Tuesday, July 10, 2012

My Life Organizer: Includes 2 FREE Printables!

Woo! So sorry for the delayed post. My third surge of family visits this month just came so I had to put blogging on hold for a few days. Which brings me to the subject of my next post, my life organizer! Every year I always bought a new planner from Walmart to stay organized in addition to the calendars I had all around the place. However, I always had things all around the house and I always have so much to remember that even if I write it down I still misplace the piece of paper I wrote it on. If it weren't for this life saver I put together, my life would be allllll over the place. If you look around online or on Pinterest you'll see a lot of moms and women who have set up a similar set-up and call it a home control binder. None were suiting enough for my lifestyle so I decided to create my own Life Organizer.

I started off with basic filing topics and added more as I needed:
*Personal Calendar
*JAM's Calendar
*To Do/ DIY
*Family Reunion Planning
*Emergency Info
*Coupons (Coming Soon)
*Business Cards (Coming Soon)

I made dividers out of cardstock simply because I love color and the simple tabs you can buy from the store didn't fulfill my needs =p. Then i decorated my dividers with leftover scrapbooking stickers and cutouts from magazine that inspires me and fits the topic of my tabs.

Some of the contents of my life organizer are repetitive, but I'm a real visual person and I liked the idea of separating certain ideas. For example, in my bills section I have a monthly calendar so i can record when my bills are due and budget my weeks based on what is due that week. I also have a bill sheet for every bill I pay so I can record when I paid it, how much I paid, and record confirmation or transaction numbers for any online payments I do. At the top I also have the company's info and my account number so I have all of that in one place if I ever had to refer to it. To learn how to make your own simple monthly calendars, check out this video. If you want ones that are already pre-made you can visit Calendar Labs for simple monthly calendars. If you are also interested in tracking your bills with the bill sheet, I found it at DIY planner.

I also have another calendar in my "personal calendar" section. Bills are stressful enough so I wanted to separate it from my personal calendar. This section helps me keep track of birthdays, holidays, college life, or any other important dates and events going on. Since I have such a big family, we're really big on birthdays so I added a separate birthday chart with their names in the appropriate spaces and the year they were born. Tracking the year is easier for me than their age since it never changes. I just do the math to find out their current age. Once I was done I printed out a copy for the rest of my family to help them keep track as well. I wanted my personal calendar to stand out and suite my personality a little so I found this cute calendar on Tip Junkie that had cute designs to match the month. I found the coordinating birthday chart on Executive Homemaker.

The next tab I created was a calendar for JAM (can you tell by now that I love calendars and repetition hehe). With him starting elementary school, his extracurricular activities, and making friends who invite him to birthday parties, it was necessary for him to have a calendar of his own. I found this cute calendar from Silly Bee's Chickadees that had fun holidays on it that JAM found amusing like Dress Up Your Pet Day, Dr. Seuss Day, and Star Wars Day.

Now, when I made my contacts tab, I searched high and low for the perfect contact sheet. I tried to make some of them work for me but it either had info spaces I didn't need or didn't have info spaces I wanted. I used to backup my phone and maintain my phonebook online on my email until one day I logged on and ALL my contacts were gone after keeping it there for 10+ years. So, I went back old school and decided to manually write down my contacts. Since I didn't find a contact sheet that suited my needs, I made my own on Microsoft Word simply by making a table. Instead of making a sheet for every letter of the alphabet, I did one for every two letters and made a blank sheet at the end to add on to each letter section. Here's my personal contact sheet that I made.

MY FIRST FREE PRINTABLE YAY! I'm so excited! It's nothing fancy, but if you want to download it feel FREE to do so and edit it to your liking. Click here to download. I added the (__) phone option to fill in the parenthesis with any extra phones numbers (IE. Work 2, Cell 2, Pager) that someone might have.

Now my To Do/DIY tab is a diamond in the rough. It kind of became more of my inspiration section. I do have a cute to do list that I printed from Good Gravy Designs, but I also have random brainstorming sheets, cutouts from magazine of things I want to try, important documents, inventory documents and everything in between. It's not enough to divide into individual sections just yet, but I know I will eventually.

I'm planning our first cousins reunion this weekend so in addition to the To Do list above, I also set up a tab for all my family reunion planning. I put the guest list, food list, house contracts, etc. in this section so everything is in one spot whenever I need to refer to it (which is pretty frequently). Another tab in My Life Organizer is my emergency info tab. I'd have to say that this would probably be the most important tab in my binder. I don't have someone babysit JAM often, but for the times that I do I've printed out 2 copies of everything in this section. It contains a first-aid checklist that I go through once a month to make sure my first aid caddy (more on this later) is filled, a print out of what to do if someone is choking or requires CPR, and my babysitter information sheet that I put together. This sheet has everything anyone would need to know in case of an emergency: Parent's info, household info (including directions to the home just in case an emergency operator needs specific directions through my complicated apartment parking lot), personal emergency contacts, info about JAM, his pediatrician and dentist, the closest medical facilities that accept his insurance like the hospital and pharmacy, veterinarian info just in case there's a pet emergency, and last but not least, an emergency treatment release just in case the sitter has to take JAM to the hospital or something for a serious matter that I can't get to right away. I still have to do my research to see if I have to get this release notarized or something to make it official, but I still provide it just in case. In an emergency sometimes it's hard to even remember the number for 911, let alone the number for poison control so this is when the Babysitter Information Sheet comes in handy. Usually the people who babysit JAM are CPR certified, but just in case someone needs it during an emergency I ask people to read through the choking/CPR procedures when they have some downtime. If this sheet is something you're interested in NO WORRIES! I'm allowing you to download the Babysitter Information Sheet here! Yay for another FREE printable!!

Well there you go. My Life Organizer. I hope this helps some of you get all your important  documents together and keep your life organized. I decided to add a a couponing section to my Organizer as well as adding a place to get all the business cards that I receive and want to keep in one, easily accessible place. A few more fun add-ons  for a Life Organizer are binder pockets to hold all those smaller things that can't be punch-holed and/or business card holders that you can both find on Amazon. Don't wait to get this binder started! Think about things that you organize and do on a weekly basis and go from there as a way to assign your tabs. You don't have to get it all done in one day. Built it little my little. You can even make it into a binder that you leave in a common area for the whole family to access so that everyone stays organized and uses this binder as a way to communicate and be in the know. So, what are some tabs that are going into your Life Organizer?