where wildly different is perfectly normal
Yes, I am organized. I’ve made my peace with that.
Yes, I am organized. I’ve made my peace with that.

Yes, I am organized. I’ve made my peace with that.

If someone had to describe me in only one word, 99% of the time that word would be “organized.” It’s a sickness, really. I can’t not be organized, I’ve tried. I get all shaky and discombobulated. The house may not be clean, but by God, there’s a place for everything and everything (for the most part) is in its place.

A few months ago I started working on a central calendar system for the family. I wanted something that looked nice, because it was going to be in a high-traffic area and visible the second anyone walked in the door. It needed to be magnetic, so I could stick things up there as necessary. I wanted something not messy; chalk has dust (and I have enough of that, thankyouverymuch) and dry erase boards smear and don’t erase well. I finally decided on a magnetic blackboard with chalk markers. The blackboard is beautiful, with a wide wood frame (thank you, Pottery Barn) and is quite large, about 3’x4′. The chalk markers work on smooth blackboards (I tested in a corner to make sure they’d work), and wipe off with water or the special cleaner. The look is that of a coffee shop, with the daily specials written on a blackboard. Finally, I needed something to divide it all up, and went with a thin vinyl that I ran through my Cricut for the words and then my Xyron for the adhesive.

Remember, I’m pathologically organized. I really enjoyed this. Here’s the result:

The week at a glance is at top, where I put the events that affect the boys. The current day (I fill it in at night after the boys are in bed for the next day) is on the far right. There I put what’s going on that day, a joke, the weather, that sort of thing. In the middle I have important phone numbers, like our cell phones, the doctor, police, poison control (two boys, ’nuff said). On the bottom are upcoming dates, important things that are coming up in a few weeks (A’s book reports, for example). The far left is blank. I can write motivational stuff there, quotes, things that come to mind. I have a bunch of magnets that I use to hold stuff up, like the ornaments for the advent calendar my mom stitched for us.

It took longer than I figured to finish this puppy, and wasn’t the cheapest thing I’ve ever done, but it looks like a million bucks and I love it. The frame on the board matches the other Pottery Barn piece I have in the room, the filing cabinet that looks like furniture (hides 90% of my flute music and holy cow the price went up on that!). The boys actually check the blackboard to see what’s going on, see what’s for dinner and how warm they need to dress for school, and what’s coming up. So far, it seems to be a success. I have a bulletin board hidden in the basement stairwell where I stick up school notices and things, so this can keep its clean lines.

Next step in creating the ideal house? Well, other than picking up and moving to the house I saw today that was (must breathe now) not only perfect for us but affordable, laminate flooring so I can toss the miserable builder-grade carpeting.

Organization rocks.


  1. I love calendars more than I can describe. As a matter of fact, I’ve tried to do “digital” calendar systems, only to give them up b/c the happiness in a calendar for me is the creating of them. So I’m salivating over this lovely system you’ve developed here!

  2. Oh, I love that. Too bad the layout of my place does not lend itself to that sort of thing. (must see to understand). But laminate floor has been our savior. I only wish we had done it upstairs as well. Two words: polymer clay.

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