Last weekend I had the pleasure of making a return trip to Birmingham, Alabama, for a pixels2Pages LIVE weekend event.  It was the perfect weekend for scrapping – rainy and dreary – so no one was the least bit tempted to venture out!  About half of the attendees had come to this same event last year, but for most of the rest, it was their first p2P LIVE weekend.  We packed in a lot of training and got lots of pages done!

I always come home from p2P LIVE events feeling like I learned as much (or more) than the attendees, albeit in different ways.  I continue to be so impressed by the number of women ‘of a certain age’ (and I include myself in that group) who have taken up the hobby of digital scrapbooking even though their experience with computers is limited.  So many of us did not grow up with computers, like our children and grandchildren are, and, unless we were working outside the home in jobs that required some computer use, most of us are self-taught.  We probably even learned things on a ‘need to know’ basis, and as the p2P team is well aware – we don’t know what we don’t know!  That makes learning a program like Artisan a bit tricky, because it sort of assumes there is a baseline knowledge of computer skills.

If you’re not familiar with computer filing systems and naming conventions, and if you don’t have a consistent system of naming, filing, backing up, and deleting, you can become overwhelmed pretty quickly!  Like most things in life, computer maintenance works better when you have a plan and execute it on a regular basis.  One of the first things we tackled at this p2P LIVE event was cleaning out our download folders.  In case you’re wondering, that is not an official p2P LIVE module, but we Pixies are pretty good at working on the fly.  I only had to see a few computers to know we needed to take a little side trip before we started working on our profile pages and Blueprints!

In case you haven’t been to a p2P LIVE event, we always have a few things that need to be downloaded, preferably before attendees arrive at the event.  One thing is the template for a profile page, then there is the exclusive p2P LIVE Blueprint, and then there is usually an exclusive kit, and then we have handouts for the modules we’ll be doing that weekend.  It’s always interesting to see what got downloaded and where it ended up, and it’s a good indicator of what we’ll need to focus on during the weekend.  So, back to those download folders…

To borrow from a current TV commercial, what’s in your download folder?  Is it full of zip files of p2P Blueprints that you’ve already extracted and filed?  Are there digital art kits in there that you’ve already put in another folder and added to your Artisan library?  How many set up versions of Artisan, Historian, and other programs are hanging around?  What about zip files of photos that you downloaded from Forever?  Pictures you wanted from Facebook?  Fonts that you’ve installed?  Handouts or Blueprint checklists?  E-books?  If you have more than a handful of stuff in your download folder, you might want to spend a little time “Marie Kondo-ing” it this weekend.  Move things that you want or need to keep to a documents folder or to the place they really belong.  Delete the things you don’t need (like zip files of Blueprints that you’ve already extracted and filed, or set up versions of programs you’ve already installed).  Move photos to Historian or Artisan or wherever you needed them to be.  Make sure any art kits are in the right folder and remember you don’t need more than one copy of them.  Keep all of your fonts in one folder (and back it up).  Make it a goal to have an empty or almost empty download folder, and keep it that way!

 

Cleaning out download folders was just the beginning of what turned out to be a fun weekend full of learning in Birmingham!  There was lots of oohing and aahing going on, and I could see lightbulbs popping all over the room.  Have a look at some of the pages that were made by clicking HERE to see our Forever albums.  Many thanks to our fantastic Ambassador hostess, Fran Smitherman, aka The Energizer Bunny, who coordinated the event and got us all together.  Tameka will be heading south in June for another p2P LIVE there, so if you’re nearby, you may want to attend.  Be sure to check Rabbit, Rabbit each month to see where and when upcoming events will be held.  You never know what you might learn at a p2P LIVE event!

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22 Responses to Blog: What’s In Your Downloads Folder?

  1. Gaye Jean Swentzel says:

    Senior here i have 1400 items in my download folder zipped blueprints my photos and artisin 5 kits . have put all my pics in historian and have a blueprint folder where i put them so i can delete these? have minimal computer knowledge thanks trying to free up some space as i only have 45 gb left of 455gb years of digial content on computer . i have about 1700 blueprints and enormous amount of content
    thank you so much Gaye

    • Jan says:

      Anything that you have downloaded and then put (saved) into the appropriate folder (for example, you extracted individual Blueprints and put them into a Blueprints folder elsewhere) can be deleted. If your photos are in Historian and backed up, they can be deleted from your downloads folder. If your art kits are in a folder with Commercial Art Kits (or wherever Artisan is reading them, they can be deleted from your downloads folder. All of the above (Blueprints, photos, and art kits) need to be backed up to an external hard drive (not stored in multiple places on the same computer). Cleaning out your downloads folder should give you LOTS more space and your computer will run much faster!

  2. Dawn Cooper says:

    I have blueprints in trash bin on my computer but “empty recycle bin” will not delete them. Is there something that I am doing wrong? Thank you for all the great advice you all give.

    • Jan says:

      Are Blueprints the only thing in your recycle bin, Dawn? Sometimes it’s hard to empty the bin if there are Artisan projects in it. Try this: Shut down your computer, and when you open it, immediately empty your recycle bin (without opening it). That seems to work for most people having trouble emptying the recycle bin. If that doesn’t work, I’d contact Forever support.

  3. Sandy Norman says:

    I needed a change from trying to balance Girl Scout cookies tonight and found myself reading about emptying my download folder. I can honestly say that I have successfully accomplished both tasks tonight. I even took a screen shot of my empty download folder to include on my d2D page for this week! Thanks for the kick in the butt to get them done Jan.

  4. Kaye Rhodes says:

    I have sub-folders in my download folder to help organize things I want to keep, like the Bright Idea downloads, knitting instructions, etc. Should I be doing something else with them?

  5. Rhona Collinson says:

    Thank you, Jan. I often looked at all those folders, and thought, “Can I delete you?” Now you have given me permission and they are all gone.

  6. Kristine White says:

    Are we supposed to open zip files and just take the blueprints out and paste them into artisan folder? I have a bunch in the zip format still. Newer to this so am asking…. Thanks! Kristine

  7. mordw.41@bigpond.com says:

    Boy, do I need to clean out my downloads folder. I have lots of Artisan Set up folders, zip folders what I have already downloaded. Being in my late 70s, my computer knowledge is very much the novice. I do have a wonderful Ambassador who is 3000 ks. away but I always feel stupid asking her dumb things. But lookout Janine, some dumb download questions coming up!

    • Jan says:

      The only stupid questions are the ones you don’t ask! Sounds like you know what you need to do – good luck! And good for you for taking this on – you can do it!

  8. Kim O'Leary says:

    This is so funny because these words…”your download folder should be empty” just came out of my mouth about 20 minutes before I signed in to p2P and said this. Great advice to everyone!

  9. Lindie says:

    Thanks for this reminder. I try to clean out my downloads folder at least once a week. Between school, p2P, Forever, etc. it can get really messed up. I’m sure I still have things there that need deleting, maybe I will get to that today. Thanks for your blog. Keep on “Happy Talkin”.

  10. ANN says:

    Thanks Jan, I needed this blog. I have kept the BP folders because I’m afraid of losing the blueprints or that I got them extracted. I do delete the content that I purchase after importing them to Artisan.
    So tomorrow I will delete my BP folders and clean the slate. I trust you

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