I am on summer vacation. Yeah! That means I can start the long list of projects I created for myself to do over my break from teaching. Although, I also love to spend the summer planning and preparing for next school year (crazy, I know:). The last week of school was crazy and things were dumped everywhere! Yikes! My desk was piled with various piles of stuff. I couldn't find things my daughter needs for the summer, things I need for my masters program...very unlike me. So, the problem has been remedied. In the process, I also fixed another problem in our kitchen (I'll explain more on that below). Here is what my desk looked like before...not horrible but you can see the piles of paper.
Here was the desk drawer, not sure it had ever been organized:)
We have a bulletin board and cubby in our kitchen that has always been a catch all for coupons, ads, gift cards, invitations, etc. It just looked like a mess all the time! So, in organizing my desk, I incorporated a place for some of those items. Here is the wall of the kitchen before.
I had a nice green fabric tub sitting empty in my house. I decided to use this to help organize the desk top (yeah for free!).
I created labels for items I need to access frequently and put them on folders for the green tub. These included folders for my daughter for school and extracurricular activities. She will be starting kindergarten in the fall and will also go to a before/after school program. The school folder has forms I need to complete for the fall, school supply list, calendar and items I need to reference for her school. The extracurricular folder contains her dance schedule, gymnastics schedule, park district class info, etc. I also created folders for retail coupons and restaurant coupons to help clean up the spot in the kitchen. Now I don't have to shuffle through the mess on the wall, I know they are in the folder. I can also put the coupons directly into the folder as we get them from a store or restaurant instead of in a pile somewhere.
I put the folders in the tub on my desk. The tub also contains my notebook where I put all my to-do lists and blog ideas. In the back is books and notes for the current masters class I am working on.
Since I had to organize the piles of paper on my desk, I did some reorganizing and relabeling of my file drawers. I created new labels (I like them to look the same:) and reorganized them a bit in the drawers so the placement/order makes more sense when I need to file something away.
My final step was to clean out the crazy desk drawer! Here are the after pictures of the desk drawer and desk.
To recap, here was my process:
1. I went through the piles on my desk, throwing away and sorting as I went.
2. I sorted and tossed items from the bulletin board in the kitchen.
3. Labels were created for the items I wanted to keep close at hand on my desk.
4. I organized the folders and items I needed to keep in the green tub.
5. The rest of the papers were put away in my file drawers (which got new labels and a little reorganizing as well).
6. I cleaned out the desk drawer.
Much better! Now, papers I need are easy to find in the folders on my desk. I have pens and post it notes in a cup so I have them handy. My Household Management Binder sits on the corner of my desk for reference as well.