First Aid and Meds Storage,
Address Book Organization,
Library Materials Record-keeping,
and Sundry Other Items
My apologies for the length of this one, but it’s jam-packed with “Helpful Hints” and it’s the last of the three.
(Click here to read “Helpful Hints” Part 1, and “Helpful Hints” Part 2)
22. Keep a box (a shoebox, tackle box–various sizes are available–or a Rubbermaid container work well) in the bathroom cupboard (or higher up if you have small children) with common medicinal products which you use, such as Tylenol/aspirin/Advil, cough drops/cough medicine, medicine droppers, medicine dispensers, different kinds of thermometers (labeled), etc.
23. Keep a properly stocked first aid kit near the main bathroom (you can go the Red Cross website for info on what to have on hand) with supplies such as assorted kinds and sizes of band aids, salves, ointments, gauze and tape, ipecac and the poison control center’s #; also keep an ice pack in the freezer and an ace bandage and heating pad on the shelf with your first aid kit.
24. After you no longer have small children in the house, hang on to that small wooden stool they used and store it in the bathroom closet or cupboard for guests with small children and your (present or future) grandchildren.
25. Keep your bathroom bag packed with travel size toiletries and supplies, to make packing for an emergency or a special getaway quick and easy. Keep it, and an overnight bag, on a shelf in your bedroom closet.
26. Use a large cloth bag to carry library books back and forth to the library (click the link to read “Going to the Library”) and when you bring library books home from the library, always put them in the same place: a large basket on the floor of the living room, or one shelf of the bookshelf works well. Train your children to always return the books there when they’re done looking at them. Record all materials checked out in a log for this purpose (write the date due both on this log and books due on that date on your calendar) before you leave the library. (If you don’t get the books recorded before you leave the library, don’t allow anyone to look at any of the materials until you have done this once at home.)
- Being able to look back at a record of all the books you’ve read, for years.
- Knowing the title and author, and library where it’s located, of that great book you read two (or five) years ago.
- Knowing, and tracking, how much you’re spending in fines each year!
- The ability to recommend, and give a printed copy, of good materials on a given subject.
Limit the number of items each child may check out (keep it consistent) and let them know what this number is—increase the number with increased age/or responsibility shown. Require that the child pay out of his own money (or if he is too young, he can do “jobs” for you to pay off his debt) for any materials lost, damaged or overdue.
27. When you go with your children to the library, or any such public building, for that manner, clearly spell out what behavior is expected and before entering the building, stop at the door and remind them (“Ok, no running—walk—speak in a whisper, stay by me/or sit at this table/stay in this area (etc.)” and tell them in a calm, but firm, voice, what to expect if they disobey: “If you disobey I will take you into the bathroom and spank you and you will not be able to check out any books” etc. (If you’re thinking I’m a “mean” mother, please remember that the tone and demeaner is loving, but firm, and this is clearly the example God used with His children: If you obey Me, you’ll be blessed, if you don’t, these are the dire consequences. You choose.) Occasionally, without warning, reward good behavior with a “treat,” however, the reward of good behavior is that you all enjoy a wonderful time together as a family at the library, being together. The reward is relational, and intrinsic. Do not allow them to ask for a reward. If they ask (this is to beg) then they automatically don’t get the reward, even if you were planning on giving one. Let them know this. Then follow through exactly as you said. Library visits will be one of your most enjoyable and anticipated activities together!
28. Before a young person may get their drivers license (or permit), make a requirement for them to memorize and recite a whole book of the Bible (James is good because it is filled with wisdom—or selected chapters of Proverbs.)
29. If you have a credit card: record your purchases on a log sheet (kept in your purse or notebook) just as you would when writing a check and write a memo to indicate what the purchase was for, such as “clothes-W(endy)” or “gas” or “entertainment/restaurant.”
30. If you buy things at home parties, such as Pampered Chef or Tupperware, keep the receipts, along with a current catalog, in a two-pocket folder on a shelf by your computer. This makes it easy to make online orders, or email your hostess or consultant about a particular item or order. Also keep the product care and use cards there, and staple or paper-clip the consultant’s business card to the folder. If you have hosted a party, keep all the information relating to your last party: invitation list, addresses, phone numbers, whether the invitee came and/or made an order, the food you served, etc. This will simplify things the next time you want to have a party, and allow you to particularly invite those who enjoy attending these events.
31. Keep a “Master Address Book” with the names and addresses of everyone you know and update this every 5-10 years. Store this Master List on a shelf in a cupboard of your kitchen, with other Directories. When you are unfamiliar with how to get to a person’s house, keep directions on a sticky note by the entry for that person in the Master Address book. When they move, all you have to do is throw away the note. Also, when visiting the person, you can take the sticky note with you to help you get there, and return it to the Master Address Book when you return home. You will also be able to make any changes to the directions, or clarification needed, as you’re driving there.
32. Other Address Lists: Keep a separate Christmas Card address list, noting whether you sent a card/letter/photo and have a check-off box for each year. Keep this in your Christmas Planning Notebook (click on the link to read about “Christmas Organized” Planning Forms, etc.). In the notebook you carry with you, keep a reduced-size copy of the church directory, and your most-used addresses and phone numbers. If the directions are short, and not likely to change, write them right by the person’s address, otherwise use the system from tip #31.
33. Do your cleaning each week on a schedule spread out over several days so it’s not so overwhelming. Assign the same child the same job for a period of time; then you know who to praise when it is done well, and who to blame when it’s not:) and they will get more skilled at it because they get to practice doing it often. Once each child has been trained in each job, if one child especially likes one particular job, make it his, but don’t allow the favorite/least favorite job to always fall to the same child.