I am obsessed with calendars. In fact, I’m kind of in love with all kinds of pretty paper. Maybe it’s the artist in me, maybe it’s the writer, but electronic versions just don’t have the same appeal. There is something that I just adore about flipping to a new page of a calendar each month (I bought a calendar at Versailles if that tells you anything). I spent a few years with completely uninspiring calendars, and then I began a torrid love affair with Rifle Paper Co.
Two years ago I bought the Secret Garden calendar and enjoyed it thoroughly. I loved seeing her signature flowers at my desk each day. And it’s a good thing that I was in love with this calendar, because due to an inadvertent oversight on my part I ended up with no calendar for 2015 (I was trying to wait for the calendars to go on sale and they sold out of the one I wanted, so no calendar for me.) This year, I wasn’t taking any chances and I ordered my calendar early.
I absolutely love this calendar. I love travel, so this calendar just makes me so happy. Plus, the cover shows the Paris map that I have as my phone case. Love love love! And, my thought is that once the year is over (assuming I won’t have to use my calendar for a second year!), I want to save the artwork to do something like this.
Don’t you love it?! Anyway, I am excited about giving my calendar new life as prints. These will be perfect in our office too, which I fondly refer to as the “map room”.
So, that’s my calendar at home but of course I need a calendar at the office too, right? I usually buy one of those small desk calendars, but after using my Versailles calendar I suppose I was spoiled for anything else. I saw a photo on Instagram similar to this one, using a clipboard and printed Instagram photos.
Love the idea, so I decided to make my own. I often need to see two months at a time at work, so I printed two to a page. And I went through my Instagram likes and chose some of my favorite photos that were representative of the months.
I am thinking I may do this again for this year, but haven’t actually sat down to do it. It worked really well for me though, and was something fun to look at in the office. So, that’s what I’ve been using for calendars. Kind of along those lines, I am trying out a planner for 2016 too. I’ve spent the last few years working exclusively with an electronic calendar for keeping track of my appointments, events, etc. I don’t actually use my wall calendar for that, it’s just to look at. LOL So, I love the convenience of having my calendar in my phone because then I always have it with me. I also use an online/app called Remember the Milk for my to do list. It’s great because again, it’s always with me and it is so easy to postpone tasks, mark them complete, add notes, give tasks a priority rating and due date, etc. But, I watched a Periscope recently on the benefits of using a paper planner over an electronic calendar or to do list on your phone/tablet/computer. One of the pitfalls of using an electronic version is that there are too many distractions on your device – social media, messages, emails, etc. By using a paper planner, you can focus on your scheduled tasks and priorities without the infinite number of distractions on your device.
I took advantage of the Black Friday sale and ordered myself an Erin Condren Life Planner for 2016. I spent a good amount of time comparing the EC planner with the other planners out there, like the Passion Planner, the Simplified Planner, the Plum Paper Planner, and so on. Having never used a planner before I wasn’t entirely sure what would work best for me, but several people recommended the EC to me so I decided to give it a try.
I really liked the presentation when my box arrived. It was like getting a present in the mail. From myself! The Black Friday discount was only good on the Good to Go (not personalized) planners, so that’s what I ordered. I did get a coupon for a personalized cover that I can redeem. I’m having a hard time choosing which cover I want though!
I do love the cover it came with, but it would be fun to have a personalized cover. I won’t go too far into detail about the planner itself because there are a million posts and YouTube videos about that, but I’m very happy with it. I love how creative some people are with their weekly layouts, but other than the stickers that came with my planner I haven’t gone out and spent the money to buy more. I am mostly just using colored markers and that has been fun. I opted for the vertical daily layout and it’s been working great for me. My planner is looking very similar to the one below – markers, minimal stickers, and a little bit of washi tape for good measure. Down at the bottom of each day I have been tracking my water, vitamins, and steps and I’m loving that – keeping me accountable!
I’ve been using the monthly view to list my goals for the month broken up into the seven key areas of Oola (Fitness, Finance, Family, Field, Faith, Friends, and Fun). Then, I have weekly goals that I can check off in the weekly views. That has been helping a lot to keep me on track. And at the back of the planner in the Notes sections, I’ve listed out my reading goals and project goals for 2016 along with pages to record my accomplishments.
So, that’s what I’m doing for my calendars, planner, and to do lists for 2016. How about you?