It appears I am a planner junkie! I didn’t even know that was a “thing” until I haphazardly shared a blog post on planners (who knew they had those! They do. Tons of them!!!) on Facebook and the engagement skyrocketed.
If you are not a blogger you probably don’t track things like Facebook engagement so I will just tell you- it is very, VERY hard to get bloggy things seen on Facebook. You may not be able to hide from your crazy cousin’s hourly status updates about what she ate, her political and religious views, and why she is mom of the year, but you may never see a single post shared by a blogger you follow no matter how many tricks they try. Facebook hates bloggers! (On that note, you can pop over to Facebook and “like” A Kreative Whim Blog and then hover over “like” and choose to “get posts in newsfeed” or even “get notifications”. And just maybe you will get in on all the blog goodness I share!)
Anyways, I shared one post about planners and all the crazy cousins, friends, and everyone else I know came out commenting on how much they struggle to find the “right” planner. So, like I said- being a planner junkie is a “thing” and I want to share the planner I finally settled on (and am loving so far!) in case you are still looking for the perfect fit.
My planner requirements included:
- full size- (8.5 x 11)
- monthly calendar spread
- weekly calendar spread
- lots of room for notes/brainstorms
- a section to set goals
- a section for my blog notes and details
- a place for lists
- a place to keep track of appointments, meals, and workouts (time-block style)
Plainly I had a lot of aspirations for my little planner. While I did not find one that has every single one of those elements, this one comes pretty close: The Dreams by Design Planner from Karen over at A House Full of Sunshine.
I am so excited about my Dreams by Design Planner. I spent some exciting time getting it put together just like I wanted it and it is pretty close to perfect for me now (and my hubs thinks I’m a weirdo because this was so very important to me!). Until the last few weeks I had not thought about how personal a planner was. For example, my mom wanted a very specific monthly planner that showed one month on a 2-page spread and was personalized with photographs of our family throughout. Sounds simple, but guess what- you cannot find one to personalize anywhere. I had to start FROM SCRATCH just to create hers (however, I now have a template and can make you one for the right price! Haha!). I, on the other hand, am a sleep-deprived Mombie these days and I was in desperate need of a central location to keep track of “To Do” lists, post ideas/brainstorms, appointments, weekly schedules, and everything in between.
Why did I choose this planner?
Honestly, the very first thing that made me want this planner was the simple fact that Karen shared a video on her blog that shared each page of the planner. Simple, right? But so often a designer planner will show 2-3 pages of the planner and you can’t get a feel for what you are ordering.
I also loved the goal setting pages. 2015 was not my year and I’m determined that 2016 will be an improvement and I’m starting with some fresh new goals for my relationships with God and my family, my health, and my blog. Being a (recovering) special education teacher I am all about Specific, Measurable, Action-filled, Realistic, Time-specific goals but I often forget to follow the SMART acronym when I’m setting goals for myself. Thanks to Karen’s “Steps I will take to achieve this goal” prompt I was reminded that reaching a goal is all about the process. In addition to the “Goals” pages there is also a selection of pages geared specifically to projects.
Finally, I loved the Weekly Master Plan. I am a visual person so being able to look at a piece of paper and see the blank space (also known as free time!!!!!) helps me have a clear picture of what my week looks like.
How I use my planner.
This planner is designed to be printed and bound by a professional printer. Because I wanted to have the freedom to move items around at will I chose to print mine on my home printer and put in a binder. It was also very important to me to have a Blog Planner and Life Planner in one place for the sake of efficiency (and the fact that I already use 5 different journals so 2 planners in addition to those seemed a little daunting.) It’s not fancy but it is extremely efficient (and I love the 3 ring binder I found at Wal-Mart!!). And if you are worried about the time and ink needed to create your planner there is no need! It only took me a few hours to get everything laid out, printed, and organized exactly as I wanted (and would have taken less if I would have left everything exactly as Karen fabulously created it). It also only used about 30% of my ink cartridge, and I printed front and back so paper usage wasn’t excessive either.
The Dreams by Design Planner does not have a Blog Planner component but it does have plenty of space for notes and brainstorming. I did come up with a solution for the absence of a Blog Planner and I will share more about this (along with links to free printables) later this week so be sure to come back and visit!
Thanks for stopping by. I would love to know what you look for in a planner! What planner do you use?
PS- If you have not found a planner yet it is not too late to grab the Dreams by Design Planner. It’s only $19 and has many customizable options!
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