That was in my house? Really? I’m a pretty organized person! But the truth lay bagged up right there in front of me. 87.6 pounds of it lay in front of me… paper!
When we returned from vacation, I received the following email from professional organizer, Emily Smith, owner of Simplify with Smith. I met Emily through a friend and I loved her take on organizing… simplify, be cost effective, and make everything beautiful with some simple organization!
The deadline is almost here! You have until THIS THURSDAY to send in the pictures of your filled bags along with the total weight that they weigh on the scale.
Prize is 1 free hour of professional home organizing along with a package of heavy duty garbage bags.
If you are unaware of this competition, here are the rules…
The challenge actually started the week before we left on vacation, but with a sick kid and a packing agenda, I missed the previous email. There were now only 48 hours of the challenge left, but I thought… Sure, I’m game. We have all the newspapers from when we were on vacation, a couple years of taxes we can shred, and some out dated Mary Kay brochures I have on hand (yes, I do Mary Kay too in all my “spare” time). It’s worth a try to win the challenge. Who wouldn’t love a professional organizer to come in and evaluate their home and give them a free hour of their service?! It’s on!
So I started writing a list of the couple areas in our home to check for unnecessary paper. Ironically, this challenge came at the same time I was writing the post Paper Organization: Vertical File Box and updating our own box. As I went through each of our files and updated them, I found I had some papers that were no longer needed… and this is our current and “working” box! Yikes! If I was housing unnecessary papers in there, I was afraid to see what I’d find in our office.
I gave my husband a few places for him to check and go through. Together we started our search for paper clutter. I cleaned out magazines, old Mary Kay brochures and files. He cleaned out a couple of our extra-large files we had been storing in the file cabinet and our previous year’s 3-ring binder of medical stuff.
We had 3 bags going. Two for recycling, one for shredding. And I was on a mission. Me + organizing + a competition = go time! I even pulled out the large banana box that held memories of my school days. Who needs old history tests from 7th grade 20+ years later? If only the clock weren’t ticking down and I could’ve tackled the entire box. But it was and the time came to weigh in.
The bags were too large to fit on our scale for an accurate weight. Our solution… Brad held all three bags and stepped on the scale. Then he weighed himself and subtracted the difference.
Within 48 hours, we pulled out 87.6 pounds of organized clutter!
Wait… organized clutter? Yup. Each paper we packed into those bags had its own neat little spot. There were no piles lying around. No overflowing drawers that couldn’t be shut. Yet our files and nicely organized cabinets were full of unnecessary paper lurking inside!
Sad to say, we came in third for the paper challenge. However, what a relief to have the files cleaned out and more storage space! AND… I’m sure you know it has motivated me even more!
So, over the next couple months, I would like to challenge you to work on clearing out the clutter. Why wait until spring when the weather is nice to do spring cleaning? I’m using these snow days to do some serious home organization.
To kick off this Clear Out the Clutter series, I’m going to pass on to you the Paper Challenge AND… reward one super clutter clearer outer a $25 gift card to The Container Store!!!
Paper Challenge details:
- The Paper Challenge starts today, February 6th and closes at 11:59 p.m. CST on Thursday, February 20th.
- Paper, newspapers, and magazines all count! (Please do not include books or phone books.)
- All papers should be weighed in a plastic bag or trash bag. However, we want to be environmentally friendly so please plan on recycling after the weigh in!
- To enter, please post a photo of your bags of unnecessary paper on our Facebook page (linked to the paper challenge post: https://www.facebook.com/385154664934533/photos/a.418751598241506.1073741830.385154664934533/509117532538245/?type=1&stream_ref=10) with the total weight in the comments.
- The participant who discards the highest weight of paper wins a $25 gift card to The Container Store!!!
If you live in the Chicagoland area and are looking for a professional organizer for your home or business, check out Simplify with Smith!