Tuesday, March 22, 2011

I Have Located My Organizational Skills

Seems I left them in the nineties.

Y'all. On this hunt for the lost title, we have drug boxes down from the attic that haven't been opened in years. They were all labeled "Financial Records" or some other such important sounding title so obviously we have moved them from house to house with us.

One of them was a treasure trove. In it, I found all my old checkbooks and bills from 1992-1998. Let me explain what I was doing in those years.

1992--my senior year of college. Oh those checkbooks were a hoot. Had to call my old roommate and let her know what we did with all of our time. Dairy Queen, Texas Burger, Mazzio's Pizza, WalMart, Campus Bookstore, etc. Every check was written for $3-$4. Oh dear. We had a blast talking about that. We had an apartment at that time. WHY did we not feel we had time to eat at home? And how annoying were we with our $3 checks?

1993--this was the year I both got married and began teaching. The credit card bills from this year were cool. Every month had something insignificant like gas for the car and then a plane ticket. Always a plane ticket. S was still stationed in California and I was here in Texas teaching. One of us flew to see the other every month for the first 6 months we were married. After he got home, our grocery bill checks shot up to $70. Seventy dollars!

It went on and on. In 1998 I got pregnant with Sweetheart and that is why, sadly, my organizational skills ended in 1998. This box was IMMACULATE. Discover Card bills? All in chronological order and rubber banded together. Each set of bills was stored like that. Each bill was stamped "PAID" with a stamp I used to have. Each checkbook register was reconciled and each bank statement marked up from the reconciliation. Each booklet of check carbons was stored in order in the original box they came in. And neatly labeled on top with a marker.

What has happened to me?

The box that is storing stuff from 2007-2010 doesn't have much in it. I pay most of my bills online now and don't get paper statements from the bank anymore. That's sort of sad. I will look back in 10 years (or the next time we clean the attic) and have no idea what we were doing with our time. Checks gave a record of our life.

A record that is now shredded, by the way.

Anyway, I'd like to travel back in time a bit and get my old self to teach my new self a thing or two about organizing. Besides having kids, and if you are as old as me you can appreciate this statement:

we have had to learn to do things completely differently than when we first became adults. I truly think that is one reason I lost my skills. We don't pay bills the same way, we don't write checks for everything, I check my account all the time online--I don't wait for the statement at the end of the month...things are just different. My mom taught me very well how to take care of bills and my checkbook but things have changed.

Does that make sense?

Anyway, it was encouraging to remember that at one time in my life I had it together. Gives me hope that I can get it together again.

And maybe find that title along with my skills.


  1. You should keep your registers-it takes me down the same road. :)I still buy pretty checks- not sure why.

  2. My former self is much like your former self! I have boxes like that. Fast forward to my current desk - well - I can't even say. It's awful, just awful.

    Thanks for this post, it gave me a chuckle.



I don't get to talk to a lot of actual grown-ups during the day, so your comments make me really happy! :)