Monday, November 23, 2015

I Only Need 3 Things to Plan My Day.....

As the topic says, I only need three things to plan my day - a monthly calendar, a writing instrument and a piece of paper.  However, I want to do more than just "plan my day", I want to plan "My Life".  So maybe you are asking "What's the difference?".


Planning a day is easy - anyone can do it.  You are merely reacting to a given set of circumstances...for example if you are sleeping you need to wake up, if you have an appointment you need to go to it, if the house is dirty you need to clean it (or not, depending on your cleanliness standards), if you need groceries you need to go to the store.  See - it is reactionary - you are reacting to circumstances around you.

But what if you want to plan your life - moving forward with your goals, dreams, projects all the while continuing to react to the situations around you?  If you want to do more than just "plan your day" you need a system.  A system to record your goals, dreams and projects where you make an action plan and execute those plans.

Enter my planning system - while it works for me, it may not be the best fit for your life.  I follow (with a few deviations) the Franklin Covey Planning System.  The first thing that I had to do was create a Mission Statement - a mission statement is a summation of who I am as a person, where I want to be and where I want to go and what I want to accomplish (literally and figuratively).  Once I determined this, the rest of my "system" was dictated by my Mission Statement.  



For example one of the parts of my Mission Statement is to act in a manner that brings out the best in me.  So I had to determine what brings out the best in me and one of those things is being creative, whether it is with my business, reading a good book or actually creating a craft. So I have sections in my planner that are geared toward reading, crafting and business (to name a few) and within each of those sections I have goals and projects.  The goals and projects are further broken out by action steps or a plan of action and those action steps are integrated into my daily plan.  So my daily plan now consists of more than just reacting to my surroundings (cleaning house for example) it also includes individual steps that I am taking each day to make me a better person and work towards specific goals that I have created that support my Mission Statement.

If any of this interests you or if you are ready to do more than just react to your day, I encourage you to join my Franklin Covey Addicts Facebook Group, look up Stephen R. Covey and his books - a great starting point might be First Things First or 7 Habits of Highly Successful People or get your hands on a Franklin Covey Starter Pack (less than $10 on the FranklinPlanner.com website.  

Disclaimer: these opinions are my own and I am not an affiliate of, nor anyway compensated by Franklin Covey/Planner.

Thank you and check back soon for a more detailed look at my planner and it's contents.

Take care,
XOXOXO

Friday, November 20, 2015

Franklin Covey Classic - Back to My Roots & Miscellaneous Updates!

Vintage Franklin Covey Classic (inserts are US half letter - not to be confused with A5 size, which is different)
I am still working on this whole blog thing and regular updates….but as with most things in life trying to develop new habits is a work in progress.  

So on to the updates – I am back in a Franklin Covey Classic Size Planner which is not to be confused with an A5 size – here in America the standard size paper is letter size and our 7 ring binders use half letter size paper which is 8.5” tall x 5.5” wide.  Franklin Covey, Day Runner, ACCO, Greenroom Eco (available at Target) and Daytimer are a few of US brands that use the 7 ring system.  Also noteworthy is that you can purchase half size 3 ring binders (Avery brand) at most office supply stores and the 3 ring configuration on those will also hold 7 hole pages without re-punching. 

Now you have the rundown on 7 ring binder systems and the fact that they are not A5 systems.  Side note: it’s a personal pet peeve of mine when they get called that as I am a firm believer that if you post on YouTube, a Blog or other Social Media you need to do your research before running your mouth and providing incorrect information. Ahem, let me remove myself from my soapbox and carry on….

I am a long time Franklin Covey user (almost 30 years, yep I am THAT old). I have dabbled in other systems from rings to spirals to elastics and I always seem to gravitate back to Franklin Covey.  So what brings me back?  Both the binders and the planner system….how do I count the ways?!?
Two major things about the binders – whether they are leather, vinyl or plastic coated canvas they seem to have a longevity that is not seen in very many binders (unless you count some European binder companies) plus if that wasn’t enough there is also the fact that you can remove and replace the rings on many of them (they are screwed in instead of riveted). That means you can upsize, downsize or just replace the rings. So the binders are great, but I also need a planning system – not just a calendar that I can throw some decorations at (I can buy those at my local DollarTree) and list out my appointments and tasks, but I need a bona-fide, tried and tested planning system.  You know what I am referring to - I need a planning system that does more than just record my appointments and need to do’s and looks pretty and gives me something to post pictures of on Instagram.  I need something that ties in all phases of my life from appointments, to tasks, to life goals, to family goals/tasks and events, journaling, mission statement (the standards by which I live and strive to follow), my finances and so much more. I need to see where I’ve been, what I’ve done, where I’m going and what I need to do and along the way I need to work on improving myself so that I am continuously learning and moving forward using my past successes and failures as a guide for the future.   If I toss a little bit of deco on my pages, then it is just a secondary thought and not the main point of having my binder and system.

Enter the Franklin Covey planning system….check it out – google it, look up books written by Stephen R. Covey. In fact I am running a Facebook Group Book Club and we are reading First Things First by Stephen R. Covey. Everyone is welcome to join – we start the reading Plan this Monday the 23rd, but the archives will be kept in our group for future reading and resources.

Definition of Plan (taken from https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/plan ): A set of intended actions, usually mutually related, through which one expects to achieve a goal.  If you would like to read a more detailed, in depth definition I encourage you utilize the link or do your own research.

Important to note that I read through multiple definitions of the word “plan” from many sources and not one mentioned keeping a calendar with appointments, events and tasks as a Plan. Therefore by my summation "A Planner" as it relates to a system is more than a calendar keeper; a planner is a system that utilizes the sum of all parts of the planning process to get to the end in mind – a goal or a set of goals.  

Therefore I can conclude with the utmost certainty that I. AM. A. PLANNER. PERSON. (I personally like the term Planner Nerd) and I use a binder (Franklin Covey) that houses a complete planning system and keeps me on track and always moving forward.  Are you a planner person or a calendar keeper?  There is a difference and if you think that your system is not working for you then maybe it is not the binder, but it is the need for an actual system.  I don't sell inserts, nor am I compensated in any way by Franklin Covey, but I do know what works for me and I am happy to promote it.  I run a Group on Facebook which is dedicated to Franklin Covey (Franklin Covey Addicts) - look us up, we welcome all and would be happy to have you (we love coverts, LOL).  Perhaps this post won’t be that popular or it might be controversial, but that’s ok, I know wo I am and I know where I’m going and I’m ok with both. 

On a side note, watch for future posts of how I actually use my planning system and maybe some totally non planner related random stuff, 'cuz that's how I roll - kind of Random!

Take care,
XOXOXO

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

A Brief Timeout......and Ramblings!


So, I took brief timeout while I dabbled in the ringless world of Traveler's Notebooks.  At first I thought that I was done with my rings forever, but then little things kept happening that bugged me - like I wanted to carry too many books and tipping in additional pages was a pain.  I love the system as a whole, but as far as my style goes, it seems to work out the best if I only use this style of system for journaling.  I moved back into my ringed Franklin Covey - I started with a FC Compact size, then morphed up to a FC Classic size (1/2 size US letter) and now I am enjoying a FC Pocket size.

One thing that I can definitely say is that when it comes to current Franklin Covey ringed binders, I have tried all of their current sizes and the ones that I continue to come back to are Pocket and Classic.

I am going to try to post more often in this blog about how I actually plan out my days and what I use that works.  I may also throw in a few posts about my family and maybe some posts on various organizing systems that I use throughout my house.  I also have a lot of unused planner deco stuff so I might even do a giveaway or two or ten!
Let me know if there is something in particular that you would like to see or if you have any questions.

XOXOXO

Friday, August 7, 2015

Facebook Account - What Happens If You Die?

I thought I was pretty Facebook savvy, but I ran across a post on one of the blogs that I follow on how to prepare your Facebook account in case you die.  In a few simple steps you can prepare your account so that someone can take over your account, turning it into a "legacy account".  

Giftie at Giftie Etcetera has done a wonderful step by step (with images) tutorial which you can see by clicking HERE.

Overview of the five simple steps:
  1. Settings
  2. Security
  3. Edit (in Legacy Contact)
  4. Add Legacy Contact
  5. Click Close
After step #4 you will get a pop up similar to this shown below (my personal information has been blocked out), asking if you would like to send a message to your "Legacy Contact". 
My Facebook account is ready to go should I die - one less thing that family members will have to deal with....  

In regards to other social media - I have all of my log in information stored with my will to help make the process a little bit easier when I am gone.  If you would like to read about this in more detail, please go to Facebook's Newsroom Article on this subject (they also show the steps to add this from your mobile device).

Thank you for stopping by,please leave me a comment if you have any questions
or requests for future posts - I would love to hear from you!

XOXOXO

Sunday, August 2, 2015

One Book July 2015 Conclusion

My "One Book"
Did you notice that I was awfully quiet about One Book July?  That would be because I really struggled with it!  I did flip flop around and finally ended the month in the same cover, but with a totally different set up than what I started with.  In fact where I ended is actually more of a "one book" than where I started, but hey, I have been known to do things in reverse order from what is the "norm".  I ended the month in my Black fauxdori cover, but the interior books are what is really different.  I have one insert that houses what I call my permanent information - finances, contacts and login information and another book that has my planning calendars, lists, journal, notes and pretty much everything else - this book is 300 pages!

Yep, you read it correctly - 300 Pages!  
Over an 1" thick!
I love the Miquelruis grid journal books that you can purchase at Barnes and Noble for just under $10.  I love the paper and the grid, but the way they come standard are too wide for my preferences.  I prefer the standard Midori size of 8.25" tall x 4.33" wide and these books are almost 6" wide.  I tried to cut one down myself and ended up with a hot mess of jagged pages and who likes that?  Not me, that's for sure!

So, I did a little brainstorming and remembered that I had read that Office Max, Staples and Office Depot can cut down books, but I also remembered that sometimes they mess up.  So I did some more thinking and remembered that I have a local printing company just down the road from my day job so I decided to give them a call and see if they could cut it down to size and they could!  Total cost for one cut - .75 cents - less than a dollar!  Keep in mind that this book is 300 pages and just over an inch thick.  I bought two new Miquelruis books at Barnes and Nobel (one to finish this year and one for next year) and had them both cut down.  
My Icon Tabs!
I have everything in this book - a year's worth of month on two pages, the rest of the year (August - December) day per page, all of my lists, projects, meal planning and about 150 pages left over to journal, take notes, doodle or whatever I want.

My permanent info insert
With 300 pages (600, if you count the front and back of each page) I will be able to fit my whole year's worth of month on two pages, one day per page, lists and more for my 2016 book.  Of course these books are not pre-printed, so it did take a bit of time to create the calendar (found online, printed and glued into the book) and daily pages (all hand written) and re-write all of my lists and projects.  The daily pages are a cross between Hobonichi style and Franklin Covey day per page. "This one is just right...." - that's how I feel about this book!  
A "blank" daily page
Life is good when you have a planner that works with you, for you and you are not fighting a pre-made system trying to make it work for you.  The only part that is written ahead of time is the top (similar to Hobonichi) with the date and room for weather and menu tracking.  The rest is left fairly free form so I can do what I want/need with respect to that day's planning.  From start to finish it took me about 5-6 hours to completely set up my system.  I plan on doing a video with a more in depth look at how it is set up and how it works.  

I am so, so happy with the way this turned out - love the freedom to change the look of the daily pages as per my whim and schedule needs and I love the Miquelruis paper.  As Goldilocks said when she laid in the baby bear's bed, "This is just right!" That's how I feel about my setup!
An example of "completed" pages
So that's a wrap, One Book July was a success as far as I am concerned - although it was frustrating, it did lead me down the path to what I'm using now.  
I might not have started where I wanted to be, but I ended up getting to where I wanted to go!
Did you participate in OneBookJuly2015?  How did it go for you?  I would love to hear how it worked out for you and if you decide to try the Miquelruis book for your set up please let me know, I'd love to have you do a guest post, in fact I am always interested in having others do guest posts on my blog and if you are a blogger, I will happily provide a link to your blog within your guest post!

XOXOXO

Friday, July 3, 2015

One Book July 2015 - Yes or No?

Greetings!  I realize that this post is about 3 days past when I should have gotten it completed, but sometimes life (and a heat wave) takes priority!  

So the question is - One Book July 2015, am I participating?  The answer is yes, I decided to participate this year.  I almost participated last year, but my husband had an unfortunate and pretty serious bicycle/car accident the first day of Summer.  He was the "bicycle" part of the accident - he suffered a broken hip, cuts, muscle tears and strains and developed a blood clot within days of the accident happening.  Needless to say my whole focus was on him, his various doctor appointments, hospital trips and his care so I didn't have the time, energy or inclination to participate.

The challenge as I understand it is pretty loose and relative to your own perspective.....in the strict sense it is One Book, One Pen for One Month, but the main premise seems to be to take what you are currently doing and make it relative to your own situation with the end goal of trying to determine what your planning needs are, what works and what doesn't.  
Since I have been a paper planner person for over 30 years and a journaler for even longer (since I was a little girl), I have a very good grasp of what works for me in regards to my system.  Yes, I can take my fairly simple system and put it into any vessel and make it work, but why would I want to try to change a system that I have fine tuned over the years that works?  Could I plan in a blank book?  Yes, I've done that.  Could I plan in a ring bound planner?  Yep, I've done that too.  Can I plan on loose pieces of paper?  Yep, been there, done that too!  I create my own inserts so they have been adapted to my needs and I do tweak them as needed to sync with the fluctuations of my life, but the basic planning remains the same.  The rule of "don't try to fix that which is not broken" comes to mind, but there are ideas of this challenge that appeal to me.  I realized that I carry far too much "junk" on a daily basis just "in case" I might need it.
What would happen if I needed something and it was not there?  Would the world come to a screeching halt?  Not likely!  Would I adapt and use whatever else I had available?  Probably.
So, I have accepted the challenge and modified it to suit what will actually challenge me.  


My One book Challenge
One Book:
I slimmed down my Fauxdori (traveler's notebook) to only the essential sections that I know after years of trial and error will work the best for me and took out those sections and bits that I consider to be fluff.  I now have one much slimmer five insert traveler's notebook or fauxdori or whatever the current PC term is for it.  The inserts are fairly specific and are: journal/spiritual study & reflection (replace when full), notes and grocery/miscellaneous shopping lists (I replace this insert when it's filled), monthly (whole year, I replace this insert at end of year), daily (at least two month's worth, replace with new daily pages as need), and one that houses contacts, finances, business, project lists & family member critical info like current medications, etc. (this insert doesn't get replaced unless the pages become too tattered).  I am thinking about combining the planning portion (monthly and daily) into one cover.  I also have a zip pocket add on, a few calendar/planning type of stickers and a few post it notes.  All books and inserts were custom made by me to suit my specific needs - some were printed and some just hand drawn/written.
One Pen:
I completely eliminated the traveling pencil pouch from my repertoire and I slimmed down my pens to just two (from the 9 or 10 that I had carried).
One Month:
I will give it the full try for 30 days and document what I learn along the way.
Right Now:
In just three days time I have learned that I don't LIKE the pen limit, but I can live with it for now, My bag (purse) is much lighter and I might even look into carrying a smaller bag.  The the act of slimming down my system has motivated me to slim down and declutter some other areas of my life.  I like watching everyone's OneBookJuly2015 videos and wish everyone luck, however please don't compare what I am doing with what you need to do.  We are all unique and individual and rather than try to fit into someone else's perception of a system, just be content with cheering them on and try to strive for a system that works for you.  As MaryAnn from PocketfullofVintage says (I've paraphrased a bit) "Your life, Your Planner, Your Journal, Your Way!"  That about sums it up!

Links/Info:
OneBookJuly2015 Video
Maryanne at pocketfullofvintage (YouTube)
My Cover:  made myself using leather from Michael's Crafts (in the US)
My Inserts:  printed myself or cut down Moleskin and Picadilly booklets (both purchased at Barnes and Nobel in the US)
Zip Pocket/Green Sleeves:  Zip Pocket - made to fit into half sheet size (similar to A5) ring bound and Green sleeves are from Avery for ring bound planner.  I cut off the ring portion of each and taped them together with fabric tape covered with packing tape.
Pen Loops:  stick on from Staples.
Pens:  Frixion .7 Black and Bic Four Color
Thank you for stopping by,please leave me a comment if you have any questions or requests for future posts - I would love to hear from you!



Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Traveler's Notebook, Midori or Faux-dori - The Great Naming Debate!

The great debate going on within our planning groups seems to be whether or not a certain style of planning, journaling and their respective covers are trademarked or not....the discussions within our various Facebook Groups can be heated at times and also pretty funny.  Now, since I am not an Attorney, nor am I versed in Domestic or International Trademark Law, I am not going to offer my opinion - other than to say that reading other's comments/opinions is highly entertaining!

I am in the process of designing my own unique style of cover (at least I think it is unique) and once I get past the trial and error process and have a chance to test the product to see how it holds up, I will be marketing and selling them.  Trying to determine a name for my product has been challenging to say the least, given all of the debate currently going on.

So in the interest of keeping clear of potential trademark infringements - I hereby announce that my custom covers are going by the moniker of "Elastic Banded Notebook Cover" -along with each individual cover style having it's own unique name!  If you are in the business of making notebook covers, then please feel free to use the same term (Elastic Banded Notebook Cover) as a generic description.  I don't think the term has been trademarked, but if it has, then perhaps we can insert the term "Stretchy" in place of Elastic and "Cord" in place of Banded and "Paper" in place of Notebook and "Vessel" in place of Cover......."Stretchy Cord Paper Vessel".....hmmm, I kind of like that name, LOL!  What unique names can you think of ?   One thing I know for sure - is that planners and journalers can be a silly, funny, and entertaining bunch of unique people and I am proud to be one of them!

XOXOXO


Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Ball Canning Jars - DIY to Add a Compartment!

In the interest of expanding my blog a bit to incorporate my personal blog I am going to be slowing moving select blog articles from my old blog to this (my current) blog. I always intended my Sparkle Frogs blog to include lifestyle and craft type of posts, but just had not gotten around to them. The following was originally posted 8/1/2013.....

I saw an image the other day that was making the rounds of Facebook and it showcased a wide mouth canning jar with tortilla chips on the bottom and a small plastic cup inserted into the top to hold salsa, dip or something similar. The small plastic cup had a link so that you could purchase them. I saw the $11.00 sticker price - I am not sure how many you got for that price, but still, I was sure I could do better....

Now being the cheap thrifty person that I am I immediately thought to myself "It looks like a Dole Fruit Cup would fit right in there instead!" Since I am a Mom of a grade-schooler who takes a cold lunch to school everyday, we always have the fruit cups in the pantry, so I set to work testing my theory. I also want to add that based upon the comments on the original image another friend of mine (Judy) was thinking the same thing as me.

I set up my test kitchen and I am happy to report that the Dole fruit cups fit like they were made for the canning jars and no leaks either - I shook it, turned it upside down and even left it sitting on it's side for the whole day (yes I went to the day job and left it sitting on my counter by accident).

Note:  I used wide mouth canning jars!

Thank you for stopping by



Wednesday, April 29, 2015

My Fauxdori Inserts: Book of Lists

I have several inserts (books) within my fauxdori, which assist me with my planning.  One of my favorites is my "Book of Lists".  I know that the latest craze is the ListersGottaList Challenge and while I love watching the videos and seeing the instagram photos on this, my Book of Lists is geared towards planning and not journaling.

Let me explain what I mean - most of my lists in my "Book of Lists" are planning items that I need to do, need to buy, wishlists, projects, etc. versus the lists in the ListersGottaList are things like "Favorite Songs",  "Favorite Books", "Favorite Washi Tapes", etc.  I am sure that there are also some other lists, like places to visit, but from what I have seen most of the lists are reactive meaning that they are a result of something that has already happened and my Book of Lists are proactive meaning that they are written for something that needs to happen, i.e. planning.

I would love to do some of the ListersGottaLists challenges and when I do, those lists will go into my journaling/creative fauxdori, but for right now the only lists I have are found in my Book of Lists...

So let's dive into my "Lists".





The first half of my Book of Lists is just that - Lists, while the second half of my Book of Lists is resource information on my family members and my detailed meal planning.




Let's tackle the lists first...these are the lists that I have with a brief why or how I use the list.

  1. Favorite Authors:  I am an avid reader and I often cannot remember all of the authors/series that I like to read, so this list is helpful when I am at a bookstore and I want to check to see if any of my favorite authors have released any new books.
  2. Books to Read:  If I see a review on a book that I want to read and/or purchase I note the name of the book on this list, again refer back to list #1 - I am guilty of thinking I will remember something without writing it down, but when I try to remember I cannot, which is why I write everything down, including books to read.
  3. Websites to Check:  Same as books, I note any websites that I want to check out at sometime in the future.
  4. Movies to Watch:  I note the name of the movie and a very brief description of what it is about.
  5. Household Projects:  each room (area) of the home is listed and under each sub heading I list projects I want to do and/or items that I want to buy for that particular room/area.
  6. Tasks/Wishes (Family): task lists broken out by each family member, most items on the list are items that I need to do on behalf of a family member.  I also have a "family" section which includes tasks/wishlists that would benefit the family as a whole or are items that need to be completed as a family.
  7. Wishlists:  Broken out by individual family member, including a wish list for myself.
  8. Tasks (Personal):  tasks/projects that I personally want to or need to accomplish.
  9. Pages for Individual Family Members:  One page for each immediate family member as well as our dog.  Includes birthdays, cell phone numbers, medications, notes from the doctor, important school info, current sizes, etc. Extended family also has a section, extended family is my adult son and daughter in law, my Mom, my Dad, my Grandma, etc., sizes are listed here along with any other important info.
  10. Meal Planning:  Favorite meals by category, recipes, etc.  I will do a separate post about this as it is pretty detailed on how I manage our family dinners. 
That's it for my "Book of Lists", I will be doing future posts on each of the books in my fauxdori, so if this is something that you are interested in please be sure to follow my blog.  Thank you and please leave me a comment if you found this helpful, have a question or just want to say hi!

Take care,



Monday, April 20, 2015

My Fauxdori Overview

For those of you that don't know, a fauxdori is a Traveler's Notebook.  One of the more well known company's is Midoiri, so a fauxdori just indicates a cover that someone has made versus the name brand version.  Traveler's Notebooks use elastic bands instead of rings and use books held on with those bands instead of individual paper. You can purchase books (inserts) in a wide range: blank, lined, grid and then specific books for specific purposes, i.e. monthly calendars. As with most planning systems you can also make your own books.

 My system is a combo of notebooks that I have purchased and notebooks that I have created. I just recently did a video which gives an overview. Everything that relates to my planning is in this one book (personal planning, household planning and business planning). The size of the books are 4.33" wide x 8.25" tall, these are also known as regular Midori size.

 I have a separate fauxdori which is for journaling and spiritual study. I have a Franklin Covey Monarch sized binder, which will someday be made into a home binder, but it will be more for reference information versus planning.

 These are the following books that I use (in the order that they are placed into my fauxdori):

1) MONTHLY: includes 12 months of month on 2 pages and 12 months of monthly index & re-cap on 2 pages. All known events, holidays, appointments, etc. are listed as they are known. I made these inserts. At the end of the year I will create a new one.
2) DAILY: first is a week overview, which includes recurring weekly tasks, weekly tasks that need to get done during that week and two small goals to work on for the week. Also included is daily pages for the week, which are modeled after the Frankly Covey day on one page. I have two months of weekly/daily pages. I made these inserts. I will remove old pages and add new as needed.

3) CATCH-ALL BOOK: This is a moleskine grid book and it is just what the name implies - I can write anything in here from a quick note to an address. My daily review includes re-writing any info that I have placed in here into the appropriate book if it needs to go somewhere. This is a toss away book, meaning when it is full it is just tossed out and replaced with a new book.
4) BOOK OF LISTS: This is also a moleskine grid book. It houses my Master lists - from personal need to dos to family need to dos, to projects, to information on immediate family members and the dog. This book will take me though the whole year and if more pages are needed, I will just add them in.


5) INFORMATION BOOK: Includes How to plan, my mission statement, roles, values & goals, finances (check register, monthly bills and annual bills), secret sister information, contact/address book, login information and a US map.
6) SPARKLE FROGS BUSINESS: Includes an editorial calendar (month on two pages, whole year). Blog and video post ideas, giveaways/promotional tracking, Income received, expenses, Weekly Feature tracking, social media stats tracking, brainstorming, etc.

That's it in a nutshell :) for a more detailed look, please continue to follow this blog and YouTube channel and I will be doing more videos and more in depth planning posts.




Thank you for stopping by and please leave me a comment if you have any questions or suggestions for future posts/videos!


Saturday, April 18, 2015

Introducing My Fauxdori Traveler's Notebook - Planner Peace is Mine! (Video)

Yes, it has been a while, no I did not fall off the face of the earth......Life has been busy so this Blog and YouTube always seem to be the first to get cut when I have too much to do.  I am happy to report that life has slowed down somewhat, but there have been some big changes in my planning world.....

Rings are gone - that's right, after 25 plus years of using ring bound planners I made the switch on a whim to a traveler's notebook style of system and have obtained the ever elusive "Planner Peace".

Here's a look at my system.....be sure to subscribe to catch all of my videos as they air - this first video is an overview, but videos are in the works for a detailed look into each of my planning areas and maybe even a peek into my home - showing both before and after as I try to organize each area.

Thanks for stopping by - let me know if you have any questions!


Saturday, February 28, 2015

Franklin Covey - Free Printable Monthly Checklists!

Did you know that Franklin Covey offers FREE printables on their blog?  My favorites are the monthly checklists that they offer.

They offer the checklists in all of the planner sizes (Monarch, Classic, Compact and Pocket) in both a .pdf version and a .jpeg version!

Here is a quick link to their March 2015 checklist and if you want to look at previous month's checklists just click here.

Thank you Franklin Covey - just another reason to love FC!



Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Tip: How to Clean and Condition Your Leather Binder...

I see this question asked over and over in the various Facebook Groups and Communities that I am a member of.....

Q - How do I properly take care of my leather binder?

A - I am not an expert at leather care so I always turn towards those who are; by searching the internet, asking leather care professionals and even cobblers (shoe repair shops).  I see  a lot of personal opinions, but I tend to take those for what they are - "just opinions" and you know what they say about opinions.....

If you are looking for answers on basic care, the Franklin Covey Blog has a good article on basic cleaning and conditioning.

However for anything "above and beyond" normal maintenance, I recommend consulting with an expert or you might end up with this:

I wish I could say that this was not my picture, but sadly it is....I used a product that was
not intended to be used on this type of leather and I (or should I say my binder) paid the price.
Lesson Learned.

Please don't make the same mistake I made - if you want to take care of your leather goods consult with an expert and do not rely on the opinions of amateurs!

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you have a wonderful, well planned day!

P.S. If you are a paper planner "nerd" you are invited to join my Franklin Covey Addicts Facebook Group.  Just click here to be taken to the group (you will need to have a Facebook account, be a real person and have a positive attitude).


Thursday, February 19, 2015

Movin' On Up - To Classic Size!

After much wiffle-waffling (I'm sure that's a word), I decided to make the switch into a Franklin Covey Classic Size at the beginning of February.  Although the planner is bigger and heavier than my Compact, carrying it with me everyday hasn't been a problem!

I am loving this size - the convenience of being able to just fold a full size piece of paper and adding it to one of the many pockets is fabulous! I was a Classic user for many years - it was only during 2014 that I made the switch into the FC Compact size (with a little bit of dabbling into Filofax Personal size along the way).

I have to say that I am very happy to be back to my "roots" and in my Classic size!  I manged to pick up one of the coveted (now retired) Boston-ish style binders in a leather metallic Bronze finish.  She just screamed out the need for a vintage French theme......so without further ado, here she is!
Front of Binder - this is a Full Grain Leather in a Metallic Bronze finish.  The buckle is for decoration -
the strap closure is magnetic and is elasticized at at the back to expand as needed.

The back features a full outside pocket - easily holds folded in half papers.  

Inside Left - full length vertical slip pocket, then full length vertical zip pocket, a secretarial pocket with seven credit
card pockets (bottom one has a clear window). Also one part leather and part elastic pen loop.
All decked out with a Vintage French Theme!

Back right, horizontal pocket, another horizontal pocket and two vertical card pockets, with part leather and part
elastic pen loop.  The "Black" is a Franklin Covey Page Lifter.  They are designed to be used at both the front and
the back of your planning pages, so that the pages do not curl around the rings.  The lifters are made of a hard plastic
and come in Black and if you are lucky you can find them in Frosted Clear.  

Inserts are Franklin Covey Classic Size Blooms Day on Two Pages.  They come with a Month on
Two Pages Also.  I have customized the inserts to suit my needs.

Franklin Covey Classic Specs:  Classic size is similar to the European A5 size, but the American size is 8.5" tall  x 5.5" wide, which is half of an American standard size paper, I believe it is slightly taller and a bit more narrow than the A5.  American Classic size binders have seven rings versus the 6 ring configuration that A5 binders normally have.  Most Franklin Covey binders have rings that are screwed into a base which allows for being able to easily change rings to a smaller or larger size.  You can also order ring replacements direct from Franklin Covey (U.S.) by calling their customer service number.  Classic ring sizes vary from .75" up to 2"(measuring the inside diameter).  The rings in my binder are currently 1.5" in diameter.

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed a sneak peak into my planner!

Coming Up Next:  A look at my setup and how I plan!