It’s that time of year again when your children are bringing home everything and anything from school – reports, school work including portfolios, books, art work, lunch boxes, drink bottles and uniforms. Over the past week when emptying their backpacks my children are pulling out all sorts of different things they have worked on throughout the year. We have one more week to go and am sure their will be more yet to come!
As I was organising and putting some of this memorabilia away on the weekend and getting the house ready for Christmas festivities, it occurred to me that many people are not really sure what to do with all of these extra items. Many of my clients often struggle with these things throughout the year let alone getting a lot in quick succession. Here are a few tips to organising memorabilia that usually work for me and what I suggest to my clients.
Let’s start with what I would term the easier items like lunch boxes, books and uniforms. Its a good idea to inspect these and if they are still in good condition then you might like to wash these and store away ready to get out next year. It’s much better to put things away clean than realising you need to wash them a day before school starts. If they are no longer of use to you then you might like to donate or dispose of them. Many schools have either second hand uniform and book shops or points where you can drop these off for others to use.
When it comes to the other items like school work, reports and art work the decision making becomes a little more difficult for many. You will need to decide what you wish to keep, display or dispose of. Naturally you won’t be able to keep it all as you would end up with boxes and boxes over the years of a child’s school life! Ideally you need to have one spot where you store and keep it all together. This could be in a file, box, tub or folio. I often recommend to my clients that they have a large plastic tub for each child that can be stored up in a cupboard, attic or even in a garage space. This tub is then the central place for storing each child’s school life memorabilia along with other memorabilia items for other activities.
When it comes to art work you might already have a display wall or shelf where you keep items and rotate them over time. I suggest you keep the pieces that you or your child are really proud of and dispose of the rest. If you are uneasy at disposing of any of these you could take photos beforehand to keep so that children can look at them from time to time. I know my son has often asked me to take photos of lego creations he has made at school and other art creations as he knew we couldn’t keep them forever. Fortunately my children already come home with their artwork in a folio and we will sit down after Christmas and select the items they wish to put up on our art wall, those they want to throw out and others they will keep in the folio.
If you find your memorabilia tub or place where you store these items fills up very quickly you might need to go through it on occasion and review its contents. My final suggestion is if items you decide to keep are not dated it might be useful to put a note on it so that when you do look back on the memorabilia you know when it is from.
It’s important that you come up with a solution that works for you, your family and the space you have. Do you think you can now go ahead and get this all organised in your home? If not feel free to give me a call! Also if anyone else has any great tips that work for them please feel free to let me know so I can share!