"Let all things be done decently and in order" ~I Cor. 14:40
There are not a lot of things that I feel I am able to say I am good at. God did not bless me with multiple talents, at least not the kind that are noticeable like singing, drawing, playing an instrument, etc. You will hardly ever catch me "tooting my own horn" because there really is no horn to toot! One thing I can say confidently is that I am an organized person. Whether that is considered a talent is totally up to you but I do think it is a gift that is not given to everyone. I know this because I hear a lot of people say they wish they could be more organized so I have to assume it is not something that comes easily or naturally to everyone. I cannot function in chaos or clutter. If my sink is full of dishes and my counters cluttered up I can't cook. If the living room is littered with toys and socks (is it only my house where children take off their socks and scatter them about 5 mins after putting them on?) I cannot sit there and relax. When I walk into a room I instantly see the mess...trash cans over-flowing, bureau's covered in "stuff", carpets that need to be vacuumed and the dust...of my the dust. I see it all and it instantly puts me on edge. I function at my best when everything has it's place. When the rooms are picked up. I would function even better if every room was spic and span clean but let's face it...it ain't happening as long as 9 people live here so I've learned to overlook a few things.
Over the years, as we've added more and more little people I have learned how to organize our things, and life in general, in such a way that we function like a relatively well-oiled machine. I have shared some of these ways with you in the past and I am going to revisit them as I start this series on organization. I by no means claim to be an expert. I only hope to help you if this is an area you struggle, by sharing some things that work for me. My first post on organization is about calendars. Without them I couldn't function! I wrote this post a couple years ago and after looking over it I can honestly say I do everything exactly the same still so it really has worked for us! The only change...my husband couldn't take it any longer and made me purchase a calendar that began on Sunday!
A Time For Calendars, Calendars, Calendars!
Remember the days when our young minds could retain anything and everything and we never needed to write things down. Remember when you could recall a friends phone number without looking it up...several friends numbers in fact! Those days for me were long gone after baby number one but after baby number 5 I'm lucky to remember my own phone number let alone anyone else's. The same goes for commitments and Dr. appointments, etc. In order to keep our busy family on time and where they need to be on the right day I invested in a dry erase calendar board. These range in price and size so find one that fits your families needs. I got mine at Rite Aid I think for about $10. It's magnetic and fits on the fridge right next to the phone so as I'm making appointments and agreeing to be places I can write it down immediately. I also have a small yearly calendar that is on the fridge right next to it for appointments that are in the months to come. This is not a fool proof system (remember the story of the surprise birthday party we showed up a week early for...) but it has helped me a great deal in keeping us where we need to be and when. Now I am so dependent on my dry erase calendar that I don't know how I managed without it. I keep track of the kids school things on it, church activities, appointments and engagements. I realize that people have phones they can put this stuff into but the benefit of the dry erase calendar is that it's there for everyone to see so we all know each other's schedule and can just look at it and see what we have going on.
For my husbands benefit I have to add that if you are considering buying one consider whether or not you care what day of the week it starts with. Ours starts with Mon. as opposed to Sun. and it has thrown my husband for a loop.
***I have been asked since writing this if I color code my calendar. My answer is no. We are just too many people that it would be more confusing that way. Plus I don't think I'd find enough colors! I know some people color code their calendars for different categories. Doctors appointments are green, school related, red, and so on. I don't choose to do that but it's definitely one way to go.