I have a 19 cu ft or so vertical freeezer out in my garage that I pretty much devote to freezing my films and paper. The 10 or so boxes of 20x24 or 16x20 that I recently bought for a good price are still stored on the cool most year basement darkroom; they are too big, and besides the freezer is full.
I 'un artisitically' print when I get a new batch of old paper, making series of un exciting but informative step wedges to calibrate the prodiucts' performance.
It really aids the 'artisitic' printing attempts that come later on with the products in question, without needing to disrupt the work flow at that time.
I print a step wedge to see what its current contrast range and fog is, and then trim the 2x2 contact of the step wedge, and sometimes a 4x6 print of a 'betty' neg onto the front of the box or envelope if it is fixed grade paper. I also calibrate the current speed to the first non grey tone for my analyser. In this manner I can start to use it in the future and everything is already dialled in if I am using my standard paper developer for that session.
If I have a particular look I am aiming for with the paper, I will actually try to develop the neg to match the contrast range that the paper needs to minimize the printing troubles with it. Sometimes I will make a 4x5 dupe neg and reversal process it to a suitable density, to get a neg that fits the (usually low contrast) old expired paper.
If it is VC paper, I also test towards building a new filtration table to see the best result for filtration is and to see what VC contrast ranges are left. VC papers loose contrast too. Seagull gets really wierd filtration needs when it ages; this as the paper that forced me to my present regime. I start with all yellow and then print step wedges of -15 less until I am down to zero, then start winding on megenta in 15 unit increments. These twelve or so 2x2 images I develop at once in the same tray, for the same time. I tabulate the first non black, and first non grey, and then count the steps between these two limits for all prints. Then I normalize the neutral grey that tells me how much Y&M simultaneously is neded to equalize the exposure time for a constant grey on say step 18 for all filtration, and not the effective paper speed when applying this filtration. This data all gets pasted into a ring bound notebook. Saving this data saves a lot of time when a similar batch of expired paper rolls in again and neds a frest test.
This calculated filtration info gets pencilled onto a post it, and taped to the front of the box. With this info readilly accessible I am abe to swap papers very easily and not spend all sorts of time fiddling to get the new exposure and filter settings to match a grade when swapping between different boxes of old papers.