Calendar Central – How to you keep track of your work and personal commitments? Where is the soccer schedule or school menu? How in the world is Mom suppose keep this all organized? I find it is hard to manage all my schedules on one calendar, therefore I utilize a number of different systems to keep my family organized.
I wear so many hats in life, mother, wife, school volunteer, social worker (my only paid hat) and caregiver of others. So as you may imagine, being organized is very important for me. I use a couple of different calendar systems, but would be utterly lost without them. I hope you are able to walk away from this blog post with at least one new tip to help you organize you many schedules, etc. Even the smallest of organizing will improve how smoothly your household runs.
At home I have Coyan Calendar Central (AKA side of fridge) which is used by the family on a daily basis. This is the central place in our home for information. We use the white board to jot down quick notes, reminders or shopping lists. Hubby has fixed my never ending problem of being unable to find my car keys by having hooks on the side of the fridge. It still drives him nuts when I forget to hang them up. We aren’t going to talk about how often that still happens.
Last year I posted about what makes up my Calendar Central at home. All Items are very important to maintaining the smooth running of our home. I use Amy Knapp’s Big Grid Family Organizer as my calendar at home. I am going on my 2nd year of using this one and LOVE IT. The previous 5 years or so I always used the Flylady Calendar , both calendars feature large grids, which is a must in this household!
At home I also have one place that is where all school/ Tommy related info goes. For easy access to the monthly school lunch menu and the classroom schedule for Tommy, I have them hanging on the closet door by the front door so we can review it each day on our way out of the house. We also use this closet door to showcase Tommy’s art work and school papers. If Tommy has a weekly bible verse to memorize we also keep that on the door so we remember to practice it each time we go by the door. I am a very visual person, if I don’t see it, I forget about it!
The other thing that is good about having this info on the closet door, is I am teaching Tommy to use it as well. When he asks what is for lunch at school, I send him to go look on his calendars. I have learned by being a mother of three boys, it is in my best interest to teach them organizational skills from the very beginning. Skills that they have been able to use in other environments, such as school.
I work fulltime outside of the family home. I work as a social worker so my schedule is varied depending on the needs of those I work with. I have the kind of job in which you have to be very organized, if you are not, you are in big trouble. The higher your caseload gets the more you need organizational skills to cope.
At work, I use my outlook calendar as well as a paper calendar. I still use a paper calendar so that I can make appointments with clients when I am on a home visit. I need to be able to make work appointments on the spot. I do keep personal commitments on my paper calendar as well so I don’t double book myself. I don’t know what I would do if I ever lost my paper calendar. That would be very disastrous. I keep a small 5×7 calendar so that it easily fits into my purse. Oh and the answer is “yes”….I *do color code my calendar.
NEW ORGANIZATIONAL TOOL
I am very excited to share with you a new, free way to organize your family,Cozi Family Calendar. “ Cozi is a FREE online calendar that helps you manage the family schedule, organize your grocery shopping lists and to do lists, and capture favorite memories in a family journal—all in one place.” This calendar can be shared with other family members. It helps to keep us all on the same page and informed. One feature I love about Cozi, besides that it is free, is the weekly update email it will send to all my family members. Every week each family member receives a weekly agenda for the upcoming week. You can color code the calendar for each member of the family as well. There is even a Fly Lady Version of the calendar.
Another feature I like about Cozi is that I am able to log onto it on my phone, so I am never without my calendar or lists. If I am wondering if I need to purchase anything for supper that evening, I can quickly log onto Cozi to see what I was planning on making for supper. I am a huge fan of the list feature as well. If you don’t know by now, I am a huge list maker. I find that writing a list helps me to organize my thoughts.
· Jen’s Must DO this Week List
· Hubby’s To Do List
· Daily Routines List (morning, afternoon, bedtime routine as well as weekly cleaning schedule)
· Seasonal To Do List for each month of the year
· Deep Cleaning List for each room of the house.
· Projects List
I love that you can cross off items on your lists. I also like to have all my lists in one place for easy reference. I have a terrible habit of making lists on stick notes, various notebooks or index cards. It is hard to locate a list after I have made it.
School in our state will be starting after Labor Day, so I still have a few weeks to get ready for school. I hope you were able to find a tip or two that might help you get more organized this year. It seems every year I tweak my organization systems a bit. My system gets better and better each year.
Homework: Go find a calendar that will meet your needs and start filling in important dates for the upcoming school year. The best way to start using a calendar is to have one!!