If you’re anything like me, then not being organized causes anxiety and stress. But staying organized can be nearly impossible with kids. There is never a moment more than 5 minutes where my house is kept the way I would prefer, but for the most part, I have a system of how to keep semi-organized in our day to day lives so that we have some order. Being organized helps me function and reduces the amount of stress that comes during busy days. I’m ready to share some of these easy-but-super-helpful organizational tips with you.
Use a monthly calendar:
Print out a monthly calendar and use it write out bills, appointments, parties, paydays, and events. My husband gets paid bi-weekly and I get paid on certain dates of the month so having it written down helps us keep track of what bills get paid each week of the month. He also is on-call at work one week a month so having everything written down makes it easier on our whole family. I also have birthdays written down, so that I can send a gift or card on time to family or friends back home whose dinners or parties I may not be able to attend. You can find a lot of free printables online, or even use a Microsoft Word Template like this:
Coordinate + Purge your clothes:
When I have time to put away clean laundry (who else leaves clean clothes sitting for days), I like to coordinate my closet. I have them by type (tanks, shirt, long sleeve, and by color. This makes it so much easier to find what I need when it’s time to leave the house. A couple of times a year, I also purge our clothes. My theory is, if you haven’t used or worn them in over a year, then get rid of it.
Less paper, less waste:
My husband likes to open his mail and then leave it the counters and desks and it drives me nuts. Most of our bills are paid online so I usually shred unnecessary items on a weekly basis so it doesn’t get piled up over time. I also keep receipts and coupons I do need and put them in an Expanding File Folder. Then at the end of each month, I enter it all on a Master Excel Sheet to keep track of my spending and others for tax purposes (I did not realize prescriptions and co-payments can all be considered tax-deductible!). At the end of the year, I take all my receipts and I attach it to the sheet that coincides with it. Here is an example of a portion of prescription payments from last year:
De-clutter your pantry
I kid you not, one of the VERY first things that I did when we moved into our new home was set up the pantry. I followed The Home Edit religiously and was determined to incorporate their methods into my home. I’m still working on it, but one of the things that I found helpful is taking food items out of the boxes it came in, and organizing it baskets by category. This isn’t the best picture because I haven’t had a chance to re-do my pantry (I do it every 1-2 months) but you get the idea. It’s easier to find what you need when you know where everything is. I even have a basket labeled “Kiddo’s Snacks” that is on the bottom shelf for easier access for Mila.
It’s easier for me to meal plan weekly. Every weekend I think about what I plan to make for meals for the week and then I grocery shop based on that. Having these prepped in advance takes away the worry of what to feed my family after a long day at work. The Evernote app is something I love, they have free templates for meal planning (and everything else in your life!) Here is a sample of this week’s dinner plans:
It’s also easier to grocery shop when you have the idea of what you need and what sections of the store you need to go to. It also saves money when you are not walking aimlessly around aisles where you don’t need a thing! The fact that they have it easily broken down to sections is genius!
And there you have it, just some things that you can easily do in your daily lives that will make busy days go that much smoother! What are things that help you stay organized? I’d loved to hear them in comments below.