Sunday, January 13, 2013

organize now challenge. post the first.

Confession: I'm not a super organized person. (that snickering you hear is the laughter of every person who has met me in real life.)

Confession: Most of my disorganization has to do with some not-charming experiences I have, umm, experienced, and no, I'm not going to talk about that here.

Confession: The rest of my disorganization comes from apathy and laziness and the whole I'd-rather-be-spending-my-time-on-something-else. And let me tell you, that last item is powerful. 

BUT. I'm a grown-up, and I am actually in possession of Big Girl Pants, so I'm going to put them on. I'm participating in the 12 week Organize Now Challenge with local author and organized life expert Jennifer Ford Berry and also Spring Cleaning 365

Because WHY DO ANYTHING IN MODERATION. (famous last words)

I'm not actually blogging about Spring Cleaning 365, I just wanted to mention it because if you're a crappy housekeeper with undiagnosed attention issues, and a bipolar relationship to cleaning (meaning you either never clean, or you ARE CLEANING ALL THE THINGS!!!! until you are passed out and crippled), this could be just the thing for you. Each task has been manageable except for my manic CLEANING ALL THE THINGS!!!, but I am getting better about doing the one assignment and backing away slowly.

I *am* officially blogging about the 12 week Organize Now Challenge. This week I'm working on my schedule. As I mentioned, I'm not really organized, so starting with planning my schedule makes a lot of sense.

Here are some of the weekly goals I found to be really useful:

1. Buy one planner and use it for everything. 
now my planner looks like me.
well, supposing i had green button eyes.
I spent some time looking at planners at Target. There were a ton that had a monthly calendar page, and then a 2 page spread for each week, plus an address book, plus stickers, plus who knows what else. That is just too much information and cross-referencing for my little brain. I need simpler. Maybe someday when I'm an official Organized Grown-Up I will be able to handle writing things down in 2 places, and possibly leap over tall buildings in a single bound, but for now, that's just more than I want to manage.

I am thrilled with what I found. There is a two-page monthly calendar, one for each month, and the rest of the book is a notebook. That's it. In the past I have tried to keep a calendar and a notebook (I really love these little guys... the 3 1/2" x 5" ones with graph paper), and it never worked. I need my lists and I need my calendar. I can keep a list going for the grocery store, for the library, business orders, and I can also (hopefully) stop standing up our dentist.

2. Plan the month with the whole family.
This was a pretty easy task. The Mister works a non-conventional job with non-conventional hours, so pretty much all of the errand-running falls to me. I penciled in our weekly trip to the library, church on Saturday night, grocery store (if needed), homeschool group dates until the end of the year, dentist appointments, birthdays, the big group camping trip, Lego club, camp...everything I could think of.

here's january. and yes, i did see les mis last wednesday.

3. Use a page of the planner for long-term to-do lists.
The last page of the planner? It's the long-term list.  Things like EMPTY THE GARAGE SO I CAN PARK THERE NEXT WINTER. Nothing major. Heh.

In the "Once A Year" section, Jennifer recommends choosing a planner that you really love the look and feel of, that fits your style, so that you actually use it. I really like the size of my planner, and what is on the inside, but the outside was sort of blah, and since I make pretty useful things for other people, I decided to pretty up this useful item for me. 

the valley inn, for every occasion

Here is a list of the other four bloggers participating in the Organize Now Challenge. And here is my disclosure: I have received a copy of Organize Now in exchange for sharing my experience with the Organize Now Challenge. All views and opinions expressed are mine and mine alone.


  1. SO happy to have you taking this challenge Pam since you are a local girl! Did you make that cover for your planner?
    PS The less organized you are the more excited I get for you to take this challenge :)

    1. I did make the cover! It was pretty simple, really.
      And oh, my goodness. I don't know how I could be less organized.

  2. I'm not very organised either - so I whole heartedly agree with simpler is better :) gosh just even choosing a planner is hard - there are so many to choose from and I am only just learning what features would be useful after years of dumping planners after the first few months lol! I really like that it has so many pages for notes - and your cover is gorgeous :)

    1. Thanks for the lovely compliment!
      I looked at maybe 15 different planners, and went with the most simple one I could find. I didn't want to wimp out halfway through the year because my planner was too much work.

  3. Oh me - oh my... I am here, I am following, I am doing!!!! You shall be my inspiration - as I too, feel that maintaining the planner was too hard!! And we all know - when we "fail to plan, we plan to fail" LOL - I can say it - but can I do it??!!


talk to me, people. because you know i get all giddy when you do.