Managing and organizing a family doesn’t have to take monumental effort. I’m a minimalist at heart, and I don’t like having to deal with paper, so a lot of my tips involve paperless and/or tech type options. When TwitterMoms and Icon Apps teamed up to present a blogging contest to help families get organized I thought I’d list it all out. Here are a few of my favorite things:
- The iPhone: So many apps out there that can help keep anyone organized. My favorites help with grocery lists and to-do lists and let me share them with another iPhone user in the household (aka my husband).
- The National Do Not Mail List: Generally, we are only interested in a few different types of advertisements reaching us via mail, and the rest becomes overload. Add to the fact that we receive mail for my deceased parents-in-law all the time, we have suffered from having piles of mail everywhere waiting to be sorted and reviewed. The National Do Not Mail list helps sift through different types of advertising so that you only get what you want.
- Gmail & Google Calendar: Yes, email and another calendar. Communication is key and having things in writing is what helps us the most. Twice a month, we draw up a budget based on the bills that are due and we both have the email to refer back to if a purchase decision comes up. When anyone has a medical appointment, it goes on the Google Calendar and everyone is “invited” and receives email reminders/alerts.
- Mobile Banking: Super helpful for knowing where we are with all of our accounts at all times.
- Online billing & automatic bill pay: I hate dealing with checks and stamps. I also like having all of the outgoing info in one place so I can review if a bill should be expected or paid. This helps us never miss a payment for anything.
- Making a plan. What a concept, right? Each week we plan big chores that need to be done around the house based on priority. If a big trip or outing is coming up, we try to plan what we need to bring with us, how we will handle meals and naptimes, etc.
- Having a routine. Everyone knows what is expected of them, and for the most part routine chores get done like clockwork that needs a bit of tuning. And bedtime is a breeze.
- Launder all at once, fold all at once, put away all at once, iron all at once and hang all at once. It works for us, and it gets those chores out of the way, not to be dreaded or avoided for the rest of the week.
- If there is fun happening, don’t let scheduling get in the way.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff!