The Cardinal Categories for Storing and Keeping

  • By birdie@getorganizedcolumbus.com
  • 09 Feb, 2016
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Having ample storage space in our home is almost always considered a plus. However, storing and overkeeping can often go hand-in-hand. We can manage our storing habits by changing the criteria we use for keeping. We do this first by recognizing the keep-types that lead to problematic piles. Keeping that becomes problematic generally involves one […] 
Having ample storage space in our home is almost always considered a plus. However, storing and overkeeping can often go hand-in-hand. We can manage our storing habits by changing the criteria we use for keeping. We do this first by recognizing the keep-types that lead to problematic piles.
Keeping that becomes problematic generally involves one of the following well-intended behaviors:
1. Should Keeps .   As in, I should keep this “just in case.”
2. Might-Keeps .    As in, the kids might want this some day, or I might paint again some day.
3. Guilt-Keeps.     Holding on to an item or gift, usually from a family member or friend, who thinks you should have it.
4. Exasperation-Keeps.     Storing something away instead of dealing with it.
Adjusting our keep-type criteria will help us better decide what gets the valuable real-estate within our homes. We can rely on these four basic categories to keep us in check:

1. Use Currently/Later–like, extra household supplies, clothing kids can grow into, etc

2. Use Occasionally–for example, the extra-large roaster pan or the glue gun

3. Use Seasonally–decorations for holidays or outdoor furnishings, winter clothing, etc

4. Heirloom/Memorabilia–such as photos and special items to pass on

These categories help us focus on howand whenwe use the items we are storing, rather than holding on to items indefinitely. As you can see we are focusing on use and need, and not on long-term possibility. Categories of Use help us also to determine where things should be stored in our homes. Frequently used items are kept closer, and infrequently used items are stored in lesser visited areas.
Hopefully these tenets of organization are helpful to you as you consider enhancing the storage areas of your home. Happy Organizing!

Get Organized Columbus

By Tera Harmon 16 Jan, 2018
Ever have that feeling after your home has been cleaned that things still don't seem put away and tidy? Or maybe you get that nagging sense when you walk into a room that things still need a "once over." Even in frequently-cleaned homes, we can feel like there is more to do when our clutter is the first thing that catches our eye in each room. Well the clutter itself may not be the only culprit. Our house habits can help highlight the things we use in a way that is not flattering.  Can you recognize any of these hotspots in your home?
By Tera Harmon 08 Jan, 2018
Photo Credit: Jay Wennington
By Birdie Brennan 04 Dec, 2017
Photo Credit: Kari Shea
By Tera Harmon 27 Nov, 2017
I always look forward to this cooler time of year to review coats and to decide where best to donate them. So many times when we hear about making a donation, we feel pressure to give financially. But giving something once owned and loved can be a fulfilling part of holiday tradition. I especially love involving kids so they can learn the idea of thinking of others at this time of year. Showing our kids how to prepare an item for donation teaches them how to care for others, but it also shows them to consider how their belongings can be useful beyond their own toy box. The act of cleaning up a gently used truck or putting new batteries into a remote control car to donate demonstrates to kids that our items are valuable to others--and that condition matters. This donation ritual is also an important purge ritual before the influx of contents that are about to enter our homes. 
By Tera Harmon 16 Nov, 2017

For even the most novice cooks, between now and the end of the year, many kitchens are about to get a workout. We may be hosting parties, holiday meals, trying a new recipe or two, participating in pot lucks, or baking with friends and family. Would't it be great if everything we need is at our fingertips--clean and functional for when we need it?


So often the tools and items we rely on at this time of year are somewhere in the back of cupboards, sideboards, or stored on basement shelving. I recommend gathering, cleaning, and staging the items you know will be needed in the coming weeks. In last week's post ( https://www.getorganizedcolumbus.com/the-ready-made-pantry ) we talked about a well-stocked pantry for the holiday season; for now, let's focus on the items we will likely need in the kitchen and dining areas.
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Get Organized Columbus

By Tera Harmon 16 Jan, 2018
Ever have that feeling after your home has been cleaned that things still don't seem put away and tidy? Or maybe you get that nagging sense when you walk into a room that things still need a "once over." Even in frequently-cleaned homes, we can feel like there is more to do when our clutter is the first thing that catches our eye in each room. Well the clutter itself may not be the only culprit. Our house habits can help highlight the things we use in a way that is not flattering.  Can you recognize any of these hotspots in your home?
By Tera Harmon 08 Jan, 2018
Photo Credit: Jay Wennington
By Birdie Brennan 04 Dec, 2017
Photo Credit: Kari Shea
By Tera Harmon 27 Nov, 2017
I always look forward to this cooler time of year to review coats and to decide where best to donate them. So many times when we hear about making a donation, we feel pressure to give financially. But giving something once owned and loved can be a fulfilling part of holiday tradition. I especially love involving kids so they can learn the idea of thinking of others at this time of year. Showing our kids how to prepare an item for donation teaches them how to care for others, but it also shows them to consider how their belongings can be useful beyond their own toy box. The act of cleaning up a gently used truck or putting new batteries into a remote control car to donate demonstrates to kids that our items are valuable to others--and that condition matters. This donation ritual is also an important purge ritual before the influx of contents that are about to enter our homes. 
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