I think before we get to the planner and what comes with it I want to tell you a bit about why I decided to buy it.
Way back last December I had decided that I wanted to figure out some kind of planner to help me keep track of stuff. I am trying to keep up with multiple blogs, YouTube channels, Facebook, home-school my son, email from friends around the world and the rest that life throws my way. On top of all that I really want to get my Etsy shop back up and actually have it make some income. So as you can guess I have a lot to keep track of.
Back in December I started looking at planners in the stores but I didn't find what I thought I wanted. Most of the ones I found really didn't have the flexibility that I was looking for. Also frankly most of them were just plane boring.
Since finding one ready-made didn't seem to be something I was going to be able to do I of course decided to make my own. In many ways this was a good thing because I was able to really discover what I wanted (and just as importantly what I didn't want) in a planner.
Since January I have printed out several different types/styles of planners. Some of these I found as free printables online and some I designed myself on my computer. One big advantage of doing it yourself is you can work with one month at a time and change it before you print off next month. None of them were what I was looking for.
Fast forward to this summer. Oregon is experiencing a record breaking hot summer. Since summers are normally not all that bad here we don't have AC. It has been miserable and many days I have just not felt like doing much. What I have been doing is spending a lot of time watching YouTube videos. I started out watching some crafting videos and then when I ran out of those I started watching a bunch of beauty/makeup videos. For some reason those are the channels that have planner videos on them. I discovered a new world of decorated planners! I started watching all the planner videos I could find, some were great some I switched off within seconds. Through these videos I found out about several brands of planners that are really popular. One of those is the Life Planner by Erin Condren. The first time I looked at the website and saw the price I was shocked, that thing runs $50! Then I looked at the amount I had already spent on my project of trying to make the perfect planner. I admit it I have spent way more already this year which made me take another look. After watching even more videos I came to the conclusion that this is the planner I have been searching for. So last Sunday I bit the bullet and ordered one. You can pick a customized cover but I decided to go with the “ready to ship” version since I can order a customized cover later if I decide I want one. This way my planner was shipped in just a couple of days instead of having to wait for a week or more for the customized cover to be printed. From the videos I have seen the covers are super easy to change anyway and I might even be able to make my own. (that would be wayyyy cool)
So I ordered on Sunday afternoon and my planner came on Thursday afternoon via FedEx.
*disclaimer time- I very carefully opened the box on Thursday evening but put everything back very carefully so I could take pictures and film video for you guys.
Now I have to admit that I filmed the un-boxing and wrote the above part of the blog post about 3 or 4 weeks ago. I kept telling myself that I needed to get the video and blog post finished but I never got the time to get back to it. (I guess I should have put it in my planner as a “to-do”)
Anyway, since I have been planning in my planner I decided to add a walk through of what I have done in it so far. I am planning to start doing “Plan with me” videos and blogs this week so stay tuned for those (or better yet- subscribe to my channel so you will know when I post them)
Here are pictures of the planner spreads I showed in the video so you can see them closer.
October month at a glance.
I was initially going to add to the decorations on the monthly page each week but changed my mind really quickly on that one. I ended up using some of the stickers that were left in my sticker book from the week of August 10-16. I do love those critters and they look like they are having a great time. They make me smile every time I look at them. I used the side bar to set a monthly goal- almost reached it too. At the bottom of that column is some notes that I need to remember about the month. I designed my own stickers to post on the monthly page when I post a blog and/or video. I made one set and can use them with all my channels easily by simply circling which channel/blog at the bottom. There is just enough room to make a quick note about what the post was. And a place to circle if it was a blog or a video. Most of my posts are both by the way.
Onto the week of August 3-9, this was my first time doing this type of planning although I had already logged a bunch of time watching PWM videos. I stuck with the colors of the month and used printable purchased stickers. I went for a lemons/lemonade theme for the most part.
Okay, now for the first really decorated week, August 10-16. I really took advantage of one of those dollar sticker books that are sold at the craft store. I used a combination of purchased printable stickers and some free ones from Vintage Glam.
The third week I planned, August 17-23, I have to say is my favorite so far. I love the sunflower theme. I was able to find a sheet of sunflower stickers at the craft store. I added to that with some stickers I made myself. I even made my own weekend banner and I really love how it turned out. The rest of the stickers are from some sets of printable stickers I got from Etsy.
The week of August 24-30 ended up being a bug theme. I wanted to stick to the color scheme of yellow and green, I looked for stickers to go with several themes but had very little luck at the local stores. I did find enough bugs in various books of stickers and sheets of stickers that I had on hand to make it work. It isn't my favorite but I do like it.
The other page I have decorated is the monthly spread for September. I love the dark purple and gray that the month is colored. The first thing I thought of when I saw the colors for the month was wine/vineyard/grapes. But, I had a really hard time finding stickers to go with what I had in mind. I did find a few so I decided to use them on the monthly page. Most of them dimensional and I don't want to use those on too many pages (I am afraid of making the planner too fat for the binding)
The other big change was the cover, I decided to make my own for the month of September. I picked out a fall leaves paper for it and overall I like how it turned out. I have plans for how to make a better one next time. (Watch for that to be appearing on my planner in October)
So that is my planner so far.