Sunday, March 20, 2011

Weekly Challenge #8 - Daily schedule and Finances (A Recap)

Weekly Challenge #8 - Daily Schedule

It is that time of week again!  Time to accept the weekly challenge from Toni at A Bowl Full of Lemons.  This week, she is challenging us to get our daily schedules in order.  For once I can say "This is done!!".  If you recall, this was on one of my first "Simplify" lists - to modify my daily/weekly to do lists so that they worked well.   I divided my tasks up that needed to get done each week and placed them on certain days:

Monday: Wash Towels; Weekly Home Blessing; Bake Bread
Tuesday: Wash my/Darryl's clothes; work on deep cleaning room
Wednesday: Changes sheets and Take out trash; Write Menu/Grocery list
Thursday: Wash kids clothes; updated budget/balance checkbook; pull coupons
Friday: Do wrong room rescue; wash my/Darryl's clothes; bake cookies; clean out the fridge

You may notice that I wash clothes every day but Wednesday - I tried washing clothes all on one day and found that I couldn't get everything done so by dividing it up over the week I only have to do one or two loads a day and it is easier to get done.  Plus, Wednesday gives me a free day or a day to catch up if I'm going to be gone on another day. 
I also have a Morning, Afternoon and Evening routine which takes care of everything from picking up hotspots to preparing for the following day. 

I totally agree with the guest poster, routines are the key for success. I have a new organizational blog that I enjoy and it is Organizaing Made Fun.(the guest poster!)   I enjoyed her post today and enjoyed other posts she has written as well.  I appreciate her simple ideas and taking one task at a time.
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Most of you also know that I am a big fan of Flylady.  If you are looking for a place to start - start with her baby steps.  At first, it seems a bit overwhelming but, if you really follow her system, it does work.  If you check it out and have questions of how I made it work for me, please ask!  I've been a "Flybaby" for years!

Check out Toni's challenge for this week and read the great ideas given!

Recap - Week 7 Challenge - Finances
Last weeks, weekly Challenge was to get our finances in order.  As we all know, it takes a lot longer than that but this weeks focus was making a system to help us get those in order.  Each day Toni, at A Bowl Full of Lemons, gave a challenge for all of us to work on.

Track what you spend.
This seems easy, doesn't it?  I've done this on and off for years but it is really hard to remember to write down all the little things.  Sometimes I feel like I nag my husband at the end of the day when I ask if he bought anything today so I can write it down.  That is why I love this concept of the receipt tracker from Clean Mama Printables.  It is just a calendar of the month and I write in the squares.  It works for me - for the first time - it works.  I've done ledger books, excel spreadsheets, notebooks -every idea under the sun but it was always so cumbersome whereas this - just jot it down quickly and once a week I update that old budget sheet with the breakdowns.  Eeasy Peasy.

Create an Envelope System
I've been working on this and had come up with a great complicated system that really wasn't working.  I had picked up a couple of these coupon expanding files.

I was using one for my "weekly" things like grocery money, gas, eating out, and crafts/teaching.  It was ok but was bulky and really didn't fit will in my purse. The other I used for my HUGE number of accounts that we use - everything from clothes to vacation to pets.  Yes, I tend to make things really complicated.  Than I read Monday's post.
In reading the post on Monday I loved what Kelleigh Ratzlaff designs created for her wallet.  I pulled out some scrapbooking paper and created the envelopes this week.   I also have been on the lookout for a new wallet as mine is about 15 years old and is coming apart. everywhere.  It's help up well but it is on its last leg.  I picked out a great wallet from Thirty one - I've been drooling over that stuff for awhile and finally had a reason to order something.   I really want to make the envelopes work for us (me- I'm the spender . .. ) so that we can live within our budget but this is an ongoing process.  Not fun.  I like to spend (Did I mention that) and could $2.50 us to death easily.  Which, I will point out, that is where tracking spending and keeping a budget come in - it allows you to see what you are spending and what you regret spending.

A Budget Box
I don't have one but I like the concept.  Right now I keep bills and such in a drawer in the desk which I like.  I also have a file drawer in the desk which is being very under utilized so I think I'm going to morph her concept into the drawer/file.  I don't have room for a box anywhere - my concept is to simplify which means no more clutter too!!  I think the biggest thing to take from this idea is that you need one place for everything.  My drawer is great - I keep the calendar with the bills so I know what is due when, I have a calculator in the drawer too.  When the mail comes in there is a slot for the bills to get dropped into until I put them on the calendar.  I also use my home management notebook to keep my worksheets in as well.  So I guess I do have a system . . .maybe I am already set.  Wow, I surprised myself LOL

Creating a Debt Snowfall
This was another idea that I love.  We've been working on getting this rolling but it is slow going.  We hope to see more progress over the coming months.  I love the simplicity of this concept and the way Toni explained it, again, I tend to get complicated!!! 

Thursday and Friday
An Interview and Success Stories
The last two days of the challenge, Toni shared an interview she had with Dave Ramsey as well as some success stories.  Take time to read them to be inspired!

You can find all of these posts and more over at