Have you jumped on the paper planner craze? I’ve used my iPhone for my scheduling for years – iCal and Notes mostly, sometimes Reminders, but honestly? It just wasn’t working for me! I was feeling really overwhelmed at the end of the year and started noodling with the idea of going back to a paper planner. Lo and behold I stumbled on the paper planner communities out there and have been consumed / in love / aghast with all the YouTube videos on planners! Egads!
Welcome to our Make It Monday: “Organization” circle! You may have noticed some of our Monday’s have themes? Well today we’re chatting up organization! And what’s getting me organized these days? My planner! So, here we go…
As much as I’ve been wanting to splurge on the gorgeous gold foil Erin Condren Life Planner (ECLP), I am being practical and promised myself I’d see if I could actually stick to using a cheap planner consistently for 2 months before I splurge! I’ve heard it takes 21 days of repeated/consistent behavior to develop a habit? So far, so good!
I bought an inexpensive (on sale for $7) planner at Target the first week of January, and it really is helping me keep organized. I have so many ideas running loose in my head, and this is helping me corral it all into one practical place! What I love about the ECLP is the layout of the week, with days laid out in a vertical format. The one I bought is NOT laid out that way, but I customized it by adding washi tape down the center to create a “time scheduled” block and a “to do” block for each day.
That was where I started. Then I decided I wanted to add some sort of a checkmark system for the “to do” section, and although I found some adorable stamps that I really want at Studio L2E, I’m again committed to being frugal. So I searched my
mountain of stamps for an open square to create a cute checkbox, but knew I had to use the heart I found instead – it was a perfect fit!
Once I complete a task, I fill in the heart :) I’m just a goofy dork that way! I should mention I’m loving the erasable Frixion pens. They’re super duper amazing!
So that’s got me moving in the right direction. That alone has helped me organize my days with time commitments and to do’s for the week. So nice to not have to worry about forgetting something because it’s rolling around in my head with a million other to do’s instead of nicely planned in my planner ;) Of course there are the occasional slip ups, but it really is helping me plan out my days.
Every night before I go to bed, I review my planner and see what I have going on the next day as far as scheduled obligations, what “to do’s” I may have not completed that day, and what needs to be done the next day. Then I review it again first thing in the morning. It’s really helping me get my day started on the right foot and certainly end the night feeling more accomplished than I started the day!
The other areas I needed to get a grip on included: 1). my creative team responsibilities at Capture Your 365; 2). an editorial calendar for my Make It Monday blog circle with a group of fabulous creatives (who are also my inspiring creative friends!); and 3). projects that I wanted to get to, but didn’t have an actual deadline.
Too many times I feel like my dog chasing my tail. We all know how easy it is to jump on the computer and get sidetracked. You jump on to pay a bill and an hour later you’ve forgotten about the bill but caught up on Instagram, answered a couple emails, and checked in with a couple of Facebook groups. Yup, easy to do. Unfortunately, I tend to do that with a lot of my life, and have a lot of half-baked crafty, bloggy and photo projects. Having my tasks written down is helping me keep focused…yay!
When I bought the planner in January, it came with November and December 2014 month views (2-page spreads) that I wasn’t going to use. I figured these pages were perfect for a “Project Ideas” page, so I covered up the month and days using washi tape, creating a grid to write in projects. Then, I realized the removable stickers we used to use when we had our retail businesses would be great to use for these projects so I could move around the projects! I add them to my evolving list and once the project is complete, I move it to the date or week I completed it.
I color coded my projects based on my Etsy store, Society6 store, Craft Ideas for the Blog, Planner/Organization, YouTube and more!
Somewhere I saw Washi wrapped around playing cards and thought that was a great idea instead of carrying a ton of rolls of Washi! I have a great assortment without lugging them all around! I have these secured to the inside of the front cover. I added Washi to the bottom as well so the cards don’t move around.
The last piece of organizing I’ll share with you is my grocery list and meal planning. Remember how I said I used Notes on my iPhone? I would usually write my grocery list on there, so I had quite a few to go back to reference. I made a master grocery list in Excel and print 3 weeks worth on one sheet. Before I head to the grocery store, I get my meals planned for the week and cross out the items I don’t need to purchase. I use more removable stickers to plan our dinner menu for the week, and can move them around as needed. I use some crafting markers to customize the round and rectangular removable stickers. I
like love color and coding this way helps me keep it pretty AND organized!
So I’m sharing all these ideas with you in case you’ve had any of the same hiccups I’ve hit along the way. Maybe my grocery list and meal planning idea will help you develop a more efficient system for you and your family! Perhaps my Editorial Calendar format will help you organize your creative projects a little better. One project I haven’t made yet has been inspired by my sweet friend Cara at the Hooting Pirate – she created a pen holder with Duct Tape and a bullfrog clip. Super cute! Be sure to check it out here!
And the last piece I’ll share is a little love note I found in my planner from my 8-yr old. Color me happy and lucky in love <3 I decided to use some of the washi tape to draw attention to that sweetness!
Ready to continue to Make It Monday fun? Gotta run? Melissa at Digital Scrapbooking HQ shows you how to keep a collection of photos together to scrap later with Photoshop Elements Organizer Check out Melissa’s post – her tips and tricks are amazing and I always leave her site with a great and easily usable nugget of knowledge!
As always, thanks for stopping by. Have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day! Make sure not to miss any future posts by signing up for the Clicky Chick Creates email list here! You’ll get a great little freebie download as my thank you. What’s the freebie? My go-to shot list: 7-must get photos for kid birthdays!
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