Last week, I posted about having A Homekeeper Notebook, and then due to the wonders of technology, lost the post. It has been reposted… This week, I can write about the way a home notebook is set up and practically used.
You know the things that are important to your life. You are aware of the things you need to stay on top of and keep track of, and when and how you actually lose track of those things. This is why A Homekeeper Notebook (whether you work full time or not) can really be a valuable tool. If you are a wife & mom – you ARE a homekeeper regardless of the actual work you may do.
Finding a binder that works for you is key. Whether you use a spiral bound appointment book or a 3 ring binder in your favorite size, get the one that fits your lifestyle (and your purse!)
CALENDAR. I highly recommend having a calendar in some format. Whether you need a daily, weekly, or monthly system, you will find many free templates online, or you can choose to purchase something you like from the resources I mentioned last week. Having at least a monthly or yearly calendar printed for reference is really handy for planning ahead.
JOURNAL. Whether you record special milestones, funny memories, or need a place to jot your thoughts, setting aside a small journal section for your HKN is really important. Grocery lists or other lists can be written here and moved as needed. Keeping notes is a big part of staying organized, so be sure to have a place to do this – whether it’s extra pages added, or a small stack of sticky-notes available at a moments notice.
FAMILY. Whatever your family responsibilities are – whether they are homekeeping, homeschooling, errands & extracurricular clubs & activities, incorporate your family into your HKN. You are likely managing the schedules, and when you have more than one schedule to juggle, things can get lost easily. Find a planner page that allows you to track schedules by day or by week for everyone and you will save yourself a lot of headaches in the long run! To be honest, I have a form like this that is posted on my refrigerator as an extension of my HKN so my husband can easily see everything that is going on during the week, too.
HOUSE. This is where I needed the most help, but maybe you are a FlyLady at heart. Whether you just need a master list to guide you, or a master checklist that is tracked every day or week, can save your sanity. Is it time to change your A/C filter or dust the ceiling fans? This section for those chores that aren’t done on a weekly basis can help you manage your house better and save you time & money in the long run.
FAITH. Whether you like to have a personal journal or prayer log, having a section to note your spiritual journey is really important, too. Maybe it will help you keep your serenity, too. For flexible binders, print out your favorite passages of Scripture in the appropriate size, and turn to them daily. Record prayer requests and answers or take notes from a Bible Study you’re participating in. Keep a wish list of books you’d like to read to grow your faith, and have it handy the next time you visit your favorite bookstore.
MEALS. Recording your family’s favorite meals, building menus, recording store sales and storing coupons, can be invaluable as you move through your week. For notebook size 3 ring binders, you could easily insert a few baseball card style page protectors to store your coupons. Coordinating with your grocery list and store ads, you could make saving money a breeze. It only takes a few minutes to look through your local sales ads and note the items your family needs or wants, and keeping a simple system together will make it easier for you to be a frugal shopper.
HOMESCHOOL. If you are a homeschooler, you may already have a separate organizer, but if you can combine it with your HKN and keep it in one place, you may be able to accomplish more in the midst of your busy schedule. As you plan your week’s meals and review your upcoming appointments, you can also overview your homeschool schedule and account for all of your errands and homeschool needs at the same time. Just one less binder to keep track of.
The best part of having A HomeKeeper Notebook is designing it for your life and your family and your work and your needs. There is NO one right way for everyone – and you may find the perfect format right away, or you may have to take a few days or weeks or months to get it all ironed out. If you’ve never made a Homekeeper Notebook, you can find examples and suggestions all over the web. It took me about a year to find my style and the most efficient system – but in the end, it was worth all the time trying to put it together. And My Homekeeper Notebook Works for Me!
For other great ideas and tips, don’t forget to visit We Are THAT Family for the rest of the Works For Me Wednesday posts. Seriously – it’s worth your time to check it out!