Yeah, I decided my poor binder was falling apart. It needed an upgrade....
So I got a new binder and put everything back together.
**ETA: I got a lot of my pages from Let's Meet for Lunch. Unfortunately, the blogger no longer exists. I was going to post links for you all to get the same stuff, because they are simply awesome. But now, I can't do that. I'm sorry!**
At first, I was not a fan of these dividers, but they have become super helpful. They are big enough, so they don't get blocked by my pages that are sheet protectors. And they have helped me color code my binder.
I still have my red pouch that is full.
I created my own divider pages that fit my personality. Each page has it's own picture & quote that I like that relates to that section. I have these sections in my binder:
1. Calendars (Blue)
"The common man is not concerned about the passage of time, the man of talent is driven by it." - Shoppenhauer
"What may be done at any time will be done at no time." - Scottish Proverb
I found these awesome calendars at CreativeMamma.com.
I also use the Birthday & Anniversary calendar that I found on Let's Meet For Lunch (no longer available).
2. Meal Planning (Purple)
"If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world." - J.R.R. Tolkien
"We feed the ones we love." - my mama
In this section, I added the freezer inventory & the pantry inventory sheets that I found on Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available). I put them in page protectors so that I can write on them with dry erase markers & pens. Whenever I update the items on this page, I can just erase them and write what I need to down.
I also put The Eat Sheet from Mommytrackd.com in a page protector as well. This way, when we plan our meals, I can reuse the same page. If there are special ingredients that I notice we don't have in the Inventory pages, I write them down on the Grocery List side. Travis and I normally don't plan breakfast, so it's usually just lunch and dinner that we plan for.
When I put together my grocery list for the week, I can easily look at my Inventory pages and The Eat Sheet for items that I know I need to get. However, to make sure that I don't forget any important items on my trip (because I like to just in and get out. Hanging out at the grocery store is not something I enjoy.), I refer to the Ultimate Grocery List from www.grocerylists.org. It has EVERYTHING on the list, so I can run through the list and know I am not going to forget anything.
Lastly, I have included a page protector for baseball cards that I picked up at Wal-Mart. This holds any coupons that will expire this month. When I go shopping, I can check to make sure I get items that have a coupon.
3. Cleaning (Orange)
"I make no secret of the fact that I would rather lie on a sofa than sweep beneath it. But you have to be efficient if you're going to be lazy." - Shirley Conran
"At worst, a house unkept cannot be so distressing as a life unlived." - Rose Macaulay
Here, I have a daily chore list to reference. I got my daily chore list from Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available). I might make my own some other day (or when we actually buy a house).
I also included a Deep Cleaning Monthly Schedule from Shabby Princess via Two Things in Common. I like it. I have not actually used it here to be completely honest. But, when we get a place of our own, I know I will appreciate this. Who knows, I just might make my own too!
4. Finances (Green)
"Never ask of money spent / where the spender thinks it well." - Robert Frost
"With parsimony a little is sufficient; without it nothing is sufficient; but frugality make a poor man rich." - Parsimony
This is my life saver. In the folder, I keep scrap paper so that I can organize numbers and quick math (or jotting down numbers to save when I'm hitting away at the calculator). I keep the Monthly Cash Flow Plan worksheets from Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University. I really do use it - a LOT. I'm still not perfect with my budget, but this worksheet helps keep me sane for the most part. I've put these worksheets in page protectors so that I can write our budget on them with a dry erase marker. Every month, I can just erase it and reuse it.
I also included all of my student loan debt information. I know exactly how much towards each loan is left, what the confirmation numbers and account numbers are, and what the interest is. Based on my current repayment plan, the repayment plans are also printed out and stored here.
Lastly, Travis and I signed up for an Opt Out Prescreen. We printed a copy for each of us that we keep here. A mortgage loan originator told us this trick to boost up our credit scores a little bit overnight. You know how you get spam mail for credit cards, saying you've been pre-approved? Well, credit companies sell your credit information. YIKES. When they sell that info, it has a small negative impact on your credit score - so small, you can't notice it. If you go online to OptOutPrescreen.com, you can opt out of your credit information being sold to credit card companies. For some people, it will boost it only 3 or 5 points. Others, it can boost your score up to 10 or 20 points! It can't hurt to try it! The Opt Out request is good for 5 years.
5. Medical (Yellow)
"A healthy family is sacred territory." - Anonymous
"People who laugh actually live longer than those who don't laugh. Few persons realize that health actually varies according to the amount of laughter." - James J. Walsh
This is where I keep our Basic Medical Information sheets that I got from Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available). I also keep most recent information in this section - such as Travis's allergy sheet, a sheet I made for all of my medical conditions and when I went to the doctor last. This helps us keep track of when our last appointments were - so we know when we should schedule our next one, or if we get any updates from doctors regarding our health, we can easily keep track for each other.
6. Pets (Blue)
"A cat has absolute emotional honesty; human beings, for one reason or another, may hide their feelings, but a cat does not." - Ernest Hemingway
"He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion." - Unknown
I keep our Pet Care & Information sheets here that I found on Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available). If we leave and someone needs to house sit for us or watch our cats, they know everything about our pets that they need to know. I also keep copies of the most recent vaccination in a page protector. That way, if there are any questions as to whether or not my cats have their vaccinations, I can pull out that information easily. The vaccinations also let me know when they are due for their annual check up and next vaccination.
7. Home Management (Purple)
"Home, let me come home. Home is wherever I'm with you." - Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros "Home"
"It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home." Unknown
I keep Home Maintenance logs here - which includes the serial numbers for all of our expensive pieces. I got these logs from Let's Meet For Lunch (no longer available). When we buy a house, I plan on adding to this section.
I also keep important documents in this section. Any important cards go into a baseball card protector. If there is ever a fire, this binder will help us out immensely. That is, if we remember to grab it first!
8. Car Management (Orange)
"All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware." - Martin Buber
"No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow." - Lin Yutang
This is where we keep the Car Maintenance logs from Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available). We also keep our car titles and insurance information here.
9. Blogging & Planning (Green)
"Never be bullied into silence, never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself." - Harvey Fierstein
"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss
Currently, I only have Planning Notes from Holly Days in here. I plan on expanding this section to include blog planning, Pinterest projects to work on, and party planning.
10. Family Yellow Pages (Yellow)
"Love the people God gave you, because He will need them back one day."
"Friendship is not a matter of distance, but a matter of heart. Family is not a matter of blood, but a matter of loving and loved."
"Distance is not for the fearful, it is for the bold. It's for those who are willing to spend a lot of time alone in exchange for a little time with the one they love. It's for those knowing a good thing when they see it, even if they don't see it nearly enough."
I have the first page dedicated to emergency contacts & important numbers to keep on hand.
After that, I have the phone numbers and addresses of family and friends. If I ever need to update an address or number, I can just reprint the page they are listed on (since it is based alphabetically). Super easy to keep track of.
I still have no idea what to use these awesome pockets for. When I saw these at Office Depot, I had to get them. I know I will find out what I could use them for. Any ideas?