I am super excited today to show you my new Thompson Family Home Binder! I'm sort of a calendar and day planner and list addict, so I decided to corral all of my calendars and lists and miscellaneous paper stuff into one handy family binder.
I have loads of FREE PRINTABLES to share at the end, so please keep reading for the links!
If you want to make your own home binder, here's what you do:
1. Gather all of your paper stuff and make categories. My categories are HOME, CALENDAR, FINANCES, MARLEY, AND BLOG CALENDAR.
2. Decide the order of things, and exactly how you want to organize them. You can see my order above. I also sub-divided each major category. For example, my HOME category is broken down into "Contacts", "Meals", and "Groceries". My MARLEY category is divided into "Jobs", "School", and "Sports". And so on...
I decided to buy the tabbed dividers with pockets, which makes it easier to place miscellaneous paperwork in its place - for example, I tear out event pages from our local magazines and I can put them in the pocket for each month, so we always know what's going on.
Here are a few more photos of my tabbed pocket dividers in each section.
3. Create a place for things you will keep for longer periods of time, such as sports schedules. Place these in their respective category and put them in a page protector.
4. Add a 3-hole pencil pocket to keep up with all your necessities. In my case, I have pens in 5 different colors, a white-out pen, post-it notes, and extra post-it tabs in case I add categories or sections later, or need to mark something for easy reference.
5. Set up your family calendar in a way that works best for YOU. Remember those 5 different colored pens I mentioned above? We have a color-coded calendar, as follows:
Red - birthdays, anniversaries, holidays
Green - activities that include the entire family
Blue - Mark's activities
Orange - My activities
Purple - Marley's activities
This makes it especially easy to know what's going on. You just glance at the calendar, spot your personal color, and you know what you have that particular day.
6. Find it a home in a central location. Our family binder lives on my desk, right next to my Project Life album that gets updated regularly. Mark and Marley know where it is, and they can easily refer to it whenever they need it. And for me, it's within reach when I sit down to update the calendar, pay bills, etc. Do what works for you - maybe your binder's home is in the kitchen if that's where you feel it will be best utilized.
Ok, now for the FREE PRINTABLES I mentioned! I have searched the world over for a calendar/day planner that fits my needs and just couldn't find one that I liked, so I made my own. I created a 12-month calendar for 2012, and in the meantime, I'm using the 2011 version from TomKat Studio. Feel free to keep a copy of my 2012 calendar for yourself. Here's a link to the PDF version of the entire 2012 calendar.
I also created weekly pages. The left side shows Sunday - Wednesday with plenty of room in each box to write lots of notes. Download the PDF version here.
It's pretty plain, so I dressed up the other side with 5 different designs. I also added a box underneath Saturday for Notes - because I always need more room for notes!
I'd love to see your finished product, so post a link to your blog with pictures, or just email them to me. It's always nice to share ideas for organizing.
Oh! If you want my Blog Notes printable, that's here, too. I use this to make notes for what I want to write about each day, brainstorm ideas, etc. Here's the PDF for this one, too.
I hope you enjoy the free printables! Stay organized, and I'll see you tomorrow!
*Update: I made a mini personal binder - check it out HERE: