I’ve always been a collector of things. As a child, it was bookmarks and stickers. As a teenager, beanie baby puppies, baseball cards and corvette collector cards. As an adult, my collections became slightly more sophisticated – milk glass, Medalta pottery earthenware, wicker purses.
I’ve also always been a collector of information. Scrapbooks and binders full of newspaper clippings and magazine pages. I still create those scrapbooks, whether it’s tearing out recipes and beauty tips from the pages of Women’s Health, pictures of renovated kitchens from Style at Home or articles on green meetings and SMMP from MPI’s One+ and PCMA’s Convene publications.
When I was younger it was easier; my collections were easy to find and kept in one place – my “sticker album”, or a shoebox. Even as an adult, I’ve created spaces in my home to showcase my collections. However, the information collections I keep, well, they’re completely out of hand. Stacks and stacks of clippings I suppose can be easily organized (if I had the time… ), but now with the sophistication and technology and social media, the information is getting out of hand. Pieces of information come to me through email in the form of website links and PDFs. There are YouTube videos, RSS feeds, blog posts, and mobile apps.
And the ultimate collecting tool for purveyors of information – Pinterest (the social media tool of 2013)! Yes, I have a Pinterest account (and loving it), but what happens when I actually need to find that chicken lasagne recipe that I saw the other day? Was it on my Pinterest board? In my Allcooks.com recipe box? In the stack of recipes ripped from my slow cooker magazine? Best of Bridge cookbook?? My Zite app on my phone????
My love for collecting has always brought me a relaxing way to hobby, a sense of self and a way to express my individuality. However, the information collections I keep now bring me stress, confusion and constant frustration.
I’m still awaiting the latest and greatest app for that….