Wednesday, December 31, 2014

12 Goals for 2015 [printable]

Resolutions?  Been there, done that.  Haven't we all?  Like everyone else I start a new year with such high hopes, only to see those hopes dashed under the weight of all the things I have resolved to do.  It's too much to put on a person.  It really is!

So, now I make goals.  Goals that are SMART.  You can write one smart goal on a project page, do a little brain-storming and come up with a plan and a to-do list.  You can make progress and not worry so much about perfection.

Here's a goal page to get you started - 12 Goals for 2015.  I'm planning on printing out several and adding one to my blog section, one to list Christian/Fath goals for the year and one for my health goals.  Don't be shy - there's plenty for everyone!!

  Available Sizes:  Letter  |  Half  |  Personal  |  Pocket

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Setting Up for the New Year

January 1st is usually an exciting time for those of us who use planners.  What can be better than a new year, a new month and for some, a new planner.  I love seeing white, crisp, clean pages just ready to be filled in, color coded and doodled on.  If you're still trying to decide on your setup for the New Year, it's time to get with it!  No seriously, sometimes it is hard to decide - there are so many formats and they ALL look good, don't they?

If you are using a ring-bound system, might I suggest that you not put the pressure to choose on yourself?  I started using a planner mid-year in 2014.  I created a monthly calendar that I used for that one month and then made something entirely different - that is the only format that I have stuck with.  I have used several week on 2 pages formats and have loved everyone of them but I always find something I like to tweak and/or try.  Since I use a ring-bound planner - no problem!  I usually print out a month at a time and do commit to using it for at least a month; but if I change my mind, that's fine too.  It IS my planner, right?

Right now I am using these inserts for my weekly page and these inserts are what I use for my monthly pages.

My dashboard setup seems to stay the same.  I have a to-do list front and center and right behind that a couple of sheets of blank paper for quick notes (I cut the pages out of a $3 journal from Big Lots for those).  I had been jotting down the things we needed from the grocery store on the note pages but it made sense to me that I should just put the pre-printed grocery list that I use every week behind the notepaper and it has worked well.  (tip) The notepaper is more narrow that the grocery list so it is all easy to get to.

Want to share what your setup looks like?  Feel free to use the comment section below to share.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Vertical Week on 2 Pages [printable]

A member on one of the planner groups I frequent was looking for a printable like this one and I thought I would give it a try.  This one is available in letter and half sizes.  The design might be too much for personal and pocket sizes but if you would like me to size it down, leave a comment below.

Letter  |  Half

Friday, December 26, 2014

The Everything Else Planner

I have lots of new ideas for the New Year, involving planners and beyond, that I am excited about.  Now that I am organized and/or know how to stay organized, keeping up with all these ideas should be fairly easy - except I have a problem.  My planner is only so big and although I don't mind carrying around a stuffed planner, not everything will actually fit.

Since getting into the Planner Scene, I have wondered how/why people owner more than one planner.  Did they buy them like purses to switch out when they got bored or did they wear them out really quickly.  I love the idea of keeping everything in one place but sometimes that does not work (like the time I tried to keep all of my homeschooling records in my planner) and when I switch out the word "notebook" for "planner" I don't feel like I'm going planner crazy, LOL!

So, to my main planner (8.5 x 5.5 Daytimer and my homeschool notebook (8.5 x 5.5 former Vera Bradley planner),  now add my everything else planner.  It's the leather planner with a zipper (an older Daytimer) that I was using before I got my new one for Christmas.  I did NOT want a gazillion dividers so I am incorporating Giftie's index hack (somewhat modified) to keep up with everything.

I have an index page at the very beginning of my planner; since I am not keeping up with appointments or schedules, I don't need a to-do list, calendar or anything else - the index page is it.  Following that is a set of A-Z tabs that came with my new planner.   Now I am adding everything I didn't want to keep in my everyday planner - mostly things that would fall under one main category (such as food) but needs a method for keeping up with more than one section (such as menu planning pages, food ideas from a facebook group, etc.)

This would work well with an online app such as Evernote, but I am finding more and more I like having hard copies of things close at hand that I can access quickly.  I have even put a few blank copies of different inserts that I have printed but don't need yet (such as a blank index page).

I have some aspirations (I hate the word resolutions) that I want to accomplish in the coming year so I will be adding ideas and project pages as I go along.

This is what is working for me. The ideas of the 'how and what' were swirling in my brain and now that I have a plan for all this extra information, now fondly dubbed the Everything Else Planner, I can relax going into the New Year.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

It Has to be Done!

Hey Fun Planners! I'm taking a short break until after Christmas. I will be relaxing (then) and cranking out some new planner inserts for you guys. I hope that you all have a fabulous Christmas!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Whatever It Takes

Every year my Sunday School class contributes money to get a Christmas gift for our teacher.  In the past I have either forgotten about this or I have forgotten to bring cash.  This shouldn't be such a hard thing to remember but for me, apparently it is.

The reason I am even thinking about this is because I just received a text from the girl who is coordinating the gift.  I automatically picked up my planner and wrote on Saturday's date:  "Bring Cash for Carol's Gift".

Done.  The only way this won't get taken care of is if I fail to look at my calendar on Saturday.  I take that back, I have been known to look at a task and think "I have to do this" and then don't think about it again.  My calendar task should prompt me to do something.  In this case, I backed up the task with an alert on my calendar/phone for Sunday morning, about at hour before Sunday School starts - plenty of time to go by the ATM if the task was not done on Saturday.  You have to do whatever it takes!
  • Write everything in your planner.
  • Look at your planner everyday - multiple times if necessary

Friday, December 19, 2014

One Line Journal Page [printable]

I am trying something different this year.  I used to journal from the time I was in high school, off and on, up until I was married 21 years ago.  I love the idea of documenting life but the hours I would spend writing page after page of my "feelings" are long gone!

My monthly pages give a pretty good idea of what goes on in my household but I wanted a little more depth (but not too much, LOL!).  I saw a neat idea on Pinterest awhile back but it involved more work than I knew I would devote to it.  You basically needed 365 index card and you labeled each card with the day of the month, such as "January 1, January 2", and put them all in a card box.  You are supposed to find the correct day and write the year on the first line and a one line description of your day.  When the next year rolls around, you write the new year and another description and so on.

Lots of work but a really cool idea.  My solution, of course, is to figure out a way to do that in my planner.  This year I am not printing my monthly calendars back to back because I am using the Vera Bradley month dividers (remember again, my big bargain?) so I have my month on 2 pages but the opposite sides are blank.  I figured I could use the opposite of the first side for my one-line journaling.

So, I printed up a simple insert with January 2015 at the top and then added 31 numbered lines below.  Now, everyday I can jot something that happened that day, something clever I heard, something I want to remember and other fun stuff.  If you could use some pages like this, download them here  

So simple but very satisfying!!

[Did my graphic make you giggle like it did me? ]

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Lessons Learned

I'm making some basic planners as Christmas gifts.  My mom says she is going to call hers "The Brain" and when I consider how important my planner has been to me, I can see where that would be an appropriate name.

This morning was an overwhelming one for me.  I checked my calendar, had my to-do list in place but it seemed like thing kept getting added to it while I sat there.  My tech-less hubby needed me to (all of a sudden) text members of the basketball team he coaches.  I was in the middle of school, my sister called me needing something, and just about exploded!  Sometimes you can't write things on the to-do list fast enough.

I started receiving messages (numbers not names) from the team member parents for my hubby.  I even thought I was going to be overwhelmed with that as well until I told myself - "you have a planner, what is the best way to deal with this?"  I wrote "Basketball Notes" at the top of a sheet of paper and filed it behind my "Current" tab.  Done.  Planner Peace.

During all of that, I had almost forgotten an online banking task I needed to do and I had to stop and write that simple task on my list because I very well nearly forgot it.  That, I realized, was a very important lesson for me.  Sometimes when everything is crazy around you and an important thought pops into your head, you have to just stop everything and take 3 seconds to write it down - you might find yourself in a bigger mess if you don't!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Did You/Are You Using a Christmas Planner?

I made a couple of Christmas planners this year: one with several pages of lists and to-do's, and one that I called The Minimalist One Page Christmas Planner.  I especially like the one page planner because, in my book, less is moreszssa, and even though I had every intention of using it, I ended up using graph paper instead!  I guess you could say I learned something about myself - or that what I was beginning to believe about myself was reinforced.

I was drawn in to planning by the Washi tape and colored pens but functional planning side has emerged the longer I use a planner.  As you read yesterday, a lot of the fun and creativity I enjoy from planner comes from the desktop publishing (creating my own pages) aspects.

Have you ever started out using something that you really loved, only to find out that it wasn't a good fit for you (even though you wanted it to be)?

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Where Did I Put That? [printable]

As most of you know, most of the printables you see on my blog were created because I found a need for them in my own life.  Knowing that might cause you to chuckle after you've seen this one.  For most of my life I have had a pretty good memory.  I can remember phone numbers and birth dates from years ago of friends I haven't seen in forever, but when it comes to short term memory,  have been very surprised at how difficult it has been for me at times to remember where I put something for safe keeping.

Case in point:  I ordered printer ink recently and because I didn't need to replace one of the colors, I put it away in a drawer that stores crafty and office supplies.  Makes sense that I would put it there but weeks later when I needed it, I could find it anywhere and it made me slightly crazy.  It did occur to me that I needed an inventory-like sheet where I could jot down where I stored certain important items, so why not?  I made this little insert to slip into my A-Z file.  Thanks to (what I fondly call) The Giftie Method, I won't have to remember what I named the insert or where I put it in my planner because I filed and indexed it!


Monday, December 15, 2014

Why I Create

I've heard the term "planner peace" many times since I've stepped into the world of planning and I understand it to mean being content with your planner, setup and contents.  I think I have planner peace but the fact that I am often changing my weekly pages might say otherwise!  I love my monthly pages and have decided to use them again in 2015 but it's my monthly pages that I am always changing up.  Even so, I still feel like I have planner peace.

You see, I love desktop publishing. I took a journalism class in high school and I loved the layout aspect of it.  In college I attempted to create a Baptist Student Union newsletter with just a typewriter. and even though there was only one edition of that particular publication, I had fun trying.  From the time I was given my first computer I have enjoyed creating calendars, printables, booklets and such.

So, for me, creating planner inserts is as much as actually using them.  Having a blog of free printables just made sense to me.  Some of the things I create are hit or miss but occasionally I make something that I really like and I share them in hopes that someone else will like or can use them as well.

As always, I'm open to hearing ideas from you guys!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Do You Need a Brain Dump?

So, I've been hearing a lot about "Brain Dumps" lately.  If I understand it correctly, it's where you sit down and write down everything that is going on in your head.  I've been using my planner faithful and at first didn't see why I would need such an exercise, but then I realized that I had written down some information, such as Christmas planning, in more than one place without any dates or action notes and that's not very productive at all!

I sat down and starting writing things down and all kinds of information poured out!  Now I am taking each thing on my list and am making sure I have dealt with it properly - if not, I am dealing with it and crossing it out.

Do you "Brain Dump"?  It seems beneficial to me!  You don't need a printable for this one - just grab some paper and write!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Planning Ahead for Meals

There's one thing that stresses me out more than any other - meal planning.  There are a tremendous number of resources online so it shouldn't stress anyone out, right?  Um, wrong.

When I am planning meals for the week, there is usually a conversation going on in my head.  Is that recipe big enough, will I need to double it?  Those ingredients sound pricey, I want to be more frugal this week.  That recipe looks like it takes a lot preparation.  I'm looking for a recipe that gets me in and out of the kitchen quickly.

On top of all of that, my family tries to eat plant-based about 90% of the time (when we eat at home) and I am constantly checking to see if a recipe or food fits in with the plan we follow.  Will all of that in my head, I get my pencil and paper and then stare at the computer screen as if I don't know what to do.

But I have a plan!  In 2013, I did a series on my personal blog, called:  31 Days of Plant-Based Menu's.  That was when I realized that I really did have more food in my aresenal I had thought.  Now I keep a running list of meals we can eat and enjoy and add new foods to it all the time.  The printable that I am sharing with you today is just a very simple way to make your list.  I have a space for breakfast, lunch and dinner because sometimes I deliberately do not plan lunch or breakfast because I will "just find something" and that never goes well.  Food choices might be sparse or gone completely.  Having a plan and buying food for every meal will avert disaster and maybe even give you a buffer.

Friday, December 12, 2014

New Layout for Week on Two Pages

I was doing some planning for next week when I realized that my weekly pages end on Sunday - I needed some more!  Instead of using one of the different layouts that I had already created, I made a new one - just tweaked a bit from previous layouts.

These pages are undated so you'll have to fill that in.  Underneath is a place for notes and to-do's.  The week starts with Sunday and each day also has room for notes and to-do's.  At the bottom of the notes for each day, you'll see "eve:".  If we have any evening activities going on such as basketball practice or somewhere else to go, I'll jot it down here.  I like being able to go right to this information.

Just print this page, flip it, and print it again.  Cut it down the middle and punch holes, making sure you punch the inside margins that measure ½ inch.


Friday Felicities : What Makes You Happy?

Friday Felicities is all about things that make you happy and was started by my friend Nattie. She knew the value of counting your blessings. Nattie has been a resident of heaven since 2007. I miss her a lot.

  • Seeing a Christmas  play with my guys
  • Sitting by my "faux" fireplace (YouTube, baby!)
  • twinkling (not flashing!) Christmas lights everywhere 
  • Wrapped presents under the tree (this makes me happy because I have done it early!)
What makes you happy?

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Take A Peek - My New Planner

Hey guys, sorry for being AWOL this past weekend.  I was sick and busy and needed to let the blog take a backseat for a few days.  

Last week I finished a large part of my Christmas shopping and am about ready to wrap the gifts and put them under the tree and then relax and enjoy the rest of the season.  My husband and I kind of pick out our own gifts most of the time since we know what we really want.  I really wanted a new planner and even treated myself to overnight shipping because I just couldn't wait.

I decided against getting a Filofax (even thought that would have been so cool) and bought this flexible Daytimer in red.  That was the thing that most appealed to me about the Filofax in the first place, the flexible cover and snap closure.

This one is simulated (fake!) leather but it is soft and flexible and I love it.  It has two pen holders which I am loving, and plenty of pockets on both front and back inside covers.

It came with some really nice inserts but the first thing I did when it arrived is to pull all of them out and put mine in.  It's like another reader said, the first thing you do when you move into a new house is to put your  things in - so I guess I am not too crazy.  I just like my setup so I'm going to use it until I get the urge to do something differently.

It came with a nice pad of paper that I will for sure be using, as well as the zip pocket and "today" bookmark.

I did some rearranging of my dividers.  I went back to putting a to-do list right in front, with a few blank pages for random notes right behind it. Previously I was making notes on my weekly pages, and I still do that while thinking ahead in the week, but I've found I like that to-do list front and center so I can check them off and see at a glance what is left to be done.

Instead of a monthly and a weekly tab, I'm using the 2014 monthly dividers I got from Vera Bradley (anyone else take part of that huge deal?) and am putting the monthly and weekly calendars together (separated by a page marker).  I will only keep 2-3 months of pages in my planner at a time so it doesn't get too full.

I finally put my new label maker to good use and made labels for my dividers.  I've kept the same (category) dividers, just moved them around a little - the ones I use most frequently finding a home nearer the front. This setup has worked marvelously for me the last several months and I see no need to change any of it.

Side note:  another reason I like the texture of this planner is because I can grab it and go - my old one was a slick leather and I would drop it almost every time I picked it up!

Here's a closer look at the dividers.  I chose to print the labels out vertically instead of horizontally and I like it much better.  I didn't realize how much I was craning my neck to see my dividers!

These dividers were made from some pretty file folders I found at the Dollar Tree (3/$1).  I traced my old ones, cut them out and popped a label on them - easy!  Anytime you want a new look, it would be easy to change them out.

I'm happy I got my planner early - I was never very good at waiting, anyway.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Week on One Page [Half]

I'm making planner gifts for Christmas and this is one of the inserts that I needed - so I share it with you as well!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Watch For Me!

Hey guys!  I'm looking forward to blogging again but I'm going to try for tomorrow- it was a busy weekend and I was (am) sick as well. I just need one more day of rest!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Friday Felicities - It's December, Y'all!

Friday Felicities is all about things that make you happy and was started by my friend Nattie. She knew the value of counting your blessings. Nattie has been a resident of heaven since 2007. I miss her a lot.
  • being almost finished with my shopping!
  • early Christmas gift arrives today!
  • Planner Peace (you guys know what I mean!)
  • my boys - they are so sweet to me
  • family time
  • the holidays!!
What makes you happy?

Doodle Squares! [all sizes]

I guess it is pretty much self-explanatory!  :)  Download Here

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Menu & Grocery List Combo [Half]

I have made quite a few and I think this is my favorite grocery list yet!

This menu planner is a two page (back and front) printable on half size paper.  When you download the page, you will have two full-size pages that you will print back to back.  Cut them in half and you will have two menu planners.

The planner is divided into two columns - in one column create your menu and in the next write down your needed grocery items.  On the back the columns are reversed so that when you are finished, fold the list in half vertically with the grocery list on the outside, and you are good to go. I especially like this format because sometimes when I am shopping I really need to refer to my menu and now I have it with me.  Before I would plan on one sheet and make a grocery list on another.  There is a row for "other" on the second page.  I jot down household items, items needed for a party and other items I might think up at the last minute.

I buy 90% of my groceries at Aldi but sometimes I need an item they don't carry, so to keep it all organized, I take my highlighter and highlight the groceries that I need to get elsewhere.  Hope this works for you!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

2015 Monthly Calenders (v2) - Half Size

Unless I change my mind (and that has been known to happen with my planner inserts), these are the monthly pages that I am using for 2015.  They are identical to my 2014 calendar with the exception of the font and the month titles.  Just a little something that I whipped up for me and wanted to share with you.  You can download the pages here:  2015 Monthly Calendar v2

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

My One Black Friday Purchase

I do not do Black Friday - never have and quite possibly never will There is just not anything that I want bad enough to brave the early time, cold temperatures and the CROWDS! That's just me.

Late Friday afternoon I was browsing online and saw that Walmart had this label maker, regularly marked $19.99, on sale for $9.99. Since I had wanted one for awhile, I figured now was a good time to purchase.

I am proud of myself because I haven't gone around labeling everything in sight! ::smile:: I have been contemplating how I want to use it with my planner. I have been making some changes to my planner and will be making some changes. I made this divider a couple of weeks ago and because it is so different from the rest of the dividers, it really didn't need a label but I decided to test my label maker by making one for it.

I like it! I have a decent handwriting but I have never liked the way it looks on my dividers - I like everything to be uniform - these labels solve this problem. I wish the labels were clear but that is such a small problem and I am betting I can buy transparent tape for my label maker at another time. Now I need to decide if I want the labels to be horizontal or vertical.

Did you get any planner toys on Black Friday?

Monday, December 1, 2014

TV Episode & Series Tracker

One of the girls in one of the Facebook group I am in was looking for a Television Series insert to keep up with what episodes she had watched.My husband and I are working our way through all the episodes of Person of Interest and I thought it was a good idea since I never can remember from one day to another which episode we are on.  I hope some of you find this helpful.  You can find the size you need below.