I’m the Bag Lady: Minimizing the homeschool bag collection.

Mary Poppins and I could have been sisters.  Anytime one of the kids needs something for a project, I can reach into my bag (or tote) and seem to have what they needed, maybe not what the requested, but something to fit the moment.  I have a bag for every event in our lives, stocked and ready to leave the house.

I’ve never thought I would say that I needed to minimize my collection of bags.  Today I realized that this is one of those places, that too much of a good thing can be not a good thing.

Even before we started homeschooling, all the way back to my own high school days, I have always kept myself organized by having a bag for each separate activity.  When I needed to take something to choir, drop it in my choir bag.  Campfire Girls work book and journal stayed in my Campfire bag.  My school backpack was just for school.

Flash forward a couple decades,  (Ouch! I don’t feel that old) and my kids have a bag for each of their activities; swimming, dance, piano, and school.  Simple!

Homeschool Bag Collection: Trying to minimize my bag collection a wee bit.
Homeschool Bag Collection: Trying to minimize my bag collection a wee bit.

Then there are my bags for coop, church, scouts, science club, my knitting, grocery shopping tote with reusable bags, the library return bag, recycling plastics return bag, my swim bag, “return-to-grandma” bag, “out-grown-clothes-to-pass-on” bag, and I could keep going on with six or seven more categories.

I lost a note book.  In it were measurements for Nutcracker jackets.  I could not find it for five days.  I’ve been looking in each of my bags; wondering whether I left it at the dance studio or if it was tucked in the wrong bag.  I had never thought about how many bags come and go from our car each week.  They have their cubbies in the garage, but I will also bring different bags into the house as I use the contents.

The notebook was found yesterday, it wasn’t even in a bag, but had been carried in and set on the top of our cubbies, out-of-sight just above my eye level.

I don’t know what I would do without my bags.  I don’t have another organizational system, and after twenty years, it is so engrained into my pattern, that it might not work to replace my bag system.  Replacing might not be the way to go, but cutting back on the number of bags that I manage needs to be considered.

“Minimize my bags!”,  popped into my head.  Here to is another place to minimize my school life as well as my homeschool life.  If I cut back to the essential school and home, my list would look like:

School –

  • School stuff (Actually a roll around cart that is an office on wheels.  I have necessary stuff to homeschool one child while the other is in an activity.)
  • Church School
  • Scouts
  • Knitting/hand craft

Home –

  • Recycling center bag
  • Clothes/donation bag
  • Library bag

Kid’s –

  • School bag
  • Sports Bag
  • Music Bag

I’m not sure what I will do with out those “six or seven” other bags.  This is going to be a withdrawal process in cutting back, but a very necessary process for simplifying my cubbies and the time spent hauling the bags to and from the house.

So, starting this morning, I am picking one bag a day, looking at the contents, “Is this beautiful or useful?”  “Do I keep, pass along, or recycle?” and culling my collection; minimizing the bag lady.

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