Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Right Tool for the Job

I am going to publish this post after the sun comes up (whenever I wake up), but it is actually 1:45 am as I start to write this.  I am having trouble falling asleep.  Thankfully, I don't have to be awake early tomorrow since my dad took the kids camping tonight and they won't be home until tomorrow afternoon.  Since I was awake anyway, I thought I'd get a jump on tomorrow's today's post.

I've shared pictures of the disaster that is my desk in the past.  Sadly, it hasn't improved since then.  I clean it off and it stays that way for about a day.  But, slowly, items without a real home or stuff that I use so often I hate to put it away (only to get it right back out - ie. my camera and a couple school books) start to make it back to the top of my desk.  Before you know it, the desk is covered in junk.

Unfortunately, the area under my desk isn't much better.  I have a shredder and a pretty, wicker, waste basket that I keep under there to toss all the junk mail until I take it to the recycling.  But, as you can see from the picture below, it always seems to be overflowing.

woverflowing waste trash garbage basket can wicker desk messy shredder
The mess under the desk.

I also have a problem with overflowing mail on the top of my desk.  I bought this pretty basket (Please ignore the can of air.  I did promise to be honest - even about my messiness!) about a year ago to keep my mail in until I sort it, but it isn't quite big enough.  As a result, everything hangs out of it and it fill up in just a day or two. 

mail basket inbox wicker desk messy
Overflowing Inbox

I've been annoyed by both of these overflowing baskets in the past.  They filled up too quickly to really be of any use.  But, I wasn't quite sure what a better solution would be

Then, the other day, it finally hit me.  The problem (besides my lack of organizational skills and tendency toward messiness) with both my inbox basket and my waste basket is that they aren't the right tools for the job.  You see, they were technically what I needed - a basket for mail and a trash can - but they weren't the right shape and size for my needs!

My inbox was too small to hold a normal-sized piece of mail.  And, the round, tapering shape of my waste basket wasn't suited for throwing away paper trash.  It just got all wadded up, caught on the wicker ridges, and didn't fit right.

I don't know why it took so long for me to realize that these items weren't working for me and were making my problem even worse.  But, I knew right away that I had to find something that really worked.

The solution was simple.  A larger basket for my inbox and a rectangular basket (at least as big as a standard size piece of paper) for under the desk.  I even managed to find some that matched!

The basket I found to use as an inbox is larger than a standard size envelope.  This will allow more oddly shaped things to fit in it as well.  It is also deeper so that it can keep my mail hidden from view and help things look neater.
Inbox wicker basket mail desk
Basket to use as an inbox

The matching basket I am going to use for paper trash that doesn't get shredded was large and roomy, but fit in the space under my desk perfectly.  Just to make sure it would work better than my old, round basket, I took everything from the old basket and the stuff that had overflowed onto the floor and put it in the new basket.  As you can see, it is only about half-way full!  This, too should really help things look more tidy.

waste basket wicker paper trash garbage recycle recycling
My new "waste basket" for under the desk

Now, I just need to find a better place for all the rest of the junk on my desk!

By the way, my new baskets inspired me to clean my desk when I finally woke up this morning.  Below are the results.  I'm so happy with the way my new baskets look on my nice, neat desk!  They really are the right tools for the job!

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