Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Works For Me Wednesday: Calendar Organization

Now, you all know I'm not the most organized person. I have never espoused my organization skills, and on any gifting test I have ever taken administration is next to last, right above leadership. (It never ceases to amuse that God put me in charge of a team of people and said, "Okay. Now go lead worship!" This seems like it would require both leadership AND administration *read: organization.* He is super funny like that. Yay for that whole scripture thing about Him using us in our weaknesses and whatnot.)

So, I cannot take credit for this Calendar idea. Somewhere many years ago, during our time in Montana, I must have come across some article that changed my organizational life ever so hugely. At that time we had two toddlers and a wee one, and my calendar was becoming a mass of scribbled black pen.

(Here is where one would say... in fact, many have said... use your computer! I know. I'm antiquated in sticking with the old-fashioned paper month-to-month calendar. Something about being able to just glance at it on my countertop... or the fact that my mom always had one...)

The tip is this: Use a different color pen for each person in your family. That way, when you glance at the calendar for a certain child's doctor's appointment/sporting event/field trip, your eye is immediately drawn to just their activities. Basically, instead of a mass of scribbled black pen, my calendar is now a mass of scribbled colored pen. SOOOO... not only does it keep me more sane when trying to see who has what activity when, it also brings more cheer into my life! Wow. Double WFMW whammy. Yes, I'm THAT good.

Each child has their favorite color. This also helps them pick out their own activities, lessening the, "Mom! When do I have *fill in the blank* again?" (Note: I said lessening, not eliminating.) Taylor is blue, Jordan is orange, Brit is pink, and Ian is green. I went with red. Family activities are in black, which happens to also be Nate's color. He doesn't have many of his own activities, and when he does we all come anyway. Poor man.

This tip works extra well on Saturdays when all four children have soccer games at different times/fields.

As for the pens themselves, I've found those multi-colored packs of fine tipped ones work best (0.3mm) because the small tip makes for neater, smaller writing... which makes for more space on your calendar. Pure genius, I know. You can get them at Michaels in the drafting section. It makes me feel all important and smart sounding when I say they're made to be used by architects. (But remember to clip that twice monthly newspaper coupon before you go in.)

Because I know posts are always better with photos, I will show you our September. Yes, there are spills. Yes, there is whiteout. Yes, I have not-too-great handwriting. Yes, sometimes I grab a regular blue ball point pen. But, I'm just a glutton for making public my cobwebs and general messiness. Then again, we're all normal. We just try to hide most of the time behind the Miss Almost-Perfect mask.

To check out more awesome Works For Me Wednesday tips visit Rocks In My Dryer.
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Anonymous said...

Great tip! I use Outlook on my computer, but I keep each family member's appointments in their own color and it works really well.

Blessings, Whitney

The Messy Mom said...

I think your calendar looks great. I can relate to voluntarily exposing messiness on your blog. My Works for me Wednesday is of my horrible closet and the before picture is bad... really bad. With that said, thanks for posting pictures :)

Wani said...

I personally have settled on a weekly desktop calendar ( I need more space than a monthly would allow!) but I'm loving the color coded idea! Thanks for the tip!

christine said...

and here I am stressing about having 1 kid to deal with. wow! i cannont imagine your schedule...i will need lots of pointers from you on juggling. :)

Thany said...

I don't see "Visit Emmy and Bethany" on that schedule! Hmmm, maybe next year. :)

*emmy said...

When you come visit Bethnay and I here is beautiful Sassy San Diego please use the RED marker. Can red be my color too?

( Great idea! I love it!)

MooBeeMa said...

I still use a calendar that I carry in my purse. Now that the kids are involved in more activities I am learning to write really tiny. I like the color-coding idea!