Deborah Rose column: Community shred days come in handy

Deborah Rose

Deborah Rose

Deborah Rose / Hearst Connecticut Media

Paper. It has a way of infiltrating one’s home.

Newspapers, magazines, kids’ schoolwork, bills and the envelopes in which they’re mailed, junk mail, note pads and more.

If you don’t keep up with it, it can take over — pile up on the table, desk or elsewhere.

Throwing unnecessary things out and filing items that you want to keep in a proper filing system can keep the mess at bay.

One of the challenges I’ve had over the years is letting go of some papers. As the family historian for both sides of my family, I have a tendency to hold on to certain things longer than others might.

Those who know me well have chuckled and/or rolled their eyes when they hear about some of the paper items I’ve kept over the years.

They ask why and remind me there’s very few people — if any at all — will care about what I’ve saved once I’m not around.

In more recent years, though, I’ve come to the realization that certain stuff just has to go and I’ve done a better job filing and purging.

When the kids were younger, I used to keep a lot of their schoolwork. You know, because years from now my family can look back and see how the kids wrote the letters of the alphabet and how they colored squares to learn math.

It’s nuts, really. Or, as my family would say, I’m nuts.

But all that has changed. There’s no need to keep such stuff. Just a few items from each school year suffices.

In going through some old boxes, I recently came across a handful of old papers my mom had set aside through the years.

She kept too many papers, but some of it was kind of neat to look through.

Among the unique finds were some of my school papers from my elementary years, report cards and a few greetings cards from my youth signed from loved ones long gone.

So, maybe I’m not so nuts for keeping some of the things I’ve kept. But that’s for me to duke out with my family.

We are fortunate that we live in the digital age because that makes it a little easier for us to keep things and not have paper clutter up our homes. Articles we may want to reference down the road can be bookmarked, photos can be archived in folders, kids’ artwork can be photographed and documents can be scanned, and all digitally stored.

I’m doing what I can to get some of the excess paper stuff out of the house. It’s a process but I’m content with the progress I’ve made so far, though there’s much more to be done.

There are certain things we all come across, though, we can’t just toss out on in the garbage. That’s where a shredder comes in handy.

For those who don’t have a shredder, or who have a lot to shred, community shred days come in handy because you can drop off unwanted papers in boxes and have them shredded right away by a mobile shredder.

And there’s good news. The Rotary Club of New Milford will hold another shred day event Aug. 22 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the John Pettibone Community Center on Pickett District Road.

This will be the third one of its kind this season. Maybe I’ll see you there.

Deborah Rose is a lifelong New Milford resident who has worked at The Spectrum since its inception in 1998. She can be reached by email at