Tidying up the Desk Shelves

Hello World!

So I had a free Sunday and my urge to organize came upon me and I decided to tackle the shelves above my desk. I’m pretty lucky with my apartment. It came with a lot of shelves AND a built in desk next to the kitchen.

I usually try to be organize. The key word there is “try”, but more often than not, I’m in a hurry and I just stuff the shelves with papers and whatever knick-knacks that are out and about; especially when I have company coming and even more so when that company is my mother.

With my selves overflowing with papers that I haven’t read in 5-10 years, I decided to do a purge. I cringe and am a bit embarrassed about making the purge since I’ve been living in this apartment for a little over a year and basically said screw it to the papers and put them on the shelves. That also means I actually just moved boxes of papers that I could have thrown away. I’ve included the photo below.

Before the Purge

My biggest problem was the what-ifs. I always thought “What if I need that information on Jupiter that I gathered when I was 12 because as I’m nearing 30, I will have to do another project on the plant?” I know. Ridiculous. Especially since I can easily get new information that is not 15 years old on the internet. Hear that Google? But the feeling still remained. “What if I need these meeting notes from three years ago?” It was hard to let them go. However, I Marie Kondo it.

I do recommend her method if you might be feeling you are one box, one book, one piece of paper away from being a hoarder. It’s not giving up everything like the Swedish Death Clean or any other Minimalist approach might suggest. Heavens knows, I still have more things than I truly need, but there is a sense of relief that comes with getting rid of, for a lack of a better term, garbage.

That’s what this purge really was. I wish I could say I donated 3-4 bags to Goodwill. I didn’t. Most of what I got rid of was paper and I just threw them into the recycle bin. All of about 2 garbage bags full. So much that I carried around from apartment to apartment all because I was scare of giving it up. It makes so little sense in the long run and like I said, I was embarrassed about waiting so long to tackle this part of the apartment and I don’t even really know why.

Now I will say, that as I cleaned out several Binders, I found papers I didn’t even know I had. The papers were thrown, but the binders I did keep. If you haven’t read one of my other posts, then you might not realize that I teach High School. Day 1, I tell all my students they will need a binder for my class. They will be able to keep it in the room. However, I do work for a Title-1 school. For those of you who don’t know what that means, it means that most of the kids I teach are on Free or Reduce Lunch. They don’t have enough money to buy a binder for my class, much less one for the other 7 seven classes that they take. Sometimes they struggle with the basic necessities. So, I tell them that they may borrow one of mine for the year. I have about twenty binders in my classroom and am about to bring in another 14 for the students for next year.

I honestly don’t keep track of them. If the students really want to take them, or if they come to me asking for another one for a teacher who doesn’t have a supply, I freely grab another one for them to take. They appreciate it and it gives them a little bit more of a chance to be organized and to succeed.

One of these days, I’ll have to do a post about my classroom closet. That might make some people cringe and run away in horror and I’m not exaggerating, it’s pretty bad. Regardless, the supplies I keep are for the kids so I always try to make sure that I am well stock.

Back to Cleaning. So I manage to get rid of a lot of papers and binders that were really just taking up space. It was kind of funny once I finished. I barely had enough to keep by books standing since I had gotten rid of so much! I even had space to move my sewing machine in! That was a huge plus for me. I had been thinking about moving it over, however, there had been no space. Now there was plenty and I could probably fit in more stuff. I’m trying not to, but I probably will eventually. I do know myself after all.

Another thing I noted, was the sheer number of notebooks I had that only had a handful of clean pages left. I ripped out those pages and then threw the rest away. I was holding on to so many useless papers that I wondered why I didn’t start this before.

I also like the fact that I did not need to turn my apartment upside down to get this all done. It took maybe two hours. If that, to empty out the shelves and then go through the material. It was not hard, but it was tedious. I would look at something and realize that it was from when I was in middle school! Why did I one: still have it  and two: why wasn’t it at my parent’s house!

This meant that I deliberately took it from my parents house, brought it into my apartment and then put it on the shelf for years! It’s hard to believe. However, I did. The final results are below.

After the Purge. * Note the giant white box is my sewing machine.

I’m grateful I did the clean. When I finish I entered a little high of “what else can I clean?” and immediately did another load of laundry and some of the dishes. The high wore off by the fifth dish. I do hate doing dishes.

Regardless, it’s the first step in cleaning my shelves and it’s a few less things that I now own and need to worry about with my next move. I might one day go through the books, and eventually convince myself that yes, I really don’t need or even really want that Complete Babylonian Dictionary. However, that day is not today.

I hope that you all have enjoyed my post. If you have decided to start decluttering parts of your life and would like to share, I’d love to hear about. Leave me a comment about what you’ve all managed to get done!


10 Things About Me

In attempting to be more open about myself and in this blog, I’ve decided to come up with 10 Things you need to know about me.

One: I have a Cat

Merlin is the name of my Pet master. He runs the household and I do his bidding. Any of you who have ever owned a pet will know that this is true. Although, when you see this face, it’s hard not to bend to his will.


Two: I love most things Japanese

About ten years ago, I studied abroad in Japan. Since them, I’ve developed a love of the Japanese culture.  From Traditional Japanese culture to Anime I like it all. I’ve been in the process of learning the language. It’s been slow going, but not impossible.

Three: Cooking is a Passion

I love cooking. I really do. The problem is that I’m single and when I cook, primarily bake, it makes more than I can eat. That is unless I want to grow wider. Which I don’t. So there might not be many recipes that get posted, but I will definitely put the few up there that I do enjoy.

Four: Reading is my life

A few years ago I stumbled upon Goodreads. If you haven’t heard about it, it’s basically a small community for people to showcase, or show off, what books they are reading. The one factor that I really like about it is the reading challenges they place into motion each year. They ask people to write down their literary goal for the year.

Mine is 53 books.

Another great aspect is that it allows you to review your books an rate them out of 5 stars.

Five: I love Movies

So I watch about 4-6 movies a week. Considering I have little time to do anything else. I used to go more often, however I am making a priority to try to watch more movies in theaters and I’ll try to review a few of them as I go.

Six: I’m a Teacher

I’m a teacher. I work at a high school. I will more likely than not post at least one or two posts about being a teacher.

Seven: I’m into Arts & Crafts

I’m a huge fan of Arts and Crafts. I will write about some of my projects and let you know how they all turn out. I have a Pinterest account where I get most, if not all, of my ideas. Some work out. Some don’t. I’ll be letting ya’ll know about them as I progress.

Eight: I’m a Tea Snob

I hate coffee! Sorry if that offends you, but I do. I love Tea though. I’m very peculiar about it. I prefer loose leaf to bag, but bag is better than nothing. I’ve been experimenting with different leaves to produce different flavors.

Also, those of you who drink your tea with the tea bag still in it, that has to be one of the grossest things I’ve ever heard. That’s just disgusting!

Nine: I’m in debt

Not going to lie here. I’m in debt. My goal is to shrink it all by the end of the year. I will be posting over some of the different ways I try to decrease my debt using a number of side hustles and what worked and what didn’t.

Ten: I’m a in declutter-mode

So like most of the world, I watched Tidying up with Marie Kondo. I had already been in a decluttering mode prior to this, however this really helped push me in getting rid of even more of my things that frankly I didn’t need nor want.

So I’ll share some of the things I’ve done and how I’ve gone about getting rid of a large number of things that I don’t use or even want anymore in my apartment.


So that’s a bit about me. I’ll be posting again soon! Please let me know a little bit more about yourselves.