Most people think I am so organized, but really I am constantly on a quest to not just seem organized but to actually be organized. There are a few items that have really been helpful for me in this regards. The first one is a dry erase board on my refrigerator.
Actually I have two, but the one I use all the time is for grocery items. When we run low or out of something, we write it on the grocery board. It’s really simple, but it has cut down on our trips to the grocery for one or two items which always leads to leaving the store with five or ten items! I used to grab a scrap piece of paper to jot down a quick item to remember, but often the paper would get misplaced, so this works well. Also, the other family members know exactly where the list is when they want to add something. Then when I make my weekly menu and grocery list, I just add my items from the board.
My second item is a purse organizer insert that you can lift in and out when you change purses. I was constantly changing purses and just grabbing a few necessities out of the current purse and leaving the rest. Inevitably, I would leave something behind that I needed. I first bought an expensive one online that ended up too big for many of my purses. Then one day while shopping on vacation, I found a two pack of these for 10$ at a kitchen store in one of those “as seen on t.v.” sections. It really is an ingenious item for keeping things organized in your purse, and for having everything you need when you switch purses!
My other must have item is my household notebook. I just started this about a year ago, and I really don’t know how I managed without it for 21 years of marriage.
It’s just a three ring binder with tabs that helps me consolidate important information that I need to run my household. The categories in my notebook are:
Budget-which holds my checkbook and account information and also my budget categories and balances
To Do-which has my larger “to do” items listed
Menu-for my weekly meal plan and also meal ideas
Gift List-where I can keep track of what I have already bought for birthdays and Christmas
Home and Car Maintenance-to keep track of when we replace or fix certain items
Diary-to right down cute or important things the kids say to put in their baby books later
Blog-for blog ideas, linky parties…
Passwords-for my various online passwords
I use this binder everyday, and it’s a great tool that can be personalized to fit anyone’s home management needs.
Next is this file folder basket that sits on my kitchen counter, which helps deal with the mail clutter immediately when it comes into the house. My hubby has his own file here so he know where to look for things that need his attention. The other categories I use here are: coupons, medical, receipts, bills and to file. Some of these items have to be filed later in our file cabinet, but for the quick sort this works very well, and keeps things from piling up somewhere.
My fifth must have organizational tool is my daily planner. They come in so many different styles, but this is the one that works the best for me. I use this for smaller daily jobs that need to be done immediately, and for upcoming appointments in conjunction with my wall calendar.
I am really learning as I get older (and wish I had realized 20 years ago) that organization pays off in so many ways, from the ease of finding things, avoiding late fees, having information available when it’s needed and even to saving money. It is so worth the small amount of effort that initially goes into it.
Hope this is helpful!