Wednesday, September 24, 2014

All That Jazz

About six years before I retired, I moved from one office to another. My unhappiness with this move is something I've written about before, not because I'm bitter, but because like many changes, this one came wrapped around opportunities.

One of the good things to come out of that move was the chance to create a space that was warm and
fun. The layout of the room was completely different from the one I was leaving, and at first, I was worried about how I'd make it work. But, once I hit on a solution, I had a wonderful time filling the room with my decor of choice. Animal prints, bright colors and soft surfaces abounded, and my new room drew just as many compliments from adults as from the kids who were my charges.

I learned a lot about organizing in that room, too, not the least of which was that I wasn't what I've come to call a "Type A" organizer. Type A organizers don't fill their offices with pillows and animal prints. They don't clutter their desks with trinkets or their bookshelves with stuffed animals. To a Type A organizer, an office is a place of business.

I am a Type A organizer's nightmare.

Eight years have passed, and that's still the case. I no longer have an office all my own (except for the one I've appropriated at home). The office I use at work is quite nice, but it's a shared space. Shared desk, shared shelves, shared file cabinet, shared computer. And as such, it's...nondescript. I don't expect zebra pillows and children's construction paper creations, but a splash of color or personality here and there would add so much.

I'm happy to provide these things -- in fact, I brought in a cute little cupcake sticky note holder (complete with heart-shaped sticky notes) to sit on a corner of the desk, tucked away under the upper cabinets. Hey, it's paper, right? And it's not big enough to get in the way. And if it is, then it's easily tucked in a drawer, on a shelf or in a cupboard. Till then, it adds a little pizazz to the drab brown standard-issue desk.

Too much? ;-)
And I would dearly love to add more to the decor, but I find myself trying to think like a Type A organizer. How much is too much? If it's functional, can it also be pretty? I don't want to clutter up the work space, but the shelves are bare, and those nails on the wall are just begging for inspirational quotes...but one person's inspiration inspires another person's eye rolls.

As it is, when I head to campus, I'm pretty weighed down by my laptop, course materials, my progress has been slow. But, I'm on the lookout at home. I have no doubt that if I got serious about it, I could find all sorts of goodies lurking in my basement that would jazz up the place. I'm just not sure my colleagues would be thrilled with all that jazz.

So, for now, I will keep my decorating dreams on the back burner until I can find the perfect mix of practical and precious. And I'm sure that by the end of the semester my cupcake sticky note holder will have some company.

After all, I wouldn't want her to be lonely.

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