found myself more motivated as I thought about the stories of the lives that would be changed.
Hope. Opportunity. Championing. Support.
Those were the words that went through my mind as I built the mound of donated items in my living room. And, these were good items too. I started thinking that this was not the opportunity to get rid of my junk (that’s what the trash bin was for) but this was my chance to get rid of good things, usable things that people need to find at a thrift store and that I don’t have space for.
And, with several locations across NWA, I knew there was opportunity that anyone in any community might find something useful. Heck, this lady even found a way to spruce up her place for spring. Imagine what kind of summer party she could throw with some new dishes!
Donating my items was super easy. Because I had big furniture to include in my donation, I called the main office and talked to the nicest woman to schedule a pick up. The guys who came to pick up my items were great. They called before they arrived to let me know they were en-route.
When they arrived, they added my furniture and donation boxes to the other things they had collected and were quickly on their way. It was really nice when I called to set up the pick up because I got to choose the day and it made moving day that much smoother with the list of things we had to accomplish before we could call it quits.
Weird or not, I like to think about the tables my cobalt blue dishes will now adorn. Or the closet hangers my work clothes, the ones I had been saving to fit into someday, will hang on and help someone walk confidently through their office. I think about the woman who will walk in those pumps, the ones I used to prance around Rogers in making sales calls. Will she find the community I found here? Will she build a business in a town that loves to keep it local? Will her life flourish in ways only Northwest Arkansas can make your heart soar?
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***Keisha McKinney is a giver by nature. She was raised by people who loved others and learned early on the power of investing in people and giving back. These days she is enjoying her new life as a married woman, finding a place for all her “treasures” in her new house, and settling in to a new town she is learning to call home. Ever committed to the non-profit community in Northwest Arkansas, you can follow her adventures at her own blog, www.bigpittstop.com or her daily crazy on social media, @bigpittstop. She is passionate about connecting people, needs and resources.