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WHAT’S IN YOUR JUNK DRAWER? 5 Unexpected Items Justify My Junk Drawer’s Existence


Junk Drawer as treasure trove
Junk Drawer as treasure trove

What’s in your junk drawer? Can I assume that everyone has one? If you cataloged the contents, what percent would be worth keeping? What percent might have a more sensible home elsewhere in your house? Are you sliding down the slippery slope of hoarding?

My junk drawer is a visual masterpiece, a virtual kaleidoscope with colors and shapes shifting throughout my search for scissors…ah, yes, that’s what I’d been looking for. But what I found instead was my junk drawer’s raison d’être. It is there as a placeholder for stalled endeavors, to provide assistance with everyday living, to add color to my life, and to offer a last minute hiding place for clutter when unexpected visitors knock on the door.

I had fun on my treasure hunt today when time was not of the essence, though typically my drawer doesn’t get much thought. But I know now that if I continue to be happily surprised when I find partially forgotten gems such as these, no amount of logic or promise of tidiness, or whispered comparisons to hoarders will persuade me to organize my beautiful mess.

  1. Crayola Window Crayons
    Crayola Window Crayons

    Window crayon box. It typically holds wax things used to decorate the sliding doors in the kitchen with messages of welcome and holiday greetings. Most recently it welcomed stepdaughter Nissi for her vacation visit. The funny thing is the box did not contain the crayons; they had been placed in a jar by the doors for instant access during the vacation. Today I put them back.

  2. Assorted Seed Packs
    Assorted Seed Packs

    Seed packets. I live in a townhouse and can legally cultivate a grand total of 3’ of land off my back patio. So seed packets (including corn) that were tucked in adorable if somewhat impractical Easter baskets have not found their place in the ground. I’d like to think I could plant them still, but they’ve been around since last year when I realized my tomatoes and peppers and swiss chard pretty much filled the plot.

  3. Suncatcher of Cut Glass
    Suncatchers of Cut Glass

    Suncatchers. These catch no sun in the closed drawer, but they do represent one of my favorite Topsfield Fair activities: making cut glass mosaics. It’s cheap, it’s fun, it gets you off your feet for a while, and if you’re one of the few adults to give it a try, they let you use the glass cutting scissors instead of just searching through the endless confetti of pre-cut shards. I’m not sure if Jon made the abstract, but I made the other two. Wish I could go all abstract and like what I come up with – maybe next year.

  4. Sewing Kit
    Sewing Kit

    Promotional Sewing Kit. A freebie given out at some trade show or event by the Manchester Airport. I suppose it’s less useful now that the navy, beige, and gray are gone, but I heard spring colors will be brights this year and pastels are very “Easter”.

    Bean Boozled Jelly Bellys
    Bean Boozled Jelly Bellys

    5. Bean Boozled jelly beans. Phew, the expiration date on these babies is November 2013. Making them just a perfect little trick for Easter. The beans give you a 50/50 chance, do you feel lucky? One might look like lime but taste of stinky feet, seriously, that’s how they work. Could there be a better way to stop your craving for jelly beans (well, an all black licorice box would have the same effect, but that’s just me.)

Now why was I looking for scissors?

 ©2013 by Alison Colby-Campbell

14 thoughts on “WHAT’S IN YOUR JUNK DRAWER? 5 Unexpected Items Justify My Junk Drawer’s Existence”

  1. I have not one; but three junk drawers. It depends on the size of what is going to be “resting” … LOL
    Love to the author 😀

  2. this is so OCD but my junk drawer contains everything organized with small baskets holding the contents of matches, extra key chains, sentsy cubes, a candle lighter, gum, hand sanitizers and bug spray—and those small tools that would get lost in the big tool box–mini screwdrivers etc. This article made me laugh today! Thanks. Also, I am going out to buy those window crayons–great idea!!!

    1. Well, Trish, sad to say but that’s not a junk drawer that’s a museum. Note about the window crayons, as fun as they are, if you make big solid color-filled designs, you do end up washing the window, literally*, about 10x to get the film off. Don’t know how that will work out in your tidy home, but they are fun.
      *I know what the word “literally” means and am using it correctly.

  3. I am surprised what a reply-response this blog has received. It was basically a mindless post that I only wrote because I noticed what great colors were in the treasures I pulled from the junk draw and I thought they were so cheery, they should be shared. Thanks for the feedback everybody!

  4. Hi Alison, I’m right up there with Trish, everything in every drawer has a container for “things.” Nothing in any drawer can move around….all items are restricted to their own little cubicle. I have a phobia about things flopping around, so EVERY drawer in my whole house has little or big containers, or a combination of both, depending on the size of the items that are going in them. I was just talking about this with one of my boarders the other day….he wondered why every draw in my kitchen was so organized…
    Virgo-ism maybe?!

  5. Jude, I am a Virgo, too, and as a cultural group, I know you can get over your fanaticism about order. I have, it’s very freeing….at least until you can’t find you spare toenail clippers.

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