Making a VIP Binder
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN ISSAQUAH HIGHLANDS CONNECTIONS, OCTOBER 2018 ISSUE
Happy October! Last month we discussed ways to handle the back to school rush. September was also National Preparedness month, and it is true that we never know what to expect. Being prepared and organized takes a lot of stress out of day to day situations, as well as when the unexpected arises. Instead of getting overwhelmed and putting it off “for another day”, just start small. This can bring you to your end goal surprisingly fast. Make a plan. Start small. Baby steps. One space at a time.
My biggest piece of advice that helps daily, as well as in an emergency, is creating a “VIP” binder. This will allow you to grab all of your important documents and information and go as needed. Whether it is because you need the login information for your homeowners insurance, your children’s school information, or because you are facing a natural disaster or home emergency, having all of this in one location is invaluable. When I was diagnosed with cancer, I found that having this in place ahead of time made my post op planning so much easier for everyone involved. I could point everybody to one centralized location to access almost anything they may have needed.
To make your own you will start with a heavy duty 3 ring binder, and white divider tabs that you can label easily. You may want to invest in an electronic label maker, as it will be useful in many of the projects I discuss in the future. Each section will vary, depending on your lifestyle. Some examples of documents to include are - homeowners paperwork, insurance (health, car, homeowners/renters,etc), school documents, financial documents (mortgage information, lending/banking/credit investment paperwork, etc). Now is also a great time to make sure that your will and power of attorney is up to date, and include a copy of those as well. Copies of automobile documents, tax records, and login information for email and online accounts are handy to include as well.
Another way to start on your organizational journey is by making it a goal to clear one small space every time you leave a room. If you are in the kitchen, clear one part of the counter. When you come home, instead of leaving your bag and shoes lying on the floor, put them away. These small daily practices will become like second nature, and it will all start to snowball into a new way of life. You can also begin the practice of “one in, one out”. If you are purchasing something, make sure it can take the place of something that is already in your home.
And last for this month - Halloween. The Issaquah Highlands is always bustling with costumed children (and fun adults!) for this holiday. With neighbors close by and condos and townhomes dotted throughout, it makes it an attractive location for the biggest candy haul around! When you are buying your new costumes this year, make sure to donate last year’s model. Eastside Baby Corner is a wonderful resource, and they have a drop off location at Highlands Self Storage, across from Orange Theory in Grand Ridge Plaza
Next month we’ll talk about getting our homes holiday ready!