SPRING Cleaning & Organizing {Home Management Notebook & Daily Agenda}

Just like the beginning of the new year encourages us to turn over a new leaf, Spring ushers in a desire to freshen up, declutter, and get organized.  I think it has to do with warmer and longer days, and a need for simplicity so we can enjoy those days more, without all the “stuff” weighing us down. 

As most of you know, I’m naturally pretty organized, but work and baby and life in general always has a way of interfering with my best plans to STAY organized and clutter-free.  Every so often, I need to take stock of my home and pair down, and put in some extra elbow grease to get things squeaky-clean and aired out.
This week, I’ll be showing you how I organize our dreaded paper clutter and kitchen drawers; as well as my “deep clean” Fridays; and my Home Management Notebook & Daily Agenda.
The idea behind the Home Management Notebook is that you have a handy place for your most-referenced and important items and an accessible list of “to-do’s” {the Daily Agenda}.  I have to say, so far I’m loving it!  I got the idea from Simple Mom, and tailored it to fit the needs of my family.  I spent the better part of Saturday morning creating mine, after purchasing an inexpensive 3-ring binder to contain it all.  A cute sticker makes it monogramed:)
First I determined how many separate lists I seem to have going at any one time, and then compiled a separate section for each one in my notebook.  I also finally took all the miscellaneous scrap pieces of paper and entered the information I needed into my computer too.

For me, the things I need quick access to, and therefore, created tabs for are: 
Also, I’m keeping a list of “go to” recipes in the front pocket because I need all the help I can get when it comes to cooking- especially now that I’m responsible for feeding a baby.  These are meals I know how to make and know my family likes.
I can already tell the “Gift” tab is going to be a life-saver.  I love sending cards and gifts for birthdays, but those dates always seem to sneak up on me.  I downloaded a free Perpetual calendar and have been working on filling it in, making sure to include anniversaries and holidays like Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.  I like that this calendar has all the months on one page (as long as you have room for all the dates you need to account for).  I plan to jot gift ideas here too so I’m not scrambling at the last minute.
And my

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The “Top 3” are the things I really want to accomplish that day.  On a day I work, it may only be, cook dinner and get to bed early!  
The “Weekly Goals” are a list of things I’d like to accomplish that week, which might include part of a project I’m working on, taking James to the park, or a list of errands.
“Dinner” forces me to consider what we’re going to eat that night, even if it’s leftovers or takeout.  I try to cook dinner about 3-4 times a week.
“Go/Buy” is my list of where I need to go and what I need at that particular place (not counting the grocery store).  Love this!  For example, on Friday, the list had:
  • Ikea- high chair
  • Aaron Brothers- frames for bedroom
  • Staples- notebook
  • Target- birthday cards 
“Call” reminds me of people I need to call, or appointments I need to make.
The “Blog/Photograph” space is for specific blog posts for that week and things I need to photograph for each post.
My Home Management Notebook now has a permanent spot on my kitchen counter for quick reference.
I’ll be back tomorrow showing you how I handle the paper clutter in our home!
keep in touch! 

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  1. May 24, 2011 / 12:58 pm

    I am the queen of multiple pieces of paper everywhere. :s I need to make a notebook too!! Thanks for the tips, Megan. 🙂

  2. May 24, 2011 / 2:09 pm

    Oh wow, I love this! Ever since Logan arrived, I have been off my game on organization. I have tried using my phone to keep notes but I am thinking of going back old school to a real planner to keep in my purse.

  3. May 24, 2011 / 2:31 pm

    You have such a beautiful house and work space!

    I love that you posted this because I need to get more on track with my life as well – lists always seem to help me get things done without getting distracted!


  4. May 24, 2011 / 3:44 pm

    Cant i just hire you? That would be money well spent.

  5. May 24, 2011 / 4:05 pm

    Love this idea!!! I need to create one of these binders!

  6. May 24, 2011 / 5:38 pm

    Fantastic idea! I can't wait to read about paper clutter. I struggle with that on a daily basis.

  7. May 24, 2011 / 6:50 pm

    Love it Megan! I have a few notebooks myself, but love that you consolidated things into one!! Too funny about the IKEA high chair. Mark and I were eating at IKEA shortly after your post about switching your rugs due to James' getting food on it and about it gettting in all the high chair crevices. I noticed the ones they had in the restaurant and thought …"Megan NEEDS one of those!" so easy to clean.

  8. Ricki
    May 24, 2011 / 2:01 pm

    Great idea! I seriously need to start a notebook like this. Trying to juggle everything inside my mommy brain just isn't working very well! 🙂

  9. May 24, 2011 / 8:18 pm

    Love it!! I can't live without my home notebook. It truly is a life saver.

  10. May 24, 2011 / 8:26 pm

    Thanks for the great organizing ideas. I will definitely be doing something like this soon! I am such a list-o-holic so this will be fabulous!

  11. May 24, 2011 / 9:11 pm

    I love the idea! Now I need to find the time to create my notebook. I like the birthday reminder calendar. I have reminders listed on my
    iphone, but I still like paper better.

  12. May 24, 2011 / 10:10 pm

    What a great post! Thanks for sharing this- I am very disorganized at heart and have been trying to get it under control lately. That notebook seems like a great tool- I will have to try it!

  13. May 24, 2011 / 10:11 pm

    What a great post! Thanks for sharing this- I am very disorganized at heart and have been trying to get it under control lately. That notebook seems like a great tool- I will have to try it!

  14. Andrea
    May 24, 2011 / 5:38 pm

    What a great idea!! Fantastic job Megan!

  15. Aja
    May 24, 2011 / 8:28 pm

    Ohmygosh Megan, I LOVE this! I am a total list maker and my paper pile is never-ending. This would be soo helpful and I know my husband would love to see less clutter lying around! Thanks for the inspiration- I am adding creating one of these notebooks to my to-do list this week! 🙂

  16. Courtney {a thoughtful place}
    May 24, 2011 / 9:03 pm

    This is great girl. I need to incorporate a birthday calendar into my binder. What a great idea. I need help in that department.

  17. May 25, 2011 / 3:13 am

    This post is full of wonderful ideas! The second my summer vacation starts, I'm going to use all of your ideas to start an organized binder of my own. Thanks for sharing!

  18. Elsa
    May 25, 2011 / 4:19 am

    I heart house binders/notebooks! I love your pretty hydrangeas, too!

  19. May 25, 2011 / 2:13 pm

    Could you tell me which font you used for your Daily Agenda? That looks great!

  20. Traci
    May 26, 2011 / 1:04 am

    I have a notebook too but mine isn't quite as fancy as yours!! Mine is small & fits in my purse. It's really helped a lot.

  21. Lauren K.
    May 27, 2011 / 2:20 am

    Thank you so much for posting this! You are a girl after my own heart when it comes to organization. I have tried countless approaches to organization that all failed and the binder is perfect! I quickly went to target after work and I am working on it now!

  22. May 29, 2011 / 2:22 pm

    I need to start doing this! I have an agenda for work related stuff, but nothing for my home. I just have a bunch of lists in my blackberry, but writing it all in one place would be better for me – I like to see it all out at once. Great post Megan!

  23. June 2, 2011 / 9:14 pm

    Megan – I LOVE this post! I am such a list person, but they get so out of control that they end up distracting me more than helping me. And then there's the whole issue of having it on my iphone or on a hardcopy. Or even better, I make a list and then I leave it on my desk and can't remember anything on it…in my defense, I have pregnancy brain. I have to get this book and set myself up. Thanks for the advice!

  24. August 4, 2011 / 1:40 pm

    Nice Post, I Think current waste management system needs to be evolved according to the new emerging challenges. With more and more electronic waste now in the households we definitely need a new strategy to handle such challenges.
    Thanks For Nice Blog.

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