My "Lesson Plan" book

Posted by  | Sunday, August 24, 2008  at 7:03 PM  
Before we finish our week on Balancing Life as a Mom and move on to potty training, I thought I'd add one more thing. Since we've had lots of requests for more info on my "lesson plan" book, here is some more information. First of all, the whole "lesson plan" idea was really meant to be an analogy of sorts. I don't actually use a lesson plan book. HOWEVER, your comments made me start thinking and I think you COULD use a lesson plan book to organize your week. I'm considering giving it a try! A typical lesson plan book looks similar to this:

Days of the week run down the side and the class periods or subjects across the top. You could have one column for chores of the day, to do list items, meals, other appointments, notes, etc. Brilliant! The only problem is that they typically only encompass Monday through Friday. You could easily make a template on MS word for this without having to buy a lesson plan book. Ok, enough of my new idea. On to the system I use NOW. Here are some pictures of my notebook. I'll put descriptions below.

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1. I just use a 3-ring binder. Mine has a pocket in the front - so I put some of my son's artwork. :)

2. Inside front cover holds important items that I cannot punch holes in.

3. First section is schedule and this is a sample of the schedule that is in there. There is also a more detailed schedule of Adeline's. (not pictured)

4. Second section is chores and contains my cleaning schedule. I'm still tweaking this as I get used to being home full time.

5. This is a copy of the checklist I use for each room of the house. They are in sheet protectors so I can use dry erase marker to wipe it off each week. I got these checklists from the internet, but plan on redoing them on my own to be more specific to my house. I mean who wipes the light switches each week?? Not me! (Although I did do it last week - hence the check!)

6. To do list section simply houses a spiral notebook where I jot down my list each week. Usually I do this on Sundays.

7. Grocery section contains my weekly meal list. I try to plan two weeks out - but will always plan at least one week out.

8. Another section contains extra forms like this potty chart! Stay tuned next week for more on potty training!

9. Christmas list for this year. I've already written two gifts I have gotten for my nephews on there.

10. This is my little corner in our living room. We recently moved our huge computer desk and computer out of Adeline's room! Now that she naps in her room 3x a day, I had almost no time on the computer. For now, we got a cheapo smaller desk and although its too cluttered for my taste, this is my station. It helps that it is right next to the kitchen too and my notebook sits right here. (See it on the tower?)

Those are all of the pictures I can really post! I had taken others and put them in the bubbleshare album before I realized, DUH - I can't post pictures of all our family/friends phone numbers, pictures of credit cards, etc. HA! So hopefully this gave you a better idea of my notebook. Share with us your system or any ideas you have about keeping a notebook or similar system for managing your house.

One more quick thing about organization. In case you haven't figured it out already, I am fairly organized and I cannot function when things are out of order. I can handle a dirty bathroom (gasp) as long as it is straightened up and neat! Ha! A website that I have gotten GREAT ideas from is I'm an Organizing Junkie. It is a great resource for organizing all areas of your life and home.

Finally, I thought I would post this picture to assure you that my house is nowhere near perfect. This is what I found in our bread drawer on Friday while cleaning my kitchen. I have NO idea how long this has been here. It's the end of a loaf of homeade bread. Oops! I thought I'd been smelling something musty for a few days, but just couldn't find the source. Maybe this is why our house still hasn't sold??


Shannon said...

Yay!!! Thank you - I had been waiting to see a "picture" of what you were talking about. This is helpful. I'm also eager to check out that Organizing Junkie website.

Hey, that bread looks familiar too... like something I pulled out of MY fridge a week or so ago. That's when "clean out fridge" became part of my weekly to-do list -ha!

Mallory, Amy & John Mark said...

Thank you so much for posting this! I can't wait to check out the website.

Do you keep your coupons in this notebook? If so, where? What practical tips do you have for keeping those uncluttered?

Christina said...

I used to keep my coupons in a notebook (this same one actually) but found that I was terrible about keeping that up. I originally used a check file with 13 (I think) dividers. I quickly outgrew that and needed another system. I switched to this notebook with dividers and baseball card holders. It is GREAT to be able to see all my coupons when at the store, BUT it takes TONS of work to put each coupon in a slot. So I ditched that and made my own envelopes for each category. I keep all the envelopes in a plastic container. I usually plan my shopping trips before going and know which coupons to use. However, I still take my box with me to all stores just in case!

noahandlylasmommi said...

What a great post. I definintly need to get more organized. With a 5 year old in school, a 2 year old, a job and school, it will be very helpful!!!

Keith said...

The notebook idea really is phenomenal- thanks for all the ideas!! I have a similar notebook, patterned after the one shown at . It’s basically a place to keep all those little lists that would otherwise be stuck on my fridge or collecting dust on the bathroom counter. It saves so many trips up and down the stairs hunting for info that I need all the time. Here are some of the things my notebook includes: schedules, to-do lists, house cleaning lists, a 2 month menu plan, grocery and errand list, price comparison list, emergency numbers, 1st aid/CPR notes, frequently called phone numbers, list of verses I want to memorize, books to read, movies to watch, websites to visit, yard sale list, questions for the doctor for upcoming check-ups, chart for my daughter’s chores (for stickers), book list for kids’ library visits, hymns (and their page numbers) I want to teach my children, essays/poems/songs I’ve written or started writing, family project/fun day ideas, technical help sheet (for info like how to turn on the computer, how to change a tape in the camcorder, etc.), and a list of house decorating notes (paint color names, etc.) Then there’s a calendar at the back for advanced planning.

As for coupons, I use for grocery coupons, which allows you to forget clipping and organizing the bulk of food coupons. For other coupons, I fixed a little picture album (100 pages or so) with tabs labeled Month, Month, Month, Later, Ads, Menus. I keep a post-it on the first page of each Month section, to tell what month it stands for. For example, right now, those are labeled Aug, Sep, Oct for coupons expiring in those months. The later section holds coupons that expire after Oct. This system allows you to see all your coupons and makes it easy to clean them out when they expire. We use this book mainly for restaurant coupons. The Ads section is for ads we get that we might want to remember. The menu section makes it easy to decide before we go out what we want, or for calling ahead for take-out.

That’s it. Even so, my kids were both late getting in bed tonight. You can’t win ‘em all!


Christina said...

GREAT ideas - esp. the part about CPR and First Aid Reminders....My son choked just last night and we ended up in the ER. Praise the Lord he's fine and we didn't actually have to do the heimlich, but I was freaking out too much remember anything like that or CPR anyways. Good idea about putting that in the notebook! Oh and I love flylady too....thanks!

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