Wednesday, April 02, 2008

WFMW: One Stop Planning (Reprise)

In a special edition of Works for me Wednesday, Shannon has asked us to "share our very best with the internet." If there is one thing that makes my household "work for me," it is this simple organizational scheme. So here it goes (again):

I have always been a bit of a do-it-yourselfer when it comes to organizational systems. I have never found a commercial product that has all of the features I want in a size or price that I am comfortable with.

In college I photocopied a grid with my weekly class and work schedule drawn in, penciled in meetings as they were scheduled, and then planned homework and my social life around those parameters. I could see my entire week at a glance and know just where I needed to be when. I used some variation of this system for ten years. It was simple and flexible, but thorough. It really worked for me.

Then I became a stay-at-home mom, day care provider, and owner of a very high maintenance home. I had things to be done, but no set schedule -- my time-based organizational system fell apart. With all of the constant (blessed) interruptions, I could not keep track of all of the things I needed to remember and do. I could not remember what on earth I needed at the store, or when I had last vacuumed the playroom. With the help of Flylady, I got daily routines going, but still needed to make the system my own. This January, I finally sat down and made a planner that fits my life. The sheet has a box for everything I need in a week -- appointments, menu plans, preschool plans, shopping lists, and ongoing projects. I also have a checklist of all of the tasks I complete once per week. I even found room to record the kid's milestones and what books we have read together.

I print off a month's worth of sheets, pop them into a soft-covered binder, and keep it in the kitchen cabinet above the computer. The binder rolls up small enough to fit in my coat pocket, which allows me to bring it along to the grocery store and doctor's office even when my hands are busy. Here is what it looks like in use.
That is what works for me. To see what tips others have come up with, visit Rocks in My Dryer.


Alberta said...

Great chart, I can see how having it all in one place helps the home run smoother with less stress. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Great idea - I love it!