Monday, March 14, 2011

Adventures in Paperwork

I like paper. (sorry cannot figure out how to rotate before photo)

I sometimes go to paper stores and buy up samples of several different papers and envelopes, and they sit in drawers at home waiting for me to use them. I keep paper sample books, I keep interesting printed pieces. I keep ideas and plans. I used to collect post cards. I keep doodles. I keep articles I want to read. I keep recipes I might make. I keep financial files since I started working in the 90s. I keep the drawings my kids do. I keep holiday cards, birthday cards, business cards. I keep printed ads that I like the look of. I keep tickets from events, I keep bulletins from church. I buy notebooks and journals. I keep a stash of scratch paper and color books for the kids. I have a whole bread box full of note paper, and assorted blank paper items.

My main areas of collecting paper are:
1. Desk - this is where I put things I really should deal with sooner, rather than later. I have file spaces, but usually I "run out of time" and just pile it on top. Inside the desk is where I keep my envelopes and letter head, and cards, and paper samples...
2. My bag I bring to work - this is where I put things that were on my desk that I really should do today, or soon anyway. I always hope to have a few spare moments during my day to get a few home things done. This always accumulates unheeded.
3. Newspaper/Ads box - this one is new - it helps - I think. Whenever I get the papers (we have two local papers that come every week) they go in this box. I am getting better at cycling through these so that when the new ones come, the old ones get tossed in the burn bin.
4. The bathroom cupboard - my things to read when I have a few minutes alone. Whenever I come across something I want to read, but do not feel like I have time now - into the cupboard it goes.
5. The school paper drawer - Kindergarten produces a lot of paper. I try to just put finished things in so I do not lose track of items needing attention.
6. The remembories bag/box. I get a bit carried away with what I keep. I always hope I will get around to sorting through things. Has not happened.
7. The kitchen counter. Things I need to deal with, or want to discuss with hubby, or that the hubby needs to deal with. Gets moved to desk for me to deal with later, and piled on the counter for hubby.
8. In the sunshine room I keep the craft paper, the breadbox of paper, the color books, the paper sample books, my gardening mags and planning supplies. In the upstairs corner cupboard I keep my old financial files, my remembories from years past - oh and all the photo albums - have I mentioned I love photos. In the mud room I keep my filing cabinet for this years finances, my land records, and hubby's medical files. I think that is all of it.

I have been working on clearing out the paper. I recently emptied a drawer of "Things I want to read" and threw away about 1/2 - however the other 1/2 joined the stack of things to read I keep in the bathroom. At the end of 2010 I moved the bin of remembories upstairs to my deal with it when I am retired cupboard. This weekend I finished clearing and organizing my desk so I have at least one before and after photo. My things to deal with are now in a bin. I really have not cleared out any paper clutter though. I have just moved it. Repeatedly.

I have tons of paper. I have always liked the idea of scrapbooks. Keeping track of a year in a book by scanning or photographing items rather than keeping originals. However, time does not allow, and so into bags it goes, until the year is forgotten, and I no longer know who did which drawing and how to get all the memories back in order. So being overwhelmed, I do not do anything except leave it in a box.

If there was a fire, I do not know how I would retrieve even the most important items. Somehow I have to start consolidating and reorganizing, and make sense of it all.

I have a paper problem. It appears I hoard not just paper, but paper memories. Sigh. Time to start purging. Pray for me! I will start one drawer at a time.

Below food journal:
Monday - up at 4:50am - still not early enough. Feed chickens & goats, milk goat, bring down trash, wake hubby, get out the door. Forgot to read Ps. Tea. Oatmeal with brown sugar. Lunch 2 baking powder biscuits, string cheese, pears, and peas. 15 minute walk during work. Dinner - pot pie! It is pi day after all. Also baked potato & OJ.

Tuesday - up at 4:40am - almost there! Feed chickens, milk goat, wake hubby. Read an extra Ps to catch up. Sleepy the whole way to work - we were up late last night. Monday nights are the tv shows we love. Coffee at the office. Starting to wake up finally. Late breakfast because coffee filled void - oatmeal/brown sugar. Lunch baked potato & apple sauce. Still longing for snacks from the table - especially on a day like today when I'm sleepy.

Wed - up at 4:30 yippee! Feed chickens, feed goats, milk goat, wake hubby. Tired again - but coffee from commuter. Didn't read PS until I reached the office, Lunch baked potato & apple sauce. Dinner, leftovers - I had a casserole with extra cheese on top and some baked beans. Didn't get through paperwork at all., scrambled looking for coupons so I could run to grocery. Didn't use any coupons, but took advantage of Walmart's price match option. For part of my alms giving - purchased coffee for church.

Thur - up at 4:40 grrr. Feed chickens, milk goat, wake hubby. Tired - I have to get to sleep earlier. Coffee at the office. Breakfast - usual. Lunch - 2 hard boiled eggs, 1 string cheese, some grapes, and an orange - perfect. Loved the protein rich salty, and sweet fresh fruit - perfect for cycle inducing cravings. Sweet and salty, love them both - not together though. 12 eggs from chickens today! wow! Dinner - leftover pot pie and a bread. Irish soda bread wasn't done before I had to bring kids to dental appointment. Late night for the kids - didn't get back until 8:30. Poor boy is going to be very sleepy at school friday.

Fri: up at 5:23 ooooopppps! Didn't have time for any of my chores - sigh. Breakfast usual + slice of soda bread. coffee. Lunch 2 HB eggs, yogurt + cranberry sauce (yummy!), soda bread. No walk because I was helping get a grant proposal out of the office. Hopefully a busy and blissful weekend! Dinner tuna salad sandwiches - mmmm.

Sat: up at 8am - when the kids got up. So much for my consistency desire. Breakfast pancakes with bananas, lunch fried egg sandwiches, dinner - friends over, 9 at the table - ham with brown sugar & honey, squash, fresh baked rosemary olive oil bread, fresh fruit, a little wine. yum!

Sun: up at 8:30am - breakfast oatmeal with raisons & brown sugar, cake at church with coffee, lunch parmesian focacia, ham, cake & candy, dinner homemade burgers & french fries. Kinda got a little over indulgent with desserts today.

1 comment:

Jenni L said...

Two suggestions:

1. For all of those little things (recipes, ideas, cartoons, slips of paper), I have come to use the program Evernote ( I can use it on my computer, the Web and my mobile. It is a great place to just keep track of all those little things (I am working with a friend on a Web site and I just started a folder: one note has our agreement, one note has design ideas, one note has the domain information. It has also become a place where I clip knitting patterns I find online so I don't have to print them out. And all those little piece of paper I wanted to keep but really have no where to put them...I love this program!

I'm contemplating putting articles I want to read in the program as well. You can scan items in or take picture with your camera. The search function is pretty awesome and apparently can even search images and PDFs.

2. I have a banker box with hanging folders for each of the kids. One folder=one school year. Then I only put in my favorites of what the kids bring home as well as special things like report cards, special events and awards. It has eased a lot of my mind to know that I don't have to keep everything, just the best or most fun. And I file them right away and no papers hanging around.

Good luck!