Thursday, April 01, 2010

Show Us Your Life: Organizing Tips

Well, I guess I didn't look ahead at Kelly's schedule, because I talked about organizing and cleaning last week, but since I LOVE organizing (and talking ;) I'll post some more!

Organizing is key to my sanity. =)

I'm single and busy with school that I teach, school where I learn (will finish in December!), church activities, friends and family. If I don't stay organized then papers, flyers, mail, papers to grade, grad school projects to complete, dirty dishes and groceries can all pile up fast!

I'll repeat a little of last week's post here:

My best tips for organizing:

1. If the papers have a place to go, it's easier to put them there than it is trying to figure out a place for them to go.

2. Have a file drawer with manila folders or hanging files and LABEL them! =)

~ Another little tip is sort through them at the end of the year and shred all papers for the last year. (I'm a little more cautionary and keep that quarter's papers...but shred all others.)

3. Try to not have a junk drawer. It's really easy for all those little things to pile up. Do you really need them? If not, chunk them! If yes, can they have an actual place to go? If not...see previous question! :) If yes, make one and then put them there!

4. Install more shelving if needed! Home Depot sells wire shelving for a reasonable price. They'll even cut it to your specifications for free! I (ahem, meaning friends of mine) installed these shelves for me in several closets (and several apartments) over the years. They're wonderful at creating additional storage space!

5. Label those boxes of decorations! I have three of these purple bins.

I just did some organizing over Spring Break and (for the first time) labeled them. Now I know what I'm getting out before pulling it down. Also, before this cleaning frenzy, I thought all of them were Christmas decor. Now I know one has sports equipment in it! (So THAT'S where the racquets were! ;)

That's all at home. At work, I keep everything electronically. I'm a teacher and I want to be able to create an assignment and save it, so I can edit it and use it next year. Next year's students might need a slightly more challenging assignment or slightly simpler wording on instructions. As a teacher, I'm constantly adapting what I use in my classroom. I don't want to have to white it out on the sacred original. I want to click on the Word doc, make a change, click save and print and be finished.

I file EVERYTHING in Word. That might be obvious, but I mean I create very detailed files on my computer so I know EXACTLY what I'm looking for.

Some examples:
Because of Winn Dixie
Beginning of the Year
Mick Harte was Here
Songs of the Month
Lesson Plans
End of the Year

When I have a workbook page, I scan it in and add it to my electronic files!

I also do this in my Outlook inbox. I know some keep everything in their Inbox. I would rather file it. For me, it helps to find things.
I have files labeled: Parents of Students, Colleague, Administration, IAT, ARD, School Info, etc. If I have a lot of communication with one particular parent, then I create a file specifically for that parent, too.

In the interest of full disclosure: I haven't followed my own tips for the last two weeks. I have non-perishable grocery items on my kitchen counters and floor. Mail is stacked on the dining room table, my coffee table is covered with grad school projects, there are bags of school items by the back door, curtain fabric that came in the mail is lying where I opened it, laundry is on the back of my desk chair...the list is endless. So sometimes, it takes one really big ORGANIZE!!! (Think a team with their hands in the center yelling "WIN!") day and then I get back on track. ;)


  1. Thanks for all the great tips! Happy Easter! Your blog is too cute!

  2. I love your tips.
    I have to be organized. We very busy and if I don't put appointments on the calendar well, it's not pretty.
    Today, I forgot that I had a doctor's appt on Wed. Ugh!
    Have a great weekend.

  3. Great tips...and an adorable Easter blog border...Enjoying a Saturday afternoon of blog hopping and all the Easter posts.

    Hope you will stop by and leave a comment....On Sunday night I will be drawing for

  4. good~ keep sharing with us, please....I will waiting your up date everyday!! Have a nice day........................................