Getting Organized – Jen Burke

Whether you’re splitting up everything you’ve ever owned, or just getting the kids through transitions each week, it helps immensely to be organized. We also believe that an organized home helps you be organized mentally.

Birth Certificates, passports, and legal documents need to be shared. Get all that important stuff together and put it in a safe deposit box at the bank. The bank officer signs off on the contents and photographs it, so if something is missing down the road you have a record.

When you are splitting the house up, it’s not as hard as it sounds. Jen suggests writing down the top 10 things you can’t live without. She has found that there is typically very little cross over. Anything left over can be sold through estate sale, so you recoup some money.

As you’re splitting up things, pick a room that is yours. As you use items that will need to be in both homes, purchase duplicates. If you do it over time, it’s manageable. And, if the house is on the market, consider getting a POD.

Kids art work? That can get emotional. Here is a great solution: Let the kid’s things become theirs! Don’t give it to either parent but create a bin for the kid.

With photos, think quality over quantity. How many pictures do you really need? Divide by person and not by year. And if you are super angry with you ex, don’t deface the pictures. Both homes should have pictures of you and your ex so the “family” is still intact. It helps the kids feel settled and loved.

Google Calendar allows for sharing of documents and calendar. Both parties can have access and you can store anything like report cards, pictures, and documents.

Kids shouldn’t have to worry about bringing their toothbrush back and forth from moms to dads. Just get duplicates of toiletries and day to day things. It’s not as expensive as you would think because they end up using each item half the time. It also reduces stress so kids don’t have to think as much. You can even label your clothes “moms” or “dads” so you know where they go.

And we like this tip: get the same bedding in both homes. Whatever helps the kids feel settled and permanent.

About the Author Barb & Jo

Through the process of our own divorces, Barb Hazelton and Jo Briggs learned more than they ever needed or wanted to know. Through their friendship, shared experiences, and connections through navigating their own divorces, they created this video series. They've been where you are and they hope Single Process can make it easier for you by connecting you to their resources.