April Organizing Task

Posted on April 25, 2021 by prairiemoonquilts in Studio Organizing Challenge

Well! That last task was fun (and a bit motivating)!

How many things did you end up getting rid of in the last month?

My final tally was 70 items. (I honestly think it might have been more than that, but I had trouble keeping track.) Here’s how it breaks down:

I gave away 42 items.
I threw away 22 items.
I used up 3 items (that won’t be replaced).
I sold 3 items.

And I tried super hard not to bring in more items, which is also a big part of this endeavor.

My Cowboy even got in on the action and got rid of a few things, but I’m not counting his items in my total. But my house and studio feel better already, so I need to keep at this in the future.

How about you? I’m so excited to hear your numbers, so let us know in the comments how much stuff you got rid of last month!

And now it’s time for a new Studio Organizing Challenge.

My brain is on overload this month with lots of deadlines (which is also why I haven’t been online much, and some of you have been checking up on me — thanks), so I resorted to drawing another card from the organizing deck of cards so I wouldn’t have to try to think of something. Here’s what came up this time:

Yikes! This is always a tough one for me, but it’s also a big one that needs dealing with, so I’m kinda glad this is what popped up. In spite of my efforts to keep up with all the paper that comes through a business (or the ranch, or my life in general), I still have lots of piles that need to be gone through and decided on. So I will be working on that for the next couple weeks, to see what progress I can make.

Sitting here at my desk, I can see right now 3 large piles that need taken care of, so there’ll be no shortage of jobs to choose from. I need to follow that advice of “only handle it once”. I have a bad habit of not wanting to make a decision right then, and putting the paper back into another pile. Or resisting simply filing it away like I should, and making a “to-be-filed” pile. Maybe I’ll start with that pile. Talk about a pile that makes no sense!

How about you?

Do you have paper piles? Or do you have your paper under control? Any advice for the rest of us?

18 responses to “April Organizing Task”

  1. mimisdarlins says:

    Paper clutter: I do have a suggestion. Incoming mail is one of the worst contributors. Now when we bring in the mail, we sort it, remove the junk, and separate it “his and hers” before the stack finds its way into the house.
    Also, I have a canvas bag hanging on the mudroom closet door for mail that gets recycled.

  2. Debbi says:

    Well that task certainly fits into my plan…but dealing with household papers and doing taxes☹️this week.

    I follow Lisa Woodruff at organize365. She promotes the Sunday Basket. I’ve been using that system for a while and it works good for me. My biggest problem is going thru it every week. My bills are all on autopay so most stuff isn’t urgent.

    I’ve adapted the system, or am trying to, for my quilting. I don’t have business so there aren’t those issues, but I’m always printing stuff off the internet, or I buy a pattern, or I think of something I want to order. I drop all that stuff into my Sunday basket for quilting. Then periodically, definitely not weekly for my needs, I go thru it and put stuff on my calendar or put it away. I have a folder for projects I want to make sooner rather than later and it gets revisited each time and reevaluated. It’s kind of like a pile in all honesty but it’s hidden and the place feels neater. I’m just thinking I should add a note in there with the number of blocks I complete at each sewing session so I can easily report my blocks…hmmmm. I also want to tally my spending and yardage in and out. It could work for that too.

  3. Bev Hovis says:

    I found having many waste cans helps A LOT!
    One by hubby and one by me in the family room, and in the kitchen. (That’s 4). I have 3 in my sewing room by the machine, the cutting table, and my ripping chair. The idea is one wherever you are, and work so the paper goes in the trash… not into a pile! Touch it once, and only twice if you need to read it more etc. I also have a clothes basket for newspapers and other recycled papers. No newspaper piles either.
    The many waste cans have helped a whole lot….unless you trash an ice cream wrapper and the cat needs to see if there is more to lick!!

  4. Wendy Tuma says:

    My paper piles in the quilt room are pretty well organized, and I just recently culled through them and tossed and filed. The rest of the house is a bit more of a challenge but thankfully mostly in our home office. I didn’t get through anything this month since we were gone part of the month. (I did finish my panel through – happy dance!)

  5. PAULA M MORGAN says:

    I am resisting the prompt to replace the ink in my printer to hold off on creating more piles…I do have baskets near the desk for printing off those things, I want to do in the future, patterns, cooking ect. just need to sort. I do have a junk drawer in the hallway just for cooking recipes we have used, or plan to use…as far as getting rid of stuff…mostly recycling boxes that have been emptied over the past 3 months. Gave a bunch of fabric to a friend and a bunch more to my sister, this was her second haul this year….!

  6. Cindy Wienstroer says:

    I got rid of 5 bags of stuff to thrift store. No helping a friend go thru his basement totes – of his dead girlfriend’s stuff that her son will not pick up & take. We took large box of frames & miscellaneous items. I am condensing photos out of frames & getting rid of items he will not notice or know about. As for my papers – mostly ok since i don’t go online much to print.

  7. Karen E. says:

    I took a lot of quilting-related items when my small group met in person for the first time since March of 2020. I still came home with some, and I didn’t count how many went into the bags or how many items I brought home. The leftovers are in the car to be dropped off at The Salvation Army store, so they aren’t coming back into the studio! I definitely need to work on small piles of paper in several locations, so I’ll be keeping the new reminder on top of the stack.

  8. Jocelyn says:

    You are such a motivator! I was walking in my neighborhood, and noticed people had put out for charity pick up. I immediately went home and got two boxes and a trash bag full of stuff to put out at the driveway. Didn’t count, but there must have been at least 50 things in the lot. Thanks for the push!Jocelyb

  9. Suzette Harris says:

    I stopped counting at 30! But I got rid of big things tucked away just taking up space. I wanted the 30 to really be “something”. So happy. Got rid of a bunch more than the 30.

    I’m very aware of things in my sewing room that I just shuffle and don’t seem to use. I have gathered up several batches of things and given them away. Great stuff…just not being used by me.

    And paper…always the paper. I targeted a overlooked stack last week. I’ve still got some to go but will get back to it.

    Keep the challenges coming. They’ve really sparked fire in me.

  10. Angie in SoCal says:

    I got rid of at least one thing each day – mostly stuff I tossed. Lots of scraps for a friend who asked for fabric scraps. She’s making junk journal and cards and needs all kinds of sizes even the teeniest – so glad!! Oh joy, I can always do this task – paper piles – yeah!

  11. Beverly V. says:

    I started out counting, but then forgot. Took two boxes and donated those things to a local sewing place. Gathered some items to give to charity, which I just gave three boxes away last month. Have a lot more to go through and get rid of more things. Also got rid of a lot of papers, including shredding. I have another paper cabinet to go through. Hopefully will get this under control soon.

  12. Ranch Wife says:

    Do I have paper piles?! I am cleaning out my mom’s house (3800 sq ft) and I’ve spent no less than 4 hours every day for 10 days shredding. I’m just praying the shredder holds out. I warned DH that I was going to throw everything out when I got home. It sounds like you are making good progress!

  13. Candy says:

    I am always culling but luckily our guild had an outdoor free table event and I took 5 laundry baskets of stuff and did not come home with any of it. I did pick up two small rolls of batting and some polka dot fabrics but was very specific in my search and take. I go through magazines and tear out any project that looks especially attractive and file it in a sleeve protector in notebooks that are organized for projects, techniques, art inspiration etc. It keeps the piles of paper in check. Now the office, teaching part took some doing. Did a notebook, divided by months with a spread sheet. Finally under control. For now. Thanks Shelly

  14. Karen C says:

    This was a great motivator. I donated 27 items and tossed some things, but forgot to count those. I’m going to just continue counting and try to get rid of one item each day.
    Old papers are my biggest problem. For too long, I just didn’t have any system of dealing with them, so now I have bins of all kinds of stuff. I’m determined not to leave this to my children to deal with, and am working daily at sorting it out now. Thanks for motivating us, Shelly!

  15. christopher thomas says:

    Well I am happy to say that I did get rid of a ton of things. I started to keep count but I was taken over by getting rid of things that I no longer needed or wanted.

    The trash men were not happy with me at all, for 2 weeks in a row I had big piles out for them, (I should of taken pictures).

    I used a old set of luggage and went through my closets and filled the 4 piece set and took up to the local thrift store. I am sure they are happy as it goes to help people that are going for treatments.

    The trash men will be more happy with me this week but I still have a lot of trash for this week once again.

    My shop was open and did well in selling more items out of it as well.

    So I am going to say, (and this is just a guess), my totals are:

    Threw away 100+
    Donated 50+
    Sold 28 in the shop

    I am good on paper as I do save all my receipts, but at the end of the month I add up all the items that I will need for taxes and then I put them in a bankers box, but I am sure that I can find something that deals with paper that needs to be reduced.

    As I was getting ready to send I do know of paper that needs to be gone through and that is my quilting magazines so that just might be the chore for this afternoon. Going to try and finish in the yard planting caster bean seeds this morning so they can get to going.

    Hope everyone has a great day and week.
    Happy quilting

  16. Stephanie says:

    I stopped keeping track, but did ok with the toss a thing a day challenge. Used up lots of small things (and old foodstuffs). Trashed some, and donated stuff too – yay.
    Paper … shudder … that stuff breeds!

  17. Shelley this new challenge is an easy one for me. Most of my quilt patterns are digital. If I’m going to make that quilt, I print the pattern and put it in a project bag or bin with the fabric, thread, etc. Once I have made it I then decide if I want to make it again. If so the paper pattern goes in my file cabinet. If not, the pattern (both digital and paper) get shredded. As for paper coming in, mail is sorted and dealt with immediately.
    I did fairly well with the last challenge;
    I filled 4 large boxes with fabric, notions, books and scraps to go to my Guild for the next Yard n Yardage Fundraiser. I even priced everything so the boxes can go in to the storage room next time I go to the Guild. I also took 2 boxes of kitchen things to the thrift store. Nothing was thrown out since after moving we had no excess junk. Everything is still useable in our home. 😉

  18. Diane says:

    Paper. Whew, that’s a good one and one I really need to focus on. I cut out recipes thinking I’m going to include them in our meal rotations and still have some from several years ago that haven’t even been auditioned. And then there are all the “Wannado” patterns that I’ve printed off and yet to complete. Photographs! I have boxes of them and empty albums and scrapbooks to put them in, and well, you get the picture. And the mail. Beloved and I each get at least 3 requests every single day for opportunities to contribute to charities. Seriously, it’s heartbreaking not to be able to help all of them but I’m a little irate that some of those that I have given to have shared my name with their friends, and they seem to have lots of friends. OK enough grousing Let’s get this party started!

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