Friday, 2 March 2012

Mission Control - Planning/To Dos


I introduced Mission Control in this post, and since then have been working away feverishly. I am SO EXCITED by this project, you'll probably have gathered by now how much of an organising gal I am, and this is ORGANISING HEAVEN!!! Are you picking up the excited vibes yet? Do you need some more exclamation marks - !!!!! I am so excited about this project I couldn't wait till Monday to post it!! I need to take some actual photos of the binder to slot in with some of the descriptions below, so you can see it in action, but I COULDN'T WAIT!!

I've had a rubbish week of too much hard work and Hubs is working late again (I'm beginning to forget what he looks like!) so I thought to myself "Self, you need to get your Mission Control hat on and get yourself an update post done" so since Self is really clever and knows what she's talking about, I had to listen and follow her instructions - TA DA - one update post!

Can I just say up front, that I've read though this post and it reads a bit blase - "I did this" and "I've chosen that" and "I sorted this" and "its all wonderful"... well it is wonderful now, but I have to confess it was HARD WORK. I did and redid and redid and redid this binder so many times its made my head spin. I'm sticking with the information on what's working for me now, rather than boring you with all the failed work-in-progress attempts!!

 I've now settled on 3 binders to complete Mission Control:

1. Planning/To Dos
2. Info
3. Health & Wellbeing

The Health and Wellbeing binder I'll keep with my books on alternative therapies for reference. The other two will work together.

I tackled the Planning/To Do binder first. The layout of the binder means that I can access some information from the front of the folder and some from the back. 

The sections I've included are:

To Do Lists
Blank Paper

I've set up the binder so that where possible related pages are viewed without you having to flip a page over, so I've inserted title pages and restructured the folder to achieve that.

I also set up the binder so that I can flip straight to the back pages where I have all the current daily and weekly stuff available, rather than being lost somewhere in the middle sections. These pages are landscape orientated whereas the others at the front of the folder are (mainly) portrait.

Then if I want to look at the annual/monthly stuff I go back to the front of the binder (this may seem a bit back-to-front, why not have the daily/current stuff at the front? - well I realised when I was setting it up that I was naturally turning and flipping to the back of the binder so I figured if I'm doing that, that's where the stuff used most often should be! Don't know why I did/do it, no rhyme nor reason, but its working, so I'm sticking with it!). 

I've put a plastic wallet for supporting papers just in front of the To Do section so I just use the wallet to flip to that part of the binder easily:

A nice neat little trick I'm really happy with is setting up the Today, Tomorrow and This Week, Next Week pages so that each section to be filled in on the page is the exact size of a mini post it note (i.e. 2" x 1.5").

This means I can write the info on a post-it note and stick it onto the plastic sleeve page instead of updating the worksheet and having to constantly reprint them. I will no doubt go through A LOT of post-it notes but I figured that would be cheaper than paper and toner! Plus easier to amend and delete info!!

Each section in more detail (pics are template style, not the filled in versions):


Calendars - year to view for this year and next year:

Planned/Public Holidays - for scheduling our leave dates for this year and next year (we have to do this pretty far in advance to arrange the time off work):

Important Dates - for noting birthdays, significant dates and events that recur annually:


Packing List - to note what clothes, accessories, jewellery, travel info and tech/useful stuff plus "don't forgets" to take on holidays, with a section to note what was useful/missing (I usually take a copy of the packing list with me):

Travel Essentials - summary of the packing list for what is packed in the bags/containers that are to be taken on holiday:

What to Wear Planner - helps to create a capsule holiday wardrobe and mix and match outfits and accessories:


Christmas Card List - list of all cards to be sent grouped into categories (family, friends, work, clubs etc):

Christmas Address List - address details for any cards to be sent by post:

Christmas Menus - to note the dinner choices for each of Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day:

Food Shopping - a list of all food required for the main Christmas days and other days we're on holidays (item, quantity, store, fresh/frozen/dry and to note which day its for (or general):

To Do List - to note specific tasks to be done to get the house and us Christmas ready:


Planner - to note events that happen during a particular month as a reminder - events that we usually attend (e.g. Edinburgh Festival) or watch (Wimbledon):

Ideas - to note ideas for events that happen during a month that we might want to add to the planner (recurring e.g. an annual festival or one-off e.g. a theatre/concert event that we might want to attend):


Planner - to note plans for the weekends and keep track of what we've been up to (also useful to note weekends we have to work so can't plan stuff for):

Ideas - to note ideas for what we want to do in coming weekends:


Self explanatory?!


This Week & Next Week - plans for each day in the coming week and an extra section for notes.

Today & Tomorrow - home to do; work to do; appointments/calls; daily tasks reminder; reminders; notes; weekly organising & weekly housekeeping:

Blank Paper - for noting things to buy.

I've been using the Planner/To Do for a couple of weeks now and I LOVE IT!! I used to rely on my memory and scribbled notes for all this sort of stuff, so its great to have everything in one place and ORGANISED!! Oh and it doesn't look too shabby either, if I do say so myself!! I was originally going to go down a neutral grey/cream colour scheme to fit in with the study's colour scheme, but I was craving me some colour and had to give in to it!

I'm hoping to make progress on the other binders this weekend - I've got my Mission Control mojo on and it needs to be done!!

Do you have a household manual? Have you thought about having one, but not been sure where to start (I share your pain)? Do you have any suggestions for my version - all suggestions gratefully received! Oh and a plea, I've mentioned I'm not getting my head round the housekeeping elements of the binder, so if you can help with that - PLEASE PLEASE DO!!


  1. Wow, what a great binder you have! Very impressive!


  2. That's intense. But hyper-organized. Excellent work.

  3. I need to do this PRONTO!! Great job. And thanks for linking up this week :)