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May 1, 2023

Creating systems to organize all of your important documents with List and File creator and Army wife Liz

Creating systems to organize all of your important documents with List and File creator and Army wife Liz
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Today we are sitting down with the owner of List and File and army wife Liz.

Liz shares about their military life including have 2 babies while her husband was deployed and what that experience was like. And living overseas in Korea. Her family loves living there! She says everyone is so nice and welcoming and its very kid friendly!

We talk about career transitions and how language jobs or being a translator might be a great fit for a military spouse!

Liz tells us how and why she created List and File and the importance of having all of your important documents in one place. She walks us through what documents you would want to have in a PCS binder, creating a daily binder, a career binder and an education binder.

Paperwork isn't usually a very fun topic but we had a pretty great time anyway! I hope this info helps you create systems for your own important documents!

To find out more visit listandfile.com

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[00:00:00] Alison: today, we are, , sitting down with Liz, and Liz is the owner of Liston file and Liston file. We're gonna get into all of, , the different products and things that that is, but it's essentially a really cool. System to organize your paperwork in, in different phases. So like PCs and medical and education and things like that.

[00:00:24] Alison: , this is gonna be coming behind the education stuff that we talked about. , in April with month of the military child. So this is a great system if you're finding yourself, Hey, I need an education binder, me raising my hand, , this is, this would be a great system to procure to help you along the way as you're building that education binder.

[00:00:44] Alison: So, Liz, welcome to the show. I'm happy to have you 

[00:00:46] Liz: here. Thank you. Yeah, I'm excited to talk to you. 

[00:00:50] Alison: Yeah, for sure. Okay, so again, this is super fun because I already feel like you're my friend. , I love when when you hop on Zoom with someone 

[00:00:58] Liz: and you're just like, oh, hi. Like I could totally be friends with you, so 

[00:01:01] Alison: this will be easy.

[00:01:02] Alison: Yeah, right. This will be fun. It'll be a good conversation. , so another really cool thing, is that Liz is in Korea. So the beauties of technology is that we can sit here and have a conversation with each other, and you're on the other side of the world. It's, you know, it's Friday night for me, Saturday morning for you.

[00:01:19] Alison: So that's kind of crazy. We're gonna get into some of how, , living overseas and Korea specifically, we'll get into that in a little bit. So, Liz, , I always like to start with like your military affiliation. What does your military life look like so 

[00:01:32] Liz: far?

[00:01:33] Liz: Sure. , so I met, I met my husband actually when we were 14 and 15 years old. We grew up in the same neighborhood, so it's one of those stories, which is really cute. , and my husband did R O T C in college. . , and then we, , I'm actually a year and a half older than him, so, , he was in his last year of R O T C and I had, , I was in the middle of grad school.

[00:01:54] Liz: , when we got married, , so we're, we're an Army family. We've been in for nine years. , we've been. Georgia, Texas back to Georgia now Korea. , couple of deployments. , both of those were when I was super pregnant with our first two kids, so had our first two kids while he was, while he was deployed, which was an experience.

[00:02:16] Liz: And, , yeah, I think we, I, I mentioned this to you earlier, but I think Coral will be in for the full 20 as of right now, we, we enjoy military life. It's obviously hard in a lot of ways, but we're lucking it. Yeah. 

[00:02:29] Alison: I love that. Okay, so let's just pump the brakes there for a second. So you have had, you've had two children while your husband's been deployed.

[00:02:37] Alison: I haven't talked to any spouses that have experienced that. Tell me how that was for you. Were you guys, were you stationed stateside when you had your kids? Like what, what did that look like for you? Support wise and just logistics wise? Yes. 

[00:02:51] Liz: So we were, we were in the states for both of those times. Obviously it, it was very hard both times for, for all the reasons that you could guess.

[00:03:00] Liz: Yeah. , but I was also super blessed in both instances. , first of all, because both times I was actually able to go home with family. I decided to, , just for the support around that. I have really awful pregnancies. , I won't go into those details, but really, really bad pregnancies. And so, , I've got a wonderful, wonderful support system with my family and with my in-laws as well back home.

[00:03:23] Liz: And so I was lucky enough to have that option, , and to go back and stay with them, , while I was pregnant and having, our kids. , the other thing, so my husband was deployed first to Korea, , so that was interesting that we're now, you know, back here and then the second time. Was actually Northeastern Europe where I had lived for a year and a half, , before we were married.

[00:03:46] Liz: , oh, wow. I, I did a, I did a church service mission for a year and a half, and he went back to the same countries, one of the same countries that I had lived in, and so it was, That was really unique in that I knew exactly where he was and what the cities looked like, and we even ran into, he even ran into some of the people that I knew, you know, there from years ago.

[00:04:06] Liz: I think it was 10 years ago that I, that I did that. Wow. So, so that, that really connected us, you know, over the second deployment we had a lot to talk about cuz I knew the area that he was in. , but anyway, both of those were, were nine months deployments and, , at least during the Korean deployment, the very first one with our first daughter, he was able to come back for about eight.

[00:04:29] Liz: Okay. Including time zone. So he was home for four days. She wasn't here. , I was induced. And then he was able to spend the, you know, her first four days with us and then until he had to go back. , 

[00:04:40] Alison: how is that? I 

[00:04:42] Liz: can't even, that was, it was, it was a, it was a blur. It was foggy. And if, you know, if we had more time or a different topic, I really struggled with postpartum depression and anxiety.

[00:04:56] Liz: , especially with our first. And so that was really rough. And again, I'm really glad that I had the option to go home and be supported by family, , a lot. It was, it was really rough. Yeah, it was rough. Even with, you know, even being with family and, , yeah. You know, it's, it's just life though, just 

[00:05:12] Alison: right.

[00:05:13] Alison: Yeah. I think it's, it's kind of like one of those Yeah. It's one of those situations where it's like, If you, if you've said, if someone said to you, this is what you're gonna do, you'd be like, what? Uhuh and Uhuh? Nope, that ain't gonna happen. Not gonna do that. And then you end up getting in these situations and you just freaking do it.

[00:05:31] Alison: , we were stationed, we got stationed in Florida like a couple of things ago and, , tours ago, and. We, I remember walking through the house and in the garage there's the hurricane shutters and I was like, what is that? These corrugated sheets of metal. What is that? Yeah. The realtor was like, oh, those are the hurricane shutters.

[00:05:48] Alison: You're not gonna need those. Cuz we were stationed at Cape Canaveral. You're not gonna need those. We don't get hurricanes here six months later. Don't say it, Michael. Michael's gone. Michael's gone. I have a three and four year old and I'm putting up hurricane shutters. Never put up hurricane shutters.

[00:06:05] Alison: Never. And I'm like, here we go. Oh my guys, here we go. This is how it is. And it's like, if you, you know you Yeah, exactly right. You just figure it out, you know? And I feel like it's, you know, it's just one of those things. You just make the best of it. You do the best you. And it's not always gonna be pretty and not always gonna be fun and probably wouldn't opt to do that again, but it is what it is and you just make the best of it, so, oh my gosh.

[00:06:27] Alison: Okay. All right, so, so then let's talk about where you guys are now in Korea. So you guys actually chose to go there, which I think is really cool. And and we were talking a little bit beforehand about. Your thought process around it, and if you could just tell us like what is it like to live there?

[00:06:45] Alison: Cause I feel like a lot of, I feel like, like when I, when when we initially started talking, you're like, oh, we're in Korea. I was like, oh, like that. My initial reaction is like, oh gosh. Because there's so much, I think, political kind of stuff that a lot of us don't understand. I don't really understand all of it's involved in that.

[00:07:01] Alison: Just that it's a little bit of. A disaster. So I'm just curious. Mm-hmm. What does life look like in, in Korea? , what does that look like for a military family, for you guys? And what has your experience been internationally there? 

[00:07:12] Liz: Mm-hmm. So yeah, we, we have loved.

[00:07:16] Liz: We have loved Korea. , I'll just start this off by saying obviously everybody's, everybody's experience is different and yeah. You know, some people just really don't like it here. And so, , all of all of those experiences are also valid, but, , and don't you know people who are listening, don't roll your eyes at this again, but I'm gonna say it again.

[00:07:35] Liz: It really is what, what you make of it a lot of the time. Some sure, some things you can't control, obviously. , but, lots of it is, is what, what you make of it. And so, , I, I had mentioned I love to travel. Both my husband and I have lived in different countries, , for the military and even before he joined, mm-hmm.

[00:07:53] Liz: So we were kind of used to that, you know, we've, we've experienced different cultures and learned other languages and things, and so this wasn't, , a huge step for us. Mm-hmm. , I understand that if you are a new military spouse or , you've got, again, young, , your first kid, whatever, then this, this can be scary.

[00:08:10] Liz: I mean, and it's, it still is l nerve-wracking for us in a few ways, like mm-hmm. Learning how to drive in a different country was mm-hmm. Interesting. They give you, they give you one, one driving class and you, you take one test and here you go, here's your , Korean driver's license, and you're like, are you sure I'm safe?

[00:08:28] Liz: Yeah. Right. I 

[00:08:30] Alison: don't know that I can do this. I dunno that I'm qualified. Yeah. I'm not sure. You 

[00:08:34] Liz: think I'm qualified, but I don't, I don't think that I'm qualified. No. So the first time, you know, driving my big, , Toyota Sienna with my two kids through Korea, the very first time by myself, I was just under my breath speaking to myself the whole time.

[00:08:47] Liz: Like, okay, you've got this, you got this. And luckily in Korea, the street sign, if you're, if you're coming here and you're worried about driving, The street signs are in both Korean and English. Okay. Before I came here. There you go. So, you know, I mean, most of them are obviously Korean names, , and some of 'em are non translated, but, but for the most part they're all in English as well, so that makes it, that brings the stress levels down quite a bit.

[00:09:13] Liz: , so don't worry about that. If you're, if you know you're coming to Korea, , But, , like I said, there's so much to do here, so much to do. Soul is very close, at least to the duty station that we're at. , the country itself is about the size of Indiana. Oh. , and so just imagine, you know, you can get anywhere in the country within, I think maybe five hours is the longest you would drive.

[00:09:35] Liz: Wow. So if you're from Texas, or if you've been stationed in Texas or Alaska, that's like mm-hmm. That's like a weekend trip. There you go. Soul is amazing, obviously so much to do in that huge city. And then we, we talked about just the travel opportunities too. A lot of people will go to Japan and Thailand and Vietnam and , about, Bunch of other places.

[00:09:57] Liz: It's, we've really enjoyed it. It's very family focused. If you have kids, , lots of, , kids cafes. Korea is known, , for their awesome, quirky, unique cafes. They've got all sorts of stuff. They have a bird cafe out here. You just go and, Birds are flying all over while you're, while you're, , drinking coffee and like there are, that's interesting.

[00:10:20] Liz: Farm, farm animal cafes. There are other themed cafe, like, just, just weird quirky stuff. They're like, okay, this is Korea. Great. Let's try it. , And amazing parks. I, I've heard that Japan also from people, some friends who have been stationed in Japan, , say the same thing that, you know, they've got amazing parks for kids.

[00:10:38] Liz: So anyway, it's, it's what you make of it. We have really enjoyed it quite a lot. We're, we've actually decided to extend for a little bit longer our time here. , so it's, it's been wonderful. I really like it and I like to learn languages and so Korean has been a new challenge and yeah, it's, it's been positive for the most part for.

[00:10:58] Alison: I love that. And, and your kids are small. You've got really small kids. So what is that, so you were saying that it's very family friendly. How is that for you navigating, you know, being so far removed from family and then just that the culture, like what have, what have you found with that? With having really small kids?

[00:11:14] Liz: With really small kids. So, , the, the positives of being in Korea with small kids is again, everything is very family focused, right? So there are always, always kids cafes. , there are restaurants that have like separate, , established rooms for families or families with babies. So like, you don't feel awkward, , you know, okay, if my kid.

[00:11:34] Liz: Thrown a tantrum or crying, then yeah, I'm bugging everybody else in the restaurant. They have a room for that. You know, here are the families and they're used to it. , South Korea has the lowest birth rate of any country in the world right now. Wow. So I think, yeah. Yeah. , I can't remember what, what the rate is right now, but I think.

[00:11:51] Liz: That definitely plays a, a part in their focus on kids. Cuz you know, they're trying to, as a country, they're trying to increase their birth rate. Right. They, at least coming from the states, they've made it super easy to find things to do with kids. And also it's, it's very safe here. It's very safe.

[00:12:11] Liz: So that was gonna 

[00:12:11] Alison: be my next question is how do, how 

[00:12:13] Liz: are you feeling there? Yeah, it's, it's very safe. , children are, especially if you have like blonde, blue-eyed kids, they're, they're treated very kindly here. All, all kids are. Anywhere you go, , our experience has been, , they give candy to kids and little toys and they're always, , adults are always getting down and talking to 'em and stopping 'em on the street and they, , it's not gonna be every single person for every single family, but Right.

[00:12:40] Liz: But for the most part, yeah. Kids are, kids are loved and, , cared for here. Yeah. , So, yeah, so that has been nice. 

[00:12:49] Alison: And then living situations there. , do you have to live on base? Are you allowed to live out in town? , what does the living situation look like? Oh, good.

[00:12:56] Liz: Good question. So if you, Come here, you do have to live on base unless they have no room. Makes sense? Okay. Yeah. In which case , , you're approved to live off base. , it changes frequently. , if you come here, you do need to check, like even day by day it can change.

[00:13:10] Liz: But I think the threshold is maybe 95% capacity. , they are building some new family towers right now, and so a lot of people coming in over the next few months will be living in. , new family towers. Oh, nice. But we, we live off post and I was hoping that that would be the case actually. Okay.

[00:13:27] Liz: , just my husband personally likes the separation, Sure. Between work and home. I get it. Yeah. Makes sense. Even with a drive. I like to be out more in the country just for culture and other reasons. So we live off coast. , not a lot of houses have yards here.

[00:13:43] Liz: There are some neighborhoods that do, so you can find them. Homes don't have garages here. Okay. In general. 

[00:13:49] Alison: Are they a lot smaller? Because I know in Japan, everything is Jeep, they're really small and you 

[00:13:55] Liz: know, what is Yeah. The, the homes are probably a little bit smaller.

[00:14:00] Liz: Yeah. Yeah. I would, I'd say that's, that's probably right. And then, Of course there are, , depending on when you, where you're stationed, , there are a lot of, , little dirt roads in the area. And so it can be kind of, nerve wracking, navigating through these little, through rice fields.

[00:14:14] Liz: You're driving through rice fields and a lot of dirt roads and things. So, you know, having a, a big family van like ours is kind of like, oh, this is, this is gonna be fun. But, uh, but it's worked. We've, we've been in. No accidents. And I'm knocking on, I'm knocking on everything wood. 

[00:14:32] Alison: Knocking on. I'm knocking on 

[00:14:33] Liz: like, yeah, it's, it's been okay.

[00:14:35] Liz: , bring your car, bring Korean mattresses are a lot harder than American mattresses. So if you have a mattress that you like, bring your, , you're not allowed to bring a washer and dryer. , I think that's everywhere overseas though. Maybe so. Okay. Used to that, our neighborhood has four Korean. It's just a two street neighborhood. We love it. Four Korean families and all the rest are military. Families, , oh, nice. Lots of kids. They all played together. It's, it's been, yeah, it's been a great area. So 

[00:15:04] Alison: I love that. , I'm really happy to hear that perspective from you.

[00:15:07] Alison: And this is what's interesting to me is, , I'm friends with a lot of, of military spouses on Instagram and one was talking about, she's like, these are my favorite places of, that we've been stationed. And her least favorite place that she was station. Was my favorite place that we've been stationed.

[00:15:24] Alison: And her and yeah. And my least favorite place is her favorite. And so it's like, and I was like, this is so interesting. And I said, this is like, because I feel like I see all the time on military spouse pages and spouse support groups and stuff like that. I'm gonna go here, gimme all the, tell me all the information, Uhhuh, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

[00:15:44] Alison: It's your opinion, right? , I hated living in Florida. Those were my least favorite duty stations. And it might be someone else's, absolutely favorite, right? Yeah. I loved being stationed in the Pacific Northwest. Other people hated it. So it's like, yeah, everybody's got their own opinions, so you really have to take all that stuff for the grain of salt.

[00:16:01] Alison: And, and you're right. I know that it's incredibly cliche, but like, Make the best of it, right? Just do what you can. Make that bucket list, what can we do around here? What can we experience? And go into it with that and not, because again, you're just asking someone's opinion and they're, everybody's different, what they like and what they don't like.

[00:16:20] Alison: So it's just so subjective. You just kind of gotta, yeah. Go in it your own and figure out what you like, and you just figure it out. Maybe don't like, or just, yeah, just embrace it, you know? So then tell us a little bit about what your career has looked like as you, as you've navigated your military life and having babies while your husband's deployed 

[00:16:39] Liz: and all of those things.

[00:16:40] Liz: What, what does that look like 

[00:16:41] Alison: for you? Because you, you said when you, your husband, when you got married or. When you fir like that, you were in grad school, so clearly you had a path that you were headed on with your career. So let tell us a little bit about that. 

[00:16:53] Liz: Sure. Yeah. So I loved school.

[00:16:56] Liz: If I could go to school forever and ever, I, I absolutely would if it was free and I had the time. , I've always loved school, so yeah, I did go to grad school. I studied international education management with a focus on language program administration. , oh, cool. .

[00:17:09] Liz: I, what I did was, , I think it was right as I married my husband. , he had one year of R O T C left. , I got a job out of grad school, , as a, , translation coordinator for a okay. Translation business. , what we worked on was actually translations of international patent applications.

[00:17:29] Liz: , so that was really interesting and I, I loved that a, a lot of people overlook that job field. You know, I always see what, what, you know, this is a big, huge hot topic for military spouses, but yeah, what jobs can I have? What, you know? Mm-hmm. What, what remote jobs can I have? So if you're listening to this and this and that is you, Especially if you love languages or you're interested in other cultures, consider that field that you maybe haven't considered before.

[00:17:54] Liz: , translation because by nature of that field, mo, a lot of the jobs are remote anyway because you've got translators who are working in all different time zones, all different languages. So a lot of the jobs can be remote. That's just the nature of the business. So yeah. So just putting a little bug in people.

[00:18:13] Liz: You know, ears. Yeah. 

[00:18:15] Alison: If you happen to have a proclivity towards languages. Yeah. 

[00:18:17] Liz: I started, , as a translation coordinator there, , full-time. , worked really hard, , got promoted, , few months later. Worked really hard, negotiated a raise for myself, , and then. Our first PC s move came up.

[00:18:33] Liz: I made sure that I did my best and I'd gotten really good at my job. , so I was able to negotiate with my boss, , to become remote. My position that wasn't originally remote. Mm-hmm. . I kept, working full-time after we moved.

[00:18:48] Liz: Then I had my, , first girl and that is. When I moved down to halftime, we just decided, , that for our family we wanted. , instead of putting her in daycare, we decided that I would move myself to halftime to take care of her. , I just needed to do that for my own mental health.

[00:19:07] Liz: , I couldn't do both hundred percent at the same time. A lot of women do, and I'm just amazed at. Your capabilities. , I decided to go down to halftime after having my daughter. , did that for another year or so and then, , actually switched companies. I moved over to a different translation company, and was a senior product or project manager there.

[00:19:27] Liz: Did that for. Not super long, maybe like six or eight months. Before having, , our son. . And then at that point, I, I just decided to , stay at home mom. At that point. 

[00:19:38] Liz: And then, , all the way back when my husband, , it had been several years, so all the way back, , I thought about my first, , S F R G meeting. When my husband was still in ro o t C, and that is when I had the idea for list and file, that's when I had my, my first idea for creating these binder inserts.

[00:19:58] Liz: Okay. , and so I had that idea and it had been nagging at me for several years. And so I thought, , I'm a stay-at-home mom now. , it's so much work. You know, working is work, staying at home is work. All of it is just work. I wanted to, to make this work.

[00:20:13] Liz: , , that is when I started it and I decided, you know what? I really want to do this and I , wanna create this thing because it would be really useful one for me. , I wanna create this, this organizing system that I don't have to recreate every time I move.

[00:20:26] Liz: Mm-hmm. Because I'm lazy and, uh, yeah. And so that's, that's kind of when I decided to, to switch over into entrepreneurship and go that route. 

[00:20:37] Alison: Well, you know, and this is my favorite part of, the show and, and why I like to talk to so many people with so many different types of jobs because I feel.

[00:20:47] Alison: You know, career continuity 

[00:20:49] Liz: and just what can I 

[00:20:50] Alison: do as a military spouse because we're getting yanked all over the place all the time. It's just really challenging. And so I love diving into, what does your path look like? , because maybe someone finds themselves in a, and they're like, oh, hey, a translator.

[00:21:02] Alison: I do really like languages that I never really thought about that. Maybe that's something, you know, like you never know 

[00:21:07] Liz: what, I never see that. I never see that in comments. You know, when people say, oh, these, you know, this feels tiring, or this job, and I never see. Translation company, and they're always, I'm always getting messages on, you know, LinkedIn and stuff like, Hey, we're hiring hiring.

[00:21:20] Liz: So it's, it's a growing, growing thing anyway. Yeah, yeah, 

[00:21:23] Alison: for sure. Okay, so, so what was the impetus? Like you're, so, you said you're sitting at, sitting in an s FRG meeting and you're like, Hey, I, I feel like, what, what, what 

[00:21:32] Liz: happened? And that real, you're like, man, I feel like. 

[00:21:35] Alison: Could this be this? Was it one of those, like, this could be done so much better than what I'm seeing right now, or like, this is, this is a hot mess.

[00:21:43] Alison: It should be, I don't know. , what was that that made you say yeah. 

[00:21:46] Liz: Hmm. So that's a good question. So it was, it was a really good friend of mine who was the S F R G leader. And so she, she, you know, got all the spouses together and pulled, held up her big binder, and she said, this is a, this is called a pc.

[00:22:00] Liz: Binder this contained, you know, you should put all of your important documents in this binder when you move. , from what I remember, that was kind of it. Okay. All your, all, all your important documents are in this binder. And I, for whatever reason, , that just stuck in my brain and I remember thinking well, like what important document?

[00:22:19] Liz: What does that, what does that mean? Like how, how do I organize that? You know, it's pro, it's probably just cuz I'm o c d honestly, that I, that my brain just went, no, I need more, I 

[00:22:28] Alison: need more, I need more, I need more details, I need more, I feel 

[00:22:30] Liz: I need more. Like, gimme a list, give me organization. , and so I kept thinking about it and I, you know, after I, I, I researched a bunch and I think there were, I found maybe six blog.

[00:22:43] Liz: , about PCs, binders, and what should be included in it. Okay. And so what I actually did was read all that I could and found all of the, , suggestions, recommendations, the information that I could about. It made a huge, , like master list of okay, you know, every, just about every possible document that you could possibly have.

[00:23:03] Liz: And then I split them into two categories. One category was. Everybody's gonna have this, you know, if you're in the, if you're in the military, you're gonna have a social security card, you're gonna have, you know, a birth certifi, you know that, all that kind of stuff you're going to have. And then the other category was suggestions files that are common, but that perhaps don't apply to every, everybody.

[00:23:26] Liz: Right. Okay. , and so I made list and file binder inserts based on those two categories. So Okay. I combined all of that information and then I thought, you know what? I wanna make these more permanent and like easy to use for multiple PCs moves. Cuz I don't wanna redo this in in two years or three years.

[00:23:46] Liz: No, it's a lot of work. Yeah. Yeah. So, yeah, so I, yeah, that's what I did. I decided to make something that was e efficient and really thorough, but then that also was reusable for a long time. Cause again, I'm, I'm lazy and I didn't wanna redo this. So, so that's kind of how the idea Yeah. Was born. It just, it.

[00:24:07] Liz: Popped into my head and it didn't leave for the longest time. And there's a quote that I love that kept coming to mind over the years that said, if you can't stop thinking about it, don't stop working on it or working towards it. Yeah. And. I just, I just went with it and just said, okay, , I'm gonna try this.

[00:24:23] Liz: And I've never, made a business before and , , I've never done entrepreneur things before other than like, lemonade stands when I was little. So , let's do some research and reading and let's take a couple of classes and some, 

[00:24:35] Liz: , topics that I don't quite understand yet and teach myself. And that's, it's the beauty of the internet. We were talking about, , the age of the internet that we 

[00:24:43] Alison: kinda straddled, back in the, the age to the nineties, to the, , the dawn of the computer. A lot of things.

[00:24:50] Alison: Yeah. 

[00:24:51] Alison: So now I'm curious because I am also very O C D and type A and I like everything to be nice and neat and organized. So just briefly, you don't have to go into super detail, but , , what should you have in a PCs binder?

[00:25:05] Alison: What are those documents? 

[00:25:06] Liz: There are 12 categories of documents that are included in our, in our daily binders.

[00:25:12] Liz: And so you need to have, , identification documents for certificate, , social security card, obviously marriage license if you're married, . Passports, , you also obviously need, Health and medical paperwork, , medical records, vaccination documents, , health insurance, information you need.

[00:25:28] Liz: , legal, finance, , housing, paperwork, your mortgage and lease agreement 

[00:25:32] Liz: basically 98% of military families. Should , have these documents, for sure. In legal, should have wills. You should have powers of attorney. You should have, , several copies of orders for, , the service member. So we've, identified those, those 60 documents that you absolutely need.

[00:25:51] Liz: And then of course there are. , dozens more that, that are very common and might apply to your family. , for that reason, , if you use list and file, , we also include , a quick guide when you buy your binder inserts that lists all of those documents on the backside, so you can use that list and go through it and customize it for your family and say, oh yeah, hey, we.

[00:26:11] Liz: We are married, we do have a marriage license. Okay, let's put that, , on here. Mm-hmm. , stuff for pets even. You need . Information about your pets, you need information, about education and, , we even have an emergency tab as well, so things like 72 hour kit checklist and an emergency communication plan.

[00:26:28] Liz: And, , , a DD form 93 as well is included on there that a lot of people don't, don't consider or don't think about keeping a copy of. So I don't even know what that is. What is that? , the service members should fill it out and you should keep it updated, but it's a record of emergency data.

[00:26:42] Liz: Oh, okay. So the service member fills it out and it's like, Hey, in case of emergency, here's who you contact, , it's either one or two pages long. It's not super long. But keeping a copy of that, , what your service member. Listed. For example, my, my husband had filled one out, but not since he had joined rtc.

[00:26:57] Liz: So on his DD form 93, it still listed his parents. No, because we weren't, married yet. Yeah. And so get a copy and make sure that all of that information is up to date. Right. Um, if it's not updated, that kind of thing. Um, gotcha. Yeah, so we've listed it all out. The stuff that you absolutely should have, as well as the stuff that you might have and you'll want to, you'll want to keep as well, so you don't have to keep recreating those lists in your mind and going, oh, wait.

[00:27:25] Liz: Wait, what did I keep last pca. Oh yeah. We had, you know, we had okay. Utility information for those companies and we also had, yeah, for finance we had, you know, X, Y, and Z and oh, we gotta update our life. Insure, you know? Yeah. Don't, don't use all that mind power and. Just use these lists that, you know, I'm shamelessly promoting myself.

[00:27:46] Liz: But no, it's, don't use, use these lists that we've already made for you and yeah, use them over and over so you don't have to keep trying to remember that and think about it cuz it's a lot of important stuff and Right. We're already stressed and, and yeah. Busy a lot of the time and there's so much, so much else that we need to be doing that.

[00:28:04] Liz: Right. Yeah. Well and the other 

[00:28:06] Alison: thing I'm thinking about too is like, you're laming all this stuff and I'm like, okay. Yeah, well I have. I have a file folder that's called Important documents and like it's all in there. And I'm like, wouldn't it be nice if there was just this nice? And, and again, my type a o c D brain is like, man, it'd be real nice to just be, because every once in a while you need your marriage license for whatever, or you need this thing and you're like, oh, let me fi dig through this.

[00:28:35] Alison: And then again, when you, you know, you're PCSing. That's all documents that you wanna keep with you. And so instead of taking a big file box, you can say, here's my binder. This says everything that we would need in it, and you're ready to go. Mm-hmm. And then you just add a new tab, like you don't have to redo it over and over again.

[00:28:55] Alison: So I think that that's fantastic and I'm so excited to get it and, and start moving through that. And start moving 

[00:29:02] Liz: through that. Well, that's true. Yeah, well then that's, that's kind of what we want to relieve is that, you know, that that pressure and the stress, and so even, even if you do have, if you do have all of your documents just thrown in a bind, you know, in a box and that's all that you can handle right now, that's, that's okay.

[00:29:21] Liz: Yeah. But. But having this, , one thing I really like about what we've designed also is the, is the checkbox table. Yeah. And so not only can, can you check off Yep. I've got this. Yep. I've got this. But you can also track things like expiration dates and number of copies. Mm-hmm. , just a whole bunch of stuff you can, you can track in there.

[00:29:39] Liz: And so you've got, You know, if you're looking at all of your health records or all of your financial documents that you've got, you can just open to that tab and in one quick look you can see, oh, okay, we, you know, we don't have all our power of attorneys, or This power of attorney expires in December of this year.

[00:29:55] Liz: We need to get that updated because my husband's deploying. Yep. , Or, you know, all sorts of things. And so, , , it's, it, it is doable the other way. But if you're, again, if you're Ooc D in type A like we are Yeah. Or if you just, just wanna, you don't wanna have to shuffle through that. Yeah. Two call stack of papers to find stuff.

[00:30:17] Liz: Go this route. 

[00:30:18] Alison: Yeah, that's exactly. And then, and then this is what I'm mean. Cause I'm, they look pretty Exactly. They look, it looks nice, like it's the prey on the shelf, but you can feel so accomplished. And so I'm thinking, yeah. So I'm thinking that peop I'm excited about it because I like to be organized and I'm like, oh man, wouldn't it be nice to just be like, oh, passport.

[00:30:36] Alison: Yes. Here, it's right here. Oh, yes. We mean when you're here. Oh, your husband. When 

[00:30:39] Liz: your husband. For things, you just say it's in the binder and yeah, you don't have to keep doing this, you know, for people who can't see, I'm shuffling through my imaginary papers. Sure. You can just go, oh, it's in the binder. So you open the binder up and you look and you go, oh yeah, like house household stuff or like housing or you know, emergency or there's a deployment tab.

[00:30:58] Liz: Okay, here's a deployment, Deb, important contact information. Things like, yes, things like that. Mail guidelines, right. I love that. Oh, honey, it's in the binder. 

[00:31:08] Alison: It's in, it's in the binder. Just find, it's in binder. The binder. Yeah. And then as you're, if you're a person that is not type A or ooc D, you could be like, I don't, oh my God, that's, I don't wanna 

[00:31:20] Liz: too much, I don't wanna, I don't 

[00:31:21] Alison: time on this.

[00:31:21] Alison: Yeah. Yeah. So this is what I would do. You have your, you did these cute little checklists at the top of it. You need this, this. Pick two things. Yep. Okay. I'm gonna find my marriage license and I'm gonna find the birth certificates and they're gonna go in this plastic sheet in there. Done. Boom. Tomorrow.

[00:31:37] Alison: Yep. Maybe I'll pick something else. Or next week I'll pick two more things and then just slowly. Put it together. Like it doesn't have 

[00:31:43] Liz: to be a slowly build it up. Yeah. Yep. Over perfection. There 

[00:31:47] Alison: you go. A hundred percent. Okay. So what, what products does list and file have? So we were just talking about like the PCs, but then you were also saying a daily binder.

[00:31:55] Alison: So like what, what do you, is it just for like PCs? Is it like a daily life? Do you have a separate one for education? Or you kind of have the tabs all come together, like tell us what, how you. Divvied up. 

[00:32:07] Liz: Sure, sure. So Liston file offers three different binder inserts right now. Okay. The daily binder is also the PCs binder.

[00:32:15] Liz: Okay. The daily binder. So all the things that you need to gather for PCs moves are going to be within those 12 categories that the, that the daily binder offers. So we, we called it daily because it's not only for PCs moves, it's for every other day of the year as well. Gotcha. So, Daily binder for every day and also for PCs moves.

[00:32:34] Liz: And it has an, an in-transit or or travel tab on there as well for PCs specific documents. Okay. So that's one daily binder. , second one that we offer is, , we. Launched it most recently. What am I trying to say? We launched it recently, , just a few months ago, but it's a career binder for service members.

[00:32:53] Liz: Okay. , this is, , actually something that is, kind of a, suggestion among service members. , sometimes they call it a Love me binder or brag book. Mm-hmm. , it's not as common as a PCs binder. , yeah. But, but. That comes up. So May maybe you and your husband have heard of it. We, no, 

[00:33:09] Alison: he's got one.

[00:33:10] Alison: I'm looking at it. He's got like, he was super o he's a little o c d, so he's got, and it's got , , all of his evals and his certificates from courses that he's taken. And it's just all in a thing so that if he needs to go back and look at something. Yeah. , he did. That was good.

[00:33:24] Alison: We got that one down. Great. 

[00:33:26] Liz: Ok. Yeah. Him Go ahead. Gives him an a plus. Yeah. , no, that's, that's great. That's exactly what it is. Yeah. So what we did was we, , consulted with, , multiple service members across all branches of the military who had at least 10 years of active duty experience. If not, yeah.

[00:33:42] Liz: If not a lot more. , and so we talked to everybody. We did a bunch of research. , I'm, I'm good at that. I'm good at compiling list and doing research, , and. We again separated those, those, , documents into the two categories. Again, this, , these are pa papers that service members Absolutely, absolutely.

[00:33:58] Liz: Should keep copies of. Yeah. And here are others who might want to, to keep as well, , in the, in the quick. They get. So, the career, that's the career binder set, it's, , super helpful. , especially if you're set, you know, getting ready to separate, , proving retirement points, , you know, VA disability, all that kind of stuff.

[00:34:18] Liz: Sure. , it's only eight tabs instead of the daily binder has 12. The career binder mm-hmm. Is a little smaller. And therefore cheaper as well. Eight tabs. And then the third thing that we offer is, , education. For, school-aged military kids. Yes. Oh, goodness me. Yeah, I have, 

[00:34:34] Alison: I I have not seen 

[00:34:36] Liz: your to-do list longer.

[00:34:37] Liz: It's 

[00:34:38] Alison: gotten really long. Well, because I'm, cuz I, okay, so we're recording this in March. It's not gonna probably come out until May, but, I've never really kept track of the girls report card. I'm like, eh, whatever. I don't even know if I've kept them to be quite honest with you. , and so now as I'm doing all of this research in the month of the military child and around educa and this education binder and what should be in it, I'm like, oh 

[00:35:00] Liz: Lord.

[00:35:01] Alison: It's a lot. , so tell us about the education binder. What kind of stuff, what kind of stuff would you. And this is a, this is a thing. I mean, we're gonna get into this. This is, we will have already talked about this 

[00:35:12] in 

[00:35:12] Alison: April, but like, you know, you really should have. Documentation just to make it nice and simple.

[00:35:19] Alison: Immunization records, state testing results, all of that stuff so that when you go to a new school, you can just say, this is what we've done, da, da, da, da, da. So, oh, my word. Yeah. It's a

[00:35:30] Liz: lot. Woo. Yes. Yeah, so, so the, the, you already touched on, on several of them, but yeah. The, the education binder. Kids is also eight tabs long and it, it includes things like, , new school information, former school information, obviously records.

[00:35:47] Liz: , we have a, a supplemental tab that kind of includes a bunch of miscellaneous stuff and then special programs for kids who are in any type of special program. Mm-hmm. , i e p, you know, plan or 5 0 4 or like gifted and talented type stuff. Mm-hmm. , and so there are I think 25, files. That we've identified that, , are crucial that you absolutely should have again.

[00:36:08] Liz: Yeah. , and so that, that is actually not too many. Mm-hmm. , it's definitely doable if it's over overwhelming. Hearing this and thinking about it. That's, that's why we made these, we wrote 'em down for you. So all you have to do is find it and stick it in and 

[00:36:22] Alison: stick it in there. Oh my word. Yeah. 

[00:36:24] Liz: Yeah. Whew.

[00:36:25] Liz: Yeah. So, , and I, I really like our education binders because they're super cute. They were designed with the kids in mind. They're, there's one that you can even color in and. And so, especially if you have, , slightly older kids Yes. , this is something that they can work with you on. So you can kind of help them take, , responsibility over their, you know, their education journey mm-hmm.

[00:36:48] Liz: And their own mm-hmm. Their own school transfer stuff, even if that just means they're carrying the binder into your appointment with the school, to help mm-hmm. Register them and get them set up. Mm-hmm. , but they can, it's something that they can work with you on again, depending on. , and be proud of and say, Hey, here's, here's me, here's what I'm, here's what I'm working on.

[00:37:06] Liz: Here's what I've done in the past. And, , yeah. And so it's, it's really, , fun in that way. And there's also, a transition tab, , that maybe you'll be happy to hear this, but for this tab, you don't have to collect any files or information. You just have to read it. And it, it gives you information about making the transition smooth for kids as well as for the.

[00:37:29] Liz: And so it gives, tips on how to do that and what you can do to help, help your kid transition. , yeah. And, , yeah, so the thing, the thing about all of these is a lot, , a lot of times I'll hear, well, all of this, all this paperwork is, Online. Right. It's all, it's all in the government, 

[00:37:49] Liz: , we're just gonna transfer it. It should be in the system. But Allison, can I tell you how many times in Instagram comments, Facebook groups, , spouse support groups, blog posts about people with other experiences all over the place? Mm-hmm. Who have said, These, the records didn't transfer. Yes.

[00:38:08] Liz: They got lost. Mm-hmm. They don't have the correct ones. Mm-hmm. Even three weeks ago, a friend of mine in a, in a group Facebook chat came on and said, , the school doesn't have any of the vaccination records for my kids, and they're completely lost. And so, according to the school, my kid has had no vaccinations and he's.

[00:38:27] Liz: He's had vaccinations, like mm-hmm. That kind of stuff. Mm-hmm. That unfortunately happens. Honestly, you should have both. You should have paper copies and electronic copies. , that's what we recommend. We're not anti electronic copies at all. Keep both. Right, right.

[00:38:40] Liz: Keep both, keep the physical ones, because that kind of stuff does happen for the career binder. Right. I've had several. Come to me and say, I couldn't find this document. And I went through three years of back and forth in emails and no, we don't have this and nope. You need to prove it. And do you have a copy and mm-hmm.

[00:39:00] Liz: All sorts of just frustrating stuff. Yeah. That doesn't need to happen. , that, that this can help you avoid. Right. , so even if you think, what, you know, what am I doing this for? They already have copies. 

[00:39:14] Alison: Yeah, just does it really matter? Yeah. Cuz that's what I, that's what I've been thinking about too, is I'm like, oh my gosh.

[00:39:19] Alison: Seriously, this whole education thing is stressing me out. I'm like, oh my God, I gotta have the state test thing and I gotta have blah, blah, blah, blah. And it's like, hold on though. Hold on though. Like we just sat down with their teacher. And had a conference and they gave us an example of their writing.

[00:39:34] Alison: They gave us their last math test and they gave us their evaluation. Three hole punches sticking in the thing. And that's their progress for right now through fourth grade or whatever they're at. It doesn't have to be. This crazy thing, but you're exactly right. That it, and the, and the other part is with the career binder specifically, cuz we do have that Yay for us.

[00:39:54] Alison: Or yay for him cuz I didn't have anything to do with it. But, but as you're going, if you're going up for a promotion or you're going for a review and you wanna make sure that everything is, is right, there's been, he's like, oh, I had this award and I had this, but it's not in my service record. So he had to go back into that binder, find it.

[00:40:12] Alison: Scan it, give whoever needs to have it so that the, , , service record is updated appropriately. And if he didn't have that, then he would've been in that whole thing. You were just talking about that whirlwind of like, oh, you gotta get this from 

[00:40:23] Liz: here and that from there and, oh, it must have been lost terra's on so-and-so's desk.

[00:40:27] Liz: Oh, we can't find it. Nope. It's not, you know, we don't have any record of it, yada, yada. Right. Yeah. It's, it's so simple and you, so you think, no, it's handled right. I don't, I don't need. Right. But the, the stress and the problems that it causes, if you don't have a copy of it Yes, a hundred percent. It's not worth it.

[00:40:45] Liz: It's just not worth it. Right. 

[00:40:47] Alison: So, and the time save too. Cause I'm just thinking about, oh, how many times have I had to Google the address and phone number? For a job that I had four years ago. Right. Or whatever, you know what I mean? Yep. Like if you just had it shoot, then you, then you would just have one you 

[00:41:05] Liz: about it.

[00:41:05] Liz: Yeah. Yeah. Oh, 

[00:41:06] Alison: there's that. Yeah. Done. Or you can't remember , hold on a second. What was that again? Like an address, have you started that document yet of, these are all of our 

[00:41:16] Liz: past addresses. These are all the. Exactly. Yep. Yep. That's part of it. So that's like four pages long. I'll, I'll just, I'll just tease something that's coming in the future.

[00:41:26] Liz: What we're actually doing is separating the, the daily binder from a pc s binder. So the PC S one will be smaller, , and it'll be, , very specific and very tailored to an individual PC s move. And so that is, that is part of it actually, that it will include, , we'll have a section that includes all of.

[00:41:43] Liz: Prior addresses, and all you do is write your new address on it every time you move to a new place, and then when you need, right. Whatever. And then when you need for whatever, you need all those past addresses from, you've just got it right there. So, yeah, that, that is when you get 

[00:41:57] Alison: asked that awesome question of list, your past six address, or three or four, whatever, it doesn't matter.

[00:42:03] Alison: Like, it's like, why? 

[00:42:04] Liz: I just wanna, I just wanna write No. 

[00:42:06] Alison: Yes. Pass. No, I'm not, I'm not gonna do Right. Not gonna do that. Not gonna do that. Okay. I love it. So if so, where can we find 

[00:42:16] Liz: your product? List and file.com. Super easy. We're also on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, , at list and file for all three of those.

[00:42:25] Liz: So super simple. Perfect. 

[00:42:27] Alison: Okay. Love it. Yeah. All right. This has been awesome. I have loved talking to you. I feel like you, , and I would be friends if we were next door to, we can still be friends now, but , we're totally friends. Yeah. I could, I, I have really enjoyed talking to you and, , I really appreciate everything that you shared about being overseas because like I, I was telling you before we started, I haven't talked to anybody that's been stationed or that is stationed overseas and, and especially in Korea, it was really.

[00:42:52] Alison: I think, I don't know what the right word is. Uplifting, encouraging, maybe encouraging is the right word. , , you're there and you're thriving. You're excited to be there. You actually asked to extend for longer. , and again, , everybody has their opinion of what they're gonna like or what they're not gonna like.

[00:43:06] Alison: And just go in with an open mind and just make the best of it. And you never know what you're gonna absolutely love. You know? , and even when we were stationed in Florida, I mean, , we saw so many rocket launches and we went to Disney all the time. It wasn't all bad, you know?

[00:43:21] Alison: I mean, I, I don't, I don't wanna put hurricane shutters up by myself again, 

[00:43:24] Liz: but, 

[00:43:25] Alison: you know, there, there was other positive stuff around that too, 

[00:43:29] Liz: , I think there's that 

[00:43:29] Alison: for everything. So I think that's great. And, , I really appreciate your time and, , and scheduling all this stuff. Thank you.

[00:43:35] Alison: And just the, and if people have questions, like you're online, you've got, like you said, you have a Facebook group . 

[00:43:42] Liz: Yep. Message us on Facebook. We have a, there's a, contact us. Form on our website that you can send us a message, email us info list and file.com. We also, , we do a lot of, work with like individual units and, oh, perfect.

[00:43:56] Liz: Yeah, individual units, , S F R G groups, things like that. So we do bulk orders for those as well. If it's something that you wanna create for your S F R G group or you know, a new spouse, welcome. Class, like acs, that kind of thing. Yeah, that 

[00:44:12] Alison: class. That would be so smart. Because it, because it's like you, you're sitting there and it's like, eh, and I'm just thinking about, , we've been in for a really long time and we haven't had a system like that.

[00:44:20] Alison: I have a system, quote unquote, I've got this folder, but I'm just thinking , man, it would be so nice if you just, and how like, and maybe it's not for everybody, but for me, I just feel like it'd be such a relief to know that. Everything is just boom, boom, boom, boom. Everything's right here. Oh, you need your there honey, go to the binder.

[00:44:38] Alison: You need your passport. It's in the binder. You need a copy of the gross birth certificate. It's in the binder. Like just, 

[00:44:43] Liz: it's in one spot. Especially, especially for new military spouses who are often, younger and they're, , we're all just entering, , I was just entering, you know, adulthood as well.

[00:44:56] Liz: Sure, yep. It covers all of that stuff too. Like even if you weren't in the military, This is the , these are the documents that you should also be keeping anyway. And so yeah, those two things combine in our, in our inserts and just they, they teach as well as as track. And so yes, you don't have to think about it and it's like, Nope, this is what you need.

[00:45:16] Liz: And if you have all of this together, you really don't have to worry about much. So Yes. Yes. Take it to your appointments. Take it to in processing, take it to, you know. Yes. We've, we've even had, a couple of people give these as wedding gifts, , and they wrote back to us and said, oh, they, this, they said this was their favorite wedding, , cuz they, , they're marrying it to the military.

[00:45:35] Liz: So this is their favorite wedding gift. Yeah. And she like loved it and Yeah. And we loved to hear that. We're like, oh yes, this is, I'm so glad that something as silly as organizing papers, it's. , exciting, which, , it isn't always, and we, we know that it's not the most exciting topic, but, 

[00:45:52] Liz: it's so worth it to just get it, have everything 

[00:45:56] Alison: organized like that. Yeah. And I think you're, I think. Yes. Really your brain of stress. And I think you're right with the new spouses coming in, because you have that checklist. You should have this, this, this, this, this. Because you come, there's no training.

[00:46:09] Alison: There's no training, no. When you come, you enter into the military's. A spouse, there's nothing. So you gotta figure it out on your own. You gotta learn the hard way. You gotta ask questions. And so this would be like, oh, here we go. Because you see it all the time. It's my first PCs. I don't know what to do.

[00:46:24] Alison: It's like exactly over what do I need? Exactly what do I need? So this is perfect. You got that 

[00:46:29] Liz: checklist. This is what you wanna put in there. Done. Boom, you're good. Yep. Okay. Yep. Awesome. 

[00:46:33] Alison: Absolutely. Well, I appreciate your time, Liz. It was so great talking to you. And again, list and file.com. Get your system.

[00:46:40] Alison: I'm gonna get the whole shebang cuz I need to do the education one. I'm like, I'm like, oh, and I'm, I'm actually excited about the everyday one because. Again, I've got the, I've got that two inch file folder that's just got like, the mess in it, you know? It's 

[00:46:56] Liz: just living. Yeah. Yeah. It's like, you know, there's, again, there's, there's nothing wrong with that, but it's, there's something to be said for, for being a little more specific too.

[00:47:05] Liz: So hopefully that helps. Just helps you go, okay, yeah, here's the place for these things. Here's this. Yes. I don't have to think about you anymore, and when I need something, I don't have to. Is it in the office? Is it on the countertop under our mail from the last week? Is it right where. Yes, 

[00:47:20] Alison: a hundred percent.

[00:47:21] Alison: I'm so excited. I can't wait. And I will, I'll be sharing, I'll be sharing all of my organizational stuff on Instagram too, of how fantastic my, because I, that stuff makes me 

[00:47:32] Liz: so excited. Like, look at the 

[00:47:34] Alison: organized stuff. I love it. All right, Liz, I 

[00:47:39] Liz: appreciate your time so much. Thank you. Yep. We'll talk later.

[00:47:43] Liz: Yes.