Some of my friends comment that I am quite an organised person. I am not always, I guess I am as organised as small people will allow, but I am more happy when things are organised, and sorted before their deadline. For example I am one of those strange breed of people that handed her dissertation for her degree in about two weeks before the due date. But, I wish I had more time to be more organised. However, I thought I would share a few things that help keep me organised and sane!
Family Calendar App
If you haven’t already, set up a family calendar app. I don’t know where I would be without ours and it has everything on. I use Google Calendars which shares between my mobile and desktop calendars. Everything goes on this, school events, work events, days out, anything we need to remember or out of the ordinary both my husband and I list it on here.
Set up a Spreadsheet of Family and Close Friend Birthdays
While all of the family birthdays are put in the calendar, I actually find it useful to keep it all on a spreadsheet too, particularly those that I would buy birthday presents for. For friends children where I might not remember how old they are, I try to put the year they were born on the spreadsheet too. Then I also set a budget for the gift which I can refer to each month when I set up our monthly budgets.
Keep in a Selection of Birthday Cards
So I might have them all written down, but I still manage to forget some. Or there’s the last minute party invite, or someone you have entirely forgotten. For this reason I find it useful to keep in a selection of birthday cards – for adults and children. You can often buy them on multi-buy deals saving money too. Then I don’t have to do a panic buy.
Birthday Party Present Box
Children’s birthday parties can add up if your child is invited to more than one in a month, or weekend. I have a box of gifts my children were given but they already have (I give them pocket money in exchange), or collect toys in sales and clearance and keep them aside
Write Everything Down
Since having children my memory is terrible – it used to be so good too! I now survive by writing absolutely everything down. I have an ongoing list of things I need to remember.
Daily / Weekly To Do List
After writing everything down above. I then move them into a weekly and daily to-do list. What needs to be done each week and then I break this tasks down into daily tasks. One of the big areas I fail here is I tend to under estimate the time things take here, which is something I need to improve on.
Create Spreadsheets for Recurring Events
The first time you do this, it might feel like a real pain, but you will be so glad you did this. The biggest thing of this that has really worked for me is setting up a Christmas card list spreadsheet, a Christmas gift and budget spreadsheet and a spreadsheet I update regularly for my tax return.
Set up Email Reminders for Important Things
So on the google calendar app I mentioned above, you can set up reminders to coincide with a calendar entry. So for things like car MOTs, car and home insurance, things where I might need time to organise something I set up an email reminder that emails me one month to two weeks before the event to give me time to arrange it.
Create a Budget Spreadsheet
I actually don’t now how I managed before I did this and this is something that I have been doing for years now. I keep a spreadsheet recording all of our incoming and outgoings and update it at least every couple of days. I never trust my bank statement as it never takes into consideration costs that still need to be debited. So my spreadsheet is my go to for the family finances and I cross check it against bank statements to keep track of our spending.
So these are the top things I do to help keep my family organised, are there any things you would recommend I should add?