Make a Household Notebook

This week is all about getting a good habit going.

One great habit to develop is that of managing your home in a way that best suits you and the season of life you’re in.

I am a firm believer in finding a good home managment system that works and then tweaking it to fit my family, my home, and my life. What works for the girl next door may not work for me. But, I can always learn from her.

One thing that I find helps me manage my home a little bit better is a household notebook. Last year I shared how I put mine together. Every few months I update it with a few tweaks, so that it can keep working for us.

It was so exciting to read Shannon’s post about her household notebook and how she’s tweaking things to fit her life as a mom with a new baby. And to see that my little planning ebook was helping her do it just made my day!

What’s a Household Notebook?

A household notebook is basically a command center for all the goings and doings at your house. It can help you keep track of appointments, menu plans, grocery lists, daily checklists — whatever you need to do or to remember, it can help you.

It can be as simple as a binder full of calendars, schedules, and phone directories or as complex as planning sheets and checklists bound together in a spiral notebook.

I put together an ebook (a digital document that you download to your computer) called Organizing Life as MOM that is a how-to manual for putting together a household notebook that fits you and your season of life. It’s 125 pages of inspiration and planning pages to help you “get your act together.” Many of the pages are customizable so that you can make it fit you!

Lots of choices

There are lots of designs of planning pages available, so I thought I would share a few so you can bop around the web and see what fits you best. You might end up using a little bit from each place.

:: $5 Dinners – Erin has compiled everything for garden planning to pantry staples in her Printable Resource Center.

:: Life Your Way – Mandi is amazing in providing a wealth of printables to use. From Christmas to address book template to take-out restaurant directory, she’s got you covered. She even explains how to develop a digital household notebook.

:: Steady Mom – Jamie wrote a book devoted to helping parents provide structure and consistency to their days with children. She provides some organizing resources to that end.

:: Money Saving Mom – Crystal has a variety of charts available to help you manage your household, including cleaning lists and chore charts. Crystal even explains her notebook in a short vlog.

:: Simple Mom – Tsh has an assortment of free downloads, including her daily docket and some helpful checklists.

:: LifeasMOM – Buy the ebook, Organizing Life as MOM. ;)

Get Your Act Together in 2011!

To encourage you to set up some kind of system to help you better organize your days, I’m offering a fun little giveaway.

The Challenge: Between now and January 31st, I want you to put some order in your chaos. On the 31st, I’ll offer a link-up/comments section for you to share how you are getting more organized this year.

Entries can feature household notebooks or other command centers for your household. (Blog posts will be best since you’ll be able to show us pictures of what you create.) Either way, explain how you set up your organizational system and how you plan for it to serve you in the coming year.

Two participants will be randomly chosen and will each receive a $25 gift card to help them get even more organized in the coming year.

Are you up for the challenge?

Do you have a household notebook? How does it help you? What creative tweaks have you tried? Get one ready for the 31st!

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Comments

  1. This is perfect timing as I’ve been wanting to update my notebook. It’s a little dusty and I need to pull it out and give it an overhaul.
    Blessings,
    Kim

  2. I have always wondered what you mean by ‘beds aired and remade”?

  3. ive been wanting to put together something more”formal” currently i just use a regular spiral bound notebook(that I got at staples I think for $0.01)

    Honestly, it looks a little overwhelming and I have no idea to start since Ive never really used one!

  4. I love my household notebook! I’ve been using it since just before my first baby was born, 11 months ago, and I’ve gleaned ideas from many of the sites you mentioned (Lindsey at PassionateHomemaking.com also has great ideas).

    For me, keeping it simple and making it work for me have allowed me to continue using it rather than creating a giant, complicated resource I don’t want to mess with. :)

  5. As we’ve been inundated with about two feet of snow I find myself wondering what you would do with your kids on a snow day! We’ve already made cupcakes and chocolate chip cookies. The kids are wading through the snow now, which has given me a break. Now what?!

  6. I have the makings of a notebook scattered all over. I use many of your free printables but just can’t get the time to get it together. But it is part of my new year goals so it will be my “get a good habit going” focus! And boy do i need it!

  7. Oh! Thank You Thank You Thank You! I was just telling my husband that I needed a way to get organize! This is PERFECT!

  8. This is such a great idea. I’ve been thinking about making one ever since I saw it on Simple Mom years ago. Except I never seem to follow through. I really like the Motivated Moms calendars, too. I’m going to check out your e-book now. I hope it will help me to get things together.

  9. This is exactly what I need to do to take the next step in organizing my life. Thanks for the tip. Also, I am doing Manage Mondays this new year on my site. http://bit.ly/dLxvtQ

  10. I bought a daily/weekly/monthly planner for 2011 and have been putting my “to-do lists” and planned meals and schedule and anything else in it! Right now, it’s just me and my husband, but I want to get into this habit now, before kids. I suspect I will put together a more formal “household notebook” once kids are in the picture!

  11. I’ve been working on creating a homemaking binder to help get more organized in several aspects of our lives. I’m so excited to see all of these printable pages to help!

  12. I’ve been working on making my own household notebook since New Year’s Day, inspired by your sale on your ebook (I missed the sale, so looked to do it myself). The computer is on this morning because I was just producing some draft planner pages! Now to drag myself away from the computer to actually get the stuff on my to-do list done. Thanks for all your tips.

  13. I’m so glad you posed this! I had a great notebook all set up eight months ago. I loved using it, but realized after reading your post and looking at some of your links that it needs some tweaking. Our lives have changed over the past 8 months! :-) So…I’m having fun getting organized again in a way that meets our needs right now.

  14. I started putting together a household notebook a year ago and never managed to finish it. This month I’ve been feeling inspired to work on it again and now you’ve given me even more motivation.

  15. After spending too much time today looking at various home management binder printables, I decided to purchase your ebook. I have just printed out everything I need to get my sad home management binder into working order. I am so excited to use your printables. I will definitely be reading some of the information in it again. Thanks for creating all of this so that I didn’t have to.

  16. I have set-up a spreadsheet to help me keep everthing organized from A-Z.

  17. Yes! This is perfect timing and I’m taking on the challenge!!
    http://www.momendeavors.com/2011/01/up-for-household-challenge.html

  18. My husband won an iPod Touch, which I then got to keep… SO I was all set to try to technofy my notebooks/dry erase boards “system” [list-making CHAOS]. Sadly, all the various apps I found and/or tried just didn’t have the ease of viewing things all at once, ability to quickly flip pages back and forth, etc. Now I’m back to paper. BUT if you should hook up w an app developer, I might be interested if you come up w a Life As Mom app. =)

  19. I printed two double-sided pieces of paper. Page one, side one: daily and weekly chores. Page one, side two: monthly and quarterly chores. Page two, side one: monthly meal plan (from your ebook). Page two, side two: weekly meal plan (from your ebook). I put each page into a page-protector and hung them on the fridge. I check off my chores or fill in my meals with a dry-erase pen. Entirely reusable, and all I really need at this stage of life to keep me going. (With 2 kids under 18 months, I’m not asking much of myself right now.) :)

  20. I’m curious if there are any super easy beginner systems out there for organizational whimps? I just recently went back to work outside the home and am noticing a few things slipping…

    Help!

  21. I’m not a mother, but I believe these organizational kits are perfect for anyone who wants to keep everything in one place. Thanks for the resources. :)
    -Sarah
    fitango.com

  22. Just purchased your organizer so I can get 2012 kicked off the right way! Can hardly wait to get things in order :)

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