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Organising your family

Kate Thompson juggles freelance writing and editing with being a wife and full-time mum to two young boys. She works with corporate clients to create copy for their publications and websites, ghost-writes e-books on far-ranging topics in...

Your whole life
in a folder?

From SheKnows Australia
Looking after yourself can get overwhelming at times, so when you have a whole family to be responsible for, you really need to have a strategy in place to keep on top of things and stay reasonably sane.

Your whole life  in a folder?

Photo credit: Blend Images/KidStock/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

Paperless, shmaperless! While it is good in theory, there are definitely still times when paper is best. It doesn't have to mean messy piles though. The Home Management Planner is a way to keep track of all the different aspects of your life in one convenient, easy-to-access place. Everything from class lists and babysitter info to meal planning and cleaning schedules can be organised in a go-to folder.

The blog world is full of organising geniuses like Bekah from Pinch A Little Save-A-Lot and Ginny from Organizing Homelife who have done all the hard work for you so all you have to do is find the templates that suit your family, print them out and then fill in your details.

A couple of hours spent now will seem like a small drop in the bucket when you desperately need to find the number for the vet that you didn’t save in your phone, or when you’re trying to remember the neighbour’s name, or when everyone is asking that dreaded question, "What’s for dinner?"

Your whole life  in a folder?

Make a home management planner for your family


  • 3-ring binder
  • Section dividers
  • Plastic sleeves
  • Colour printer
  • Access to your details


  • Sort that annoying pile of paperwork into piles of like information.
  • Brainstorm the categories and information you think your family needs in your binder. Try these for inspiration:
    • Calendars: A 2013 overview, a monthly calendar and a weekly timetable so you can see at a glance what is coming up and what you have on. A birthday calendar is also a smart idea.
    • Cleaning: A cleaning checklist with chores to do daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annually. No more excuses!
    • Meal planning: A weekly meal planner and list of your family’s favourite meals so they are on hand when you're trying to decide what to cook.
    • Contacts and important details: Emergency phone numbers, contact numbers of close friends, family and neighbours. Even a page with details like website, email and wi-fi passwords is a good idea.
    • School: Pockets for all that paperwork that comes home from school as well as the teacher’s email address, school contact numbers etc.
    • Finance: Your budget sheet, monthly expenses, a pocket for receipts and another for bills.
  • You can access free printables and other great ideas from these amazing blog sites: 
  • Now just fill in your details and file that paperwork in the appropriate categories.

Now all you have left to do is USE IT! Put the folder in a place you and the rest of the family will see it and use it every day.

More organising tips

2013: The year to get organised
The beauty of making lists
Declutter! One room at a time

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