Monday, January 11, 2016

School Art Keepsakes Decluttered and More

I'm very excited to report that we did more decluttering of keepsakes this weekend! I pulled out the two bins that held my youngest daughter's keepsakes from birth and the early school years. The goal was to reduce the contents enough that we would only have one bin left holding the best memories.

As you can see below, it definitely got messy before it got better. And I had help! We had a trash can and bag for  recycling nearby.

Yes, more mylar balloons trashed. And I did let go of the little hat and favorite onesie. I have pictures of my daughter wearing those items and find those more meaningful than keeping the actual clothes that are sitting in a bin. 

I'm donating the little book and two shirts (for bears). The postcards are unused and will become part of my stash of stationary. The CD (of 3rd grade memories) is getting recycled. I'm not sure we ever even watched it...which now I'm wondering if I should. I don't know if it's pictures or video. If video, I may want to keep if my daughter is 'in action' in them.

In total we got rid of the following:
  • 213 pieces of paper
  • 9 postcards
  • 42 cards
  • 1 CD
  • 1 book
  • 2 medals
  • 1 fan
  • 4 tshirts
And look! Instead of two pretty full bins, we now have one empty bin and a bin that isn't even close to 2/3 full. I was able to get the keepsakes in a bit of order. I put preschool papers on the bottom working up chronologically to the most current items we have saved. We did find a few items that we will scan in and then toss the originals. And over time, there may be more of these items scanned, but right now that isn't the entire goal. 

My youngest daughter has two more bins in my closet of keepsakes. I believe the items in these other two bins are full of items made in art class, primarily clay items. The goal for me is to at least reduce these items to one bin. It is possible they will all go or could be added to the bin shown above. That would be really nice!

Our method was to look at every item in the bin, which, yes, was overwhelming initially. If it didn't strike us as a keep item than it was easily discarded. There were some items we didn't agree on, but we kept all that at least one of us was drawn to keep. 

My daughter did think it was odd that I was saving some of her drawings from when she was 2 and 3. I did have a lot of them. I think they are so sweet and it is neat to see the progression. Several had her hand traced, which she then compared her hand size to it now! Big difference of course. I did save the best of the best of that age, but let several go, as many of the same type of thing aren't quite as meaningful as just a couple. At least for me! 

Once we were into grade school papers, there were cute pictures attached to some journal entries. The writing was neat to see and to see what she felt was important to write. My daughter was amused at the writing. I think this age was more interesting to me than her. She probably would have tossed it all. But I keep for now because it is meaningful to me. 

Keepsake decluttering can be really hard, but after decluttering so much over the years, I know that more isn't better. Less is good. Fewer keepsakes are just more meaningful than a hoard of keepsakes. At least in my experience. And we seemed to find items that were meaningful in the past, but not so much now that more time has past. 

Year to date decluttering was 222. Now 495. Yes, there were 273 items discarded during this most recent keepsake purge. Yippee!! 

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