Hey friends! As some of you may know, I’m obsessed with planners! I found a really great cheap one at Walmart last year, and used it all through 2015! For a few years I fell off the planner bandwagon, but now that I have so many meetings (babysitting nights), events (parties), and appointments (reminders to get my hair cut), it’s impossible to imagine my life without a place to write everything down.
I loved my 2015 planner dearly, but couldn’t find a replacement that I really loved. Sure, it was just a standard weekly planner from BlueSky, but I just really wasn’t feeling any of the designs available to me, plus I knew I needed to be able to customize it.
This year, I wanted to combine my planner and journal as a sort of daily gratitude log, so it was important to find a planner that offered a full page for writing per day. I also tend to use my planner as a notebook to jot down ideas for blog posts, songs, gifts, etc., so I wanted needed more room than just a few lines per day.
I started out with the Moleskine daily planner/journal, found here. My version is hardcover, 8.25 x 5in. I like this size because its large enough to not get lost, and small enough to carry with me everywhere (which I do!). Even in my ‘smaller purse’, it fits perfectly upright with room for my makeup bag.
Included in the daily pages are monthly pages at the beginning of the book. The monthly view pages are probably the pages that get the most use in my planners, since they provide a nice overview of the month as a whole. I was disappointed to find that the monthly calendar pages took up only one page, instead of being spread over two. Plus, all 12 months were at the front of the book, not evenly spread throughout and separating the daily pages. Having already decided that I wanted to use a Moleskine planner (as they’re known for durability), I decided to just work with the planner that I had, and make it work for me.
I bought a set of planner refill pages (something Jacob was convinced didn’t exist) made for a FiloFax planner and cut them to size. Not wanting to take away daily pages by gluing them in, I attached the sides with washi tape in a fun pattern. This allowed the tabs to stick out in a way that made it easy to navigate month-to-month, gave me two full pages of monthly overviews, and separated the daily pages into their appropriate months. Three birds with one stone? Awesome!
I customized the inside cover easily with the help of some scrapbook paper, ModPodge, and some favorite pictures of Jacob and I.
On the introduction page, I glued in some small Post-It notes. I love having Post-Its around because it allows me to jot down a quick thought or date without having to set a date to it quite yet. Once the date is set in stone, I’ll write it on the calendar itself. I only ever write in pen, so canceled plans are not my friend! I use the next blank page as a ‘brain dump.’ Essentially random thoughts or notes that have no other place will end up on a sticky note on this page until I figure out where it needs to be!
What better place for a vision board than a place you’re guaranteed to see every single day? I added in this mini vision board to the front few pages of my planner for daily inspiration. It covers up the front information page, but honestly I don’t feel the need to write down my address, doctor, mom’s phone number, and blood type all in my planner. That’s pretty personal information if someone were to get their hands on my planner. Also, in an emergency, all that information is safely stored on my phone for access.
My next addition was writing down all of the birthday/anniversary/important dates to remember. The Moleskine planner provides plenty of space to do this, so I utilized their ‘list-style’ date keeper, then transferred them to the appropriate dates on my monthly calendar. I added in small tabs for dates I needed to buy gifts for, so that once the gift was purchased I could remove the tab reminder.
I babysit for tons of different families, and while I usually see most of the families at least once a month, every once in a while I get a request from a family I haven’t sat for in months, and have to scramble back through our interview messages to find their address/apartment number/gate code. If I don’t find it of course I can always ask, but I feel like it makes for a more personal experience when I simply know where to go. Not every family knows I babysit for at least ten families, and want to feel like a priority. So, I sat down and scrolled through dozens of Care.com messages and e-mails, and compiled an address book of families that I care for so I have them all handy. Of course for each family I have an emergency contact sheet with their address on it, but it’s just nice to have all in one place with my planner, rather than thumbing through dozens of papers in my nanny binder. Also in the address book I added important address I might need in case of emergency. Like if for some weird reason I needed to get to my grandma’s house and needed to use someone else’s GPS and didn’t have my phone or couldn’t call my parents for some reason? The situation is completely unrealistic and hypothetical, but it could happen!
I’ve decided to make my planner a work-in-progress, as I want it to also be my journal/scrapbook…. essentially making it my ‘everything’ book. Tickets to that movie we went to? Pasted into the page. That sweet note from my boss? Safely paperclipped inside :) If you’ve never seen a ‘junque journal’ that’s essentially the look I’m going for.
Some great examples of a junque journal!!
I want to create a big, messy art piece representative of a year in my life. I will allow myself the freedom to doodle, paint, scrapbook, journal, plan, and whatever else in these pages, and I can’t wait to see the result at the end of the year! Hope you enjoyed a peek into the beginning of my year-long project, and I hope to see you here again soon<3