My File Box

posted in: Organization, This Is The Life | 5
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Many years ago, I put together a file box in accordance with one of Emilie Barnes’ books, Survival for Busy Women. I love my file box! I thought I’d share with you a little about it because it is so simple and compact!

For starters, I have a whole slug of 3 in. x 5 in. index cards . I started out with bright, colorful cards, but have resorted to a mixture now. My card box is a bright yellow so I can easily locate it if I set it down somewhere. Everything is written in pencil so I can erase as needed. The exception would be for some storage cards, which I will explain later. Tabs could also be in pen, as those don’t change.

Next, I have dividers. They are labeled:

  • Daily
  • Weekly
  • Monthly
  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December
  • Storage

Emilie Barnes recommends the following:

  • Daily
  • Weekly
  • Monthly
  • Quarterly
  • Twice a year
  • Annually

I prefer my way, because then I can nail down an exact month in which to assign items. If the items are quarterly, I make 4 cards. If the item is twice a year, I make 2 cards. I hope you are following me now smile2.gif

Now to explain what comes behind those headers on the cards….

Behind my daily tab, I have several cards that need to be done each day. Yours may vary. Mine are as follows:

  • Consider dinner preparations: Pull out meat for thawing
  • Make Bed, tidy bedroom
  • Balance checkbook
  • Have quiet time
  • Take garbage out of each bathroom and put in new bags
  • Wipe down sinks
  • Sweep floors
  • Laundry: Wash 4 loads, dry, fold, and put away
  • Do school
  • Dishes: Maintain
  • Wipe down front of cupboards and appliances

I do not do all those tasks. Some are shared and some are assigned. They are in no particular order. Each day, I go through my cards and make sure each task has been accomplished. I have been doing it so long, though, that I know them by heart and are routine here. I do revisit the box no and again, though, to see if I should add or remove something.

Behind my weekly tab, I have a card labeled for each day of the week. The days of the week could be in pen since that doesn’t change. Mine are as follows, yous could be different.

  • Sunday: Plan for next week, take a break
  • Monday: Iron, mend, vacuum, water the live tree in the living room
  • Tuesday: Mop floors, do bills
  • Wednesday: Vacuum, bathe littles, yard work
  • Thursday: Town day, get garbage cans out for garbage service
  • Friday: Clean bathrooms, plan menu
  • Saturday: Check over undone chores, bathe littles, vacuum

Behind my monthly tab, I have 4 cards, which are labeled

  • Week 1
  • Week 2
  • Week 3
  • Week 4

On each of those cards, I have written tasks. Mine are as follows:

  • Week 1: Clean all 3 upstairs hall closets (blankets & linens, towels, coats & shoes), yard patrol, clean garage
  • Week 2: Clean out van, clean refrigerator
  • Week 3: Change linens, clean pantry, watch kitchen walls
  • Week 4: Follow up on things to be mailed, sorted, and filed, clean washroom, wash appliances thoroughly.

Here are the things I have behind each of my month tabs. I have a card for each task:

  • January
  1. Clean under refrigerator and stove
  • February
  1. Straighten drawers
  2. Clear upstairs bookshelves, clean thoroughly and put back together
  • March
  1. Sort through clothing boxes and rotate clothes.
  2. Clean the shed
  • April
  1. Wash windows, inside and out.
  2. Defrost & clean garage refrigerator & freezers
  3. Change smoke alarm batteries
  • May
  1. Put bacteria in toilet/septic
  • June
  1. Clear downstairs bookshelves, clean thoroughly and put back together. Rotate books.
  2. Change furnace filter
  3. Clean the shed
  • July
  1. Clean the dryer vent in back of dryer
  • August
  1. Rearrange some furniture or consider what might make my home warm and welcoming. Make changes as desired.
  2. Clear upstairs bookshelves, clean thoroughly and put back together.
  • September
  1. Clean screens from windows for storage over winter.
  2. Clean the shed
  • November
  1. Sort through clothing boxes and rotate clothing.
  2. Change the smoke alarm batteries
  3. Harvest/can/freeze
  4. Put bacteria in toilet/septic
  • December
  1. Clean shed

I know… I have some duplicates often, but the idea is maintenance before it gets bad.

I am going to share about my storage tab another time, because it is a little involved and will probably take another post.

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5 Responses

  1. Great, I draw up lists as well. It keeps us sane!

  2. Ruth…thank-you for sharing this on your blog…this is right along the lines of what I was looking for..the card file is good, or just to add to calender…but the card file saves lots of copying…!

  3. 🙂 I linked this on Training Daughters Teaching Wives. This is great information! I wanted to share it!
    Sensational Sunday Links: http://trainingdaughtersteachingwives.com/?p=668

  4. JennInSeattle

    Now I’ve made 3×5 cards based on your lists but more reflective of our household needs. I hope it works! Your organization sure helped our grocery bill and gave me a sense of order (not to mention how much faster and less stressful it is). I didn’t get to the ones for each month of the year but this is bookmarked. Thank you again Ruth! You really are a great example of what Titus 2 teaches! 🙂 Thank you!

  5. Thx I followed your link from CMOMB and I love this !

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