Monday, June 6, 2011

Getting Organized Day 1

Yippee! The week of getting organized has begun! I am so excited to have this underway. I am trying to live a more organized life and I know I am not the only one who struggles with it. I decided to do this week to get every one pumped and inspired to have a happier, more organized home. When everything is organized, I am more willing to play with the kids and be creative.
I have been scouring the internet and talking to everyone I know about favorite organization tips. So, this week will be filled with everything I have learned.

***You can download the free printables I made at the very end of the post.***
I made 3 new printables for this post and have included 3 others that are very helpful. Also the 2011 calendar is open for download as well.

The single best advice I can give is make a Command Center Binder (aka Home Management or Household binder)

I actually use 2 methods because together these 2 methods are the perfect fit for my family. A binder and a small hanging folder (seen HERE). 

I use this because the binder wasn't working for things that I just wanted to get off the counters, but have easy access to later. The categories I have here are:
1. mail
2. shred
3. coupons
4. Every family member has their own folder that anything pertaining to them goes in it (school papers, or anything hubby and I want to keep, etc)
5. File (things I want to keep, but need to be put in our filing cabinet, Tax info, recipes, insurance information, etc)
6. Kid's Art (this is where I put their art projects I want to scan, but haven't gotten around to it)

I really {heart} THIS idea for binders and eventually I will be that organized, but for now I just have 1 binder that is all encompassing. Except budgeting, that is a binder all of it's own and needs to be separate, at least for our family.

So here is how to build your own.

#1:  you can purchase a kit with PDF files to print pretty much EVERYWHERE included etsy.

#2:  you can save yourself money, but will spend a little extra time, by creating it yourself or finding free printables on the internet. The + for creating it yourself is it fits your family needs exactly.

Many of the printables I have are no longer available for free, but I did find THIS, and THIS that will give you a huge head start. I tested the links out to make sure they really were free and they were!

You can personalize your binder and decide what categories your family needs. Our binder has the following sections
1. Contacts (I keep all our contact information. Family, friends, doctors numbers and addresses. Any business cards I need/have I store in a baseball card clear sleeve. This keeps the clutter off my refrigerator.
2. Important Dates Calendar
3. Schedules (classes at gym, hubby's work schedule, kid's school year calendar, etc)
4. Netflix (just a clear sleeve to put all the netflix mailing envelopes)
5. Household Inventory (pantry, storage, and freezer inventory, home maintenance list, auto maintenance log, Book/movie sign out sheet.) I created 2 Free printables because I don't know about you, but I always forget who borrowed what.)
6. Blog (blogging ideas and checklists)

One of the best things I ever made was a "Baby Sitter Information". I put this as the very first page under "contacts". There are lots of free printables available, but I wanted to customize mine so it fit our family perfectly. I made a printable for you too and...... I put some of my sense of humor in it! It has everything I felt was important.
I just take the page out of my binder and hang it on the refrigerator right before the babysitter comes. Then I don't have to give them a verbal run down and worry about forgetting something, they can just read it themselves. I just tell them instructions are on the fridge.

Making this binder is seriously the single best thing I did to get more organized. It cuts down on clutter on the counter and refrigerator, keeps paper clutter under control, and helps our family run more smoothly. Best advice I could offer you is to make one ASAP! It can change and grow with your family needs. Decide which method works best for your family or do both like we do:) Good luck!

Book Sign Out Printable

Movie Sign out Printable

Babysitter Information Printable

Important Dates Calendar

2011 Calendars

14 Weekly Menu Planner


Jackie said...

I think this is seriously the BEST IDEA EVER!

I'm going to do it for sure! LOVE IT!

Toucan Scraps said...

looks like a wonderful project

The Matthews Family said...

Thanks for the printables! I don't know how many books I've lost by forgetting who borrowed them! But when I tried to download the menu planner, it says you can only download it "by folder" and you have to pay to download it that way. Do you know anything about that? Thanks! : )

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