Thursday, November 15, 2007

One Must be Organized to be Frugal

Most of the time I’m a fairly organized person. There are times, however, when organization goes out the window, and the clutter in my life begins to pile up. It’s at these times that frugality goes out the window. An example of how disorganization cost me happened yesterday. We received a call from the YMCA on Friday reminding us that the deadline for soccer sign-ups was today. So yesterday I loaded up the kids and drove to the YMCA to sign them up for soccer. I knew soccer sign-ups were in August, but I never called to find out when they started.

Had I called, I would have known that the early sign-up deadline was August 21. Because I missed that deadline, I had to pay an extra $5 for each of my children. You may say it’s only $10, but $10 mistakes can add up quickly.

Other symptoms that disorganization is costing you are:

  • eating out too often, because you don’t know what’s for dinner
  • buying duplicate items, because you don’t know what you already have on hand
  • washing one outfit at a time, because you need to wear a particular outfit tomorrow, but you forgot to throw it in the laundry with the rest of your clothes a few days ago
  • paying a higher interest rate, because you forgot to pay your bill on time
  • paying late fees, because you forgot to return a book or dvd to the library

What is the answer? Learn to be more organized. Yes, organization can be learned! Some resources for learning to be organized are: In simple steps, Flylady teaches you to organize your home little by little. I have had a lot of success using morning routines and weekly home blessings. When my home is organized, I don’t feel overwhelmed by clutter, and I am more productive.

Flylady isn’t for you? Try Organized Home. It’s a different approach to the same principle. Everyone can organize his/her home with a little discipline and effort. I’ve come across tons of great tips from the message boards. Organized Home has some pretty cool printable forms, too!

Getting Things Done. I had heard great things about this book, but I didn’t know if it would apply to a stay at home mom like me. I read it, and I have found ways to apply it, especially when it comes to paper clutter! David Allen presents a pretty good system for filing and keeping track of all the papers and emails that make their way into our lives. I recommend this book for anyone who has trouble with paper clutter.

HouseWorks is a great book if you really don’t know where to begin with the clutter in your house. Written by Cynthia Townley Ewer, the CEO of Organized Home, this book is a wealth of information from how to declutter your house to how to clean things. I wish this book would have been around when I first got married!

Having a tough time with meal planning? Try Saving Dinner by Leanne Ely. This book has 6 weeks worth of dinner menus for every season of the year, complete with grocery shopping lists. Copy the list, cook, and eat! It doesn’t get easier than that! The recipes are very healthy. The groceries cost me more than what I personally budget for a week, but it’s still less expensive than eating out. Leanne also has a website, where you can get menu plans emailed to you every week for a fee.

A free option is Menus4Moms. I love this website when I’m strapped for time, because I can get 5 dinner plans for the week plus a grocery list FREE! The grocery list also includes an estimate for the cost of the week’s groceries. I’ve found that it’s usually pretty accurate. The menus aren’t quite as healthy as the Saving Dinner menus, but they’re kid friendly, and still much healthier than eating a Big Mac.

You now you have some resources to help you get organized. No more excuses for unpaid bills and last minute trips to McDonald’s for dinner! Now excuse me while I do a 27 Fling Boogie!
If you have a favorite website or tip for getting organized, please share it in the comments!

If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!

No comments: