Well it was so much fun doing Menu-Plan Monday, that I decided to join in on Works-For-Me Wednesday as well!
I've been thinking about starting a series on implementing various organizational systems throughout your home, and this is a perfect opportunity for me to do that. :)
One of my current goals is to simplify our lives to the greatest extent possible, so that we can focus less time and energy on the stuff we have to do, and more time and energy on the stuff we want to do. With each new system I implement, it makes our lives just a little easier, and frees up just a little more time. These systems become almost automated after awhile, to the point where I hardly have to think about them.
There are still plenty of things in our home that don't have a system, and it's obvious. Those are the areas that keep getting messy and cluttered, and that I find myself wasting time doing the same thing over and over again. Whenever I notice that happening, I add it to my Projects list, and plan to tackle it as soon as possible!
So each Wednesday I'm going to share a system that works for me!
I'll start today by talking about the one that we can all relate to... the dreaded grocery shopping. This was one of the very first systems I implemented, because it was the one that I found most aggravating! I wanted to shop once a week, and get everything we needed for the week, as quickly and efficiently as possible, staying within budget, without having to run out every other day to pick up something I forgot!
Since my Palm Pilot is my organizational best friend, I downloaded a free program called Handyshopper. It's basically a database that you can do whatever you want with. There are a list of Stores, and then under each store you start listing all the things you buy there. I started off just adding things in as I needed them. It didn't take long before I had a complete database of everything we would ever buy. Now whenever I notice we are getting low on something, I simply click the item and it moves it to my "Need" list. Sounds great, right? Well, it doesn't end there!
There is also a place where you can enter the price of each item. I started doing that as well, putting prices in as I purchased things, so that I would have an idea how much my groceries were going to cost. Now nearly every item on my list has a price beside it, and when I create my list I can click on "Checkout" (the button with the dollar sign on it), and it tells me how much it all comes to! It also allows you to compare prices between stores. So I can quickly see if something is cheaper at WalMart, or at SuperStore, and I can shop accordingly.
Finally, there is a sorting option. It allows you to sort your Need list however you want. You can sort by category (produce, bakery, dairy, canned goods, etc.), or you can sort by aisle. I started adding in aisle numbers as I bought things, and now pretty much everything has an aisle number. It's amazing how quickly I can zip through the grocery store now! Everything is listed aisle by aisle. No more treks from one end of the store to the other.
Since I add things to my list as soon as I run low on something, I almost always have everything I need in the house to make a meal. So on Fridays when I do my menu-planning, all I have to do is add to my list a few fresh things that I need to complete those meals, and I'm done!
Works for me!