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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Organize Yourself With a Binder

Author Cathie Rainwater CM of 

A home organizational binder is a binder that organizes a home! 
Okay maybe that's a little vague. It organizes EVERYTHING. 
How's that for an explanation? Really it does though. 
It organizes anything you want it to. 

I think for me that was the most difficult thing to control. I see the “big picture” rather than the steps to get there. I know a task can be realized, and often mentally simplify the road. This can be a great tool for planning things! But it's horrible for organizing. In high school and college, I'd write my paper before my outline, just as an example. How does this relate to my binder? I imagine myself sitting in a crisp white kitchen, wearing Dockers and polo shirts, with fresh cut flowers on my tiled top island, on a bar stool, when I actually don't own any of that. The reality will likely be me organizing this big thing, then not being late, my kids knowing what's going to happen, my mother knowing how to deal with everything when she babysits, etc. And me still in jeans and t-shirts.

If you're looking to organize your life, it very well might give you a makeover as well, so I can't guarantee you won't start being the mom who everyone stares at saying “I wish I could be as together as she is.” That's my goal. To be that mom. I've already had a taste of it using and let me tell you that (free) website is AMAZING. If you aren't using it, you need to be. It organizes your calendar (you share the account with your whole family), your meal plan, grocery and to-do lists, and more! But back to the binder. Why am I doing the binder if I have Cozi? You can have SO MUCH MORE.

There are a lot of binders out there you can purchase. On etsy there are great starters (nearly everything you could imagine), for about $30.00. I will tell you how much I spent on mine so far...$4.99. I've printed everything on my home computer. I bought a giant pack of paper for about $6.99 from Target, we have extra computer ink and we were nearly out of cyan and yellow, so we did need to replace during the printing process, however, all in all it didn't really use much up. I don't know how many pages I have. Sorry! But I can tell you that all of my resources were free. What do I have in my binder? See below!

*Remaining 2013 Calendar

*2014 Calendar

*Bedtime Routine

*Morning Routine

*Binder Cover and dividers

*Black Friday Shopping Organizing List (...oh yes)

*Children's Wardrobe Checklist

*Daily Goals Checklist

*Emergency Kit

*Fall Home Maintenance

*Kids Chore Charts

*Peek at the Week

*Pet Information Sheet

*Phone and Address List

*Phone Emergency Information

*Phone Restaurants – Takeout

*Seasonal Back to school Checklist

*Birthday Guest List

*Birthday Planner

*Summer Home Maintenance

*Basic Medical Information

*Quarterly Home Maintenance

*Blank Lined Paper

*Kids' information sheets

*Spring Home Maintenance

*Warranty Tracker

*Blank Labels for tabs

*Medication Information

*Tax Checklist

*Weekly Routine Chart

You can add whatever you want in the binder. I know people who have their meal planning calendar, recipes, coupon envelope, school information (I'll be adding this, just need to find a good printable for it), doctor visit info, dental visit info, grocery list, budgets (weekly, every other week, monthly, etc), refrigerator inventory, freezer or pantry inventory, household inventory for insurance purposes, mileage log for driving, baby sitter information...need I go on? Just look around yourself and see if you see any papers. You can find a way to put that in there if it's not garbage.

With three kids, being a Chapter Manager of RochesterMommies, being a photographer, working in the daycare center of the gym I go to, being an assistant running coach for my daughter's team, being in the church choir, and sort of homeschooling my 3 year old for preschool this year, I'm BUSY. I'm hoping this binder can help make this all easier! Do you use a binder? Are you considering doing one? Take a moment to tell us about it and leave a comment!!

I gathered free printables from the following and I urge you to visit them! They have a lot of information:

This is my pretty binder below, with some of the pages spread out.  I got it from Target.  :)  No, you can't slide a cover page in but I ended up sticking it inside...probably didn't need it but it's all good.  

Great job Cathie! I am inspired to go work on my binder now!

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