PRT154 – Reorganizing This Afternoon

This week we’re eavesdropping on some organizational consulting to help get scrapbooking supplies in order. Come listen!

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  • Aj

    I just finished the show – I personally have a dedicated space, but I share it with my husband, so I found this show to be really thought provoking. Thanks guys!

  • Debbies

    I also got a lot of good ideas about how to store things in my dedicated craft space. Like the part about things you know you are going to use and need during crafting can be put up and away because you will need them and then some of the things you forget about keep out and at hand so you remember you have them and use them.

  • Diane

    Katie Scott was the guest you had, who is so good with the Roundtable topics and links them on her website/blog. Kiss and Tell Scrapbooking ;)

  • Thank you! I felt so bad that I was drawing a blank on her name during the show!!!

  • Laurie M.

    Sorry, this question is unrelated. I’ve been listening to the Paperclipping Digi Show. I’ve been listening to a few episodes every week and now the links are broken. Can you fix it please? I’m already having withdrawals.

  • The links shouldn’t be broken. We reduced the number of category topics we had on the front page and that was one we had to get rid of. Have your tried doing a search? Just put Digi Show in the search field in the right column. The posts should show up that way.

  • Paperclipping Nerd: Hi! Yes, that’s me: Katie Scott, the one who has all the paperclipping episodes memorized! I did do a list of the topics and guests with episode numbers on my blog (if you search in the search thing on the right on my blog “paperclipping episodes” it should get you to the correct post).

    “Negative” Scrapbooking and Art Journaling Episodes of Paperclipping: On the negative scrapbooking, if you really want to dive deeper into that, you should look for the paperclipping episodes about art journaling and the ones with Julie Fei Fan Balzer since she usually talks about art journaling. I think the earlier paperclipping episodes noted that art journaling is usually a place to put those private negative thoughts and then there was an episode or two about how art journaling doesn’t have to be negative. Nancy Nally was using her art journal as a place to get through some of her negative stuff that she didn’t want to put on scrapbook pages so that’s where she made the distinction; ie. I’m mad about “x” (that goes in the art journal); vs. “we have a challenge – ie autism – but I’m brightsiding the story ala Ali Edwards” (that goes in the scrapbook). You might also want to hit some of the earlier episodes with Ali as she is a great one to brightside challenges – which I think is a great idea.

    On Scrapbooking The Truly Negative Stuff: Personally, I don’t recommend using scrapbooking for the negative stuff although I have done some negative pages. One topic I hit from time to time on the negative side is unresolved issued I had with my father’s premature death – I didn’t get to be there when he died or at his funeral since I was pregnant and couldn’t fly; so from time to time over the past almost 10 years since his death, I’ll feel sad or upset about it and when I do, I make a scrapbook page about it – some of them have been negative like “I wish I could talk to you one more time so we could clear up these pestering issues…” Although, over time, I think that the scrapbooking about my father when I’m feeling the need to has actually helped me grieve him and remember him and resolve my issues; it has also helped me let my kids “know” my dad even though he isn’t here anymore – not that they are reading through my journaling on those pages, but because he’s on my mind and I spend a bit of time scrapbooking him and usually then I’ll tell (verbally) a story about him to the kids that is relevant to them (ie. my dad could eat more than anyone – my son has that in him too – and then I’ll tell the lesson that he also ran 5 miles a day and never carried any body fat – I probably need to revisit that lesson myself).

    Ella Publishing and Stacy Julian: Early on in Ella Publishing, Stacy Julian (and maybe Lain Ehmann as a co author? can’t remember) did a book called something like “20 Secrets of Happy Scrapbookers” where she used concepts from a popular psychological science book written about happiness by David (somebody – can’t remember ) and she applied the concepts to scrapbook pages. Then I did an article for Ella Publishing using that same concept and took that same author’s book about Secrets for a happy marriage and applied the concepts and made about 7 scrapbook pages using the concepts (one I can remember right now it taking the long view of your relationship – so that instead of letting little annoyances about your partner get to you, take a longer perspective on the relationship and don’t let the small stupid stuff get to you – I think my scrapbook page was about taking a horizon view and I used photos of my husband and I boating where you often literally look at the horizon to see where you are going; I also did a page about sharing housework, and others.)

    Why I think It Is Important to Scrapbook Mostly Positive Stuff: The point of the happiness book, Stacy’s ebook, and my article was that if you focus on the happy stuff, especially by scrapbooking about it, you actually become happier / your relationship actually improves! Conversely, I think if you scrapbooked the negative stuff you start to focus on that and you actually become unhappier! Which is why I don’t recommend scrapbooking the negative stuff in your life. It is ok if your scrapbooks don’t actually tell your true life, nitty gritty, every crappy thing that ever happened to you tale. Instead, by focusing on the positive in your scrapbooks, not only is the benefit that your pages will show the people you love that you love them and your pages will remind you that your life is good – which is nice for when you might be feeling down; but more than the pages – it is the process of noticing good and happy things and then spending the time making the page and revisiting the happy thoughts that is the awesome part because when your brain thinks about that happy stuff, its just as good as being actually happy – so when you are down or feeling blue – don’t focus on the negative, focus on the positive – a friend of mine says “smile until you actually feel happy” and this happiness trick actually works!

    Scrapbooking Saved My Marriage: About the same time as the Ella happiness book, around 2009 I think, I was contacted by a writer for First For Women Magazine and she had found my blog and wanted to do an article about me and how I scrapbooked my marriage to actually improve my relationship. The issue was December 2009 and if you search my blog I think I have some blog posts on it from back then. Anyway, she wrote a really great article about how I used scrapbooking to get through a rough patch in my marriage (she described my marriage and life like in the book/movie “Marley and Me” when the kids were small and the dog was driving them crazy and the marriage was strained – we had lots of parallels) and how making scrapbook pages about my husband, for my husband (ie. why I love you mini books etc), actually helped me to focus on the positive aspects of my marriage and our marriage actually improved because of positive scrapbooking!

    Ok got to go – how’s that for a long winded reply.

    P.S. Great show as always!


  • Karen Greaves

    Hey Noell and Izzy! When you introduced this week’s topic, I wasn’t sure there would be much in it for me but I was on my hour-long morning walk so kept listening. By the time I was half way through your show (and my walk), I was ready to run home and re-organize! My 9′ x 9′ home office/studio contains my business computer, printer and filing cabinet, my quilting, knitting and misc crafting as well as my scrapbooking/papercrafting stuff. That’s a whole lot of clutter. Although I do have works-in-progress stored in totes as Aby described, it’s all the other stuff that makes the mess. From this point forward I will be evaluating what is diet coke and what is cottage cheese! Thanks Aby, Gina and Laura for your inspiration and motivation. Thanks Noell and Izzy for joining me on my Wednesday walks.

  • I totally agree re: happiness. I know some people feel it’s important to be “real,” but when you focus on happiness then the happiness does become real. And none of us want to be open and real about our bodily functions — because it’s gross. But it’s also real. Better to get it over and done with with very little sharing and then move on, right? ;)
    But if we dwell on the negative it spreads within us and to others.

  • geezee

    Thank you Katie. I read every word here with great interest. I had no idea until you pointed out there good therapeutic way I had scrapped good stuff about my relationship with hubby and other difficult people. I think focusing on the good stuff helped remind me of reasons I valued the relationship and the person. Thank you for pointing that out. GinaZ

  • geezee

    Thank you also Karen. I loved the analogy of Diet Coke and cottage cheese. That was effective for me as well. I was worried that I wouldn’t add any value to the show, but I got so much out of it. I am thrilled to come here and see the responses to something I got to be included in by saying “Help me with my Mess”. That was difficult to admit when I want to see myself as completely organized. It was a pride thing. GinaZ

  • vishae

    Wow, where do I begin…

    Firstly, thank you Noell and Izzy for reading my comment on the Roundtable! I nearly fell out of my seat when Izzy read my handle (and yes, that’s how I pronounce it, it’s completely made up anyway – think back to the time when you had try 20 billion different usernames to get an unique Yahoo! handle that didn’t include any numbers in it).

    This week’s show was really interesting, and I was totally amazed at how quickly Aby was about to think of organisational ideas. When I first read about this week’s topic on one of your blog posts I thought for sure there would be a lot of pre-planning or discussions between Aby and the selected audience members – but no, it was all done on the spot. Great job Aby.

    And kudos for the (once again) great podcast topic Nizzy (Noell + Izzy)!

    Secondly, Katie, wow… wow…

    That was a much more comprehensive answer than I was expecting. You actually touched upon a couple of points that I hadn’t thought of (or at least in that way).

    I was thinking that by not scrapbooking your negative side, you’re not giving a true account of yourself. However, it was great how you said that it is completely alright to do that! And Noell, that analogy with the bodily function completely nailed it on the head.

    I was really interested about, Katie, your take on how positive scrapbooking would help you see more positive stuff in life and to help improve your relationship. I’ll definitely have to keep that in mind – and to look up that “20 Secrets of Happy Scrapbookers” ebook.

    (Considering how it’s an Ella Publishing ebook, I’m guessing it could be found on BPC – definitely going to be using that affiliate link!)

    Thanks again everyone for helping me out with that question!

  • moncoff

    I had that happen recently as well and it was a browser issue with IE and Google and a bunch of computer stuff I don’t understand. But…I can access everything fine through Chrome or Safari. Weird…but maybe that can help.

  • moncoff

    I recently moved out of a dedicated scrap space to the dining room and this helped so much! I Love the cottage cheese vs diet coke analogy. Genius. Great episode. And Hi Laura…you did great!

  • Marina D-K

    I am one who definitely scrapbooks about myself and some negative emotions occasionally. i think it is very therapeutic. I have used this type of scrapbooking mainly while working through grief. I keep that album separate from other albums just so I can refer back. I think it helps me to get some negative emotions out and be better able to really appreciate the great times. I’ve taken part in Scrapbooking From the Inside Out challenges and those have helped me to be more introspective with myself.

  • This post came at a perfect time for me! I listened while doing homework for Aby & Wendy’s Organizing FUNdamentals class. Thanks for keeping me motivated while I sifted through disaster.

  • Jeanette

    Hi Noell. This was another great episode. I was the one who talked about not having to scrapbook the negative stuff because we don’t need help remembering that. It was on the podcast about scrapbooking special needs children, and Ali Edwards and I were talking about how we handle the difficult moments in our scrapbooks.

  • Marie-Pierre

    The more I think about what is ok to share and what should go in a scrapbook, the less I know.

    About scrapbooking the negative… When I became a mom for the first time, I had a really tough time: I was living in a foreign country, far from my parents and my baby wasn’t sleeping and didn’t want to drink. It was hard. At that time I was just beginning scrapbooking and I was taking Ali’s Yesterday and Today class. I loved the class! In that class, we were encouraged to scrapbook the good and the less good, so that years later, we would have a sense of where we were coming from and the difficulties we had overcome. To have a perspective. I kept my journaling very real and it felt good at the time. The pictures of all the tender moments with my baby would come on a page where I wrote the story of how hard it was to be a good mom. Today I’m happy hat I have written the real stuff down, but at the same time, I don’t feel like I want to read these pages. And even worst, when someone grab my album I’m hoping the person won’t stop and read these pages…..

    That brings me to another thought: even when it’s not negative, I’m shy when other people read my stories. Even though it’s not negative, it’s always personal, right?! Do you also feel like that when other people look at your albums? Strange enough, I’m not shy at all to put all my pages on my blog as I write them. It’s almost like I’m thinking that my blog followers are scrapbookers as well and that they mainly want to see my pages and not my stories specifically. So where do you draw the line of how much you want to share and how do you decide what is right to put in a scrapbook and what isn’t? At the end you don’t want to have only a book about your baby’s firsts. What makes an album special are all the personal view we add to the stories, right? So what is ok to share? What do we want to remember? And to which extend do we want others to see in our head and heart?

    Thanks for all the great episodes!!
    Keep them coming. :)

  • geezee

    Thank you Jeanette. That really stuck with me and made me feel less uncomfortable about ‘editing’ what I choose to scrap. Sorry I did not remember your name. GinaZ

  • Deirdre Keating

    I ? Aby and am so enjoying this show. I’m wondering if there is any way to share Laura’s photo of her space so we can see what Aby sees (thank you, Gina, for showing yours on your blog).

    I just switched from facing the door to facing out the window…now I’m rethinking it! Oy. I am very visual and used to organize based on “out of sight, out of mind”, so I had everything in cute open baskets and buckets. Now I’ve either changed or just learned that ‘out of sight, out of mind’ is actually a good thing—I need white space, clear space to get motivated.

    I bought an Ikea Vika drawer set that I love, and am slowly transitioning to having everything put away. I’m listening off and on as I re-organize. I’d love a follow up show with the same guests—or to Aby answering questions from listeners:)

  • Don’t know if this has been asked, would it be possible to post a photo of each room?

  • I’m with you all! (Though in my fridge, the Diet Coke would be the forgotten thing!) I used to have all of my letter stickers out, but now they’re stacked in a suitcase. I won’t forget about ’em, even if I can’t see ’em!

  • Heather Dubarry

    Loved the show! Loved hearing the kinds of questions Aby asked as she approached each room.

    Things to think about re: organization. What works for you now, may not work for you next month. How you build a page changes over time. It’s good to re-evaluate your organization periodically to see what works and what doesn’t.

    Storage solution for Laura if she decides not to do shelves between the windows. How about a rolling cart that sits next to or underneath the table? That would make it easier to put away on the rare occasions she needs to actually dine in the dining room.

    And yes, I answered when you asked a question! It’s hard not to!

  • Marsha

    Marie-Pierre, I think the how much to share and with whom is such a personal decision. Some people are just more open than others. One suggestion for you specifically, though, is that perhaps you could take the more personal pages or the more negative ones from the past – those that you don’t want people to read – and put them in an album of their own, so that you still have them but also can share those pages more selectively. You would have a record of those tough times (which we all go through) but you wouldn’t need to be confronted with them every time you look at your albums. Just a thought…

  • DiaButterfly

    Hi Marie,
    I agree with everyone that says it is ok/good to focus on the positive in the scrapbooking and Jeanette’s comment about not needing the help remembering the negative. The truth is…It is hard to be a good Mom; I am not a mom yet but I know that from my friends and family. So I had two thoughts. First, maybe add a page at the end as an afterword maybe with a photo of you with your child or a self portrait of you looking back or journaling and you can tell your child how the album makes you feel in hindsight…this was a difficult time BUT….here is what came out of it…. My second thought was to go back and edit some of those pages and hide some of the journaling that is more personal than what you want to share with everyone or see every time you look at the album but you can still preserve it for your child. I wish my Mom was more of a memory keeper, I would love to see all the things she enjoyed about raising me and my siblings and all of our good times through her eyes. I also think it would also be very insightful to learn what her fears and challenges were as a new mother. As my husband and I are trying to get pregnant these are feelings I am very interested in right now. There is a difference between “gosh this kid is a pain in the neck” and “wow, I am so exhusted and I don’t know what I am doing”. Knowing that my Mom felt the same way would be reassuring…overcoming those difficulties is what makes a great mom. You are honoring your story and your child’s story.

    Recently my Dad shared something very personal with me. In my journaling all I said was “He talked to be about (insert key word here) and told me I had to have hope…”. Anyone who reads that will know that my Dad helped me through what was on my heart but I haven’t given up the personal details he shared with me. Noell said something about this in one of the Roundtable episodes..she said something about being able to tell enough of the story to recall the memory without giving all of the details. (I apologize I have been listening to old and new episodes, I don’t remember which episode it was). But if you are worried that you are oversharing that comment by Noell was very helpful to me. I think it was the episode about blogging actually or journaling. I believe in the same episode Ali Edwards was on one of the panelists and I don’t remember how she worded it exactly but she says she shares a lot but not everything. When it comes to your family….as long as you are sharing your thoughts about your love for them you can’t go wrong. We are always going to be much harder on our pages and journaling than our family ever will.

    Sorry for rambling…I just loved how your comment got me thinking!


  • C.Robin

    Hi Noell, I enjoyed this show. I have a small craft room , but when my friends come over we need to use my dinning room to craft. I need to find storage there so I don’t spend my time running up and down the stair for to get things. Any ideas. Thanks Robin

  • I always enjoy listening to PCR during my morning workout, and I totally loved this show’s topic!
    I share an office with my husband, and I have a table in front of a shelving system where I keep product and tools within reach. In fact, I recently just purged my craft room to simplify my scrap area and make product more accessible. I love having a clean and organized space, (in fact I clean after I craft each day, and that really helped me prioritize product and tools that should always be within arm’s reach like my Silhouette, inks, clear stamps, paper trimmer, scissors, etc.)
    Next year, God-willing, our craft room/office will change once again so that it’s a nursery/craft room/office. I have spent the last year cleaning out and making room in the closet for a little one’s clothing, but I will be dividing a rather large office into a craft/office and nursery combo.
    Any tips on crafting in a shared room with an infant?

  • Lisa Zepponi

    I wasn’t sure if I would “get anything out of this program”, but that’s what I get for thinking! I have a dedicated scrap room/office and I loved the diet coke and cottage cheese analogy! Tomorrow I am going to really evaluate what products/tools I have closest to me and can I eliminate those old CK mags off my valuable shelf space!

  • Ah! I mixed Aby up with Aly Dosdall. So embarrassing!

  • Minna (non-schmo from Finland)

    I noticed the same, moncoff. The link over at The Digi Show website also stopped working at the same time. The way I found the earlier Digi Shows was to search PDS. Words “digi” and “show” appears in soooooo many posts here ;)
    Thanks for the wonderful episode once again!

  • vishae

    Thanks for the recommendation (referring to “Scrapbooking From the Inside Out”), I’ll definitely take a look into that as well

  • Heather, thank you for the rolling cart suggestion. I was looking at and measuring the space where Aby suggested the shelves/cabinet go, and I don’t think one will fit there. I considered a rolling cart, but wasn’t sure it was a good idea until I saw you suggest it here, too. Off to find me a cart that will work!

  • :blush: Thanks, Mon!

  • Thanks, Minna. I just searched PDS and they showed up. I emailed Steph the url of the results page, so maybe she’ll re-link it. Here’s that link for Moncoff:

  • Reb Shay

    Agreed, I came here to see the photos! It’s hard to visualize it just by their descriptions.

  • Reb Shay

    I also don’t have a scrap room and scrap on my dining table. I have to clear the table every night because its the only table we have in the house. I use small storage boxes, like shoe boxes sized, from Costco, to store my tools, adhesives, a small collection of stamps and inks, and washi tapes in those boxes. I pretty much only use the adhesive and cutting tool boxes all the time so I take those two boxes with me to the dining room. They’re easy to bring and easy to clean up afterwards. Just thought I’d share for those of you that scrap separately from your supplies. I have exactly 4 boxes of those, and they store everything I need! I use my xacto knife a lot to cut, this way I don’t have to buy too many shape cutters.

  • Reb Shay

    They are also toddler proof she cause they are lidded, so I can leave them on the floor and not have to worry about my curious toddler.

  • Theresa Erwin

    Me too! I vote for photos. Loved this topic. I’d enjoy hearing this kind of topic again b/c I think there are as many scrapbooking workspaces as there are scrapbookers. For instance it would be really fun to have input from a small spaces scrapper in NYC (ie 400sq ft apt) vs. a scrapper who shares an office with a spouse.

  • geezee

    I see my comment with my link went away. I am actually posting on my site and updating through instagram, twitter, and FB. All those links can be found at my post on Messtaken Identity . Also look at the most recent Inspiring me Roundup, it is also about this Episode. gina z

  • Laura left a link to her photos here in the comments. And i’m pretty sure Gina posted hers on her blog. We linked to her blog in the show notes.

  • Thank you for sharing! How do you store the paper?

  • I talked to Aby and we’ll definitely do it again! I also want someone who doesn’t have a permanent space but has to pull all their stuff out and then put it all back.

  • Katherine Kelley

    Reb, just saw a few YouTube videos on portable storage/workstations made for tool guys… Called The FatMax Mobile Workstation by Stanley. Most of videos were reviews done by craftsmen for their tools of trade, including a wedding dj guy (makes me think of Izzy with all the stuff for filming). One vid was from a scrapper who had yet to fill it or use it. Maybe that’s a possibility?

    IKEA makes several rolling carts that scrappers have utilized – I know Katie Scott has a blog spot on her IKEA cart. Looking through the Two Peas Gallery last night I saw the Raskog cart ($49.99) someone used in their home for movable storage.

    And, while watching those YT videos sat through an intriguing ad for new product called Urbio – a modular storage concept utilizing grid and magnet that is clean and current looking. It’s also recyclable and made from polypropylene.

    I am in process of moving a lot of my stuff upstairs from a basement crop room to my living room so I can keep tabs on my elderly MIL while I work and scrap. Taking all my books and homeschool items and swapping places. I repurpose lots of shipping boxes into storage containers – rather spend $ on classes, supplies, and subscriptions. Key to reusing boxes – sturdy tape and boxcutter for cutting carry & hold spots on sides for hands. Also save the side lids to tape to bottom of boxes in bottom is uneven or needs more support.

  • I’ve been meaning to come back here to comment again, but, well, I’ve been busy scrapping in my new space! Thank you, thank you, Aby and Noell for having me on the show and giving me such great ideas! Who knew that sitting on the other side of the table would change my scrappy life so much? I’m still very much a part of the family activities when there, I can still see a page in progress so it can get kicked around in my head as I go about my day, but the very best part is now when I am sitting across the table from my son as he does his homework, he sits at my scrappy table and I scrapbook while he does homework! I have never gotten so much scrapbooking done before!

    I decided to get a cart for next to my new chair rather than a cabinet. It can be wheeled out-of-site if company is coming, and keeps things close at hand without cluttering the table-top. I also put my alphas in my closet. Still trying to decide if that’s working, but it’s great having them off the table. I still have more purging to do, so that will free up even more space.

    Overall, it’s just awesome. So many unforeseen benefits and it didn’t even take that long to do. Thank you!!!

  • Karen Schreiber

    Thank you so much for doing this episode! I just listened to it while I was driving from Boston to NC and it made the trip go by so fast! I have moved in the last year and although I have a dedicated scrapbooking room in my new house I just haven’t felt like scrapbooking. For the last several months I’ve been trying to analyze why this new room does not ‘call me’ to scrapbook in it. Is it the color? Is it the light? Is it my lack of shelves? Two tips in this episode were so very me 1. Face into the room, not with your back to the door. 2. Put away those things you know you are going to use anyway and keep out those things that you think you might forget about. After I got back from our trip I put a table in the center of my room so that my chair could swivel back and forth from the counter against the wall to the center table. I can’t believe the difference it made! It was so helpful to have you invite real scrapbookers onto the show and have Aby go through a thoughtful process with them. I thought this show was fantastic!

  • geezee

    Laura, I am so glad you got that result! I was thrilled to be a part of the show with you and I was wondering how you fared afterward. I was amazed at the difference one little change made. I use my ‘staging’ cabinet exactly as I need to. When I have a current project, I put the essentials in that cabinet and then I can remove them to free up the space for the next project. That one change has fit into my workflow with amazing results.