Recycled Exercise Books

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Half-used exercise books are standard fixtures at the end of the school term. It gets kind of messy with a few pages from the spelling test book, to an almost unused stack from the penmanship class. Instead of keeping these used exercise books as it is, I consolidated the unused sheets into 2 DIY bound journals, so that I can write on the the remaining unused pages.

After some tearing, sorting and hole-punching, I turned to my elementary book binding skills and created 2 journal books with the loose sheets.

This project can be easily completed in under 2 hours. Nothing fanciful here, these recycled exercise books are after all just recycled paper being bound. I did not use any glitzy craft paper or tapes. I just grabbed whatever that I could find inside my drawer. However, I still attempted a simple decoration trick with a 3.5″ diskette label, to make it look slightly “old-school”.

Things I used for this project:
– Scissors
– Hole puncher
– Linen thread & needle
– Cover paper
– Masking tape (Optional, for the book spine, if you do not want the stitches to show)

For more on DIY book binding, see here, and here.

School Day Checklist

The week long school holiday was over in the wink of an eye.  To get the kids ready for the new term, we created a leave-home-checklist: a list of items that they need to bring to school, e.g. water bottle, pocket money, student pass etc.  Special items that are needed on certain days (like, art file on Tuesdays) are also jotted down.

It is useful for the morning rush hour, as the kids can get a bit disorganized on their way out to school.  Best part: they do the checking on their own, and are responsible for their own oversight should they forget anything.


Sorting The Laundry Faster

I know some moms who hate sisters wearing the SAME thing together.  But some of the wee clothing are so adorable, I often find myself getting identical ones for the girls, albeit different colors, if available.  They can even take turns wearing different colors for all they want, as I hang them all in the same closet, so there is not much sorting done for the “going out” clothing.

It’s the undies and pj , which we are more particular with.  When the girls were younger, visual sorting was still possible with the obvious size difference.  As they grow up, it’s now down to just one size difference, mmm…not that obvious anymore.

At first, the size labels were doing a fine job, but with more washings, the prints on them started to wear off and could no longer be seen.  I often find myself holding 2 pieces of clothing together to compare the width at the waist band/ shoulder before keeping them into the sisters’ respective drawers.

Then this idea of cutting away one of their labels as a form of identification strikes me one fine day.  And it is so easy.  No more finding and flipping that tiny label to see whether it is a “M” or “L”.  I just need to be consistent, for example, if the elder sister is the one whose clothing’s tags get cut off, stick to this system.

It works on all clothing with tags except another clean laundry sorting spoilsport: school white socks, no tags.  Luckily, the school does not make it compulsory for the children to wear the official socks with the school’s name printed on them.  So I get the elder one to buy hers from the school, and the younger one from elsewhere.