organising, rEArranging

Organising those snippets of information (Part 2)

Care Cards

Keeping information so that it can be easily retrieved is often a challenge so here is  how I deal with information about the care of anything –  from a Kitchen appliance to advice on Stain Removal.

On my Kitchen notice board I have a bull-dog clip that has a number of A5 size information sheets and I call these my ‘Care Cards’.

I choose A5 because a lot of information booklets are printed on this size for instance my new Iron Instruction book.

I have a number of kitchen and other appliances and although I don’t need to keep the whole booklet available in the Kitchen (because my Kitchen is tiny and I have very limited space) there is often a page of information I do need handy from time to time for undertaking a certain task which I do not perform regularly enough to always remember the procedure.

For instance

  • For the Flymo Lawn Mower – I need to know how to adjust the height settings in Summer and Winter by adding the disks
  • For the Oven  – I occasionally want to set the automatic timer or adjust the shelves to the correct place for my Christmas cake
  • For my Iron  – I should do a self clean maintenance once a month
  • For my Washer  – I need to clear the drain pump every other month

 Then I occasionally need information on items like

  • How to care for my Orchids – the feeding and watering instructions
  • What items I can take to our local recycling point and their opening times
  • The diagram and instructions for correctly placing the coals in our open Gas Fire when I clean it out
  • A handy leaflet on the uses of my kitchen cleaning products – Bi carb, White Vinegar, Borax and Soda Crystals (see Move to Portugal for a recent post on simplifying your cleaning products)
  • And just in case I keep a First Aid leaflet with a useful ABC direction on how to resuscitate someone if I ever had the misfortune to need this (hopefully not!!)

Anyway I think you can probably get the gist now…

I photocopy the information from booklets or type out and print what I require and anything that isn’t A5 I reduce down on the photocopier.

I then used to slip each sheet into one of those A5 plastic pockets and cut off the edge with the holes but for items that are going to be used for many years I laminate them which is even better as they are wipe-able. (yes I know laminated items are not very green – if you prefer to avoid the plastic then print or photocopy onto stiff card)

After laminating each sheet I bundle them all together and keep them secure with a large Bulldog clip and hang in the kitchen.  Then whenever I want any of that information it is there at my fingertips and the cards are very transportable and can be stuck on a cupboard or wall whilst being read – much easier than having an open folder or book.

I also find it useful to keep the details from the boxes of bulbs that we purchase that are not the usual run of the mill light bulbs – like narrow screw in candle bulbs for the wall lights and Halogen for the spots.  I collect these together, photocopy and laminate  them…

…the sheet is kept with the care cards ready for when I need to buy some more – I can drop the card into my shopping bag and match the size and number up in the shop.  I also do this for batteries for the various appliances we have.



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Organising those snippets of information (Part 1)



7 thoughts on “Organising those snippets of information (Part 2)”

  1. The care cards are such a great idea. I usually have to rummage through the kitchen drawer to find the oven or fridge/freezer booklet. It would make much more sense for me to copy just the relevant pages rather than have to look through a heap of foreign text before I get to the English part of the booklet! I think the photos of your lightbulb boxes is an excellent idea too. Keep them coming!!!


    1. It was because of the frustration of searching through instruction books that caused me to develop my Care Cards! And the light bulbs – well more than once I have guessed at the right one in the shop only to get it home and find it didn’t fit!


  2. Good idea but sadly I am never that organised and hardly ever read any instructions till I come unstuck!! I do have a plastic bag full of the booklets which come with items I have purchased but that is as far as it goes. As my old schol reports used to say “must ry harder” and “Could do better”!!!


    1. Hi Marigold – I see you are catching up on your reading now you are back!
      I liked your comment and think we each develop systems that suit us so I am sure your plastic bag is there and handy if you should need it – just ignore my OCD tendencies! As you can imagine my Care Cards have grown over the years and now encompass a whole range of things I like to keep handy to avoid the temptation to ‘guess it’ as I frequently get it wrong – (and I mean very wrong) – like the time I tried without the instructions to set the Automatic Timer on my new oven and ended up with a meal as cold as when I first put it in and a Flymo that scalped the grass when I had intended to higher the blades – need I go on (LOL)!!


  3. Great idea. I just have a filing system divided into major appliances (oven, fridge etc), small appliances (toaster, blender etc), computer, furniture, and so on. I have to look through piles of booklets to find the one piece of info I need.


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