Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Binders Can Organize Your Life Series! ~ Part 1

A couple of weeks ago I found out I won 1st Place in the Organizing Junkie's 28 Day Organizing Challenge for making over our hall coat closet to a new Command Center.
Of course I was so excited because I don't win anything. So let me take a minute to toot my own horn. Toot, Toot!

Okay. Now that that is over, let me get on with this post. As a result of my win, I had dozens of comments and questions on my binder system which has saved my life! Well, not really but you know what I mean, right? So in an effort to help all the women out there (and some men) have a little peace in their lives, I am going to share with you what my Binder System is all about. Since there are so many, I will do it in a 5 Part Series over the next 5 Wednesdays.

Binders Can Organize Your Life Series
Part 1 ~ Manual & Warranties, Holiday Ideas, Decorating Ideas & My Recipes
Part 2 ~ Crafts, Gifts & Tips and Christmas Planner
Part 3 ~ The Child Edition ~ Girl/Boy Scouts, Catechism/Sunday School and School Info Binder
Part 4 ~ Home Management Binder
Part 5 ~ Financial Budget Binder

Let's get started with Part 1:

This is one of two of my Manual & Warranties Binders. Why do I have 2? Well because it tends to get a little heavy if you put them all in one binder. I use HEAVY DUTY 2 inch binders. I didn't spend the money on view binders since we rarely use the manuals but you know you need to keep them. As you can see they are nothing special. I just put a P-Touch label along the spine as you can see in the picture above.

Here's the side view showing you it can get pretty thick. If it was a bigger binder, it becomes hard to handle. Trust me on this, I know from experience . . . well, it just makes sense, right.

So here is the guts of the binder. I put HEAVY DUTY sheet protectors in there and fill them up. It is so much easier to flip through a binder when you are looking for a manual or warranty instead of rummaging through a box or file folder. Another great tip is to put your receipt with the appliance right with the manual. I just put them inside the front cover.

Next up is my Holiday Ideas binder. As I've said in a previous post, I'm a ripper. I like to rip ideas out of magazines, newspaper or print ideas off of the computer. Now, what do you do with them once you've done the above. Do they go in a file folder or a box never to be seen again? That is exactly what used to happen to mine . . . until I created my Binder System. As you can see, I used a front view binder (I got them all on Target's clearance of the back to school stuff for under a $1) and made them pretty with a cover and spine inserts. I pulled these images off of Google Images but if you want me to email you mine, just send me an email asking for them and I'll get any or all of them out to you. They are all word documents.

I like 5 Tab index dividers. It gives you more room to write or type your tab tile than an 8 Tab index divider does. My tabs are: Winter, Valentine's Day, Spring, Easter, Summer, 4th of July, Fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas.

Anything that relates to the holiday goes in that section . . . such as ideas I print off the Internet like how to make cute votives out of small jars.

Here is an example of something I "copied & pasted" from a website onto a word document and printed because sometimes when you print something from online, you get all the advertisements and junk. Isn't this Halloween costume cute? I made it for Allison several years ago but I've kept it because hopefully one day I'll have grandchildren!

In this example, I printed something off but there was all this dead space at the bottom so I just pasted with a glue stick something I cut out of a magazine.

Now in the spotlight is my Decorating Ideas Binder. There are a million and one ideas out there about decorating that I love so I've created this place to have all of my favorites in one spot.

My index tabs are: Foyer, Kitchen, Dining Room, Living Room, Bedroom, Kids, Bathroom, Craft Room (I don't have one now but maybe someday. . . Allison will be going to college one day!), Garage/Storage and Outdoors.

Same idea as before . . . I cut out, paste down and then I add what I like about the pic or my idea on how I would change it.

The last binder I'm going to share with you today is "My Recipes" binder. It's nothing fancy but it serves it's purpose. I would like to make a pretty page for each recipe but I'm a realist. I have SO many recipes that I know a pretty page for each is not going to happen. I also don't use sheet protectors because my kitchen is so small, there is no room to lay the binder out in there. When I use one of the recipes, I use a magnetic clip on the refrigerator to hold the individual recipe page. In the future when I get a bigger kitchen, I'll transfer them to page protectors and get one of those pretty cookbook holders to hold my binder.

My index tabs are: Appts (Appetizers) & Party Foods, Soups & Stews, Salads & Side Dishes, Main Entrees, Cakes & Cookies, Desserts, Beverages, Kid Recipes, Holidays and Miscellaneous (tips & serving ideas like different ways to fold a napkin and such).

I use the same idea in this binder as the others. I three hole punch recipes that I've printed from the Internet. The recipe below is in my Mom's handwriting . . . I love that I'll have this forever!

This particular recipe is one of mine from my cooking blog, From The Heart of My Kitchen. I open a word document and put the picture and recipe on it and then print. I also save all of these recipes in a file on the computer so I can put together a binder of all my recipes for Allison. I'll give it to her when she moves into her first place.

I hope you enjoyed Part 1 in the Binders Can Organize Your Life Series and be sure to come back next Wednesday for Part 2.

You can become a follower or just come back to:

Works-for-me Wednesday at We Are THAT Family
Show and Tell Wednesday with Blue Cricket Design.

I'll be sharing this series at both places.

Have Fun!
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Anonymous said...

I love my binders! Thanks for sharing your system - I'm always looking for ideas to tweak mine ;)

Laura said...

Wow you are so organized! I'm jealous.

Feel free to stop by my blog and enter my necklace giveaway!

Mom2fur said...

So far I have two recipe binders (one holds only well-established favorites) and a household binder with some general things like phone numbers and take-out menus. I love the idea of a holiday binder for all holidays! It's a lot better than having scraps of paper all over the place, LOL!

And go ahead and toot that horn again--you deserve to!

Kara said...

I love these binders. My mother does the same thing and she ALWAYS knows where everything is down to her last receipt. I'm not so organzied, but this inspires me:)

Heather@PixieDust said...

great ideas! i use lots of binders too. I have 2 for recipes (one for meals and one for baking) one for take-out menus, and 3 for all the articles I've saved from Martha Stewart. And I keep adding more - this week i got one for all my cricut cutouts.

You might also like avery photo sleeves, they are standard size but have 4 small pockets - great for receipts, recipe cards, etc.

Melissa said...

I love to Organize! This is amazing. I love the decor book. I find Ideas that I love then I forget where I put them. Thanks for sharing this great idea.

Kathleen Pitt said...

Enjoyed this post, i like the idea of the binder for the warranties ect, I will have to borrow that one :)

Janice Mills said...

Love it! Love it! Love it!

I started a project like this a while a go but didn't finish. Please help a tired mommy get back on track by sending the binder covers and spines -

Also, what font & size did you use for your tabs? They are so pretty. One last question - what size are your white binders?

Again, love it, love it, love it.

Great job!

Tonya said...

This is going to finally give me the peace of mind I need! I have a bin FULL of papers that I just can't seem to PUT AWAY and now I know why - there was no where to put them away! It is full of ideas from magazines, receipes, I can create binders and put it all away...I went out today and bought my binders....I'm soo excited I can't wait to start! Thank you!!!

Money Saving Momma said...

I just bought my first binders to get organized and googled the words and found you!!! So happy!! I have a money saving blog that i have recently started if you'd like to visit...


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