Project Simplify - Office Clutter

After - what's left of a junk covered bed!

It's week #2 in the Simple Mom "Project Simplify" five week program. If you haven't heard or need the extra push to do some simple organizing, this is a great weekly meme to join. Last week we tackled master closets, this week it's ...

paper or office clutter. Next week... who knows! That's the fun of it - we never know what the next hot spot will be, we just have to jump on it and git 'er dun.

A smattering of office stuff from one basket

This project has been on my back-burner so I'm glad to finally do it! We have moved 5 times in 8 years. Do you know that I'm still carrying around office junk in moving boxes that I haven't opened from 2 or 3 moves ago? I know there are a few from move #1!

A home itemization book from 2000 - never filled out! 
This has moved 6-7 times! 

Boxes of letters. Boxes of snap shot photos (ok, not junk). Boxes of office supplies. Grocery bags of pens, pencils, markers, stapler removers, JUNK. Usable items, but un-used by us.

There is the home booklet, and a Magic Jack never used!

I know exactly why I've been moving with these bags - the day before we are set to climb into the Penske truck, I take that one junk spot in the kitchen and pour the contents into a shopping bag and stuff it into a box or another bag. Then when we arrive at our new house, it gets shoved aside because I'm using only the 2 pens in my purse. And I like this. It's simple.

Yup...I opened this box and there was another bag of pens & markers!
 At least 2 moves ago!

Eventually, I might grab a few more pens, pencils and markers to use. The rest stay in the bag and get stuffed back into the moving box until our next move. Then I quickly go through boxes, deem that I don't want to deal with sorting it and certainly can't throw perfectly good pens and pencils away! And there they go onto the truck to our next house. And the pattern is repeated.

Tub to donate, trash bag and another EMPTY basket!

I'm on a major clearing out roll. My next target I'm having a hard time with: snap shot photos - you know the pre-digital days when we had stacks - or boxes - of pictures, sometimes 5 or 10 images of the same shot!

Ahh...another empty tub and all extra office supplies are now in one spot.

My question to you is this: Am I allowed to throw away photos?
Photos are sacred. What if someone in 50 or 80 years finds one and it's the
missing piece to history? I can't fathom looking at every.single.picture. and
decide if I want to keep it or not. What have you done or will do?

What is photo-keeping etiquette?

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Emily said...

Wow - you've been busy collecting pens! Check out the fabulous Jennifer of IHeartOrganizing to get some great tips on storing photos. Here's a link I thought would be helpful for you.


Emily from Nap Time Is My Time

Alexis of NorthOnHarper said...

It's crazy the things we hang on to... but congrats on getting organized now!

Dianne said...

You can clean around here if you want to!! Oh you don't want to?? I don't want to either!!
Anyway, it looks great at your house! :)
Dianne @

Marie said...

I wish I could get organized in a few areas around here and photos are one of those -- I've been scanning some of the more important ones but what to do with the rest?!

I'm a new follower from the blog hop :-)

Debbie said...

I've been trying to organize one room of my house a month this year. It is amazing how much accumulates over the years!

House Revivals said...

So funny about all your pens! As far a photo organizing goes -- just get them all into one place for now. The same bin or whatever. At some point (later) ditch anything blurry redundant, etc. It's okay to keep a few duplicates, but you don't need to. Store negatives in a different location (safe deposit box, your mom's house, whatever -- there are binders and boxes you can get for these). You will probably never need these, but if your house burned down or flooded or something, you would still have a photographic record of your family. If you hate scrapbooking, don't do it and don't feel guilty. Just have all your pics in a bin or basket or box, and enjoy periodically sifting through them and feeling the nostalgia.

sskcraftshop said...

Hi, New follower came through blog hop
...you can visit me at

Carolee Sperry said...

I have been on a major de-junking and painting kick, too!

I paint a wall in the office, then come to the computer, visit a few blogs, then do a wall in the bedroom, then visit the computer....balance :-)

I'm visiting from Never Growing Olds Over 40 Blog Hop.

I have a few blogs:

Come on home - mom blog

The Blogging Biz Mom

While there, feel free to subscribe to my newsletter and join the Blogging Buddies group

Working at home advice

Good luck on your de-junking mission...

Have a great weekend!

Color-Coded Organizing said...

Wow! You really went hard on your office clutter. Photos are hard to part with, but you can always scan them in and store them on a website (which is fireproof!) and pass them on to friends and family who will honor them. Good luck!

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