Thursday, September 22, 2011

A new way to organize - the Family Binder

Thanks to my friend Sarah, I had the "in" to the MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group she's in. They have a waiting list for this particular chapter so I was excited that she could put in a good word for me! MOPS offers a community of mothering support, personal growth and spiritual hope. It helps all the moms involved be the best mom possible. (All their words and I'm a believer.)

We've had two meetings since the semester started. The first meeting, we had a speaker that preached "Love and Logic" ( I really like the subject and I completely see how it could work. I plan to follow up a little more.

The second meeting , the speaker, Linley Phillips from was there to talk about the Family Binder. At first I was a little skeptical. Would this be for my family? How could I make it work for us? I'm a fan of the basket of paperwork, take-out menus, loose magazine tear outs, etc. You know what I'm talking about. I know you have an area like this too. Just because the pile is a disorganized mess doesn't mean I don't know what's in it.
After hearing Linley speak about how she uses the binder and how other friends use it, I started to think about what I would change. At the end of the session I was sold. I came home telling Adam that I was going to reduce this pile and that pile and that bin. It's still a work in progress but I think he's coming around. As soon as he sees the piles diminish I know he'll see the light.

Note: I got to use some of my scrapbook paper and my label maker. Craft supplies + organizing is a winning combo.

Schiffman Family Binder :)

My category tabs:
-Calendar - I'm gonna use the month at a glance
-To Do
-Family Info - includes emergency info, info sheet for babysitter, quick reference phone numbers and addresses, info about our house
-Eat - take-out menus, menu planner, pantry and freezer inventory (to use for shopping), lunchbox ideas, recipes and dinner suggestions from magazines or web
-Holidays/Gift Planning (my favorite) - birthday and anniversary list, gift ideas planner, gift closet inventory (I buy gifts throughout the year and forget who they're for and where I put them), and holiday budget
Violet - any school paperwork, records, etc
MOM - my section! I'll probably keep Groupons, personal to do lists, etc
Ideas/Inspiration - magazine and web pages of things I want to remember and try

Some hints:
-Put most things in a sheet protector so you don't have to make a million copies. Write on the sheet protector with a Vis-a-vis (overhead projector pen)
-Keep a zippered pencil case in the front of the binder with a pen, pencil, calculator, hole punch, post-its...

If you're interested in starting a Family Binder check out these links:
See other links on Lynley's blog

Other organizing blogs with free printables: (love love love this one!)

This is just the beginning. I'll update as I make changes or find that something might work better a little differently. Please let me know if you start a Family Binder and what you put in it. I would love to hear!