Organize Family

Family Information Binder

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When a homemaker has established her home office, she is ready to add additional tools to make her paperwork like easy and convenient.  One of these tools, in fact probably the one which will used the most is the Family Information Binder, a place for every important, frequently used piece of paper.

Conceptually, the Family Information Binder will hold important information which the homemaker will refer to again and again throughout the year.  There are three sections to the binder:

– Household Information

– Family Information

– Medical Information



Household Information

It is suggested that initially, you label eight binder dividers with the following:

– Keys

– Miscellaneous

– Numbers

– Purse/Wallet Contents

– Safe Deposit Box

– Special Occasions

– Storage

– Vital Documents.



Behind the Keys section put an 8-1/2″ x 11″ clear plastic business card holder (I use business card sheet protectors, Item #950-157-078, from  Place a spare of each key you regularly use in each of the available spaces.  Add a blank business card (or use the rear side of printed business cards) upon which you have written the purpose of the key.  Tape the opening closed.  These keys becomes your personal “backup” keys.

The Miscellaneous section is for a perpetual calendar and metric/imperial measurement conversion tables, plus any other reference material which will help you navigate through life.

The Numbers section is a place to store information regarding the numbers if you life:  banking, credit cards, library cards, and etc.

The Purse/Wallet Contents section is a place to store a xerox copy of your purse/wallet contents which have been copied (front and back) using a copier.  Such information is very valuable if these items were ever lost or stolen.

The Safe Deposit Box section is a place to record the items which you have placed in your safe deposit box.  This alleviates many a trip to the bank searching for a documents which may or may not be there.  Often it is useful to keep copies of these important documents in this section, too, as a reference.

The Special Occasions section is a permanent place to record birthday and holidays plans, preparations and traditions.

Family Information Section

When these sections are complete, create dividers for each family member.  Put pertinent, current paperwork you will refer to often behind the appropriate dividers.  For instance, John’s soccer schedule will go behind his divider.  Tom’s piano recital schedule will go behind his divider.

Medical Section

We are a mobile society.  We move.  Our doctors and dentists move.  Things change.  If you keep good records, you won’t spend endless hours tracking down information that was so readily available at one time.  So, keep simple medical records in your Information Binder!  If you need more detailed information, you will know who to call and how to reference the material you need.  It only takes a few minutes to complete your notes and you will find a new sense of control over your own life, plus have a place to put important medical information you receive.

For the “Medical Information” section of the Information Binder, prepare a binder divider for each member of your family and label it “Dad-Rx”, “Mom-Rx”, “Tom-Rx” and “Sue-Rx”, etc.  You probably won’t get into this section of the Information Binder as often as the others, so keep these dividers in the rear of the binder.

Use Simple Forms

Behind these dividers you may want to make up simple forms for keeping notes.  You will need one form per person for doctor’s visits and  one for dental visits.  Each of these sheets should have a place for:  Date, Doctor/Dentist, Reason for Visit.  Other sheets can be prepared for prescriptions, immunizations, childhood diseases, and maternity records (for the mother in the house).  Keep special medical instructions, county immunization cards, and other medical information you receive in the appropriate places.

Keep Good Records

When you go to a medical professional or get a prescriptions or have shots, take a minute when you get home to note dates, reasons for the visit, prescription numbers, kinds and amounts of medication, etc.  It will be well-worth your trouble.

Give Records to Adult Children

When you children are grown and move from the house, make a copy of the record for yourself, and then give them this medical history to keep for themselves.  It will aid them in understanding their own medical past as they navigate adulthood and have their own families.  It may  even motivate them to keep their own medical records.

Find more helpful ideas in the “House of Order” Handbook, Chapter 7, “Information Binder”.  Also see:  Home Office.

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Photos from  Used with permission.