Thursday, February 3, 2011

Home Management Binder

I have a confession to make - I love to organize. I have loved to organize since I was a wee little one. I used to (and still do) organize shelves in the grocery store just so everything would be back where it belongs. My CDs are alphabetized, my books have taken on several patterns (alphabetical by title, by author last name, or tallest to shortest) just for the sake of reorganizing, and my clothes are organized by color spectrum (yes, even my folded underwear is organized in color - and yes, I am one of those people who folds their underwear). My favorite tasks at work are alphabetizing or putting things in numerical order. I function well in a picked up, organized room. Clutter drives me nuts, and there never seems to be enough time to devote the proper attention all the clutter-collecting areas in my home.

I follow a lot of blogs. Most of them are on home decorating, home management, organization, food, or health and fitness. A bowl full of lemons is one of the organizing blogs that I read. I find it refreshing to read about new ideas and more helpful tips for organizing my home. In January, that blog posted a 21-Day challenge to an organized home. Another organizational blog that I follow is IHeart Organizing, who posted a getting-papers-organized challenge for the month of January. With school starting, cake decorating classes, choir, church, and working two jobs, I didn't have enough time to participate at the time while adjusting to my new schedule. But since cake decorating classes ended this week, I will have another evening free during the week. Hooray! I fully plan on working my way slowly through the challenge, but for now I want to jump on this week's weekly challenge - making a Home Management Binder!

First things first. What do I need?
  • Binder
  • Labeler
  • Hole Puncher
  • Dividers
  • Printer/paper
  • Patience (I've been working on this for a few days)
  • Inspiration
  • Time

(binder and labeler pictured)

Once I got my supplies, I read the weekly challenge post again for inspiration. Breathe, relax, and move forward.

Categories for my household:
  • Calendar
  • Schedules
  • Cleaning
  • Menu Planning
  • Finances
  • To Do
  • Medical
  • Contacts

The great thing about a binder is that you can always take something out and put something new in if your original system doesn't work for you. Hooray for simplicity!

More breathing, relaxing, and moving forward.

The first tab is "Calendar". The weekly challenge post recommends using a printable week-at-a-glance calendar. I have my regular planner where I write down EVERYTHING, but this will be a useful tool for connecting with my husband once a week to make sure we are on the same page (pun intended). We can merge our calendars with each other so we both know what's happening with the other for that week, how we can pray for each other, and when we will have free time to spend together.

Another calendar to have is a month-at-a-glace calendar so we know what upcoming events we have going on.

The next tab is "Schedules". Spencer is a youth group worker, and I'm in the choir for our church. This tab will be a place for those schedules. I'm also planning on merging my homework schedules, since all of my teachers provided us lists for the entire semester.

The next tab is "Cleaning". Since I generally have a hard time keeping up with housecleaning, I made up a schedule for the month of February to cycle through all my tasks by one or two each day.

The schedule goes like this:
  • Every day: wipe counters, sweep floors, dishes, clutter, and laundry
  • Mondays: Clean bathroom
  • Tuesdays: Dust house
  • Wednesdays: Vacuum house
  • Thursdays: Wash floors
  • Fridays: Menu/Shop
  • Saturdays: Sheets/Towels
  • Sundays: Clean litter box
  • Deep cleaning this month: clean oven & range, clean microwave oven, vacuum furniture & upholstery, and clean floorboards
I also have a space at the bottom for "Organizing Tasks this Month." One there will be tackling all the paper in the house by following the IHeart Organizing challenge.

The next tab is "Menu Planning". In there, I have a sheet for Menu & Grocery Planning, a shopping list, and another sheet to fill in as we run out of things. I'm also planning on grabbing a baseball card protector sheet for holding coupons for our trips to the store.

The next tab is "Finances". I've been dying to get a handle on receipt organization. So I have a page for tracking receipts, a bill payment tracking sheet, and a monthly budget worksheet.

The next tab is "To Do," where I'll place a now, later, and sometime to do list, as well as a list of ongoing projects for our home.

The next tab is "Medical," where I'll place all of our important medical & health insurance information. Phone numbers, copies of insurance cards, immunization records (copies) & physical records (copies) will be kept here.

And the final tab is "Contacts." I want to have a running list of contacts in case of anything. This will probably become my address book of sorts, as well as a place to go to for our pest control, utilities contact information, neighbors, family, friends, etc. Basically anyone we would need to get in contact with.

So that's all for now. This was a LONG post, but I'm glad that I was able to finish it before the week was over! I'm excited to get my binder all organized so I can launch myself into successful habits easily.


  1. Loved reading about your home notebook! So thorough! I got a few ideas for my notebook. Thanks for the good read.

  2. I have the same binder! Great job!

  3. I LOVE this idea! I already have a budget/finance binder.. and my "brain" day planner... but all those items in one place is genius! I'll be staying tuned to your blog for more great ideas.

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