Get Organized for 2011

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Being a mom is hard enough, but when you’re disorganized, it can seem like the hardest thing in the world. Getting organized will make your life a whole lot easier. Here are some tips and tricks to start the new year off right — organized and happy — so that you can focus on what’s really important, like your family.

Take Action Immediately

The real key to keeping paper clutter at bay is to handle it immediately. Putting it aside will only make the pile grow larger and discourage you from taking action later on.

Use a File Cabinet

If you don’t store all your paperwork in a file cabinet, you’re not being very efficient. Getting a cabinet with labeled folders is the first step in staying organized. Labels like "Medical", "School", "Receipts" and "Utilities" will help you out when you need to find something quick.

Make Time

If you’re overloaded with paperwork, then make a commitment to set aside 1-2 hour each evening or weekend to sort through that pile of papers you’ve been ignoring.

How to Handle Mail

Every day, when you take the mail out of the mailbox, go through it quickly and throw away or shred the junk mail. Then, place the important mail in a tiered file tray. Use whatever labels work for you, like "Urgent" or "Bills." Make sure to take some time every day to go through that tray.

Use a Family Calendar

Post a calendar in a part of your house that your family can’t miss, like the Kitchen or next to the front door. Mark any important dates, like appointments or birthday parties, so that your whole family can access this info without going to you first.

Use Available Resources

Going paperless may just be the answer! There are certain web sites that will help you get organized. AboutOne.com for instance is an online family management system. It’s one place, accessible anytime and anywhere, where you can store and manage your paperwork and your life. You can keep track of your family’s busy schedule, like doctor’s appointments, or important info, like your kid’s school address. You can even upload those precious memories in the form of photos or artwork. Your whole family will have access to this info. Take advantage of AboutOne’s discounted offer for ModernMom readers and use the code MODERNMOM to sign up for 20% off your first year.

Sponsored by AboutOne.com

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