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  1. That planner is adorable!

    I’m a sucker for calendars and planners. And markers and stickers. Office supply and craft stores 🙂 I don’t know what I’d do without my calendar and planner.

    (Hi from SITS Sharefest!)

      1. Me too…. I would rather spend 2 hours going around a office supply store than at the mall or any other clothing store. I really do not like shopping for clothes.. 🙁

    1. I Agree! I love all those things as well, and I find it comforting to know I’m not alone! That there are others who have that same affection!

      I’m really glad I found this site!

  2. I don’t use a paper planner anymore, but sometimes I miss it! I love writing with colorful pens!

    1. I think that’s the biggest reason why I haven’t completely converted to using my calendar on the phone, I would miss color coordinating to much! 🙂

  3. I am a huge nerd!! My husband always teases me because I love office supplies. Seeing your pictures made me want to run out and buy a planner right now. I used to be so organized but got away from it, but you have motivated me to pull my home binder back out and get to work for 2015! Visiting from Mom2Mom linkup.

  4. I love this post. I am naturally not a planner but since becoming a special needs mom (5 years ago) I have learned to embrace planners. Your tips are amazing and I am going to have to start writing my goals into my planner!

    1. They really do help organize all those important dates and I am sure you probably have your fair share of appointments for your child. Writing down goals in my planner has really revolutionized my life and has helped me keep track of actually accomplishing them 🙂

  5. I love your system! It’s really cute 🙂 Those are also really incredibly important tips. I never even thought to include my goals in my planner! Thank you for sharing 🙂

    1. Thanks! It had definitely revolutionized the way I approach goal planning and accomplishment by adding in some mini-tasks and completion dates.

    1. I know! I can’t believe I didn’t think to do something like that sooner but I’m pretty sure I am going to enjoy moving a ribbon around much more than trying to keep a paper clip in my planner. Plus it’s so much prettier! 🙂

  6. Love these tips! I try to do each of these when I start a new planner (though I’m usually on the academic year since I used to teach), but inevitably, I’ll forget something. I’m pinning this for when I get my new planner for my blog and etsy shops.

    So I have a weird question. It’s a long shot, but I’m desperate! Is there any chance you would be selling your Martha Stewart discbound planner? I can’t find it anywhere, and I want that one in that size. If so, please let me know.

    1. Actually, scratch that. I thought that yours had the pen holder on the side, but it doesn’t. Don’t mind me, I’m just over here being awkward haha

      1. Ha! 🙂 No worries, I’m actually planning on keeping the discbound system and just placing notebook paper in the middle and using as a journal/idea notebook. \\\\

  7. I look forward to planning every year as well. I just got my 2015 planner in the mail and am excited to sit and reflect on 2014 as I ponder new goals and activities for the new year. Thanks for the great tips!

  8. one other thing i write in my planner weekly is my prayer list. that wah i see it every day when i open my planner. even if i dont intentionally remember individuals i see everyone’s name

    1. Dawn that is such a great idea! I never thought to include my prayer list in my planner but that makes so much sense, especially since I look at my planner several times a day. Thanks for the idea 🙂

  9. This is great! I am about to sit down and plan out my calendar so this is a great resource!

  10. Hi! I’m also a planner addict… Maybe you’d like some of my ideas that I developed over time.

    I combine mine with a diary (pages that I take out and make a book of monthly) and my permantent lists (in the back I keep lists of books I want to read, projects I’d like to make, goals for my life, movies I like to see, future names for my cats, songs that make me cry,…). I just like adding all kinds of stuff between the diary pages like wrapping paper of gifts that I got, letters from my friends, embellishments of my favourite tea… And I write on all kinds of paper that I find, like those postcards you can get for free, to make it very vivid. In the planner part I mostly write on stickers (labels), they give it an instant nice overall view. Or when I’m not sure I will finish the task that day, I write it on post-its and then I can just replace the post-it to the next day.

    Greetings and good luck with your planning!

    1. And I forgot to mention, very important to put in your planner:

      -expiration dates of foods/medicine
      -opening hours of shops/facilities you visit often
      -maps of places where you keep getting lost

  11. Can you recommend any similar planners that aren’t out of stock (other than the free printables)?

  12. This is my first year using a planner since high school! I am looking forward to having somewhere to write things down. I’m hoping it will keep me accountable to my to do list. I completely forgot to add seasonal items in. Guess what I’m spending some time on today.

  13. if you want to use the disc system, it’s still available at Levenger.com. I just saw it in the catalog I received this week. I used it for 4-5 years and had thought it was gone forever!

  14. Maybe I don’t understand because I’m not a mom yet, but I am a full time college student who has many of things going on in my life. I honestly cannot see how on earth someone feels the need to be THAT organized about every little thing in their life… It almost seems manic. Sure, I can write doctors appointments and people’s birthdays on a calendar on my fridge, but my goodness gracious this is ridiculous! Maybe I’m just an ignorant college kid and I’m sure most of you moms see me in that light… But 70% of this is unnecessary (and washi tape? what the… why??)

    1. Hi Sara, thank for commenting. I admit that I may be a little crazy when it comes to being organized 😉 It’s just how God made me. I know these tips won’t apply to everyone but for me personally when I spend the time to make a plan like this I find I am much more intentional and purposeful in my days. I think what is important is to find a planning system that works for you and you can certainly take or leave any of these tips. Best wishes to you as you continue on in your studies.

    2. Sara for a long time I was just like you. I saw no reason to be so crazy about schedules and planning. Now I am a full time college student attending year round, a veteran with a lot of Dr appointments, a mom of 4 kids ranging from 12 to 2, and we have 5 pets with all the various vet and grooming that entails. , I handle the bills, the menus, the grocery shopping, the appointments, the housekeeping, and the planning for our family of 6. Did I mention we are also currently building a house from the ground up? My planner may seem manic but in reality it is my sanity in written form.

    3. I think if you had more going on you would understand the need to have on spot everything is written and scheduled. I have two kids on five hockey teams and a rodeo princess! I can’t keep those schedules all straight in my head. Not everyone is crazy with the washi tape and stickers, (but I do think they are fun). I get so much more done with a plan! If I write it down it is like a commitment that I have made instead of just an idea.

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  16. Now why haven’t I thought of making a bookmark for my planner!? 🙂 One thing I like to add to mine is a reminder to send a card about a week before an anniversary, etc. Otherwise, I have a habit of not remembering until the day of. Also, when I add a doctor’s appointment, I jot down the co-pay as a quick reference for budgeting.

    1. Those are such great tips Suzanne, especially about the co-pay! It’s good to know what expenses we have coming and if I write them down then I am prepared. Thanks for sharing!

  17. Fabulous planner! I have a helpful hint to help with your goal f sending personal cards. I glued a top loading mailing envelope (9×5) to the inside cover. That way I can keep cards and stamps n my planner so when the special day comes around you just address it and plop it in the mail. If you are really feeling organized, you can write the addresses on envelopes ahead of time. I mainly do this for business thank you notes but I’m sure it will work for personal mailings as well. Keep up your awesome work!

    1. Taryn that is such a great idea! The Simplified Planner actually has a little pocket in the front cover so I may have to do that to keep myself on top of notes and cards. Thanks for the tip!

  18. Victoria, your ideas are great! I live alone and have a slow schedule compred to other women! I have a simple schedule & a simple life. I thank God for what I do have–including my planner!

  19. I recently went from a digital calendar to ring bound calendar, and I must admit, it’s much for fun. I enjoyed reading your input about goals and planning for holidays additions to the calendar. I found your post via pinterest, Thanks for sharing.

    BCM

  20. This was a great post! I enjoyed it. I am way behind on this year’s planner, but there are so many choices. I thought I had it down but now, I am not so sure…sigh. I recently found the printables on Etsy and there are some really cute ones as well. One thing that makes it so hard is that I want the one planner to rule them all, lol, and to arrange homeschool, home business, home stuff and everything else. It’s hard to find one that gives me as much space as I like on the daily pages!

    One thing I do to help me keep up with mailing cards is I use an online service that sends me reminders 10-14 days in advance of the occasion. I then click on the link in the email and it takes me to the correct part of the card catalog (birthday or anniversary), so that I can choose from those cards. A few clicks and my card is sent for me! I LOVE it. That is the ONLY way I get cards sent these days.

  21. Thanks for the great advice. I love planners too. One of the things I do is to list all the birthdays in a month on a sticky (name, date) and put the sticky on the previous month’s page. For example, I’ll have a list of all the June birthdays on the May page. Not only do I take the sticky with me to the card store to purchase the cards (a once-a-month task), but I transfer the stickies to the next year’s planner in December.

  22. So, I know I’m late to this one, but I love the tips. I currently am using a “reusable” type planner system from Staples, the ARC one they carry. I love that I don’t have to pay out a fortune for a new planner every year and I love that they have their calendar refills academically so, I can fill them in for the school year vs. having to purchase a new planner before finishing out a year of school info.
    Also, I love using colorful pens and I do try to use a color system for everything. like, one color for each of my kiddos as they all always have so much stuff going on. one color for my own things like household work and errands. and then a I have a small line on the bottom of each day that I write “wfd”-what’s for dinner, and fill it in at the start of the month. so I don’t have to scramble to think of a dinner last minute or ultimately order a pizza. ha.
    Glad I’m not alone in my love for “pretty stuff”.

  23. Michael’s sells the disc organizers. This is my second year using one. The company who makes them is Create 365.

  24. One thing I find helpful in remembering annual appointments is to book them the same month as my birthday. The same for my son and husband as well. That way, we remember that it has been a whole year. The other thing I do for more frequent appointments is to write a reminder in my planner to book another appointment on “x” date. For example, when I get back from the dentist, I set a reminder 6 months later to book my next teeth cleaning. I use a Moleskine 18-month planner and it is really helpful.

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