Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Simple Organizing Tools

I pulled out an old composition book from my son's high school days and started jotting down some things I wanted to start thinking about in connection with Christmas planning. The book is kind of ragged and too big to fit in my pocketbook easily so I decided to actually buy one!!!

So today at lunch I ventured into the Dollar Tree for my first Christmas shopping of the year. I even listened to some Christmas music on the way! I love Dollar Tree and Dollar General. You can really find some neat things there. Usually, its not what you were looking for, but something totally unexpected that you'll run across.

Today I was in the market for a small notebook and a new personal planner/calendar for 2008.

I found these.

They would make cute "little something" Christmas gifts. I plan to go back to Dollar Tree, purchase more and make little sets. I have some homespun type twine to tie around them. Other ideas to add to the gift could be a pen, magnetic memo pad or one of the $1.00 cds they have at Dollar Tree. I purchased one yesterday called "Angels". I haven't tried it out yet, but if its good, I'll purchase a few of those too. This cd has some of my favorite songs on it, such as "Angels Amoung Us", "Over the Rainbow", etc. I'll listen to it on the way to work this morning and report back!

The planner is made by Dayspring, which is a company that distributes Christian items usually found at Christian Book stores. They had several to choose from and they were only a dollar. There are scripture verses throughout, with a place for prayer requests, addresses and phone numbers, what the bible says about .... all kinds of things, as well as a calender for September, 2007 through December, 2009.

The notebook is 5 X 7 with an elastic band to hold it together. It also has an inside pocket which the planner fits into perfectly like this:

I have a permanent address book that I usually keep in my vehicle. I don't like to carry big notebooks around with me. Usually where ever my vehicle is, I am, so the address book is readily accessable. I also don't see the need to re-write the addresses into a new planner each year.

These are my plans for the notebook:

For Christmas I plan to have a page for each of the elephant bites I need to eat.

1. A list of all the people who I want to give a gift to, family, friends, neighbors and the mail lady. Beside each name I'll write the things I plan to purchase as well as ideas, if I'm not sure.

2. A chart showing all the people I have purchased gifts for, what the gift is, how much it cost and if its wrapped yet.

3. A list of stocking stuffers purchased for all my immediate family, who the stocking stuffer is for and the cost.

4. A list of decorations I would like to have and what I need to purchase or make. I'm pretty sure we need new tree lights. :o)

5. A list of things to do, such as writing Christmas cards and mailing them, purchasing food for the Church's food pantry, getting new sweet grandbaby's stocking ready :o), etc.

6. A list of the foods I want to cook during the holidays. This would include cookie baking and the menu for Christmas meals. There will also be a grocery list of items needed, after checking my pantry first.

After Christmas I'll just tear the Christmas planning pages out and save them to help me in planning Christmas for next year. Then this notebook will be used for "to do" lists, grocery lists, price lists, menus, you name it.

As to the planner, I'll spend a few minutes writing in dates such as birthdays, vacation days, holidays and appointments.

I like to keep these two things in my pocketbook all the time. I make appointments while at home, the office or at the doctor's office, so its good to keep it with me at all times.

I've tried all kinds of planners including notebooks and expensive leather-like planners, but I've discovered that a simple $1.00 planner and 5 X 7 notebook WORK FOR ME.

For more Works For Me Wednesday tips, please visit : Rocks in My Dryer


Angie said...

Sounds like a great plan! :)

MomOnTheGo said...

I think copying your categories (even without a notebook) will work for me. Thanks for doing the thinking on this. I need to record what we give and then *keep* it so that I don't repeat myself or forget (like what magazine subscription I gave to my nephew last year now that it is time to renew).

Anonymous said...

This is wonderful! I think I am headed to Dollar Tree today!! Thank you for the tip!

Crafty P said...

May I also suggest some of the links from my Holiday Planner post last year. They're FREE! at Family Fun magazine's website.

Go here first http://christinacostain.blogspot.com/search/label/organization
and you'll see my links!

I love this planner and have been using it for 5 years now!

Littlepenpen said...

You are so very organized! I bought a pretty pink notebook today so I can start my coupon organizer that your daughter educated us about!

She's Here! Victoria!

Its been an exciting week! Victoria arrived on Monday and I kept her brother for 3 days. Only bad thing is that today I am home from work ...