On storing my children’s childhoods

Ok, so yeah, I’m feeling quite better now. Not stellar, but better. It’s after noon and I’m still in my pajamas (technically), but I’ve accomplished a lot today so far. And half the kids are fed (who knew my son liked chicken salad?), so I’m gonna call that winning.

Here’s what’s on my mind today: I get really frustrated when the house starts to become untidy, when I see things laying (lying?) around where they don’t belong (confession: that’s on my mind EVERY day). A lot of it is the kids’ stuff, but a lot of it too are areas I am intending to sort and organize. Kids bring home a lot of stuff from school. Some of it is not important, and can be pitched immediately, but then a lot of it I believe is worth hanging on to, at least for a little while. I will sometimes hang artwork on the fridge, take a picture of it for proper archiving, and then recycle it after a few weeks.

I’ve been doing pretty well at keeping up with the inflow, but those last few weeks of school were a whirlwind and I kind of gave up for a spell (yes, I said spell). So I have been wanting to get that last batch taken care of before we’re too far into the summer. And guess what? Today I did it! It’s all been archived and/or stored (some things are hard to photograph, so I keep them) and now I’m getting ready for next year!! I am abhorrently against clutter, so it may seem odd that I’m choosing to keep any of my children’s elementary school mementos, but I am sometimes a sucker for sentimental things. Also, I at one time enjoyed looking through the crap I made as a kid. I once created a watercolor painting of a giant can of Campbell’s Soup. Not exactly the kind of thing you would frame and hang in your kitchen (maybe), but even after all those years I still remembered how hard I worked on that painting, and how satisfying it was to complete. So, you know, memories. I expect my children may have some memories wrapped up in these things I’m keeping, and maybe one day they’ll want to revisit them. Or not, it will be their decision.

My only issue at this point is that the small boxes I’ve been using to keep these mementos are rather full. So I need to find the sort of boxes where I can keep these things in decent shape, but also sorted by year. Do such boxes exist? I’m sure they do. I’ll be scouring Amazon later, of course. Maybe Etsy or Pinterest will have some good ideas too. Do you have any ideas? I’ll take any suggestions you’ve got!

3 thoughts on “On storing my children’s childhoods”

  1. One piece of advice I’ve received is to ask the kids which pieces they’d like to hold on to at the end of every school year (setting a limit of ~5 pieces per school year). My mom saved mine in rubbermaid plastic containers that she handed to my sister and me when we moved out of the house. If I were you, I might also look into archival storage container depending on the artwork: http://www.containerstore.com/s/office/paper-file-storage/archival-paper-storage/123

    (found your blog by exploring wordpress’s tags! Glad I did!)

  2. You can check out JoAnn Fabrics and Michael’s Crafts for those boxes (I actually found one at Goodwill that I used for photos). U-Line has a huge box selection too! 🙂

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