Each year in December or January I like to spend a few hours to go through my files, clear out and shred things I don't need anymore. This typically includes going through existing files, making a huge mess, and setting up new files for the new year. Ideally, this allows me to make room for the new items both in getting rid of old things and setting up a new system for things in life that have changed over the past 12 months. Once things are setup this way, it makes it so much easier to be able to move forward and stay organized for at least the next 8-10 months. Though I typically get behind a little bit toward the end of the year, spending this annual time helps me catch back up and start with a clean slate.
In November 2009 we put our home up for sale and entered the contract on our new home. This was a very quick process and so the filing that had been stacking up toward the end of the year was stacked in boxes, out of site and inaccessible. We stayed in that situation through the new year and until we moved in May 2010, which means not only were we behind at the end of 2009, nothing was prepped for 2010 and through the first 6 months and into the move piles and piles of filing kept stacking up.
1 week after we moved our world fell apart. It kept falling apart for 4 weeks - the least of our concern in rebuilding was our filing system. Of course, that meant that over the remaining 7 months of the 2010, we've lived in a very unorganized home....not only are there still rooms that are unpacked (though just the craft room and the guest room closet now!), our filing system was well-passed out of hand. This of course was just one piece that mentally defeated us...even though I'm letting go of Mie my goal is to avoid letting my house take control.
Last night I was able to spend gathering all of the 18 months worth of unfiled junk. At one point I had 20+ piles spread over half our living room floor. I was smart enough to wait until the babies went to bed and Logan was watching Scooby Doo but on occasion he did come out to tell me about the mess I was making. It took 2 1/2 hours to get through all the sorting, filing, and shredding, but in the end I felt so free. I also managed to clear out my
I treated myself by eating a pomegranate. Alone. (and yet even without Logan's sharing I only made it through half).
I was fortunate enough to find a long-lost Chili's gift card, which means for our date night we'll get to have a nice treat, another thing I'm thankful for.
Though if I had to rank them getting through the files would far beat the free Chili's. And it's $50 so that's saying something.