Monday, December 31, 2012

Organization Obsession

Some of you know that I am about to start my final semester as an undergraduate student. I plan on going to graduate school for Creative Writing, which means I will have to move to a new city. A new city means I will have a cool new place of residence, a wonderful new job, and a wealth of new inspiration.

For someone like me, this great opportunity is, more accurately, a bunch of opportunities under the general label of a single decision. What that really means is the one decision I make (where I decide to go to grad school) will open up a million doors for me.

Interior design. Art. Music. Writing. Food. Love. Snail mail. Organization.

I can't begin to describe how excited I am to implement all the latest organizational tips and tricks I've picked up over the past few days. I am an organization fiend. I love to organize. I manage to trick myself into cleaning by calling it organizing.

The last two hours of my time divided itself into making a list of paper file categories for when I move, and organizing my laptop files (but not cleaning them out, as that is a task for another day when I have hours upon hours to read, track changes, and merge the many stories I have on my computer).

I wanted to share my plans with you.

Plan Number One: 

The Plan: 
I will get a large hanging file for my pen pals, one for each grouping of letters. Inside this file I will place one manila folder for each pen pal I have. On each folder I can then write their name and tape or glue down their information card for easy access. Inside the folder I can include some sort of manual log for the last letter I received from that person, and the last letter I sent out to them. With their card right on the front, I can drop little gifts, articles, or items they might enjoy into their file (probably in a baggie to prevent damage), based on their likes.

Alphabetically ordered in manageable sections.
Easy access to logs, information, and gifts.

Takes up a lot of space.

Plan Number Two:

The Plan:
I already use several binders to organize my pen pal information. However, this isn't particularly helpful when I only have their name to go by. The new plan is to use the alphabetical tabbed cardstock I have to organize each pen pal in order. Then I will place clear page protectors in each section. Within each protective sheet I will have an information card, a manual log of exchanges, and a baggie that includes any interesting items I find or want to send. 

Takes up less space.
Papers are better protected.

Would become bulky if I had too many dimensional gifts.
If each section held two or more pen pals, I'd have to sift through to find one.
Would need to add more binders if I cannot close the first one.

So what do you think? Which method would you opt for? I'm leaning towards the filing system (Plan One) because it has fewer cons. It might be a larger system, but it seems more efficient. Are there any suggestions you would make to improve either of these systems?


  1. How about best of the both worlds?

    Happy New Years.

  2. they both sound pretty cool! I was thinking of doing some mail pal organizing too! I think I may start an altered rolodex for keeping track of friends addys,likes, dislikes, and maybe small gifts they would like. I don't have nearly as many pals as you yet tho! :) happy new Year!

  3. Or how about zip-lock bags and a one of those file folder sized boxes?