A home management binder is one of those things no one thinks he or she needs until he or she actively uses one. Believe it or not, some people come to wonder how they lived without them! The goal is to create a binder that includes, at minimum, a calendar of important dates, a master to do list of tasks that need to be handled around your home, a menu plan, and a shopping list.
Some people are very skeptical about using a home management binder. For many, a home management binder seems like one more piece of clutter, one more thing to keep up with. But handled appropriately, it can be very helpful in keeping you up to date on quarterly and yearly tasks that must be completed, keeping you focused with your home projects, limiting your grocery shopping trip to just one time per week, and maintaining enough food in your cabinets. So if you are one of those skeptics, I suggest you assemble the binder and try maintaining it for at least six months.
I know some of you are chomping at the bit to get started (I know I was when I first created my home management binder), so let’s hop to it!
How to assemble your home management binder:
- Obtain a three-ring binder. I use a one-inch binder and have never needed a larger one. Because I have multiple binders in my home, I do use a clear view binder so that I can put visible covers on it. I would suggest that you do the same (especially if you have students who have similar binders in your home!). You can use a binder you might have lying around your house, such as one your child used last school year or you received at a continuing education class.
- Create a cover for your binder. You want your home management binder to be noticeable and easily located, and a cover helps. You can create your own binder cover with just a pen–or let your kids design one. I have also included a free printable home management binder cover on my site. It is available exclusively to my newsletter subscribers. Click here to subscribe and receive access to it! (If you do not have a clear view binder, you can skip this step.)
- Create a spine label for your clear view binder. A spine label makes your binder easier to locate on a bookshelf. I have a free printable one-inch binder spine for home management binders available on my site. Again, it is available exclusively for my newsletter subscribers. Click here to subscribe and receive access to it! I suggest that you print your spine label on cardstock rather than on copy paper to make inserting it into a clear view binder significantly easier. (If you do not have a clear view binder, you can skip this step.)
- Create at least four dividers for your binder. You can purchase index dividers if you have none. If you have a Silhouette Cameo and some 12×12 cardstock, I have a free Silhouette Studio index divider cut file available on my site to enable you to create your own dividers at home. And yet again, the Silhouette Studio file is available exclusively for my newsletter subscribers. Click here to subscribe and receive access to the file.
- Label your dividers. For simplicity’s sake, I suggest printing simple words on Avery 5160 labels if you have them. If you do have Avery 5160 labels, you can download a file on my site to make those labels in a hurry. And–you guessed it!–you have to be a newsletter subscriber to gain access to that file. So click her to subscribe and receive access to the file! If you’re going to make your own labels, print or write out labels for the following titles:
- To do list
- Menu plan
- Shopping list
- One-inch binder
- Index dividers (store-bought or homemade)
- Copy paper
- Printer and printer ink or toner cartridges, depending on your printer, or other art supplies such as pens, markers, etc.
Time required: The time you will spend on this task depends on how simple or fancy you decide you want your home management binder to be. I spent less than 30 minutes on this task using my own cover, spine label, dividers, and labels as noted above. Obviously, you can just grab a one-inch notebook you have lying around, write a title page, and hand-write divider tags on some dividers if you have some lying around. Doing so would require very little time, and your home management binder would be just as functional as a fancy one. Or if you are artistic and creative and have time, you can spend hours designing a gorgeous home management binder. Do what works for you!
If you’ve found this information helpful, I’d love it if you could Pin this picture on Pinterest!
So . . . how much time did you spend assembling your home management binder? Let me know, and post a picture of yours in the comments!