Evernote: A Marvelous Earth-friendly Family Command Center

For us, the family command center was a book of all the things we may need, from addresses to home inventory lists. Through the years I also used it to hold all the magazine clippings and pictures I’d snap of things I wanted. The book quickly exploded beyond the three-ring binder especially after adding recipes. But once Evernote entered my world, organization and family commanding became so much more fun and eco-friendly.

Here’s a look at how Evernote can become your family’s new family command center.
Filing cabinet to the heavens
Filing cabinet to the heavens

How Evernote Works

Evernote is an online program that keeps all your ideas, research and  in even document copies in one place. It’s basically a digital filing cabinet with several input methods. There are apps available for tablets, iphones and Android phones and more are constantly created to support the demand of Evernote users. These apps allow you to take photos of items and share them for later use or even add notes. Files are created to hold your research or ideas and can then be shared with colleagues or other family members.
{cc photo courtesy of t. magnum on Flickr}
well used address book
Well used address book

Family Information Book

This is your go-to bible for phone numbers, addresses, log-in information for online accounts, receipts for appliances and household items, important health information, restaurant menus and so much more. All of this can now be stored in your Evernote account which is accessible anywhere. With some caution given to private information, you can keep all this data in the files within your Evernote account allowing you access to prescription information, emergency numbers for doctors, and access to your home owner’s policy information with a tapping of your phone or tablet screen. It would allow you to easily send your daughter’s babysitter all the important numbers and medical information with one email. Want Chinese for dinner, pull up a list of links to the menus of your local favorites and make your choice or send links to your family and decide together.
{cc photo courtesy of moarplease on Flickr}
inspirational magazines
Inspirational magazines

The Idea Book

This book contains all the things we find in magazines, we see at our friend’s houses, pamphlets from home and garden shows and recipes from food blogs. As magazines slowly disappear and blogs become one of the main staples for accumulating this data, many look to the cyber  realm for collecting and storing these ideas . Let’s say I adore my friend’s sofa so I snap a shot and pin it in Pinterest. In my Evernote file I link to my pin along with added links of stores where the sofa is sold, the measurements of the room to make sure it will fit, colors I may like and even pictures of the room to see what color palates will work. Once the purchase is made I can snap or scan a copy of the receipt, warranty and any other important paperwork. Everything is in one convenient location.
{cc photo courtesy of *janine* on Flickr}
Cook books
Cook books

Your Culinary Best Friend

Not only is Evernote happy to maintain your recipe base, it’s great at shooting pictures of your creations. You can also easily adapt recipes according to allergies, health needs or simply varying tastes. I take a weekly shot of the pantry so I can easily see what I have to work with. I even take a shot of the fridge before going to the store. It’s a much easier way to maintain an ongoing shopping list. There are many programs available to further organize according to your needs. Say Mmm, for example, takes the recipes you save on Evernote and makes a shopping list for you. The lists are not always perfect and a double check ensures ingredients aren’t accidentally left off, but it is definitely a time saver. Will you have to give up your beloved cookbooks? Oh goodness, no! Nothing is coming between me and my gorgeous Nigella Lawson cook books or my antique Greek cookbook. But now I am able to share my favorite recipes from those books with friends using a simple web link, Facebook post or email. Pretty amazing.
{cc photo courtesy of .michael.newman. on Flickr}
{sources: Evernote, Say Mmm}
How do you organize your home? Have your tried Evernote or similar online systems for getting organized?


About the Author

Vivian Nelson Melle is a writer and life coach helping individuals, families, and businesses thrive. She supports small businesses especially in the areas of Green Living, Health, and Wellness. She can be found at www.viviannelsonmelle.com and www.craftyvivi.com

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