Monday, June 02, 2008

Home Management Booklet

I do not have a home management binder, although I used one many years ago. I believe you really need one when you first start out in your own home, just to get your mind focused on what is important and to keep from getting behind in the management of the home. However, as years go by, you, like me, may find that after using the h.m.b. often, you memorize a lot of things and will have no need for the large book on a daily basis. I now use little notebooks from the Dollar Tree, or make my own. I wanted to show how I made my own for the month of June. My daughter and I are trying to use up all our scrap papers and stickers, and these were perfect for this little book. The covers are made from Miss Elizabeth's short stack of scrap papers, from Dollar Tree. The stickers also come from the Miss Elizabeth supply only at Dollar Tree. I punch holes for the ribbon to bind the booklet.
The inside covers have a pocket I pasted in from the scrap papers. The white pages are from computer paper.
Here are some of the divider papers in the back of the book. The front of book has about 15 pages and I will use the other sides of the pages also, so that it will last a month. If I don't want to re-do the cover, I can always take out old pages and add new ones for the next month.
This is what the tabs look like. They are just cut from the pink paper.
Here is what one of the subject pages looks like. I think you can click on for a larger view.
I saved the cellophane from the package of scrap paper, and slipped it on the cover of the booklet, because it was already a perfect fit. I believe every day is exquisitely sweet and special. There is no dull or dark day when we can do things like this to brighten it. I think the things we glance at will feed our minds depression or happiness, so I really do appreciate having a beautiful notebook to refer to aid me in home keeping. I have named this booklet the "house keeper" because it keeps all the notes I need to manage things daily.
Each woman is different, and needs to design her own book. I used various books over the years and since the organizer book authors don't know my personal life style, they never had the things I really needed in it. Notice too that I do not put the times in this. If I had to look at things like "8:00 am, 9 a.m., 10 a.m." I would be too anxious. Without the times there, I usually get things done ahead of time. There are no pre-dated pages, because there will be days that I do not use the book.
I challenge any place of work where a woman is, to produce a schedule book for her that can appeal to her sense of beauty, and touch her heart, the way these personal homemaker notebooks can. The Bible says that there is a season for everything, so a woman can adjust her life to whatever comes her way, whether it be seed time or harvest. The home organizing notebook allows her to do what needs to be done, but still remain alert to needs at hand, and adjustable to unforseen problems.


Momala said...

What a great idea! I love the idea of having a special book for each month. I'm going to have to give this a try

Karen said...

I LOVE your book! Thank you for sharing the photos. I too, find that it's best not to put down times and dates that I feel I have to adhere to. I don't want that anxious feeling!

~~Deby said...

Oh this is lovely and such a excellant idea....thank you for a great idea.

Lynn said...

I love this! You are so right about surrounding ourselves with beauty. How I wish I had found your site years ago!

Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

What a great little book.

It also makes me feel better to know someone else understands that I keep my daily schedules and such in my head (they really don't change that often).

I "park" some of my various lists in my scrapbook journal but I never thought of a little book like this... how neat an idea.

Anonymous said...

Amazing how God works. I was just thinking how much less stressed I feel when I don't write times down on my to-do list and then you blog the same thing! I'm really enjoying your posts. They are inspiring me so much. I'm not able to be a full-time homemaker (yet?) but I'm trying my best to make the most of what I can do in my home.


Anonymous said...

What a wonderful idea! I have a large home management binder, but it's used more as a reference and archive. I don't like to keep carrying it around. For everyday use I just use a spiral bound notebook. But your idea is wonderful. Now only if my penmanship wouldn't be so bad... that I would actually like to read what I wrote by hand ;-). Something to work on. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I *love* this idea. I have a large Home Management Binder that I like to use to keep information together but I don't like to use it on a daily basis. One this size would work much better and when I got tired of it I could just create another one. (o:

Lydia said...

I posted this because of several requests for ideas on this subject. I am sure there are a lot of creative ways of doing this. The idea is to keep it simple, and not get too complicated with too many subject areas, but to just do the basics. Keeping the home streamline and simple is important. If there are too many things to do, you hve to get back to basics like laundry, dishes, and keeping floors uncluttered. I am not saying this booklet is the ultimate but it was the idea I had and I think others could probably do much better. The home management binder is still useful, but at my stage in life, this one works better for me.

Anonymous said...

This is so pretty,small enough to take with you-what an excellent idea.And you always make everything look so pretty,an effort that is very much appreciated.When we give small everyday items that extra touch,it cheers your soul and gives that little lift to your heart.Thank you so much for another wonderful post. Love,Gayle

Anonymous said...

This is great for those who cannot afford some electronic mind-keeper, and it won't have any kind of failure or disappear ...if you lose it, you only lose pennies...actually it is superior to anything computerized, especially if you are trying to save money.

wendybirde said...

This is neat! I make something similar, using those larger type index cards as the pages (you can tape them together, stacked so one is a little bit further out than the next, for the binding, works really well). But i hadnt thought of adding a pocket...clever! This was fun to see.

Lydia said...

Wendy, I'd love to see your own version, using the index cards! Please post a picture when you have time, on your blog.

I found an old book belonging to Grandma, and inside of it was an old shopping list in her handwriting. It was interesting to see the different things they bought in those days and the errands that they listed. So different from today when women seem to be rushing here and there. Her life was so simple, and a lot could be seen about her life, her priorities and her beliefs, in that old, worn, yellowed list!

candy said...

I just LOVE this idea!
Your is so pretty!
I once started to make a "home management BINDER" but I got overwhelmed by it because it was a binder and it was so big. And I felt I had to make it so detailed. It was just "too much" for me. So I ended up giving up on the idea.

The reason I love your idea is especially because its simple, yet pretty and especially that I can carry it around in my purse! Thats great!!

I am going to make one. When its done, I will let you know so you can come over to my blog to see it :)

Thanks for the inspiration!

CAndy :)

Lydia said...

Candy, I am greatly anticipating your version of this schedule book...I was using up old papers, but can just imagine what someone could do who had access to a scrapbook store, with its myriad of stickers and papers.

wendybirde said...

Well this is pathetic i know, but i don't even own a digital camera. For years now in fact i have resisted taking pictures, becuase its felt strange to me to shoot them myself, like i was "freezing" something. Not sure why its bothered me to take my own pictures, just kind of Amish there i guess. But I can describe making the book:

--Buy a package of the larger sized index cards, the ones that are about 4 by 6ish. I prefer the unlined ones. Alternatively get some cardstock paper and cut out cards of desired size. The advantage to the first is it being precut, to the second that you can get different colors and sizes easily that way.

--Take however many cards you need for each catagory, but keep it as few as possible. Because of the way this book is made, using a lot of cards would be hard to use i think.

--The top card for each catagory can easily be cut down so part of it becomes a tab if you like; or you can use color coding on your cards to divide catagory, or a pattern put onto each catagory's top page, etc.

--Add at least an extra page at the end of each catagory as well. Put some extra cards too at the end.

--Put them all in the desired order, then slide each card ~very slightly~ to the right of the one beneath it, like you are making little steps.

--Attach clear tape over the "little steps" you have just made, and thats the binding. The tape can be easily covered with a pretty paper or ribbon to look nicer, or you can paste a new (thin) piece of paper over the whole cover. And of course you can put whatever picture you like on the front and/or back cover.

--If you are doing any of your writing before you bind the book, just remember that a little bit of the left of the page will be "missing" because of the step method it will be bound with.

--How using it works: On the cards you print the stuff thats constant for each numbers, general lists, favorite prayers or qoutes, all of that. And that "extra" page for each catagory, and also the extra pages at the end, are there on hold post it notes. Its an idea i got from Small Meadow press and her "Circle of Days" book. The beauty of using post its is that you just take them off when things change each week (or whenever) and put on a new one with the new stuff...rather than having to put in a new page each time.

When a new page does need to be added for something though, you can do two things: Either cut through where the tape connects the index cards surrounding where you want to insert the new page, insert, and retape; OR trim a little off of an index card so its less wide and then tape it directly onto a page in the notebook, using that same "step" method like you did when binding.

--The easy thing about making an organizer so small like this is it can be slipped into the front pocket of one's diary (thats where i keep mine, and its where i keep a small calender as well)

--And of course now i can't wait to add to the organizer one of those multi layered pockets like you have on yours...that was such a cool idea : )

Well after writing that, i can see why folks take much easier that way, and easier to understand. If i ever join the modern age here (lol) then i will post some pictures on this.

BTW, i loved hearing about finding your grandmother's grocery list. I'd love to hear what was on it too if you were so drawn. Lately, after finding a really special 1930's cookbook that i havent been able to put down (Magic Chef Cooking), ive been so excited about depression era cooking, how it uses such wonderful simple basic ingredients. And i could just imagine what a nice simple shopping list that would lead to.

Have you seen this video series on depression era ? It's had me glued : )

Anonymous said...

Could you take a picture of the shopping list? Or maybe of one old diary entry, or the pictures, if they aren't too personal? It would be lovely to have an image of them!

Lydia said...

Yes, I will try to do that in the near future.

Unknown said...

Another wonderful idea, Lady Lydia. I make hamdmade books as a small business and has never thought of creating a home management booklet for myself and starting fresh each month. My home binder is so big and heavy that I don't use it as I should. This may work much better for me, especially because it is so lovely. And what a clever thing to save for your children to have as keepsakes. I think it would help keep me from feeling overwhelmed with domestic duties and also keep me more on track with the lovely papers and such to look at.

Lydia said...

You could keep the large notebook for records and important papers.

I wanted to mention that there are some days when nothing on my to do page gets finished. When that happens, I cross out the date and write the next day. I do not pre-write any of the other pages. I leave them blank. The first 15 pages are white blank pages for daily schedules. The tabbed pages are in the back, with about two sheets of paper behind each one. You can label them whatever you need to label, because everyone has different things to do.

Lydia said...

Anne Marie, you might be able to make some of these to sell, for people who just don't have time to make them. Do you sell from your home, or your blog?

Anonymous said...

Lady Lydia,
Thank you for a great idea that is also beautiful.
I have used spiral notebooks in various sizes for my lists, but your idea is wonderful.
Thank you for sharing.
Lynne in NC

Mrs. Anna T said...

This looks lovely. I think I need to have a larger binder again, rather than just sqeezing everything in miniature writing into my tiny weekly planner.

Katrinka said...

This is really, really cute! Reminds me of something I would have done as a young wife back in the early 70s. It is so sweet! I love it!

Sue said...

Well that is just the cutest idea! Your little book is darling. Oh my gosh, I'm so inspired to get busy making a tiny home management book. May I link to this post on my blog and maybe use a couple of your sweet pictures?
My daughter and grandson's are coming down today so I probably won't get to it until next week.

Anonymous said...

I've seen many versions of Home Management Binders, but they all seemed quite cumbersome to me. I've found that having a weekly list of chores slipped into a page protector works for my general activities. I use a dry erase marker to check things off so the list can be used repeatedly. I have a small calendar planner from Graceworks that I like for long range planning. I like this because you date the pages yourself so can start at anytime.

Unknown said...

I sell from my Etsy store. I make them hre at home as I have time. If you want to see what I am doing, visit or
and I think homekeeping journals would be a wonderful addition to my store. I am in the process of making some commonplace books, so I will add a homekeeping one to my list.

I agree with you about keeping my big binder as a reference. It is chock full of good stuff. :) The little one can fit into my pocket or purse, which is more practical than my big Franklin Covey Planner. Also I was thinking about my girls, 10 and 7. They would benefit greatly from a little booklet like this. It could include their daily chores, scriptures to memorize, and get them used to keeping things organized in a beautiful and practical way without things being overwhelming. I could even add little "how to clean this" or "how to do this" pages. Thanks again for the idea.

BTW, my kids still ask for a family newspaper. That was another great idea. Thanks for your blog. It has been so inspirational to help me keep my eyes on what is of eternal value.

Lily said...

I love your blog, a new discovery for me. I think I will give this project a go.

I nominated you for an award

Lydia said...

You are welcome to link to me. If you want me to link to you I will put it on the side.

Lydia said...

Anne-Marie, I am looking forward to seeing what creative little gem you will produce. Mine was just put together with available scraps, but if one were to give their creativity free reign, and have access to any beautiful materials, they could really make a beautiful book. The cover is made of card stock from a short stack, but you could cut your own.

Lydia said...

Everyone please be sure to go look at Anne Hawthorne's pretty little hand made books. They look so professional. She has a feature where you can order a blank book per month.

On my own little house keeping book, I sometimes put a sticker that looks like an old fashioned telephone, and a sticker that looks like a letter and stamp, on the columns for phone and write. Takes less space and I don't have to write out the titles over and over. The "to do" list can have a hand with a fan sticker, like the old Victorian clip art, and the meals list can have a sticker that looks like a place setting. The special activities list can be indicated by just a sticker of a gift or crown or something. The less titles you have to write, the less space it takes on the page. This is just a basic example, but I think most people could make a much nicer one!

50s Housewife said...

What a wonderful idea! I have a large home management binder, but I've been thinking lately that I could use something small to carry in my purse. Thanks for the inspiration! :)

Anonymous said...

This is typical of brainless, uneducated housewives who have nothing important to do. How can you afford to sit around all day doodling with kindergarten materials? Paper and stickers take no intelligent thought at all. I assume you can't use anything more advanced because your Victorian beliefs won't allow you to use an ipod or anything too mechanical. You also seem to believe in whipping women, seeing your quote at the end of the blog page. You actually don't think very highly of your own sex, do you?

Lydia said...

I let this one immature comment in because I am getting an unusual amount of traffic to this article, and the comment made me laugh. It is only the millionth comment exactly like it in the last 10 years. The feminists churn out these graduates who never have an original idea of their own and all they can do is spout off the same old thing, yawn.

But I would still like to address it in case anyone thinks she is bright and using her intellectual abilities here.

You feminists are so keen on eliminating poverty and inequality.In your many humanitarian efforts (you know, the feminist orphanages that treat babies with such love, and the feminist nursing homes that provide care for old people, and all your many charities to help with the problems of poverty and inequality)you may find yourself in a place where people are being deprived of their human rights, giving humanitarian aid.

You may need to know how to make something from materials, when you cannot buy things at stores. You might be helping children, or you might get a job in child development or something where you would need to know something of crafts.

If in the unlikely event you will actually get married instead of living with your boyfriends, you might find the need to cut back on expenses instead of going to the store for everything.

It is probably no wonder you are fascinated with this particular article. I got over 100 visits from university addresses to this particular article.

It could be that some young people have not seen how things are made or have not made things themselves. When hard times come--and yes, even the career women will find it difficult when there are no jobs to be had---knowing how to make it yourself will be the thing you value the most.

Now as for being unintelligent, I have yet to see a radical fem. student site with anything worth looking at, unless you count the ones of glassy eyed young women holding beer in their hands. I rarely see anything intelligent posted here by them, that is for sure.

As for why I don't use expensive computers and hand held gadgets in my purse, I think it was commented on by someone, that if you lose it, you lose hundreds of dollars, whereas, no one wants to steal your little handmade notebook with the doo-dads on it. It is too tacky, you understand.

Your comment about Queen Victoria: if you read further in her diaries and letters you will find apt descriptions of future feminists, all which have come true: they left the loveliness of their home life and developed the habit of drinking cursing, smoking, and held a general disdain for the office of womanhood in the home, where she had the most power (but it is too hard for you to understand, and you cannot see it because it does not seem important to you.)

From the statistics, it appears that most of the flame retorts on this article about a handmade schedule notebook came from England today. I love and admire England and the English, and it gives your country a bad reputation when you write things like this.

Victoria was your queen. I don't think any of our president's wives in history ever made a bold comment like that. I was just quoting your own queen. She had a right to express herself, and she is one of you. You said you didn't use paper because you were so more advanced that you use computers when you shop...well, you are right up there with your old queen: she didn;t have to use paper for lists, either because she was rich enough to have someone else do her shopping.

I wrote many posts about the diaries, pictures, letters, scrapbooks, lists, tea cups, lace, etc. which our grandmothers left for us. If we quit using paper altogether, the next generation will be the poorer for it, for they will have no glimpse into the past to help them form good values for the future.

Finally, if you don't like the little book I made, it is not for you. You can use something else. Isn't that wonderful? I understand the anxiety you feel when you read this site. You should maybe eat some chocolate, have a cup of tea and just not worry about anything today, okay?

Unknown said...

Lady Lydia, I posted my little homekeeping books on my blog for you to see. Thanks again for the idea.