Mommy-Approved Organizers

A month into the year and despite all your pledges to make 2009 the year that you (finally) get organized, you find your junk drawer remains un-tackled, you still can’t find that dang pocket-size agenda you got for Christmas and you seem to be losing track of appointments faster than your kids get a runny nose. In an effort to curb organization-related mommy melt downs we sent out a different planner to three lucky readers, and here’s what they thought:

1 Mom’s Ultimate Family Organizer by Amy Keroes (Chronicle Books, $34, far left)

Tested by Linda Koopman, mom of Alex, 8, Carsten, 7, Savannah, 4, St. Thomas, Ont.

Organization issues: “My biggest challenge is finding everything that I need; having four kids and a husband in the house means things often get misplaced.”
Planner feedback: “This planner was put to good use in our house—it is well laid out and easy to use. Everything is clearly labeled, the binder format made it easy to flip between sections and the calendars and birthday list are great. I just wish the sticky pads had a bit more stick to them!”

2 Mom Essentials: A One-Stop Organizer for Moms on the Move by Amy Keroes (Chronicle Books, $20, right)
Tested by
Linda Koopman, mom of Alex, 8, Carsten, 7, Savannah, 4, St. Thomas, Ont.

Organization issues: “Aside from finding the time with three children to get organized, my biggest challenge is knowing where to start.”
Planner feedback: “I love the tear-out pages; I can simply tear out a page if I make a mistake. The menu notes and grocery lists come in handy as I am forever losing recipes that I jot down, and now they are all in one place.”

3 The Handy Household Helper (Chronicle Books, $23, centre)
Tested by
Shawna Lunt, mom of Taylor, 8, Alexis, 7, and Kimberley, 3, Chilliwack, B.C.

Organization issues: “Trying to keep my paperwork all in one accessible place.”
Planner feedback: “Simple and easy to use, and helped de-clutter my desk by removing all the loose papers. I liked that the folders were pre-labeled because I wouldn’t have thought of some sections that they did, but I wish there were some extra folders for things like coupons.”

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