Getting Organized This Year (Buying A Planner)

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It's hard NOT to get on the goal-setting bandwagon in January. 

On our way home from our after-Christmas visit to my parents my oldest son (11 years) sat across from me at a rest stop

"Do you have any goals for the new year, Mom?"

I looked at him blankly, impressed that goals had even crossed his mind:  "I hadn't really thought too much about it."  I admitted.

He went on to share with me four goals he had for himself.  Even our children get drawn in  at the thought of a new year! 

One thing I like at the new year is choosing my day planner.  Last year was my first year working for myself and I juggled part-time homeschooling, a part-time job, teaching adult education classes at night, consulting on off days, as well as household chores and cooking dinner, etc.  I found myself floundering through my days.  I had a list system that consisted of writing a few things on any sheet of nearby paper and promptly losing said paper.

I tried online solutions and entering info into my phone, but nothing stuck for me.  Then I decided to shell out money and get a good planner that was pretty, to boot.  It was the best decision I ever made.  This year I might try a planner from a different company.  I'll give you a couple of reviews here, just in case you're looking for something too.

These are hard copy planners that are available online.  I'll start with the simplest first

Today Is The Day Pocket Planner

I stumbled upon this as I was searching for one of my favorite hand lettering/graphic designers, Jessica Hische.She hand lettered this cute little planner and it's so pretty - it's crafted in a great vintage style.It truly is a pocket planner, as the name suggests.It's roughly the size of my hand.

Today Is The Day Planner Pages

Pros: 

  • it's so pretty
  • it's only $13.99 wait, $11.99 and is on Amazon Prime
  • it fits in just about any purse, *almost* your pocket
  • the months and weekly pages aren't pre-dated, so you can start in any month
  • pages include:  monthly spreads, weekly two-page spreads, lined notes pages, blank notes pages, checklist pages and contacts
  • cute hand-lettered quotes are sprinkled throughout the book
  • a little pocket on the back cover can hold coupons and business cards
  • an elastic band is attached to the back cover so you can close the book
  • really, it's so pretty

Cons

  • it's really small
  • like pages are all grouped together.  All of the months are together, then the weekly pages are later in the planner, same with the notes sections.  I would love this a little more if the weekly pages were lined up after the months, with notes pages added behind these

Erin Condren Life Planner

This is the planner I used last year and I love it.  It's very cute, very functional, and is personalized. 

Pros

  • there are tons of covers to choose from
  • you can add your name, just your last name, or/and a picture to the covers
  • it's much bigger than the pocket planner, but can still fit in a large purse or laptop case
  • there are laminated tabs for each month
  • weekly pages are double spreads with room for notes, morning/afternoon/evening sections, and an extra smaller section at the bottom for adding lists, meal plans, or whatever
  • there is a special days section at the front, as well as a zipper pouch and pocketed divider in the back
  • there's an extensive tabbed notes section at the back with lots of lined and unlined note paper
  • comes with bright stickers to use for all of your important dates
  • also includes a contact section
  • lots of options to add on, this year I saw a fitness pack, budget pack, and all kinds of fun little things like pens, pen holder, clips, personalized notepads, etc.

Cons

  • it's a bit pricey, starting at $50 and adding a bit if you get any add-ons.

**If you're interested in this planner, click on the following link for $10 off.

Erin Condren Life Planner

Yearly Planner by Plum Paper

One last planner I've found that I haven't had a chance to purchase is the yearly planner by Plum Paper Designs. This planner looks very similar to Erin Condren's (they even have several beautiful personalized cover choices) with a few different benefits:

  • three different weekly page layout options
  • several different add-ons that I didn't see listed on Erin Condren's site including pages for Direct Sales, baby and home planning, and housecleaning schedules
  • options for notes and checklists to be spread throughout the planner
  • a cheaper starting price (that can add up quickly, depending on your add-ons)

I haven't used this planner but was sorely tempted to try it out this year. 

Other planners I looked at:

Day Designer By Whitney English

Emily Ley Simplified Planner

 

Do you have a planner you're loyal to? 

 

Christy Halsell

Christy lives at the beach, loves on five children, and drives a minivan with too much sand on the floor. Homeschooling mother by day, graphic designer by night, Christy writes about letting Jesus heal the hurts of life and adds snippets on tricks she's learned about running a family of seven.

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