I found a fantastic book about a month ago. It's called "House Works: How to live clean, green, and organized at home."
The book has all kinds of practical tips to make your home run more efficiently so that you can reclaim the time you want to spend with family, friends, and doing your favorite activities.
The author, Cynthia Townley Ewer, has a website (organizedhome.com) that has a lot of the same information within the book. I highly recommend checking out the site! With the free time I've gained during my Lenten Facebook Fast, I have been reading this book and implementing her recommendations, including the Household Notebook.
In addition to being our family's go-to information center, I want our Household Notebook to be personalized and fun to look at. Instead of buying a binder with regular dividers, I chose to personalize it. I settled on a white 1 1/2" binder with a D-ring. I found cute scrapbooking paper and stickers at JoAnn's and chose a floral theme.
|Front cover. I chose to include a quote from Blessed Pope John Paul II on marriage.|
|Front cover and spine.|
|Binder spine close-up|
|Back of binder. I chose to include Mother Teresa of Calcutta's Nazareth Prayer for the Family.|
Once I finished the cover for the binder, I created the dividers. Cynthia Ewer from organizedhome.com gives you some recommendations on dividers for your notebook. After reading her list and considering our family's needs, and ended up with seven dividers. To personalize them, I stuck with my floral theme, and I put the pages into page protectors with a title centered on white paper, a solid-color cardstock, and a border behind it. I also attached clear index dividers with the same headings on the side of the page protectors so that I can flip to each section quickly.
Here are my seven dividers and a list of what will go into each section:
"Home Management" is my place for things like: a daily, weekly, and master to-do lists, cleaning schedules, household systems, seasonal chores, organization tips, cleaning information, decorating ideas, and auto information.
|"Meals" is my place for: weekly and monthly menu planner forms, grocery list forms, inventory forms, recipes to try, favorite recipes, and food storage guidelines.|
|"Family & Celebrations" is my spot for a clothing sizes tracker for all family members (tops, bottoms, shoes, etc.), a master occasions list of birthdays/anniversaries/other important milestones, party planning forms, gift ideas, a holiday gift list, Christmas card address list, Christmas gift exchange list, holiday menu planners, and a décor inventory. I think I'll ultimately end up with a separate Christmas binder. (UPDATE: Since writing this post, I created a Family Christmas Planner with a shared Google Docs page as well.)|