Well, I just about had it with not being able to take care of my billing and other matters because stuff was spread all round the house!
In the past, I would take care of all manner of home management out of the home office. It quickly became cluttered, not to mention the kids needed the space for their time on the computer, which was just about the same time I needed to do my work!
I then set up a mini office in the basement, but since the basement/family room is still not complete at this time, it has become an unused space, plus it made me feel isolated form the rest of the house.
Since I purchased a laptop computer, I found myself working mostly out of the dining room, going back and forth to other rooms to fetch what I needed. Putting all my stuff in the dining room made it look cluttered, so I decided to put together a portable mini office!
And here it is:
To make my portable office I did not spend a dime! I only recycled items I already had on hand around the house. The file folders were brand new, but I had purchased them at a much earlier time, matter of fact, I had forgotten all about them!
Here I have a large basket with a metal armature, it has two handles which makes it portable.
The goal is that whenever I need to work on something house related (paperwork, billing, budgeting, etc.) I have everything on hand. Whenever we have company, I can simply take the basket out of the dining room and bring it to our home office, or to my other desk in the basement. No more messy dining room table!
So, what do I keep in my portable office? Well, I thought about it for some time and decided to only keep those items I know I will need and/or use - nothing else!
I keep my laptop, my label maker, a hand/body cream, a recycled box of basic supplies and my portable pouch for more supplies (this is my on the go pouch which I featured in my Basement office post).
Inside the green container (which used to be in my pantry) I keep all that I would need to complete paper tasks:
I have a container of clips (binder and paper clips), post it notes, a pencil sharpener (kids need that when doing homework), a stapler, glue, a nail file (hey, you never know), some Martha Stewart Dew Drop Repositionable Stickers and tape. The clear container used to hold magnetic clips from Target, I put the clips inside the round container and used this clear one to hold all my post it flag and tabs. The Hello Kitty clips are there just for fun.
In my on-the-go-pouch, I keep more and similar supplies. This is a great pouch for travel or whenever I am on the go and I know I will need writing instruments, clips etc. (I take a lot of trainings) I also take it to my bedroom, on occasions, when I am doing some personal work in the evening.
For pens and pencils, I used another similar basket but instead of placing it at the bottom of the larger basket and therefore losing space at the bottom, I tied it to the top part of the basket using twist ties. It allows me to place the green container underneath it without having to remove the pen holder to get to the other supplies...it just hangs there!
The basket is almost the right size for hanging folders so I placed a few in there but was very thoughtful not to overload myself with categories. I only need a few:
I have one folder for each member of the family. In another section I keep two folders: bills paid and bills to pay. Most of my billing is completed online nowadays, so the amount of paperwork inside these folders will be limited. I have another one for Important to -dos, an example would be kids after care registration and the like. There is one more folder where I keep two more files: Archives and Banking.
In the front folder I keep a notebook and checkbooks. There are some spare files in the back, I am keeping them there in case I come up with another category I may need. The file folders are made of plastic (Pendaflex EasyView Poly File Folders ) I like them better than the usual manila style since the tabs are stronger and the sticker can be removed to be replaced by another one. I used my Dymo label maker (DYMO LabelManager 160 ) to clearly label all my files.
That's it! Super easy to put together, super practical and what a difference it has made in my dining room! During the day I simply keep the basket on top of a spare chair and when needed, I bring the chair and the basket closer to where I am sitting, I have everything I need on hand.
I should have thought about this a long time ago!
Here is a video on how I managed this task and other ones, all in one day, including a recipe for a Negative Calorie Soup!
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