It’s amazing to me how busy and confusing the schedule for one family of 4 can be—and we only have a 6 year old and a 23 month old.
I can’t even imagine families with 5 kids in school with extra -curricular activities survive. (Shout out to my mom!)
When Brian and I were first married our calendar consisted of one of those free calendars (small squares to write in) that we got from church every December. We would put it on the refrigerator and jot down important things either of us had coming up that would impact the other (dates with friends, traveling, etc.)
Once Cassidy entered the picture we continued with this calendar for a while, but our needs for a bigger more robust calendar system grew. It wasn’t until Amelia joined our family that I knew I needed a different solution. By this time Brian worked shifts, overtime and attended trainings—his schedule constantly changing. This in turn made the girls’ daycare (each of them going somewhere different) schedule fluctuate and then of course there were all the other things each of us were involved with.
Too many times it would be a conversation of, “I didn’t know you were going there this weekend, I planned X.” The first step in our new calendar system was buying a bigger refrigerator calendar
AT-A-GLANCE Academic Year Monthly Wall Calendar, July 2016 – June 2017, 14-7/8″x11-7/8″, Wirebound (AY828)
This calendar runs from July to July, which works great for us. The best part about this calendar is the size. The calendar itself is nearly 15” x 12” and the squares are 2” x 1.75” which is considerably larger than the free calendar we were getting before. With our busy schedules the large lined squares on this calendar provide enough room to write (almost) everything everyone is doing.
The calendar is wire bound with a loop at the top so it hangs nicely on our refrigerator right next to the perpetual calendar. This makes it easy for everyone to see.
These magnet hooks from Amazon work great for hanging this calendar and your perpetual calendar on the refrigerator or any magnetic surface.
Master Magnetics MHHH9X8 Magnetic Hook White Enamel Paint, 1″ Diameter, 1.5″ Total Height, 9 Pounds (Pack of 8)
With the first step completed, then I decided to color code the calendar to make it easy to see who was doing what at a quick glance. In our family Cassidy got the pink ink, Amelia got the green ink, Brian got the blue ink, I got the purple ink, and family events are all in black.
uni-ball 207 Retractable Gel Pens, Medium Point, Assorted Colored Ink, Set of 8
I will admit this takes an extra step to make sure you grab the right pen, but it makes using the calendar that much easier.
Having this calendar accessible and effortless to read has made it easy to make decisions quickly about time commitments. It also makes planning ahead much easier. Cassidy likes to look at the calendar to see what things are coming up and she uses it to make a countdown for big events that she is looking forward to.
We typically, buy the next year’s calendar a couple of months in advance so that we can start preparing for our busy July and onward.
This calendar is great and functional for our family, but it is not the only scheduling tool we utilize. This past year (again, not sure why it takes me forever to embrace technology sometimes) we began using google calendar as well. Be sure to also read about how we utilize google calendar for staying organized on the go.
It doesn’t matter what type of calendar system you use as long as everyone in the family uses it and it is somewhere that everyone in the family can see it and add to it.