Organization and Friendship

My very dear friend Laurie and I have been organizing my workroom.  This has been a tremendous undertaking.  Not only were we organizing the space, we were emptying it and pricing items for the garage sale this weekend.  We worked together on this project for two and a half days, with me working independently several more.  Here’s what we’ve accomplished so far:

We removed the loveseat from the room, moved my work desk to the other side of the room where the loveseat had been.  Moved the wide storage units under my grandmother’s enamel topped table, moved more storage units beside that which hold my art journaling materials.  We went through the bookshelves, eliminating what was not necessary and organizing the rest by topic.  The middle bookshelf holds my treasured books, my watercolor papers, sketch books, artist papers and journals.  The bookcase farthest from my worktable holds my books on miniatures and small plastic totes filled with projects and all the materials required to complete that project.

The back wall is filled with storage cubbyholes.  There are 72 cubbyholes with canvas totes in each.  Each is filled and labeled with it’s contents, and put in sections.  For example, all art journaling materials together, fabric and trims together, office stuff together, art supplies together, Christmas items together, miniatures together, etc.

The joy of an organized and cleaned workspace cannot be underestimated.  My husband attached a small portable closet, from Ikea and a gift from a friend, to the wall and is making three or four more shelves to go into it.  This holds the stuff that accumulates on my desk top.  The remaining shelves will hold the other odds and ends I have in small containers on the table top.  Finally, my husband is putting up two peg boards for additional storage.  I should have enough storage options to make me quite happy.

I’ll add pictures when everything is pulled back together.

You know, I wouldn’t let just anybody into my chaos.  Oh no.  I was reluctant to have my own mom in my workroom because of the hot mess it was.  Yet Laurie just jumped right in and helped me get going.  I had started, but was so overwhelmed by the sheer volume of stuff and the lack of space I was stuck.  It felt like I was just moving stuff from one spot to another without making any real headway.

Then Laurie arrived and suggested we begin in one corner.  Just pick one spot and start.  We started with the bookcase.  Then before you know it, that was sorted and cleared out of all the stuff I didn’t want or need-opening up 4 shelves for additional books I found in boxes and sorted out.  Then the second bookcase was tackled, then the third…The small amount of progress from the first bookcase gave me a huge boost in motivation.  After she left that afternoon I continued by moving my worktable across the room, sorting all the stuff stored around it, under it and in it, and setting up a work area which will actually work for me.  After all this, it’s just a matter of tweeking to make it as functional as possible.

I cannot suggest this strongly enough:  If you need to organize, call your best friend and do it together.  It makes the process much less daunting and the fresh pair of eyes really help, too.  Laurie could see things in my stuff I had grown “blind” to.  Things were just the way they were, Laurie could see a different way.

Laurie is a blessing in my life in many ways, but she earned her friendship brownie points this week!  What a trooper!  Thank you, my friend!

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