Project Home Management Binder Day 1: Creating Categories and Finding Materials

I’ve been continuing to cross off my January Organizing Checklist a little at a time.
  1. Make/Work on New Year’s Resolutions/Goals (I’m probably not going to cross this one off just because it really is ongoing and ever changing. I don’t really believe in setting one or two long term goals without breaking them into manageable chunks and reflecting/editing when needed.
  2. Take Christmas stuff down. (See how I did that here.)
  3. Return or exchange any needed holiday gifts
  4. Write or make any necessary Thank you’s.
  5. Organize holiday cards. (See the holiday card place mats I made here.)
  6. Organize Photos. (I’m still working on creating our yearly photo books but I’m almost done. See my posts about organizing photos here, here, and here.)
  7. Find homes for new gifts. This one is still a work in progress. I had a plan as to where they would all go but as we all know, plans don’t always work when put into action. Stay tuned next month as I tackle some new projects in the play room again to accommodate my kiddos new interests and “stuff”
  8. Make annual doctor and vet appointments.
  9. Sign the girls up for gymnastics.
  10. Register Tessa for Kindergarten. (Happening this week.)
  11. Organize/de-clutter storage area. (This is also ongoing and something I am  hoping to reallytackle this spring–fingers crossed.)
  12. Create/Edit a Home Management Binder /Command Center

 

Which brings me to today’s post:

Creating a Home Management Binder.

You’ve probably seen a version or two of these all over blog land and truthfully, I already sort of had one. But it was just kind of thrown together and wasn’t really serving its full potential. So, I thought why not spend some time really making it work for our family? January seemed like the right time too–to sort of get all of our ducks in a row for the new year.
I’ve seen tons of different categories that people have used when making their own but since this isn’t for anyone but our family, I had to really think about what would be beneficial to us. We also have a command center that alleviates some of those categories as well (which I will discuss more as they come up.)

These are the categories that I plan to create/add to our binder:

Planning Ahead–This includes yearly, monthly, daily goals;  to-do lists; weekly menu/meal planning, etc. (I’m sure I’ll add more as I get into it.)

School–This is a section for my kiddos’ school info that I need to keep for any period of time.

Reference–This includes emergency info; other contacts; babysitter info; pet sitting info; home maintenance, etc. (Again, I’m sure the list will grow.)

Good Times–This will include holiday/birthday preparations; other celebration planning; Special memory/tradition log; vacation planning, list of special dates and occasions, etc.

I think that is it –although it will possibly change as I get deeper into it.

***There are a few other categories too that I either have already or plan to devote an entire binder to rather than just a section in the Home Management Binder. I will definitely discuss these at a later date. They include:

Medical–this is for all of our medical info, receipts, etc. from doctor or hospital visits as well as birth certificates, social security cards, etc.

Home Improvement–this is for the ever evolving projects that are consistently going on in our home.

Recipes–this is to house any recipes I find either online, magazines, family recipes passed down or just ones that I jot down.

Blog–this is for organizing my thoughts when planning and writing blog posts each day.

Product/Warranty Info–This one is a maybe for me. As of right now they are in a file box. However, I’m always looking for ways to make this one simpler. A binder might be a possibility.

Some other great ideas but have other places/systems for are:

Financial or Budget section (We use Quicken which takes care of all of this. This will be a post on its own—one day.)
Automobile log (I keep record of this in Quicken too as well as where I file our bills/statements, etc.)
Personal (We each have a file box in our command center for this. I’ll discuss this more soon.)
As I mentioned above, I want to create a binder that is meaningful/useful to our family. Which means I want to put some thought and time into putting it altogether. So, I’m going to break this project into smaller-more doable pieces throughout the month. You are more than welcome to join along. The idea is that by the end of January, I will have a central place to house pretty much everything that we need to manage our home/family efficiently.
 

Today’s task: Getting the materials.

I chose a pretty 3 inch binder. I debated between this and one with a clean plastic cover. I decided I wanted something that I could keep out if needed.
So pretty won. This one came from Target. (Shocker I know.)
This particular binder doesn’t have pockets inside but it has a little clipboard in the front that I figured I could surely put to good use. 🙂

The other little goodies I chose were:

hole-punched plastic folders
plastic tabbed dividers with pockets (you can never have too many pockets, right?)
clear page protectors

I also found some clear page protectors with tabs at Staples that I thought would be great to help divide my categories.

So that’s it for today. Remember–manageable chunks. Getting organized is a lot like losing weight: it’s about small changes that we can achieve and maintain.

Can’t wait to continue. Stay tuned!

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