How I use Microsoft OneNote

With the announcement that OneNote is now (even more) free, I thought I'd write a post about how I use Microsoft OneNote. Wikipedia says, "Microsoft OneNote is a computer program for free-form information gathering and multi-user collaboration." That is exactly what I use it for. To type up and share information with my family.

Shopping List - When I learned that OneNote was available on my phone and that you could collaborate with other users, I decided to try it for my grocery lists. Previously, we wrote out a grocery list by hand, took it to the store and crossed of items as we found them. With OneNote, we are able to create a list and put a check mark box next to each item. As we find those items in the store, we can check them off. Since the note is shared on OneDrive, we can edit it anywhere and my whole family has access.

Restaurant Orders - We created a section named Restaurant Orders and a bunch of pages named after each restaurant that we like. On each page, we have a section with our name and a bunch of different meals listed. So when Person A is on the way home and decides to stop somewhere, they just have to give Person B a call and ask what they want. Person B will say something like, "Meal 1 from Restaurant A". Then Person A can just look up on their phone what meal that actually is and order it exactly the way Person B likes it. This makes it almost impossible to mess up the order.

Recipes - We use to have a stack of paper on top of our fridge. Each page had a different recipe on it. With OneNote all of our recipes are in one place that I can just look up on my phone. The paper stack is gone now.

Gift Planning - Previously we didn't plan gifts. So we would end up spending more money then we should. Now I have a nice table with the name of the person, the event and the amount of the gift. I also have a column of what we actually decided for the gift and the status of it.

Car Information - This one is relatively new. I now have a section for each car in the family. Every time we take a car in for service I create a new page that lists what was done and how much we paid. Then I create a new page for the next service. As we drive the car, we put on the next service page things that need to be checked and worked on. That way, when we get to the dealership, we can tell them what we need them to take a look at. We also have information about what was done in the past.

House Information - This one has information about the house. I started with a fuse box page. As I learn what each switch cuts on and off in the fuse box, I put an entry on this page. This section also has information, like what brand of light bulb to use in the ceiling in the kitchen. Hint: It's not a normal light bulb.

This is just some of the information that we have in OneNote. We actually find more uses for it everyday.


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