Too much paper (3)

There is a place in every home and office where the mail lands. A desk (if you’re lucky,) a table, or a kitchen counter. That’s all right for a very short time, until you have a chance to process it, but then what? Some heads straight for the recycling, but there are things you need to keep: bills to pay, school notices to read, coupons to use. If you just leave them all in an ever-growing pile, you’re headed for chaos.

Set up a little short-term filing system. Not a filing cabinet in another room; you’ll never use it.

Get a small desk-top file with a few files.desktopper 2desktopper

Take a look at your pile and divide it into categories. Some common ones are: bills to pay, coupons and menus, schedules, contact lists (phone numbers,) and sometimes a file for each member of the family. Label the files and drop in the pile.

If you have children who are involved in several activities, you may have lots of schedules and lists. A file for each child might work, or files for school and “after-school activities.”  For super-easy access, I prefer the fridge. There is a magnet for each activity: Brownies, Scouts, soccer, dance, school (one for each school, if your children don’t all go to the same one.)

fridge magnet

The soccer schedule, phone list, and maps are all collected in one place. When a school notice comes home, it goes to the school magnet (and the previous one is recycled.) The whole family knows where all the information is, and can find it easily.

Don’t assume that your stainless-front fridge is not magnetic; some are. If it isn’t, consider adding a magnetic board to the kitchen or hallway. It may not be elegant, but life will be easier.

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