I feel tremendous pride and love for my two kids, and I will admit, when it comes to these two, I am quite sentimental. It is, therefore, very tempting to save all their school memorabilia to reminisce their sweet childhood years. What is awesome is I found a way to save keepsakes without them taking over our house, and I share how I did it here.
I will admit there are a lot of amazing organizing blogs out there. Mine is humble compared to Abby’s, Just Another Girl and Her Blog, who will show you how to organize to perfection! I appreciate role models like her because I love to learn and experiment with new ideas. But in the early parenting years, I truly felt like an octopus on roller skates. I was flying. Can you relate? If so, believe me, you do not have to be perfect to be organized. You just need functional systems! Do pretty only if it is important to you, and if you have the time.
What I hope you will learn about me is that I am sentimental and passionate on one hand and practical and logical on the other. Once you have a system in place, you are half way there. You can modify my system to suite your own personality and needs. So, let me show you four easy methods I used to capture my kids’ school years. It really just started with a plan that I executed consistently right from the beginning.
Yup, I established one storage box for each kid. I made a pact that I would not keep more school keepsakes than what could be kept in their box. For the whole 12 years! As you can see my kids’ memory boxes were just Banker’s Boxes. Very humble indeed. I can tell by how their names are just scrawled on the top that I was on the fly!
There were times it was difficult for me to let an item go, but I treasure the one memory box per child even more because the items I let go, gave more value to the items that I have kept.
I created a binder for each child with tabs from grade 1-12. Again, not done fancy-dancy. They were lucky their binders got a front cover! To be honest, I collected more than just report cards in their binders. See the star… hehe, I guess I bent my rules on occasion. This binder system was easy because, I had a pocket folder to store loose papers or papers that I needed to hole punch when I had more time.
Some people may prefer to store their kids’ artifacts in a filing cabinet, but the downside to that system is a filing cabinet is not portable like a binder. I would also be concerned that items would get taken out, misfiled, and lost. With a binder and slash pockets, we could easily flip through, and it helped me keep our papers tamed. I kept the binders stored in a very accessible location during the school years, but now that they are adults, the binders are conveniently stored in their memory boxes. But, consider a filing cabinet for storage if you find it easier.
The School Highlights Album is optional. Yes, you could store report cards and highlights in the Report Card Binder
But since I am both sentimental and a details person I enjoyed the specially designed album and filling in the blanks. It gave me a feeling of accomplishment, I guess.
Today, you can get similar K-6 or K-12 School Memory Albums on Amazon. I found K-6 version perfect for our needs because in high school, there wasn’t the same amount of artifacts coming home or I was just not wanting as much of their stuff anymore!
The Class Memories Album is a separate book from the School Memory Album, and it too is optional.
I really like how the class memories album keeps their class photos in chronological order, and it is easy to flip through. There is a lot of pride when you look back and each one of the photos is in its place, and the highlights are completed.
My kids are not so little anymore; in June 2017 they are both turning 22 and 24 years old! I am truly grateful that I organized their childhood memories. I know we should all live in the moment, but there is a gift when we can reflect on how we got to where we are.
How are you doing with your kids’ memory collections?
If you are struggling with a system, I hope this post helped turn your guilt into inspiration. Remember if you are busy, you will start with a simple box and a binder with tabs and a pocket for report cards.
Once you have a system, you are half way there. The other 50% is a consistent practice to maintain your system. If that is too difficult, you can hire a professional organizer to give you a helping hand. We are no different then hiring a gardener or a hair stylist! There are just some things other people can do better than we can do for ourselves if we are too busy to do everything we want to do.
You may find a professional organizer in your area by checking out the referral system through Professional Organizers of Canada. I am located in Nanoose Bay, British Columbia, and serve between Nanaimo, Port Alberni and Comox. I am also available for virtual consulting.
Whether you do it yourself or get a professional to help, “capturing the moments of today will wow your heart tomorrow.”