Friday, November 1, 2013

Controlling Paper Clutter

The amount of paper that comes into this house is just ridiculous!  I feel like I am constantly up to my eye balls in paper.  And that's with only 3 of the 4 kids in school so far!  I have tried so many different ways to deal with paper, but it seems to just constantly take over our lives. 

A while back I shared our Command Center with you that you can find here.  As I stated then, we have only been in our house for about a year and a half so I am still learning how to best function out of it.  We have a main floor office so I struggled with what to keep in there and what to have in our Command Center.  While I think I finally have that figured out, there is still the issue of paper piling up in the filer in the kitchen just because of the sheer number of papers that actually come through the door. 

With my husband working long hours, I try to keep mail and any school papers from the days he was gone in that area so he can look through it when he gets home.  But it is also where I put book orders, field trip forms that are awaiting signatures or money to go along with them, church take home sheets for the kids to fill out during the week, etc.  It fills up so quickly.  I can go through it all and have it cleaned out but as soon as the kids get home from school it fills right back up again.  Not working. 

So I decided I needed to get a file for each kiddo (well for the older 2 year old doesn't contribute to this problem...yet...).  This is for the sole purpose of keeping their book orders, church sheets, and school forms.  It will also serve as a place for them to put their papers for me when they get home from school.  As it stands right now, they all get home and start throwing papers at me.  I stack it all up and attempt to go through it, but sometimes I can't get to it right away...and then you have situations like not knowing which teacher sent home the pre-conference questionnaire to fill out...luckily I figured that out before sending it for the wrong kid and looking like a total flake of a mom! 

This is what my shelves look like now.  I've moved my little mesh sorter up higher (out of reach of kiddos of course :) ) and it is going to be used only for the things my husband needs to take a look at.  I bought this wall filer today and am anxiously awaiting hub's arrival home from the firehouse so I can have him put it up for me (he has a strict rule that I am not allowed to touch his power tools; or any of his tools for that matter.  Which is actually just fine with me because it just means I get out of some of the work-ha!).  I am actually hoping we can add strong enough magnets to the back so I can add it to the wall below my calendar. 

What do you do for paper?  Do you have any great products for keeping your paper under control?  Or am I the only one who seems to have mounds of it coming home everyday?!  I am cautiously optimistic that this new system may solve some of our problems, but would be happy to listen to any suggestions :)

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