Working Mom to Homemaker

Embracing The Change

Instructions Bin

(156)

I know this is nothing spectacular, but I thought I would post it anyways. I re-organized our family Instructions Bin because it was getting out of control. Since I’ve done this, it’s much easier to find exactly what I need instructions for and if we ever sell our home, we know which ones to leave for the next homeowners.

All I did was use the large size of mailing envelopes that have the little clasp in the back. I separated all our instructions into categories that worked for us. Each envelope is for a category.

Examples: 

Household Appliances (ones we bought)

Household Appliances (ones from previous owners)

Electronics

Kid’s Things

Outdoor Items

 

There are also zip-lock bags that are labeled and holding the spare pieces to whatever item they belong to.  For example, we have spare crib parts, spare front and back door hardware and spare tools and pieces to kids toys, games or furniture.

 

One other thing I did was reserve an envelope for each of our TV’s. Each envelope is labeled as either “Living room TV” , “Bedroom TV” etc… This way if we ever need anything for that specific TV, it’s easier to find.

 

All of ours fit nicely in a medium-sized blue Rubbermaid container.

 

Advertisements

August 8, 2013 Posted by | ORGANIZING | Leave a comment

Ultimate Bill Organizer

il_570xN.214797339

Since this has become a pretty popular post, I decided to move it to my actual website. Click the photo to take you to the full instructions page! 🙂

January 24, 2013 Posted by | ORGANIZING | 3 Comments

Home Video Project

Besides the people I love in my life, there are 2 things I hold very dear to my heart. If I lost either one of these things, I’d be just as devastated as if I lost a person that I love. Pictures and home videos. They are visual memories that can’t be replaced. I love editing photos and videos. I love making compilation movies with pictures and video set to music. I haven’t had the time to practice this hobby lately, but I have started a project that I’m very proud of.

With video camera’s, old VHS tapes, and cell phone video, it’s very easy for home videos to get jumbled up and hard to sort through. I started out with all my cell phone video and Mini DVD video camera videos, and copied them all to my computer. I used a program called DVDVideoSoft. It’s a free downloadable program that has many great options. I don’t know what I would do without this program. Once I got all of my files onto my computer, I tediously made file folders for each year, and inside of each of those folders, I made sub folders for each month. That way, when I want to get access to my videos, I know what month and year they are from. No guessing on when an event took place or how old a child was when they completed a milestone. (I also used this same process with all of my photos)

After weeks of organizing the videos into their proper folders, I used my other favorite programs, Sony Vegas Movie Studio and DVD Architect. I made one larger video for each month of videos that I have. Each video set included the title “Home Videos [insert year]” followed by a screen that says [insert month] and finally followed by all my videos back to back included in that month.

Once each of those video sets were complete I made them into DVDs. A whole years worth of videos couldn’t fit onto a single DVD so I designed a menu screen for each DVD. It stated the year and each button was the particular month.

 

SAMSUNG

 

When labeling the DVD, I did it as follows:

“Home Videos [insert year]”

Disc [insert #]

[month] – [month]

 

These are much easier to store, share and find what you’re looking for. Because I’m so paranoid about losing my videos. I keep a copy of the organized media files on their own flash drive, a copy of the completed DVDs on our video shelf, and another copy of the DVDs in a fireproof lock box with our other important documents.

This can be a very time-consuming project, but it’s well worth it. And when you get caught up, it’s easier to keep up on it every few months.

December 5, 2012 Posted by | ORGANIZING | Leave a comment

Operation Basement

Upon the upcoming arrival of Alexis, I got a massive Nesting urge. So bad in fact, that we ended up jump starting our projects around the house to get them done before she got here. We replaced all the flooring in all but 1 room of our house, painted, and re organized cabinets furniture and closets. And then there was the other project all in itself…the basement. We have a very old house, so our basement is one of those dark, low hanging ceiling, cellar looking basements. It’s actually in pretty good shape for how old the house is, but I’ve always wanted to make it as clean and organized down there as possible. Our laundry area is down there and I don’t like the idea of cleaning my clothes in a dirty cramped area.

First of all, I would not recommend doing all the stuff we did to our house while your 6-9 months pregnant. I’m not the type to just sit still and watch others work, so needless to say, I over did it a lot. Made for one very tired, sore and grumpy pregnant woman. Anyway, I felt like the space in our basement wasn’t being used as efficiently as it could have been. After spending a few weeks thinking of ideas, I had the perfect solution and enlisted some help.

My husband and I bought some garage storage shelving and some more of the large blue storage bins that we’d already been using. We designated a back corner of our basement just for storing things that we don’t get into very often.

SAMSUNG

 

Next up was tackling the section of the basement we use more often. We have a pantry off of our kitchen, but my husband got into the coupon craze and likes to have a stock pile of food on hand in case of emergencies. So we had to figure out a way to store all of our excess food that wouldn’t fit into our main pantry. Large plastic storage drawers were the best thing for the job.

SAMSUNG SAMSUNG

 

We, or I, still have a few more little straggler things to finish up in the basement, but at least we got it so that we can find everything we need much easier and I don’t feel like I’m walking into a Hoarders episode every time I do laundry. 🙂

December 5, 2012 Posted by | ORGANIZING | Leave a comment

The Hub

SAMSUNG

 

Having 1 kid is enough to add to the work load around the house, but adding a newborn to the mix makes things more crazy. The feeding, napping, bedtime schedules just for the infant and then the schedules for the adults and toddler, and all this makes my head spin trying to think about it. We had Jared on a really good schedule as an infant and he slept through the night by 2 months old. He had always been a great napper and rarely had problems with him sleeping at night. It was an adjustment for my husband and I because we couldn’t just pick up and go when we wanted anymore. Depending on what time of day it was, we wouldn’t be able to take Jared with us places because he hated having his schedule disrupted and would let us know he was being inconvenienced. As he got older, he got better if things weren’t just so, but then we had Alexis.

Alexis, from the beginning has had a very laid back personality. Trying to figure out a new schedule for the family without making too many changes was challenging, but Alexis was and still is a very easy and laid back baby. Jared was easy, but Alexis took the lead. Our family lives in a smaller town about 20 minutes outside of town. When I was working, I had to be at work at 6 am and my husband had to be at work by 6:30. This meant Jared had to wake up around 5 or 5:30 am and be at his sitters by 6 am. My husband would get home from work at different times each day, but he was rarely ever home later than 2 pm  I would get off work at 2:30, pick Jared up from the sitters and get home just in time to start supper. Because our day started so early, so did our evening routine.

It’s not easy to explain to a toddler who is used to getting up between 5 & 5:30 in the morning, to sleep in on weekends or days he doesn’t have to go to the sitters. So when Alexis came into our family, I had the task of trying to get her on a schedule that fit what we were already doing, as not to mess up Jared’s routine. Luckily, Alexis started sleeping through the night at a month old. After some trial and error, I finally figured out the best schedule for her.

I hate thinking and like to make things as simple as possible, so I printed up our family schedule so my husband would always know how much and when Alexis would need fed and when she needed her naps, bath and bedtime if I was busy doing something else or not home. It also helps if we need a sitter one evening/night. Everything is already posted so it’s a matter of just looking at the sheet and the clock.

Once I started staying home, I realized I didn’t have time to think of what was for supper at the last-minute. I had to plan it out ahead of time. So I made a laminated sheet for that as well. I use wet erase markers to fill in the meal plan for the week and what groceries we’ll need to complete the meals. Another thing I was sick of hearing on a daily basis, was my husband asking me, “What did you do today?” This lead me to print and laminate a generic Calendar that I can change each month with the wet erase markers. I color coded the chore tasks that I complete either daily, weekly or monthly and mark them down. There’s even space for little notes and reminders for myself as well. Instead of him asking me what I did, he can just look at the paper and see.

Then I realized all of this needed to come together into one place. I got a poster board and taped a sheet protector onto it. This is where our printed family schedule went. If things ever changed, I could easily replace the paper. I then, took my laminated Calendar and Meal Plan sheets and used Velcro to attach them to the poster board. I used Velcro instead of tape so I could easily take them down to fill them out and put them back on the board. I named the board “The Hub” just because it sounded good at the time and it was a short name. It’s not hanging in our kitchen, the central location of our home. It’s been working out very well!

December 5, 2012 Posted by | ORGANIZING | Leave a comment

   

%d bloggers like this: