organize me monday #4

Today's post is about how I deal with all the papers our family accumulates. It is so easy to let papers get out of control!

So first, here's my filing system...

The green & white canvas box came from Ikea a couple years ago. It was around $10. It takes up significantly less space than a big filing cabinet. And it's small & portable if I want to work on my filing at the kitchen table while my kids are playing.

I bought most of my folders from Staples, but picked up some new ones from the dollar store so I can replace ones as they get dog-eared.

These 4 folders are my "action folders". These are the ones I use the most. They are labeled: "to PAY, to FILE, to DO, to SHRED".

They allow me to quickly put away new mail in the appropriate file. Then once every week or so, I can deal with the papers as needed. When paying bills, all my bills are together. Then when I need to file away things in their specific folder, I just pull out the "to FILE" one and put all those papers where they belong.

And then I have files for whatever needs one. Here are some of the folders in my system:

Bank, Benefits,
Cell Phone, Church,
Dentist, Doctor,
Electronics (for warranties and receipts),
RRSP, Statements (bank or credit card),
Taxes (I have one folder for the current tax year and one for all the past years),
Utilities, Vehicle,
Work (important papers from my husband's job),
and I have a folder for each member of our family.

Things are filed alphabetically...

And another thing I have done to organize my kids' papers is create a binder for each of them...

The binders were 2 bucks each for the dollar store. They are a perfect size and I liked the colours.

This is a great time of year to get your household paperwork organized because of all the great supplies for back-to-school!

I picked up these files from Walmart for around $2 each. They are made for binders and have a few spots in expanding file. I knew they would be perfect to add to the back of the kids' binders. (The yellow one for my daughter's pink binder and the green one for my son's blue binder.)

I added the simple circle labels to the spines of the binders . I want to add their first name's initial to that once I find the right vinyl alphabet.

So what I am putting in these?

These are in addition to having baby books and scrapbook albums for my kids. They are perfect to hold samples of their artwork at each age, I saved a picture my niece drew of her and my daughter when my daughter turned one, I can add in a copy of their birthday invitations each year, in my son's binder I have the cards he was given when he sprained his ankle a couple years ago.

In my daughter file, I added the hospital records from her stays in the children's hospital.

In my son's file, I put in the notebook where I started writing down things he did and said.

These systems work for me. I am always tweaking the ways I organize to make things as efficient and effective as possible.

Maybe something I shared will give you an idea to improve your system. Or to create a system if you haven't already :)

Happy organizing!


  1. I have a need for organization and I love your tips. Our filing cabinet is filling quickly and I never thought about a canvas box, thanks for sharing!
    Visiting from Young and Crafty!

  2. Great tips! Love that file case - smart that it's easy to go to any room. I have a similar binder for my son - great ideas of what else to put in there.

  3. I love these ideas, especially the notebooks. I have been trying to figure out where to put all the artwork that my boy does (I just cannot throw any of it away!). Thanks for sharing!

  4. Great great ideas! Clutter makes me sick to my stomach and your ideas rock!

  5. I need to do this. Thanks for sharing.

    I'd love to have you share this and any other of your amazing posts over at my linky party Create and Share. It posts every Wednesday. We open the party Tuesday evening at 8 pm for those who like to link up early. Hope you stop by...and follow too! ;-)

    Tara @Trendy Treehouse


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