What I asked for as a holiday gift was an organizer, but my problem with organizers is almost always that what I want/how I want it isn’t the way someone else sets up the organizer. I decided the Martha Stewart stuff that Staples was selling looked like it might work, and so far it has, mostly.
Because I’m trying really hard not to just buy more stuff, making elaborate plans I won’t keep, I’ve done this piecemeal over the past few weeks. The first pieces I bought were a small notebook and dividers. They look like this:
I got a red one, these are the small binders btw. It replaced my old, tatty kitchen binder — which I bought when we lived in California, about 30 years ago. I also got a set of dividers, which worked well too. Success! No extra stuff, what I already had is now neater and more presentable.
The second trip I bought a black binder, full 8.5 x 11 size, and calendar pages. The binder works, the pages not as much, I don’t like filling in dots when I finish something for example. My problems with it are minor, like the example. I can live with it.
The third trip was yesterday. I got another small binder, black. The idea is that the big binder is a “master plan” and the little one is my carry around piece. I know myself well enough to know that although I love the amount of space available in a large binder, I’ll carry it around for a day or two, then “forget.” I also bought lined paper, removable “to do” list pads, and the binding disks that the “to do” lists require. Those look like this:
The list pages look like this:
(All images were copied from the Staples website. I have no claim to them whatsoever. I am assuming that the images are (c) Staples or Martha Stewart or Avery. Please do NOT use for commercial use copied from my blog!)
You can’t tell from the image, but the list pages have mushroom shaped holes; they’re made to be removable.
You can’t put the pads on the disks without cutting part of the backing card away. Did that. Got them”disked” together. (Had to mangle them some to do so?) Found a place to store the extra pads.
Hmm. There are 5 disks left over. I needed somewhere to store something; I had not expected to store ANYTHING except the extra pads. I bought the disks to group the extra pads together in one organized place. The pads take 7 disks, the package of disks holds 12. There were 5 little pieces of plastic to find a home for!
I finally stuffed them in the left inside pocket of the big notebook. I was not pleased. I put them twice in the small notebook’s pockets and they fell out. I did NOT want more loose little bits!
Went to put 1 pad in the notebook. Nope, ain’t gonna work, the hole spacing is different between the disk holes and the three-ring binder rings. Okay, I understand why they did this: Why allow people to combine the types instead of making them buy both? Yes, fine Avery and Martha, but you think you might have considered selling removable lists for those of us who really like 3-ring binders (which you also sell)?
I got out my hole punch. This doesn’t work all that well, the list pad falls out. Okay, remove just 2 pages. They still want to fall out. I’m going to have to put reinforcements on them. If I do that and then cut the base of the reinforcements so the lists are still removable, I’ll have recreated the “to do” lists myself. Fine, I’ll do it, but after I use the three pads up, I think I’ll just make my own removable “to do” lists instead of buying new “Martha” ones.
AG! Then I’ll have 12 plastic disks to either pitch or find another way to use! Even with the best of intentions, new materials, forethought and careful planning — disorganization, more work, and stray STUFF results. . . .
I just can’t win.
I filled another target section 12/26/12 and forgot to post it, so it’s here: