Create and Customize a Household Family Management Notebook – Part #1

This is the first in a 7 part series. For more great posts and printables like these simply subscribe to my RSS feed. All printables are in .doc files and can be edited using Microsoft Word or the free open source software called Open Office. This set of printables is from the Simple Magnolia set. Other sets will be released in the coming weeks including the Textured Vintage, Frooty Fun, and Crafty Mama sets. You can find all related posts here: Household Notebook Printables

I was completely unorganized for many years. We lived in chaos because I am not a natural homemaker. I don’t have the ingrained routine or superb memory to get it all done all the time. I have to have a guide. That is what my Life Management Notebook is to me. It is my all inclusive information and guide book. Whether it is an emergency situation or just a slow day at home I can count on this book to have what I need to get to the next step quickly.

There are so many different things that you can call this binder: household notebook, homemaking binder, life management planner, or family organizer. I’m sure you can think of many more too. What you call it is up to you. I hope this series of posts simply serves as a launching pad for you to create the notebook that is a perfect fit for your unique family. The tips, advice, printables, and other information that you will read in them are simply an accumulation of years worth of trial and error to get what we have today. This system is one I’ve been perfecting for 9 years now. You can see one of my originals here: Household Management Notebook. You will find that over time you too will begin to change, edit, and alter the binder to suit your family’s needs.

The actual binder I use is called a Silhouette View (not an affiliate link). The dividers I use are Avery Ready Index Dividers (not an affiliate link). I have tried dozens of binders over the years and I prefer this one over all others. I like that the spine is curved and it is much more heavy duty than the typical 3-ring binders I’ve found. I also like that there is a place to insert pages of information on both inside covers, front and back.

On the outside of the front cover I have our name for the binder (Life Management Notebook). The printable (located at the bottom of this post) can be edited so that you may name it whatever you like. I also include our family mission statement on the front cover. It is the first thing we see before we make any adjustments or additions to the pages within the binder. That means before we add an extra-curricular activity, a major purchase, or project, we see can  make sure it is in line with our family’s mission statement. You can edit my statement and add yours to the front cover.

On the inside of the front cover I have all of the emergency phone numbers for our city. I also include poison control and child find. Our address is located just under those numbers and so are the names and birthdays of each family member. In the next section I include other phone numbers we use regularly such as the pediatrician, doctors office, and the schools. The next section contains the names and phone numbers of close relatives. I have included a template of the emergency numbers page with the other printables at the bottom of this post.

I keep all of this information in the front cover for emergency purposes. I train my children so that they know where this book is and how to use it in case of an emergency. If something were to happen and they called 911 then they would have the address, names, dates of birth, relatives numbers and more right at their fingertips.

In the pocket of the back cover I keep any current bills, notes, or other information that needs to be added to my binder.

I use the index dividers to keep the 8 sections of my binder organized. The sections that I find are most beneficial for us are:

  • Daily Planning, Goals, and Calendars
  • HPC Church and Ministry Information
  • Grocery Shopping, Recipes, and Menu Planning
  • Home Making and Home Maintenance
  • Debt Snowball and Financial Planning
  • Education and Extra-Curricular Activities
  • Hobbies and Crafts
  • Quick References for Kids, House Rules, etc.

Certainly you can use any sections you would like and you can also have more than 8. Avery also has a 12 and a 15 section set of dividers just like this one. I only needed 8. The template I use is available to you to download and edit at the bottom of this post.

I will go into details about each of these sections in the upcoming posts. In the last post of this series I will actually show you a video of my binder and how I use it. That will give you a better overall feel for how it works. I want to make sure that I add that this homemaking binder should be a tool to make things easier for you. It should not become another chore or distraction. There is no need to put every form or printable you have ever downloaded into it. Only use what your family can benefit from. I’ll give you an example. I don’t use a freezer inventory list. To me that would be one more thing I have to update and keep up with so I figured out an easier way to do it. It is the same with other things that I have found printables for. There is no need for all of them. Customize this binder so that it serves your family and not the other way around.

AND… you can find another post related to my Home Management Notebook at a fabulous new site that I am a contributor to: The Better Mom. It is a great place to find encouragement and practical ways to enhance your everyday living as “mom”.  Go there to see my article entitled: Family Management in Emergency Situtations: Legos Optional.

Download Printables:


  1. Not a shameless plug – this isn’t my website – but I thought I would share the weekly printable calendar that I found last week. It would be great if you could do something like this for us? (I found it at fantasticfamilyadventuresDOTcom)

  2. Try right clicking the file and click “Open with” and then “Microsoft Office Word.”

    I had trouble reading the files at first, because my computer (for whatever reason) decided to open it in Wordpad.

    Hope this helps.

  3. Thank you so much for making these and making them in word documents that we can fill out ourselves. I really appreciate the work you’ve done and that you’re sharing it with us!

  4. Thanks for helping me get organized. I am excited to grab a binder and get started!

  5. I can’t seem to get the cover page to open right…can you help me or privately email it to me? Thanks for your help!

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