How to Organize Instruction Manuals
I’ve been sticking to my goal to spend less time online and more time on my dreams. My dream is to write for a living, and that is always on my mind to some degree, but I also have a dream of a summer full of adventures with the boys. This is the last summer I have with Nicholas before he begins school. Come fall, I will no longer have a little one at my feet during the day. I want to suck up every last moment of this season in my life before it ends. My dreams of writing can wait until the fall.
Between the trips to museums, libraries, and camps, I haven’t given much thought to what I would do this week. I assumed it would work out, and that everything would come together as it always does. It did, of course. (Maybe I should take this attitude with everything in my life?)
A couple of weeks ago I bought an ipod/iphone docking station. I took it out of the box and set it up in the bathroom so I can listen to music while I get ready. The box stayed on the floor for a couple of days until I was sure I wasn’t going to return the radio. (I’m calling it a radio.) The manual stayed on the counter because it stayed on the counter.
I was on pinterest the day after Mikey’s party and stumbled across an ingenious way to store manuals. I’m sure I’ve seen and read about this method countless times before, but I never remembered it until I pushed aside a radio instruction manual to reach my hair dryer. With a wayward manual and a desire for a quick project to squeeze in between adventures, I set about organizing my instruction manuals in a centralized location. But first, I had to gather up all the manuals.
It took longer than expected, and I know there are more lurking around the house. This is a good start for this week’s project. I’m sure you know by now what I did. It wasn’t rocket science.
I put everything in a binder, though I should have bought a larger size. I had no idea I had so many manuals! I also used dividers, which you can’t really see since they don’t extend past the sheet protectors. Don’t bother with dividers unless you find the ones that are extra wide.
Do go all out on the sheet protectors. You’ll use them to contain booklets that are often thick and unwieldy. It makes sense to buy ones that are sturdy and able to take abuse. I bought ones with a top tab that folds over and keeps the contents contained. I also bought protectors with two pockets to a page. This was perfect for the half booklets that are so popular with small appliances and electronics. It seems like an extravagance, but it disperses the paper and gives you more room in the binder to store manuals. Otherwise, all those small manuals would sink to the bottom of a single pocket protector and stress the spine on your binder.
See? Fairly even, top to bottom.
You know, I was going to poke fun at myself for this project, because it seems like the sort of thing someone really, really particular would do while watching the Lifetime channel with their parakeet. But, you know what? It’s nice. I have everything put together in one spot, and I know where to put other manuals as they come in. I’ve tried file folders in the past, but it didn’t work for me. I have this vision of a tidy shelf of binders with manuals, important documents, repair and upkeep information/business cards, etc, so this binder will go in the office with all our other home binders. The home binders I have yet to put together, sure, but they’re coming.
This post was part of The William Morris Project, a weekly series that details the steps I am taking to create an intentional home. You can see more of my goals and completed projects here. To learn more about this project, start here.
Now it’s your turn! Feel free to share how you have lived according to the William Morris quote, “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” Made a plan? Cleaned a drawer? Bought a sofa? Tell us about it with a link or comment. A few guidelines:
- Please link to a specific post, not a general blog address.
- Your post must relate to your efforts to create an intentional home. I have a delete button, and I’m not afraid to use it.
- No links to giveaways, please.
- Let’s use this weekly link up as an opportunity to gather inspiration and motivation. Click links. Discover new people. Say hi and good job. I know I will.