Friday, August 10, 2012

How to Make a Family Binder

I am so excited for this amazing guest poster!!  My friend Andrea is here to share some super organizing skills with you!!  She is a wife and mother and knows how important organization is for a busy family!

Hi again!  I'm Andrea from Maia the Bee and I'm guest posting today for Bonnie.  We are a military family currently stationed in Newport, Rhode Island (I know, life is tough!)  We'll only be here for a year before they send us somewhere else so we're making the most of our time!  My husband is active duty Army and we have a 20 month old daughter, Maia.  I am a stay at home mom and love to plan, organize, craft, and bake.

Have you ever been to Newport?  It's an incredibly busy place in the summer!  There seems to be a never-ending list of events and activities around here!  Plus, we just moved back to the States after being stationed in Germany for 5 years, so we have a lot of visits from family planned.  (I've joked that you need to call ahead and reserve your room here…but it's not too far off from the truth!)

We've finally finished unpacking and have the house {somewhat} normal.  Our life has been pretty hectic these past few months with movers, a month in hotels, a whirlwind vacation, and the LONG trip back to the States.  Now that we're just about settled and have our stuff again, I've been trying to get into a routine.

It's been incredibly hard because: 1) we've had absolutely no schedule for the past few months, and 2) now that we're here, we are having to constantly change and adjust for visits, appointments, events, and mishaps.  It's frustrating.

I've spent a lot of time lately wishing I could get organized and one day I decided it was time to take action!  One of my all-time most popular posts is my Recipe Binder - it gets TONS of hits each day!  I use it all the time too because it's neat and organized.  It's so much nicer to look at now that I took the time to put it together.  I started thinking that if the Recipe Binder could organize my scattered recipes, a family binder could certainly help organize my scattered thoughts!

I started by making a monthly calendar that I want to share with you today.  I created a 2-page calendar for each month through the end of 2013.  Here is a sample from this month:

Do you need to get organized as much as I do?  Start your own family binder!!  It's easy and over the next couple weeks I'll be giving you all you need to fill it up and GET ORGANIZED!

First, get a binder.  Target sells some really cute ones, but I got mine for $2 at a local store.  Mine has a front pocket (hint: later I'll be giving you ideas for cute cover pages!) and is only 1-inch thick.  (If you think you're going to have lots to add, buy a bigger one.)  I also bought page protectors to keep important papers and schedules safe.

Are you ready to start?  

Below are the links to the calendar pages.  Once you've printed them out, you have 2 options:
  1. Slip each page into a page protector.  You can either slide it out to write on it or use a marker to write on top of the plastic.  (Wet erase markers work great for this!  You can even use a Sharpie but you'll need rubbing alcohol to erase it later.)
  2. Hole punch the pages.  To do this, make sure you put each month facing itself when you punch so the calendar will open like a book once it's in the binder.  

You can remove the current month from your binder and hang it on the fridge or a cork board where everyone will see it.  Make sure to write down everything going on during the month so you won't miss anything!  You can also color-code the calendar using a different color for each family member.  (There are only 2 of us - Maia still does whatever we do! - so I don't have to worry about colors just yet.)  

Check in with me at Maia the Bee for more FREE printables to make your new Family Binder!  Let's get organized together!!

Do you have anything special you'd like to see in a family binder?
What are your suggestions for additional pages?

Thank you, Bonnie, for inviting me to guest post today!  I love House of Grace and am thrilled to be a contributor!!

Thanks so much Andrea!!  What a great idea!!  I really appreciate you sharing this great information with us. What an inspiration!!

Bonnie :)


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