Organization 101 Series Day 7: Menu Planning & Meal Prepping!

“Organizing is what you do before you do something so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.”— A. A. Milne

Welcome to the next article in my Organization 101 Series.  In my last entry I I shared a sample of Zonal Cleaning and how you’d been unknowingly working on creating these in your daily schedules & routines. 

I was happy to share that with all of you on my NEW Podcast. If you missed it, here’s the LINK.

As I mentioned, today’s post will focus on menu planning and some meal prepping. This can be a somewhat daunting task to those of my friends who don’t enjoy cooking, or grocery shopping. Well friends, believe me when I say if you implement this easy task, you might just change your tune about the whole process. 

Many of the topics I discuss in this series I learned from an incredible lady named Marla Cilley, A.K.A. The Flylady. Her book, “Sink Relections” taught me how to incorporate all this lessons. It was from the inspirations from her book how I developed my P.M.S. concept! So now lets get into today’s topic!

I also suggested having your family help with this process. Even if you don’t have kids, ask your partner or roommate to join in the fun!

If you are not organized and structured in this area of managing your home, you can end up spending more money on things you don’t need and won’t end up using. By planning your meals and therefore your grocery shopping lists you won’t find yourself buying ingredients on a whim or wasting time thinking about what you should be shopping for.

BONUS to this task include saving TIME & MONEY! With gas prices as high as they are, you’ll even save money due to less running back to the grocery store or market because you forgot something.

I recommend using shopping apps as well.

PRO TIP: Keep your cart open all the time! As you use something or only have one of an item left in your pantry, you can quickly add that item by scanning the barcode of the item. Most shopping apps have a tab called Your Items or Your Favorites. Utilizing these saves time. You are not aimlessly walking around in the grocery store trying to remember what you need.

With Menu Planning, you will only shop for the items you need for the meals you plan to prepare that week, thereby saving money.

Menus & Grocery lists

There are a few ways you can plan your menus: Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, or even Annually. I’ve done about all of them. Currently I am using the Monthly menu planning as that fits my family’s lifestyle best. However I have done it for the entire year.

The process is simple!


Plan a day where you and your family can sit for about a half to a full hour. I like to do this on a Sunday afternoon as it tends to be more of a family day. I gather up my calendar and my cookbooks and we all get turns to add to the menu. I generally have a main, side, veggie and occasionally a dessert. We are not big dessert eaters, so we only plan a dessert about once a month.

Menus by the season! We attend several farmers markets throughout the season, so I adjust our menu planning according to what is growing in our area seasonally. During the market season- April through November we purchase the bulk of our vegetables from the farmers market and also grow a few ourselves. In the spring we eat a lot more salads, summer holds its bounty in just about everything, and in the fall we eat more root & squash vegetable crops.

Here is an excerpt from my previous blog where I show you how to create your menus for the year just in case you’d like to be ambitious or simply knock it all out in one fell swoop.

I designed two groups of menus according to the seasons. Spring & Summer menus focus on the fresh produce we’re growing and that’s available. The second is Fall & Winter which features what we’ve canned, frozen and what’s in the root cellar along with what we’re still growing in the fall garden and winter hoop house. I created eight weeks of menus for each group. This allows me to rotate over two months. I keep that week’s menu on the fridge so we don’t have to think about meal prep, especially during our busy gardening and canning season. Having a menu helps in grocery shopping and meal prep every morning.

Now, let’s look into organizing your life with Menu Planning and Grocery Lists.

PRO TIP: Include this job in your control journal in one of your desk day jobs.

Menu

Planning

Tips &

Tricks

I love anything that will simplify my life in the everyday stuff that needs to be done like preparing meals for my family. Remember my P.M.S.? The ‘what’s for supper’ question can quickly become spaghetti all too often without menus! I’m sure many of us can relate to that! So I thought it would be nice to share a few tips in menu planning.

*First take 1-3 of your favorite cookbooks and 1-2 blank monthly calendars and a PENCIL!

*First plan some of your family’s favorite meals before you scour through the cookbooks. Think about the groceries each meal will take beforehand. Fill in one breakfast, lunch and supper for each family member with their favorite thing over the two weeks of menus- don’t duplicate any meal and don’t include any desserts… YET.

*Have any family vacations, work or school days off, sports or other activities with special dates handy so you can take those into consideration. Don’t plan a favorite meal for someone when they won’t even be home for it!

*Decide if you will include breakfast and lunch! This may depend on summer vacation for kids, etc.

*If you plan to have a night out or order-in meal, jot those down next.

*Do you want to include desserts? If so, fill those in now.

*Now go to the cookbooks. I encourage you to try a new recipe once a week. This will be fun and will help you and your family find new favorites. It’ll also help you from getting in a rut of the same old thing.

PRO TIP: Be sure to jot down what the cookbook and the page number for the recipe on the calendar. I recommend using abbreviations for cookbooks. For example I would put LS for my cookbook, Lovingly Seasoned Eats & Treats. If you don’t think you’ll remember them, jot down a legend on the back of the calendar.

If you haven’t purchased your copy of my popular cookbook, Lovingly Seasoned Eats and Treats, click HERE.

Some extra tips when planning your menu:

*Do you have a garden? These should all play a factor in your menu planning.

Do you shop primarily at the Farmers Market during the season? Do you have any of your own livestock that you raise? Do you have your own chickens for eggs?

*Take into consideration what season you’re in. If you do the bulk of your shopping at the grocery store, seasonal crops will be far less expensive than items shipped from across the county. Shopping at farmers markets and/or having a garden can help save money here. Spring offers more salad crops & greens. Summer will be the mother load of produce and will eliminate much grocery shopping for fresh produce. Fall provides root crops such as potatoes, carrots, onions, and squashes. If you raise your own animals, butchering time is also happening now. Do you or a family member hunt? This can be an additional source of meat.

*Have your family members help create the menu.

This can be a fun family activity and sharing time of who liked and didn’t like what!

You now have two whole months planned out and it was so much fun and so easy. If you feel adventurous try doing another month and plan it out seasonally.

Grocery Lists Tips & Tricks!

Grocery lists are really not complicated and won’t take up too much time when you have your menus to work off of. Here are some tips!

*I recommend keeping a magnetic note pad or grocery list right on the front or side of your fridge! Each time you run out of something, jot it down or tick it off the pre-made list.

*Google ‘grocery list’ and you’ll find oodles of styles to download. Keep a master in your control journal and make a copy for each week, unless you have a pre-printed notepad.

*You’ll need to go over your menu for the next week and shop accordingly.

*As I mentioned you can save a lot of money when you grow your own or at least eat seasonally. But if that’s not an option for you, shop at the farmers market which is the next best thing. There are many winter farmers markets as well that you can shop and support and still eat seasonally with root crops, storage crops and fresh greens.

*Stick to the list when you go to the grocery store. I’m sure most of you shop at several stores for different items.  Have a list for each store and coupons/ ad’s to go with each.

*If you have any returnables, be sure they’re ready to go and in the trunk.

*I always make sure I have my grocery list, coupons and shopper bags ready to go.

*Don’t go shopping when you’re hungry… you WILL buy things you normally don’t because ‘they look good’ at the time!

Keep posted for the next in the series as we look a concept I learned during a class I took. You’re going to love it.

Jump on over to my Podcast & SUBSCRIBE so you don’t miss an episode!

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Happy Day,

Jean

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Bourbon Sweet Potatoes!

“You don’t have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces, just good food from fresh ingredients.” – Julia Child

This super easy recipe will be the hit of any meal as a side dish. The bourbon adds a bit of a tang, giving this dish a deliciously sweet & savory flavor. Be sure to let me know if you try it, and how you & your family enjoyed it!

Our Favorite Recipes

Ingredients:

4 to 5 medium sized sweet potatoes or yams, cut into ¼ inch round coins
1 stick salted butter, divided into TBSP’s
½ cup Bourbon
½ cup maple syrup
1 ½ cups light brown sugar

We like Jim Beam bourbon!

1. Peel, wash, and cut sweet potatoes into ⅛ to ¼ inch coins.

Pro Tip: Save the peels and toss them in your garden. They will break down over the winter adding nutrients to your soil!

2. Layer bottom of a 9” x 13” baking dish with sweet potatoes; put 6 TBSP’s butter evenly spaced on top of potatoes; spread ½ cup of the brown sugar evenly across the potatoes

3. Repeat this process 3 times.

4. Pour the maple syrup & bourbon over the potatoes evenly.

5. Cover and bake for 45 minutes; remove foil and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes or until fork tender.

If you enjoyed this post & thought this was a super yummy recipe leave me a comment… and of course please LIKE, Follow & Share.

You can purchase my wonderful cookbook, Lovingly Seasoned Eats & Treats again! Click this link to purchase: https://fordragonfliesandme.com/purchase-my-cookbook…/

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Be sure to check out my Facebook page & follow me there for daily inspirations, lovely photos, & of course all kinds of great home & garden tips! 

Happy Day,

Jean

Copyright Policy

All text and images on this site are copyright of For Dragonflies And Me. Unless otherwise noted, you may not use this content without written permission.

PODCAST~ Organization 101 Day 6: Zone Cleaning~ Let’s do this!

“It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan.”

— Eleanor Roosevelt

Today’s podcast will be the 6th of 10 in my Organization 101 Series. The topic will focus on Zonal Cleaning.

Many of the topics I discuss in this series I learned from an incredible lady named Marla Cilley, A.K.A. The Flylady. Her book, “Sink Relection’s” taught me how to incorporate all this lessons. It was from the inspirations from her book how I developed my P.M.S. concept! So now lets get into today’s topic!

Organization has always been a major part of my personality. I remember growing up always wanting my things orderly. I would purchase little containers to put my make-up and hair accessories in. Even my photo albums were thoughtfully organized by date and events. Later in life I started scrapbooking which allowed me to organize my photos even more! There is a genuine sense of peace and satisfaction when everything has its place and everything is in its place. 

Which leads me into the next post in my Organization 101 Series. In my last article I explained The Walk Through and how you’ll incorporate it into Zonal Cleaning. I thought this one would come across more effectively in a Podcast, so here we go.

Click this LINK to go over and listen! Be sure to follow me here & there so you don’t miss a beat.

Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to me here & there so you don’t miss a beat!

If you enjoyed this episode , please LIKE, Follow, Share & leave me a comment! I love your feedback!

If you aren’t following me on Facebook, go on over & give a LIKE & Follow me for daily tips & tricks for your home & garden! 

Happy Day,
Jean

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All text and images on this site are copyright of For Dragonflies And Me. Unless otherwise noted, you may not use this content without written permission.

What inspires you?

If you aren’t following me on Instagram, you are missing out on daily inspirations for your home & garden. I post fun reels showcasing my recipes along with local small businesses! Everyday I share the things that will inspire you to do something special!

Join me there so don’t miss a beat with what is happening here at For Dragonflies And Me.


Slow Cooked Baby Back BBQ Ribs

“Cooking requires confident guesswork and improvisation—experimentation and substitution, dealing with failure and uncertainty in a creative way.” – Paul Theroux

This super easy & delicious recipe is sure to be as big a hit in your home as it is in mine! The meat simply falls off the bone and melts in your mouth.

Our Favorite Recipes

Ingredients for Ribs:

2 Slabs of baby back spare ribs
Montreal Steak Spice
Your favorite BBQ sauce OR use my recipe

Versatile! You can interchange your favorite store brand or homemade BBQ sauce to whatever suits your taste buds.

Ingredients for My BBQ Sauce: This recipe can be found in my cookbook, Lovingly Seasoned Eats and Treats on page 407.

2 c. ketchup
½ c brown sugar
¼ honey
1 TBSP minced onions
2 Cloves fresh garlic minced OR 2 tsp jarred
¼ tsp Worcestershire sauce

For some super yummy BBQ Butter Brush-On Recipes & unique grilling ideas, check out my older blog post.

A “Green” Barbeque, Vermicomposting and some Yummy Grilling Recipe’s!

1. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees.

2. Carefully remove the membrane from the back of the ribs and discard.

The top slab in the photo has the membrane removed, the bottom photo has it on.

3. Wash meat to remove any debris; cut each slab into 2 or 3 pieces, cutting between the bones; place on a large sheet of foil wrap- enough that you will be able to wrap the slab; sprinkle both sides liberally with the steak spice; wrap so the entire piece is covered; place on a cookie sheet. Repeat the process with all pieces.

4. Place in a preheated oven for 3 to 3 ½ hours.

5. Remove from the oven and carefully take slabs out of foil; place in a baking dish side by side meat side up.

6. Turn the heat up to 350 degrees now.

As you can see the meat is super tender and is falling off the bones!

If you enjoy a more Smokey flavored BBQ sauce, you can find that recipe in my COOKBOOK on page 406.

7. While the oven is heating up, slather your BBQ sauce over the top of your ribs and spread evenly; place back in oven for 15 minutes.

Directions for BBQ Sauce- Yields 2 cups finished sauce

  1. Combine all ingredients into a large saucepan, whisk together and cook on medium heat for 30 minutes stirring occasionally. 

Nothing compares to fresh garlic!

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Serve with baked potatoes or beans… So yum!

If you enjoyed this post & thought this was a super yummy recipe leave me a comment.

…. and of course please LIKE, Follow & Share.

You can purchase my wonderful cookbook, Lovingly Seasoned Eats & Treats!

Be sure to check out my Facebook page & follow me there for daily inspirations, lovely photos, & of course all kinds of great home & garden tips! 

Happy Day,
Jean

Copyright Policy

All text and images on this site are copyright of For Dragonflies And Me. Unless otherwise noted, you may not use this content without written permission.

Organization 101 Day 5: Doing the ‘Walk-Through’~ Check this out!

“Clutter is nothing more than postponed decisions.” — Barbara Hemphill

I’m sure each of us has certain areas in the home that are a catch all. You grab the mail and toss it in a regular spot. There is probably a certain location where shoes get kicked off at… and left. Maybe you even have a location where coats or hoodies land… and seem to find a home there! It can be very frustrating when you walk into a relatively organized room and then these eye sores flash before your eyes… and you just feel your shoulders droop and have a sense of frustration.

Well Dragonfly friends you are not alone in this battle of the Hot Spots! Today I would like to focus on a common statement that occurs in my home on a regular basis…. The Walk Through. “What is a walk through?” you ask. Well, it is the next step in my organization series. I’ll touch on Hot Spots in a future blog post, so keep posted for that!

Many of the topics I discuss in this series I learned from an incredible lady named Marla Cilley, A.K.A. The Flylady. Her book, “Sink Relections” taught me how to incorporate all this lessons. It was from the inspirations from her book how I developed my P.M.S. concept! So now lets get into today’s topic!

If you missed my last post in this series, click on this LINK to go on over to my Podcast & listen to me explaining how to get your life to a state of inner calm, and outer tidiness.

Doing the walk-through…

The walk through is a very basic concept I believe most of us do everyday, but never really had a name for it.  It’s easy to apply to our daily schedules and routines and it’s one that children can completely understand. The walk through is simply going through a room and picking up everything that is out-of-place AND putting it away where it belongs.  Simply eh?

In the next post we’ll learn what Zonal Cleaning is and how to apply the walk through in it.

“You can hack your brain to form good habits — like going to the gym and eating healthily — simply by repeating actions until they stick, according to new psychological research involving the University of Warwick.” University of Warwick

Various studies have shown that if you repeat the same action for 21 to 28 days, a habit will be formed. I’ve incorporated this aspect into our daily lives over the last fifteen years and it has paid off.

I can see it in my daughter who has her own space now. She likes to organize her son’s toys in the same fashion I use to do her and her brothers. One of my sons has found the organization I instilled in him with his tools, the other with his hobby cars! I also see it in my two youngest sons with their sports & Pokémon cards! So friends, the payoff is there.

Generally there are three times of day I like to do a ‘walk-through’-

  • Just before lunch- this is when we typically vacuum if needed.
  • Just before supper- this makes for a more relaxing meal.
  • Finally, right before bed! This is the most important one in my opinion. The worst feeling is waking up to a mess!

Now that you have this new tool in your cleaning bucket, you can start utilizing it to keep your home even tidier! 

Keep posted for my next topic in my organization series: Zonal Cleaning.

If you enjoyed this blog, please LIKE, Follow & of course Share! Let me know what you think,  I love your feedback! 

If you aren’t following me on Facebook go on over & give it a like & follow me for daily tips & tricks for the home and garden!

Happy Day,

Jean

Podcast with Kat Sturtz, Rocking Your Path Life Coach & The Purgatory Relief Coach for People Who Think Marketing Is Hell.

In today’s podcast I get to introduce you to one of the most remarkable women I have the blessing of knowing & calling a friend! 

I met Kat back in 2012 when I was just starting out on my writing journey. After a wonderful conversation with her, I was off to one of her writing groups. At my first group meeting I was in awe at how wonderful she and the group were. How welcoming and the information, guidance, and encouragement I received cannot be expressed in words… I was so touched. To this day I truly feel Kat helped give me the legs to stand on and go for it! I started Rocking My Path. 

Soon after I started attending the writing group I began blogging for The Detroit News, other online publications, and even a couple magazines. 

And that is what we are going to focus on during this segment of For Dragonflies And Me. Today Kat & I are going to talk about Mindset & Motivation and her Rocking Your Path world! You’ll learn how she guides people to grow in their solo-entrepreneurship! 

My passion is helping time and cash-strapped solopreneurs build a profitable home-based business. 

I especially love helping clients break free from despair, leaking money, or making little at all.

What about You? What keeps you up at night, tossing and turning trying to figure out how to get past all the obstacles life throws at you?” Kat Sturtz.

For those of you looking for Marketing and Promotion coaching…
Clients, biz friends, and followers know Kat affectionately as The Purgatory Relief Coach for People Who Think Marketing Is Hell.

“Marketing is necessary but it needn’t leave you feeling stuck between Heaven and Hell. And it doesn’t need to be expensive, hard to do, or leave you feeling icky at the end of the day either. Not when you follow the marketing strategies, tactics, and advice I love most. Top on that list: If you don’t like being marketed to in a particular way then don’t use that method in your own marketing. Doesn’t matter if it’s being touted as the current best tactic to use. If you don’t like it, it’s likely your target niche doesn’t either.” Kat Sturtz

…and we will also chat about a wonderful organizational tool, Trello. I am currently taking that course & will have a blog coming up all about it!

Be sure to join the group for this event on Facebook so you don’t miss a beat!
See you there!

Until then, happy day friends!
Jean

Podcast- Organization 101 Day 4: Weekly Schedules & How they benefit you!

“Organization begins with awareness of what doesn’t work for us.”

— Unknown

Organization 101 Day 4: Weekly Schedules & How they benefit you!

Many of the topics I discuss in this series I learned from an incredible lady named Marla Cilley, A.K.A. The Flylady. Her book, “Sink Relections” taught me how to incorporate all this lessons. It was from the inspirations from her book how I developed my P.M.S. concept! So now lets get into today’s topic!

Do you feel there is no time to start the organization process? Do you ask yourself, “Why bother? I’ll never get this mess under control?” Do you have a houseful of ‘people’ that just seem to trail behind you wreaking havoc with what you just tidied up?

Well if you said yes to any or all of those questions, this informative blog will help you realize it’s not too late. It’s not impossible. It’s easy to get them to change bad habits too! Despite the challenges you are facing, YOU CAN do little things each day to bring peace to order in your daily life but following these simple steps I’m about to give you!

On this weeks Podcast, I discuss exactly how YOU can create a vibrant, happy, tidy home simply by utilizing schedules!

Click on this LINK to go on over to my Podcast & listen to me explaining how to get your life to a state of inner calm, and outer tidiness.

Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to me here & there so you don’t miss a beat!

If you enjoyed this episode , please LIKE, Follow, Share & leave me a comment! I love your feedback!

If you aren’t following me on Facebook, go on over & give a LIKE & Follow me for daily tips & tricks for your home & garden! 

Happy Day,
Jean

Copyright Policy

All text and images on this site are copyright of For Dragonflies And Me. Unless otherwise noted, you may not use this content without written permission.

Beef Short Rib Soup with Heirloom Veggies in the Crockpot!

“Growing your own food may be one of the most powerful steps you can take for the health of yourself, your family, and your planet.” ― Lindsay Oberst (foodrevolution.org)

Our Favorite Recipes

Ingredients:

2.5 pounds beef short ribs
3 small heads baby Bok choy
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves fresh garlic minced OR 2 tsp jarred
3 cups quartered / chunked baby heirloom potatoes
2 cups coined carrots & parsnips mixed evenly
½ cup diced red onion
1 TBSP minced fresh parsley OR 1 tsp dried
2 cups cremini mushrooms, halved
1- 32 ounce container of beef broth
½ tsp Montreal steak spice
½ TBSP seasoned garlic salt

Choose to serve with either homemade dumplings, pour over cooked Basmati rice, or add some extra wide Amish egg noodles! Either of them will be delicious!


Pro Tip: Have an extra container of broth for the leftovers as the broth will get absorbed by either of the dumplings, rice or noodles!

1. Cut short ribs in ⅓’s 

Pro Tip: Cut each short rib into thirds to easily remove the small round bone. You can also cut into chunks and use for beef stew- Just add 2 TBSP white flour to a cup of the broth, whisk & add!

2. Wash & cut all veggies.

3.  In a crockpot layer ingredients; short ribs, potatoes, Bok choy, carrots & parsnips, onions, garlic, parsley, & mushrooms.

4. Pour broth and olive oil over mixture & stir to mix.

5. Next, put seasonings on top and pour broth over.

6. Cook on high for 5 to 6 hours.

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If you enjoyed this post & thought this was a super yummy recipe leave me a comment… and of course please LIKE, Follow & Share.

You can purchase my wonderful cookbook, Lovingly Seasoned Eats & Treats again! Click this link to purchase: https://fordragonfliesandme.com/purchase-my-cookbook…/

Happy Day,
Jean

Copyright Policy

All text and images on this site are copyright of For Dragonflies And Me. Unless otherwise noted, you may not use this content without written permission.

Organization 101 Day 3- Day Planners & Journals: Utilizing the tool of list making!

“To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.” ~ Anatole France

Welcome to Day 3 of my new Organization series! Today we’re going to discuss the importance of using a journal and day planner as well as calendars. I am also excited to provide information on a NEW tool I’ve been using to help keep me organized! Read on for more!

Many of the topics I discuss in this series I learned from an incredible lady named Marla Cilley, A.K.A. The Flylady. Her book, “Sink Relections” taught me how to incorporate all this lessons. It was from the inspirations from her book how I developed my P.M.S. concept! So now lets get into today’s topic!

Let’s recap the previous post. Now that you’ve created your lists of tasks, it’s time to put them down onto paper or a spreadsheet. I started using an incredible program called Trello. It is a functional program that grows with you and your projects. You can use it for both work and personal life. I have 2 accounts- one for my For Dragonflies And Me and one for my other business, Food Trucks To You. I’ll be sharing more on this in my next blog post, and providing you with information on an incredible course I used to learn this great time saver.

You should now be at the point where you’ve created and P.M.S.’ed your lists and routines. Now you need a place to keep them so they stay organized and are easily accessible.

This is where a journal, day planner and calendars come into play. Using these tools will help you keep on track with visual ease. I could never keep up with my many ‘hats’ without them.

What’s the difference?

My journal is primarily used for household tasks and responsibilities where my day planner and calendars keep my work related projects scheduled.

Your Journal

First lets look at the journal. It can be as complex or simple as you the designer want it to be.  Be aware that it’ll evolve and grow along with your children and as home renovations occur.

Day Planners & Paper Calendars

I purchase a new day planner along with a desk calendar every year. I live by my day planner and calendars because they allow me to visually see what I have going on and aid me in planning ahead through the year.

Google Calendars

I also utilize my Google calendar which aids me in scheduling personal & work appointments including Podcast & YouTube recording times with guests. I love that I can access my calendar from my phone for easy reference.

Incorporating the use of all these elements keeps me on task.

Let’s take a look at how I utilize my journal. Be aware you don’t have to have it set up like mine, It can be as complex or simple as you the designer wants it to be. The important thing is it fits your lifestyle and needs. It will evolve and grow with your family & as home renovations occur.

I thought it would be helpful if I explained how my journal is set up, so here we go.

I use a leather-bound 1 1/2 inch 3-ring binder for my journal. It’s filled with top loading plastic sleeves and side tabbed divider sheets. It’s broken down into the following Sections.



Zones refer to each room of your home and is where you’ll put your room-by-room detailed cleaning routine lists. With this concept of zone cleaning, spring and fall cleaning can almost be eliminated.

Daily Routines holds my morning, daily, after school and evening routine lists as well as each day of the week’s schedule of routines that get done. This is where the example of my morning routine I shared with you last time would be placed.

Here’s an example of my Monday Routine:
*Purge magazines and newspapers

*Fill bird feeders

*Bathroom (this is where you’ll go to your Bathroom Routine)- tub, sink, toilet, floor

*Wash all area rugs and throw blankets in the laundry

*Kitchen floor, sweep, dishes

The Daily Home Blessing is my Mission Statement. I’ll share this in an upcoming post!

Zone’s:

My Sections are in this order:
Zones
Daily Routines
Daily Home Blessing
Menu Plans & Grocery Lists
Tools
Personal and Activity Frequency List

Pro Tip: Having a menu helps in grocery shopping and meal prep. I will go into detail on menu planning and grocery shopping in an upcoming post… so stay tuned.

Menus & Grocery lists. I like to spend about an hour once a month creating our monthly menu. I of course ask for input from Dave & the boys so everyone is happy! 

Generally I try to design the menus seasonally.

Spring & Summer menus focus on the fresh produce we’re growing and that’s available at our local farmers market.

The second is Fall & Winter which features what we’ve canned, frozen and what’s in the root cellar along with what we may have left in the garden & again what is available at the farmers market. 

…and now for your personal touch!

My Personal section holds things that inspire me. I have several poems on mothering, being a good wife & person in general, cartoons, drawings from the children and cards from friends and loved ones.

Frequency of Activities section simply holds a list of how often I want to do particular tasks.

*Each section has a Title Page. I have family photos, pictures the children have made, poems, cards and other special things to me.

As I said, your journal is exactly that- yours. Let it be a reflection of what you love, who you want to be, your faith and your passions!

Day Planners & how I use them!

As a writer, and now having both a Podcast & YouTube channel, I have multiple dead-lines for articles and projects which cannot be forgotten. I keep a list of the magazines, other blogs for inspiration in my day planner in the sidebar on the Month-at-a-glance page. I  write the topic for articles & when they need to be published along with the due date. Having these visible on this page makes it really easy to organize my writing time through the month.

All my appointments are kept in this part of the planner as well.

My newest tool is an online organizer called Trello!

“Trello is a collaboration tool that organizes your projects into boards. In one glance, Trello tells you what’s being worked on, who’s working on what, and where something is in a process.

Imagine a white board, filled with lists of sticky notes, with each note as a task for you and your team. Now imagine that each of those sticky notes has photos, attachments from other data sources like Jira or Salesforce, documents, and a place to comment and collaborate with your teammates.

Now imagine that you can take that whiteboard anywhere you go on your smartphone, and can access it from any computer through the web. That’s Trello!” Source- https://support.atlassian.com/trello/docs/what-is-trello/

I use it both singly & collaboratively! Here is a screenshot of my home page. I will be devoting a blog on this! So keep posted!

More on Day Planners

I purchase a new day planner along with a desk & wall calendar every year. I live by my day planner and calendars because they allow me to visually see what I have going on and aid me in planning ahead through the year.

On the Daily Pages of my planner I keep more detailed information. Here are some examples

*On office/desk day I’ll jot down all my phone calls that need to be made.

*I put down what’s for supper if it requires something needing to come out of the freezer, like meat.

*I’ll add extra chores to be done that may not be on that day’s routine. For example, during the canning season my kitchen gets a bit more messy. The day we do apple sauce I may want the floor washed or the cupboards wiped down when we clean the following day.

*Errands, appointments, birthdays and anniversaries also go here.

This is my favorite spot because I love the feeling of accomplishing my tasks and seeing them be crossed off the list!

The Desk & Wall Calendars!

My desk & wall calendars are basically large visual aids at a glance. It is also where Dave & the kids can leave me notes of anything they have coming up including field trips, teacher notes, vacation dates, etc.  I then add those details to my planners.

Well… now you have some great ideas of how to create your own journal and an outline on what to include in your planners and calendars. Go ahead and start working on these until I get back with the next article in the series… How to utilize Trello and an incredible opportunity for a course I’ve taken! After that we will look at how-to do a ‘walk through’ and then the how-to on Zone Cleaning!

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Happy Day,
Jean

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