It’s funny that I am simultaneously a paper girl and a fan of Paperless Home Organization

January 3, 2014 @ 11:13 am | Filed under: , , ,

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Really really really good tips in the Mystie Winckler book Pamela Barnhill recommends here, gang. I thought I was already using Evernote & Google Calendar efficiently, but I picked up some useful new ideas (including better integrating my systems) in the book. Which is 30% off with the code in Pam’s post. So, like, under $3.

In Paperless Home Organization, Mystie Winckler leads you through the process of using digital applications to build your very own paperless system. She walks you step-by-step through how to use four free apps to digitally store the same information you would normally keep in a home management binder.

Which means if you have a smartphone, or an iPod Touch, or any tablet, then your binder no longer sits cluttering up your counter, but in your hand — at the doctor’s office, the bookstore, even at your school room table.

I’d been meaning to try Remember the Milk—my pal Ron raves about it, and he doesn’t rave lightly—and Pam’s post, and Mystie’s book, nudged me to take the plunge. Last year I relied on TeuxDeux for daily task management, but my free trial period ran out and I decided I wasn’t enough in love with it to pay for it. It’s a really gorgeous, clean layout but too hard to go back to past days. Remember the Milk isn’t quite as visually appealing (its web app, that is; on my phone it’s quite nice) but it is so much more flexible and functional. Thanks to Paperless Home Organization, I’ve now got it talking to my Gmail account (my RTM to-do list pops up in my inbox sidebar) and WOW, this is just right for the way mah brain works.

As for Evernote, I rely on it for everything. Or so I thought. Now I see all sorts of new bits of recordkeeping I can shift over there. Very pleased.

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12 Reponses | Comments Feed
  1. Pam says:

    Glad you liked the book. All of your raving has me looking at Remember the Milk. That was the only part of the group I have not been using — got my cal, Gmail, and Evernote (which I love) rockin’. I seriously want to eliminate most of the paper in this house this year. It’s a process.

  2. Melissa Wiley says:

    Me too. I’d already fallen in love with the Scanner Pro app (which I configured to upload directly to Evernote)—scans beautifully with my phone and has cut way down on receipt piles, biz cards, etc.

    I am LOVING having RTM connected to my Gmail. Took me a couple of hours to adjust to the loss of the sidebar space in my inbox, but it’s worth it for the easy task-listing. You can add/complete items in RTM right from Gmail. One less site to visit. Once you learn RTM’s shortcut codes (and Mistie is wise about keeping your tags few and simple), you can quickly enter recurring events, tagged events, etc in Gmail. HAVE I MENTIONED HOW MUCH I LOVE THIS INTEGRATION??

    You can integrate RTM with Google Calendar, too, but *there* I found the RTM sidebar (which causes the monthly calendar view to compress to the left) didn’t work for me at all. I really like that nice clean big month grid for my G-Cal. But I did subscribe to my RTM tasklist in G-Cal, so I can toggle on a view that shows items on their appropriate days.

  3. Amy says:

    I need to get that ebook. Do you think the system is as good w/o a phone? I do have an iPod/iPad. I think a smart phone is not too far behind but is not a reality yet. I used RTM on the web for awhile and just couldn’t get into it. Same with Cozi.

    Going to check out the scanner pro app, I’ll do anything to get rid of all theeeeseee receeeeeipts. They are going to topple over and crush us. (alternately, I throw them right out which drives dh crazy) 🙂

  4. Melanie B says:

    I love the new header. I have no opinions on organizing things.

  5. Ellie says:

    Me? It’s your desk organizer. I like 🙂 Love the photo.


  6. Melissa Wiley says:

    Ellie, LOL, I came back to change my subject title and then saw your comment. 🙂 I’m in love with it too. Paper makes me so happy.

    I probably have organization overload when it comes to calendars…I’m realizing I just really really like calendars in any form. I rely on Google Cal because it’s on my phone—I never got good about carrying a planner with me for writing appointments in and stuff. And I like G Cal for desktop because I can set up pop-up reminders, and look way ahead in time, etc. But I also have to have a paper calendar for the visual. I was so happy this morning to print out the monthly calendar pages Lesley Austin provides for Wisteria & Sunshine subscribers. I taped it to the slide-out keyboard shelf of my desk (since I use a laptop with no separate keyboard). So pretty!

    What I like Evernote for is longer-term storage (i.e. not to-do lists & appointments). I use it a lot for historical research for my writing. And bookmarking educational resources etc for my kids—I have a notebook for each kid. Jane’s is full of her college stuff, for example. Schedules and forms and whatnot. Rose’s is mainly booklists.

    Amy, I think you can do plenty w/ RTM and Evernote even without the apps. I mainly use the Evernote app for snapping pictures of things I don’t feel like writing down, like Rilla’s piano homework at class each week. I would say 90% of what I do with it is on the laptop, not the app.

  7. Sherry says:

    I can’t get used to any of these apps on my iPhone because I hate typing stuff into the phone—those tiny keys (and all the mistakes I make) drive me crazy. I use my (paper) appointment calendar, but I get tired of writing down repetitive classes and weekly stuff over and over. I would like to keep everything on my phone, but . . . I tried Evernote a long time ago, but I couldn’t figure it out. Maybe I need this book.

  8. Ellie says:

    Well, i will say that my iPad means the world to me since the brain tumor. I carry it with me to appointments and the iCalendar is essential. I don’t use any other sorts of organizing apps or websites and whatnot, though. I find them too overwhelming. It’s just too much for my brain, you know? I could still make a paper organizer work for me if i had to, but i really do like the iPad for the calendar.

  9. Mystie says:

    Thank you, Melissa! I’m glad my book has been helpful for you, and I’m tickled to find myself unexpectedly mentioned on your blog. 🙂

    Amy, yes you definitely can still do this without a smartphone. When I started moving everything digital I had a desktop and an iPad. Then I sold the iPad and now I have a laptop and an iPod touch. I explain in the book how to make it work without a data plan. I don’t have one, and it still works really well. 🙂

  10. Nancy P. says:

    I am still on the fence about using my phone/compute for “everything”. I still like paper lists for some things, and the physical sensation of crossing things off (like a daily list), which is why I’ve held off on getting Mystie’s book. May just need to give it a try.

  11. PrairiePoppins says:

    Thank you, Thank you.