At some point in the last year or so, I got tipped off to www.freecycle.org For those of you who don't know about it or haven't tried it, check it out and see if there is a network in your area.
The whole concept is that people post things they have but don't want anymore, or things they don't have but would like, and members of freecycle read the posts and connect with each other to reduce the amount of stuff that goes into landfills. And the best part is...drum roll please... it's all free. The stuff is free. To post stuff is free. To get stuff is free. To give stuff... yep, you guessed it. FREE.
I just posted 4 bags of miscellaneous stuff and clothes and the nicest woman just came by to pick them up and brought me a new baby doll for Ada and a $10 gift certificate. Now that clearly isn't how this is supposed to work but she came to pick up three bags of stuff and I called her back to come get a 4th. Oh, and I passed on a glass friendship ball I had that was from a former friend and was giving off less-than-stellar karma. How much more of a win-win situation could this be? I get rid of 4 bags of stuff and a beautiful glass ball I don't want, she gets my "crap" and then gives me a doll and a gift card. And she even came to pick it all up!
My other experiences have been similar. I gave away perfume and perfume samples -- again with some not-so-great karma. I've gotten rid of 3 large piles of books. Today I gave away my old cell phone complete with charge, software and computer cord to connect it. And before that I passed on some knitting supplies I don't use to a woman who's daughter is interested in learning to knit. I've also passed on baby bumpers that were given to me by a woman in my mom network since I couldn't use them. And I don't even have to drop these things off. They come get them.
I've already got our TV promised to someone on freecycle when we upgrade to the one's Rick's parents are replacing at their house. And it just feels good to know that your stuff is going to a good home. I used to always take it to the Salvation Army or Good Will, which I still recommend, but this is cool because you get to see who it goes to and did I mention that they pick it up????
Moral of the story: If you can freecycle, do so. It will really benefit the environment, others, and your good karma bank.