My Bullet Journal’s Evolution of Style

My Bullet Journal’s Evolution of Style

My style is constantly evolving.

A little over a year ago, I set aside my fears and made my first mark in my bullet journal. Best decision I ever made. I’m probably going to sound like a parrot here saying the same thing a million times, but I spent months looking at bullet journal spreads before I actually did anything about it. It’s been an incredible journey so far and I’m incredibly excited to see where else it will take me. If you’re already an experienced bullet journaler, you already know this but if you’re new or haven’t started yet, here are the ways that my bullet journal style has changed over the last year.

 


Discbound bullet journal

The First Edition

I wasn’t ready to buy into the because I didn’t want to waste my money on something if it went nowhere. I’m cheap. I had an Arc by M (from Staples Canada) on hand that I was using for work before, so I decided to go with a discbound bullet journal.

My very first weekly page… was not pretty. I aspired to be like all the other gorgeous bullet journals out there with the fancy lettering and funky layouts… Having never used a brush pen before, I had no idea what I was doing. It’s squished up, it’s boxy, and oh my lanta, look at those flourishes. I have to laugh at it. Honestly, I’m still proud to show it off here but that’s because it not only shows me how far I’ve come, but it was a cornerstone of my life where everything changed.

Once I did a couple layouts in this discbound, I realized that I really did want to spring for that classic Leuchtturm1917 notebook, now that I knew I would continue! I barely even used the discbound before I made the switch. Here’s why for me: I couldn’t find dot grid paper anywhere. I find this odd. You can get blank, ruled and graph paper but in no store (at least in Winnipeg) could you get dot-grid. I wound up building a dot grid format on my computer and printed it at my local Staples but who wants to spend that much money just on paper? I didn’t have a printer of my own at the time.

So a few days after realizing I liked the system, I ran out and got my beautiful Emerald Leuchtturm1917!

 


When I Didn’t Have a Clue

When I first started my bullet journal, I had no idea what type of style I wanted to follow. I absolutely loved all the artsy ones but I was out of practice. I thought the minimalist designs were boring. I had high hopes for how my spreads would look but they all fell flat. I thought lots of colour would be great, but honestly, most of my spreads ended up looking half-assed to me. I’m also a perfectionist so it wasn’t the best time for me.

I think the biggest takeaway here is the fact that despite those feelings of not making it nice enough, I still kept going. I kept bullet journaling. That’s because it was the most functional planner I’ve ever had. Functionality beat out aesthetic by a long shot!

I tried so many different styles in the beginning that really, I was just replicas of other ideas I had seen, but no identity of my own.

 


Bullet Journal Weekly Log

Okay, There’s Something Here

The week of March 19-25 was a turning point for me. I created a spread that was clean, fresh and pretty all in one. This is one of my favourite spreads still to this day! This is the week that I started to develop my own bullet journal style. It wasn’t perfect, but I’m looking for progress not perfection! I followed this spread with another weekly log that I loved and the first monthly log I really liked!

Another important thing to note here is that I’ve already been seeing a huge difference in the quality of my penmanship! My writing is getting more legible, more consistent and evenly spaced.

The spring and early summer are a key part of my evolution here because I was loving my bullet journal so much that it became something I couldn’t wait to do when the kids were in bed rather than something I had to do to get organized! Figuring out a new layout is incredibly fun and I started noticing my creativity coming back.

My birthday is March 16th and I asked my family to get me bullet journal supplies. I wanted the Zebra Mildliners and brush pens and fancy pens, and I got em!


Bullet Journal Weekly LogThe More Content The Better…Not

This statement is wrong. Just saying. I started cramming so much into every page. At this point, I had opened my home daycare and there’s a lot of items I needed to track: attendance, meals, diaper changes, naps… I was convinced that no matter how many items I had, I had to fit it all into my bullet journal spread because that was the entire point of this system. Well let me tell you from experience, that’s really not the case. Ever since I switched to a traveller’s notebook, I’ve had more flexibility to put as much or as little as I wanted on my pages.

While I would mostly agree that the bullet journal can absolutely be an all-in solution, it’s not right for everybody to be used that way. I was so against the traveller’s notebook system but now I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Even when I didn’t have as much content or items to track, I still filled every square millimetre of the page with something. Way too cluttered!!

 


Bullet Journal Weekly Log Washi Evolution

 

My Brief Affair With Washi

Funny story. I hated washi tape. Couldn’t stand it. I’m not meaning to be mean but I always thought it made pages look terrible, all broken up. Then I found this absolutely GORGEOUS pack at Michael’s and I couldn’t resist. Granted, I actually used it to make a wallet-type insert for my traveller’s notebook, but I wound up using it on a couple spreads to see how it would look.

I haven’t used it since.

 

 

 


The Artsy Bullet Journal

I moved on to spreads that had more art: doodles, sketches and drawings. It started with the solar eclipse and grew into my favourite monthly spread in September, and my favourite welcome page for October. Feeling inspired, I continued to draw more. I did a portrait of Anne Shirley from Anne of Green Gables, Negan and Rick when The Walking Dead season premiered and a portrait of my grandfather in honour of his 10 years since passing (November 2, 2007) and Remembrance Day.

My bullet journal officially got me back into drawing, back to the creativity I had so many years ago. I was in art classes all through grade school and while I didn’t major in fine art, I did take a class at university as well. I fell off the art wagon shortly after deciding that I didn’t want to continue the education I initially started and went on a search to find a career I would love. It’s been almost 10 years since I felt this desire to create art and it’s because of Ryder Caroll that I have.


New Year, New Style

My 2018 bullet journal is heavily inspired by the beautiful galaxy Dreamdori I got from Dream and Anchor. I will be primarily using the colours inspired by space though not necessarily following a space theme.

My intention with this bullet journal is to keep the style simple and minimalist, with a bit of art thrown in. I would like to keep my drawings and challenges out of my bullet journal and instead into sketchbooks where they belong. As much as I love drawing in my bullet journal and I love the portraits I’ve done in my previous one, I don’t love the fact that my portraits are now covered in the dot grid pattern and not available for me to hang on a wall or, dare I say it, perhaps sell one day.

 

 

 

 


The Takeaway: Evolve With Your Bullet Journal

The bottom line here is to remember that your style will constantly change. That’s the beauty of the bullet journal: it evolves as you evolve. It can change as your needs change, as your life changes and as you grow. Let’s evolve together!

Plan With Me: Goodbye January + Hello February

Plan With Me: Goodbye January + Hello February

As January comes to a close…

I’m getting set up for February! This month seemed to just whiz right by. As much as I want time to slow down (there are not enough hours in the day), I’m looking forward to this winter being over! Can February just come and go even quicker than January? Please? We’ve been in a deep freeze for what feels like forever. We just had a couple warmer days, but went right back to a freezing Arctic cold front! I’m talking -30 to -45 degree (CELCIUS!) weather!

Aside from the cold, here’s what’s happened this month so far!


The Fam-Jam

Okay, my 21-month-old is making me cry. He is talking so much that it’s just blowing my mind! My oldest was talking like this when he was 2 and a half! My last baby isn’t a baby anymore and while I’m so happy and excited for what he’s been learning and is continuing to learn, I’m also incredibly sad because these are my last set of firsts! I’m totally allowed to be upset by it, just saying!

My 3.5-year-old has also been making some incredible milestones. He can now add and subtract simple numbers up to ten and he knows how to write quite a few letters and numbers as well! This kid also has the memory of an elephant and it’s pretty incredible to see, of course, it has a downfall sometimes too! Tell him he’ll get some Smarties for dessert later and oh boy, even a week or two later, he’ll still remember! The things this kiddo says will blow your mind sometimes, I think he’s going to be very bright when he starts school!


What Went Well

We are in my second month since I opened this new site and I’m incredibly proud of myself. Not only have I stuck to the schedule that I set out for myself, but I’m actually getting my daily routine down pat and feeling like I’m not as rushed for time.

My 2018 setup has been working incredibly well for me: particularly the reusable cleaning routine spread! I’m still behind in some areas for decluttering and I’m still recovering after Christmas, but the house hasn’t been bad overall because of this schedule! There are a few of the daily tasks that I hope to be more consistent in February.


weekly dashboard bullet journalWeekly Dashboard

I’m absolutely loving the weekly dashboards that I’ve been doing in this book. I have a hard time with dailies alone because sometimes I feel like it’s harder to plan ahead when I only need a day or two. I don’t like putting every single thing into my monthly logs. The nice thing about a weekly spread is that I can change it every week for whatever I need. In week 1, I really wanted a lot of space for notes and brainstorming but week 2 needed some positivity and I filled it with a quote!

What I want to improve for February: more flexible weekly dashboards. I would like to create a design that can be stretched to a full page and also shrunk down to a half page or even less. This would allow me to have more and less room for my dailies and not feel like I need to have a new page at the start of every week. This is the entire reason why I created the dashboard in the first place!

 

 

 

 


Daily and Rapid Logs

I have no regrets moving from structured weekly spreads to daily logs. With the blog and other plans, I simply don’t know how much or how little room I need and I love that I don’t need to worry about how much room I have available to write!

I’ve been experimenting with different looks for the header of each day. As much as I absolutely love Boho Berry’s time bars, they’re just not right for me. When I run a home daycare, everything follows a pretty rigid schedule and I feel it’s a waste to just colour literally the same thing every single day. What’s more is that after daycare hours, I still have kids and I just work on my side projects where I can find a time. It’s pretty impossible for me to schedule something in!

All my days consist of tasks that I can do any time of day and the goal is to just have it done before bed!


What I can do Better in February

My biggest issue is overestimating how much I can get done in a day. I set goals to work towards and that’s great, but I find that I wind up migrating so many tasks to the next day!

I’ll be completely honest in saying that I’m not even sure if I can improve this. What I can get done in a day is entirely dependent on how the kids are, how much attention they’re needing.


February monthly log bullet journal

February Setup

I went with a pretty simple layout this month. I’ve separated my blog and other plans from my home life. Honestly, we don’t get a lot of visitors and I don’t make a lot of plans, so that section is probably going to stay pretty bare!

What’s new this month is Grind and Gratitude. I’ve noticed that January was a pretty emotional month for me. I was very irritable and to be honest, I have no idea why. I love the gratitude logs that I see everywhere in this community but I’m adding my personal twist to it. I’ve always been someone who feels better writing, especially to vent any frustrations I’m having. I hope that most of these will be filled with only gratitude, but I’m wanting to give myself the chance to write something that’s bothering me. Here’s the catch: if I write anything negative, it must be balanced by writing a positive as well.

My hope is that by incorporating this Grind and Gratitude system, it will improve my overall mood in February.

 


Goodbye winter?

Let’s just finish suffering through this winter and I promise my mood will be much better in the warmth!

I hope that my monthly log will inspire you to see what worked well for you in January and build on that!

Review: Galaxy Dreamdori by Dream And Anchor

Review: Galaxy Dreamdori by Dream And Anchor

Review: Galaxy Dreamdori

*Contains affiliate links – if you purchase a product, I receive a small commission, but the cost is the same to you.

My entire life revolves around my family: my husband and my two amazing little boys. Every time I have a bit of room in my budget to buy myself something (which should be new clothes), I go out, and I come home with something for my boys and/or my husband. I don’t spend much on myself and when I do, it’s out of sheer necessity. I even have a pair of flip-flops with my favourite band’s logo on it from the year 2000. They’ve half torn apart, the soles are all wonky and flattened and really, I shouldn’t wear them at all anymore but I can’t bring myself to toss them! Then I saw this amazing dreamdori on Dream and Anchor’s Etsy shop and I nearly died.

I’ve bought a dreamdori from her before (two actually) but this one was completely irresistible! After going back to spy on the listing about a million times to make sure it was still in stock, I panicked and thought I should just go ahead and get it before she runs out of that beautiful fabric! Here are my thoughts on a custom order I received!


dream and anchor packagingThe Unboxing

Dana over at Dream and Anchor never fails to bring a smile to my face with her adorable packaging. Product packaging is a very important factor for customers even if it doesn’t seem like it should matter all that much. It’s all about how the customer perceives your brand.

Her cute little business card with the ribbon on the paperclip is adorable. Tissue paper enclosed with washi tape is such a delicate touch and makes it feel like Christmas morning when you’re opening it!

 

 

 


dreamdori dream and anchor closed galaxyFirst impression

OH MY LANTA, THAT COLOUR THOUGH!

You know when you see something online you want to buy and when you get it, the colour is completely different than it looked on the screen? Let me tell you, Dana does not disappoint! I don’t know what she’s doing to set up her product images but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a case where the colour on the screen matched the actual colour of the product! As you can see, the colour on this dreamdori is oh so wonderfully rich and deep and beautiful!!

I’ve always loved paintings, pictures, artists renderings, etc of anything space related and this is simply heaven to my eyes. I honestly can’t come up with a better description of how amazing this is, it’s phantasmagorical!

 


The Custom Details

I figured if I’m going to get this phenomenal dreamdori, I’m going to do it right and make sure it has everything I need. I learned a few things from my last dreamdori (the amazing coffee-themed one, which I plan on still using!)

A5 traveler’s notebook cover
Boarding pass style pockets
– I love being able to stuff receipts and random papers in here
2x extra elastics
– I’d like to fit my along with 3-4 inserts
Pen loop
I figured that it wouldn’t be an issue since I have so many pens and markers and other supplies that I bring along anyway. I don’t need all my supplies to go to the store, so now I just keep my Micron 005 pen in the loop and I always have it on me!

The new custom touch that Dana added to my dreamdori was a structured spine. The spine of my coffee-themed one bowed because I over-stuffed it. Entirely my fault, but Dana was amazing and figured out how to add a stronger spine to my new one!


Using my Dreamdori

Though I moved into this dreamdori on January first, I’ve also been using it for a bit longer so I can get set up for 2018. I have my Leuchtturm1917 inserted with two elastics, one at each cover and I’m loving the stability. I’ve also got my finance tracker insert, daycare tracker insert and a junk journal inserted here and I still have a few elastics to spare if I’d like to add more!.

The structured spine is making a huge difference in how the book feels. I was a little bit wary of it at first because I didn’t want my dreamdori to just look like a hardcover book with smaller books inside, I love the traditional traveller’s notebook look, but it doesn’t look or feel that way at all! Dream and Anchor did a fantastic job of creating a subtle spine that adds so much functionality.


Final Takeaway

Honestly, I’m feeling like I don’t even need to say anything about this. The first picture here should have convinced you to get you over to her shop and buy one ASAP but alas, not everyone likes a good galaxy theme. She has such a large and varied selection with so many different styles, that I’m sure you’ll find one you love too!

The thing you need to know about Dream and Anchor is this: they are quality-made. The stitching is absolutely perfect, it’s nice and stiff instead of flopping around, which is why I originally hesitated getting a fabric traveler’s notebook, and the selection is just phenomenal.

Dream and Anchor is so easy to work with, just send her a message if you have any questions and she’s quick to respond! Don’t forget to look at the add-ons she’s got in her shop as well because it has made a huge difference in my usage.

The best part: you’ll have it in your hand before you can say dreamdori! Click on any reference to Dream and Anchor and it will direct you to her shop to have a look!


Exciting News!! GET 10% OFF YOUR DREAMDORI!

Dana over at Dream and Anchor is offering a discount for you!! Use the promo code ASARYE10 to get 10% off your order over $21USD until February 8, 2018!

Click here to check out Etsy shop and get your first Dreamdori!

The beauty of a fabric traveler’s notebook is the infinite style possibilities! What is your favourite style? Let me know in the comments below!
How To Trim Your Grocery Budget: Save Money Bullet Journaling

How To Trim Your Grocery Budget: Save Money Bullet Journaling

Do you go to the grocery store each week with a plan in mind? I used to browse the aisles and figure out meals as I walked. This usually resulted in missing items for a recipe and extra impulse buys for no reason. I was at a point of running to the more expensive grocery store on the corner up to 4 or 5 times a week, which is just absurd. Do you know what happens when you run to grab one item? You end up with 5-10 items, spending 3x as much as intended and eat too much junk food because admit it, that’s what you bought! That’s it, it’s time to save money!

This is how I’m revolutionizing how I go grocery shopping. See how I utilize my bullet journal to save money!


Weekly dashboard in bullet journal, save money

The Idea

Every week, whether it was on a weekly spread or a weekly dashboard, I had a menu plan that looked a lot like this.

The system worked fine but I wound up with an issue actually writing my grocery list. Do I write the list in my bullet journal or on a spare piece of paper? I want to save money, not waste it by not utilizing the bullet journal system. The point of the system is to have everything in a single place!

I hated taking up so much space in my precious , plus grocery lists always wind up looking messy.

I needed to find a better way because this annoyed me like crazy.


packing checklist in bullet journal, save moneyThe Inspiration

Despite my dad’s teasing about my bullet journaling, he’s had a nice nerdy streak himself! When I was a teenager, he made this crazy-ass grocery list in excel where he wrote down almost every single item they bought every single time. Not just the list, he actually wrote it in the order he walks down the aisles, not numerically. It’s genius. My parents loved to save money and of course as kids, we don’t understand it… But as a wife and mom of two boys, I have a feeling that if I learn to save money, it will make life easier when they’re big enough to eat everything in the house!

When I decided I wanted a better way, this memory came springing into my mind. The other item that came to mind was my cabin packing list from 2017. It was the first reusable spread I ever created and it worked out so well, I was so proud!


Grocery store planning tipPulling it all together

I sat down and flipped through a bunch of old grocery lists and came up with a list of items that I buy often. Certain fruits, veggies and pantry products that are almost always on my list. I didn’t want to waste space for items I only buy once every few months!

I took a notebook and headed down to my primary grocery store. I’m trying to restrict my shopping to here with the odd trip to Costco because they have the best prices. The one on the corner is just too expensive!

I walked the aisles exactly how I follow it when I shop and wrote down what’s in each aisle. I looked for the tricky items too (you know the ones, like hollandaise sauce where you can never seem to remember where to find them!).

Trying not to be quite as specific as my dad was, I just used a general idea so I can follow a combination of my path and alphabetical. I feel it will make everything easier to find!

I came home, reorganized the big list I had made, and got to work on creating a spread.


Menu Plan bullet journal layoutThe Menu Plan

If you’ve checked out my last post, you know I’m now obsessed with creating reusable bullet journal spreads!

The intent behind a reusable spread is to fill it every week with pencil then erase and use again the following week!

The left page is simple: Each day is a different row and each column indicates meals and snacks. Most items are easy to nail down because I follow my daycare menu plan every week. The variety depends on what hubby is craving that week for lunch!

Dinners are more difficult. I feel like I’m always cycling the same meals. I may share it one day but I had compiled a list, organized by the protein, of common meals we make. It is surprising how much variety I actually had, but when you’re faced with brainstorming ideas, sometimes it’s hard to think of the tried-and-true recipes!

What can also be a huge help is to look at your local flyers and choose proteins that are on sale and build recipes based on that. It may give you something fresh and different for dinner and save money in the process!


Reusable grocery list bullet journalThe Grocery List

Once I’ve got my menu plan completed, I go through it one meal at a time to figure out ingredients I need. I can’t stress this enough: be in the kitchen to do this. I can’t tell you how many times I didn’t get an item that it turns out I needed and how many times I bought a product I already had and it went to waste! Don’t be like me, be smart!

The right side of this page has the large list I referred to, broken down into sections that made sense to me based on the grocery store I like to shop at. I’m hoping that laying it out this way will prevent me from going back and forth in the store looking for items because they were in a random spot on my list!

You’ll notice I’ve got two boxes for each item. The left is so I can indicate a quantity I need for each product, the right is to check it off while I’m in the store after I grab the item! I’ve also left a few blank spaces in each section so I can pencil in anything that may be atypical for me to buy.

No more forgetting items! Unless the store doesn’t have it in stock, I will have what I need and will not continue the runs to the store multiple times a week!


Save money by bullet journaling

This idea has the potential to save me hundreds of dollars in groceries every month. I was at a point of probably spending $200 or so on those random items at the corner store that I really didn’t need to get that $3 item I was missing.

The cabin packing spread is actually what completely changed my life when it came to bullet journaling. I wasn’t very consistent in my bullet journal and while I still struggle with habit trackers, this was a game changer for me. The first time I ever used that packing list, we had the best family-fun filled weekend at the cabin that we had all year…because I wasn’t thinking about having to run to the store and because the kids weren’t cranky because of something I forgot.

This moment was when I realized just how useful the bullet journaling system was and ever since, I’ve been hooked!

How do you plan your menu and shopping lists? I want to hear your feedback!

Please leave a comment below and share your ideas with me!

Reusable Collections: The Ultimate Guide

Reusable Collections: The Ultimate Guide

Welcome back!

I get annoyed easily and hate having to re-write the same thing a million times. Yes, technically I could go and get a pre-printed journal, so it’s done for me, but I have never found a planner that suited me or met the needs I had in a planner! I love the bullet journal system and love making spreads, but do hate the constant re-writing for certain things! I’m so excited to share with you the details of my signature bullet journal method: the reusable collection! 


The Options

I’ve seen many people utilize tools to help them add items to their bullet journals.

Stickers are trendy in the planner community. There are infinite options out there for you, lots of people make and sell them on Etsy. I’m not a fan of stickers for a couple of reasons. Number one, I don’t like how they would add to the thickness of my journal. We all know the Leuchtturm expands as you work through it, of course, it’s not going to stay as pristine and flat as when you bought it. Number two is the fact that writing on a sticker just isn’t the same as writing on paper. I don’t want to have to worry about my pen smudging and it just doesn’t feel right to me for some reason, the texture is different.

Stencils and stamps are also very popular. I love the idea of these, and if I were to look for something extra, I would choose one of these. Stamps could smudge, yes, but if you have the patience to let the ink dry, it’s perfect. I even thought about learning how to make them with my Silhouette Cameo. Stencils also intrigue me because it sounds easy to use. I’ve found a few that I almost purchased but hesitated because I don’t like the idea of spending money on something when I’d likely only use 1 or 2 of the 30 options on the stencil. I also prefer to use the traditional dot as a task indicator instead of circles and squares. I’m a fan of consistency and don’t like the idea of having some pages with circles and other pages with dots to indicate a task!


A new concept

I first thought about the idea of a reusable collection when I created my cabin packing checklist spread.

I needed something that is simple, something that I could use again and again and won’t waste pages or paper while doing it.

My initial thought was to have these items listed in a large tracker format, similar to habit trackers, but when it’s not consistent dates I needed it, it didn’t make much sense.

Then it came to me – something I could fill out, then have the ability to erase and use it over and over again!


What drove the need

I am a forgetful person by nature. I’m the person who will tell you the same story ten times, completely having forgotten I’ve already told you. I’m the person who walks to the kitchen for some water then leaves with nothing in hand just to have to go back again. It’s pretty horrible. I commonly refer to myself as having the memory of a goldfish. I have no idea where that came from or if goldfish have good or bad memories, but once I said it once, it stuck!

You know what I need? A remembrall. You know, from Harry Potter. The one Neville Longbottom got from his Gran in . Why can’t magic be real?

I went on a search to find a system that would work for me. I was tired of blank, lined daily planners that helped me in no way. I’d write a note to one of those days, and it would forever be lost in that book never to be seen or heard of again. I tried using planner pages I had made for myself, first in a binder, then in a discbound journal. It was much better, but I found that every week, I had to tweak the design and reprint it. Even when I thought I solved it, some tiny circumstance in my life would change, and I didn’t have a way to track it in that perfect planner I had designed.

I don’t even know where I found bullet journaling, honestly. Maybe it was Pinterest, maybe it was Instagram, maybe it was a random page that I found on-the-line (yes, online. I effing loved The Internship, Vince Vaughn nearly killed me by using this phrase!) but I found it. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll have seen that I took months between discovering the system and doing it. Now that I have, I’ll never go back. Now and then I’ll see an adorable planner, but I won’t get it because I know it doesn’t serve the purpose I need.


Revolutionizing my bullet journal

I think my favourite thing about bullet journaling is that the entire point of it is to make it your own, do whatever the hell you want in it. The sole purpose of the system itself is to give you a place to store anything and everything, without losing the information you need. If I make a note on a random page, there are always ways to index it later on. If it converts into a task, it’s easy peasy to put that in a daily, weekly, monthly or future log. If it’s just something to remember, add the page number to your future log, so it’s easy to find!

The way I’m making my bullet journal mine is by utilizing a reusable collection. I started with the cabin packing list, and now I’m applying it to a few spreads in my new journal already (Check out my 2018 Setup here!)

Of course, I refreshed my cabin packing list for 2018! But I wanted to use this reusable system on a few things.

You’ll see on the right here; I also created a reusable menu plan and grocery shopping list. I hope it’ll cut down on items I forgot to buy to avoid trips to the expensive corner store!

I also created a reusable cleaning checklist. It has a full month’s worth of daily, weekly, biweekly and monthly tasks that I can check off as I go then as you guessed it, erase and reuse! I’ll be honest here; I didn’t want all these task dots in here…I fudged up the pen and covered it up with metallic brush pens! Proof that you don’t need to be a perfectionist to bullet journal!


Free up pages with reusable collections

I agree that a large part of the fun of bullet journaling is to do fun layouts, but when it comes to mundane tracking, I just get kind of annoyed. Who likes writing laundry as a task every single damn day? Creating these spreads not only helps me stay organized, but they also leave extra room for the rest of my Leuchtturm1917, and I can make the notebook last longer!

The only negative that I’ve come across doing this is the fact that the black ink starts to fade the more you erase. It was barely noticeable in last year’s cabin spread, so I don’t see it being a huge issue. If it bothers me, I can always freshen up the ink and go over it again!

What are your thoughts on a reusable collection in your bullet journal? Let me know in the comments below!
Planning As A Rye: December Wrap Up + January Setup

Planning As A Rye: December Wrap Up + January Setup

Welcome back and Happy New Year!

I hope you all had a safe and fun new year celebration! I decided to do a special New Year’s Day edition for my blog with my December wrap-up and January setup! If you checked out my last post, you’ll see the collections I’ve created in the front of my purple . I thought I would show you on the final pages of my emerald journal with December’s spreads!


December Monthly bullet journal spreadDecember Monthly

December was a hectic month for me, as I’m sure it was for millions of others out there getting ready for Christmas! I launched this new site on December 3; I added material for my blog posts as well as Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest and I was busy the entire month.

I seem to keep adding an “on the horizon” section to my pages, though I rarely end up using them! As you can see, here’s another one that’s left pretty blank!

I liked how the monthly spread ended up filling out, and incredibly proud of myself for actually filling in the habit tracker! Usually, I go a few days at the beginning of the month, and it just get’s forgotten!

 


Weekly Dashboards + Dailies

November and December got so busy that I felt the need to switch from my weekly layout to a daily log. I was starting to have too many items to write down. Not all of them were tasks, but I ran out of space on my weeklies often. I also can’t stand some days being squished and overflowing with notes and other days being empty…drives me nuts.

When I switched, I found myself a little frustrated because part of what I liked about a weekly was the ability to have a quick view of the upcoming week – meals, habit trackers, etc. Enter: the weekly dashboard.

It’s served me well, and it’s something I’m going to continue. I don’t care if I miss a few days journaling and it looks a lot better to fill my pages still rather than have just empty boxes on my spread!

 

I keep floating between weekly spreads and dailies. The daily log follows the typical bullet journal fashion, but I did really like setting it up. Maybe that’s what made me bring in a dashboard; it allows me to put thought into a spread still as well as serve a great purpose.

There were a few days that I missed along the way. I got so busy preparing for Christmas that I neglected my journal. I got to a point where the actual doing was more important than the planning.

Here’s a critical take away: who cares if you miss a day? Take a day, take a week, take a month or even more and your bullet journal will always be there waiting for you when you’re ready!

One thing I haven’t gotten down yet is how I want my daily dividers set. I love what Kara at Boho Berry does with the time blocks, but I just don’t have a use for it. It’s a shame because it’s the perfect divider!!

 


Merry Christmas!

Christmas was a blast this year! It was our turn to host Christmas brunch on my mom’s side of the family. We open our stockings as a family before everyone gets there then we all open gifts together, followed by a kickass brunch. Eggs, Toast, Belgian waffles with all the fixings and of course, oh all the bacon!

This spread proved to be incredibly useful! Every year we seem to have a last minute scramble because we’ve forgotten a few gifts or just couldn’t find the right one. Hubby and I put a lot of thought into our presents and hate getting something unless we know they’re going to love it!

Granted, I did have a last-second scramble again, but that’s because I always tend to underestimate how big our stockings are. The boys had them overflowing, I had a few items for hubby, but I still seem to forget about myself!


Notable Achievements

This year had a lot of new experiences for me. I opened my home daycare, started bullet journaling, opened my Instagram account and started this blog. Most recently, I met two fabulous ladies, @chocmusings and @purplescapedesign and we’ve become great friends. That means more than anything else I’ve done this year. I find it difficult to make new friends, and these ladies are not only phenomenal, strong, independent women with the same interests as myself, but they also have fantabulous Instagram feeds that you need to check out!

We just wrapped up our December Lettering Challenge, Sugared Letters and it was a lot of fun! We are teaming up again for a January Challenge focusing notable women in history! We want to inspire and empower women to work for their goals and achieve their dreams! This challenge is entirely open to interpretation! Write their name, give a quote, draw a doodle, do anything you want! January will be fun!

Don’t forget to give us each a follow on Instagram, visit the link to this image to save it!


January Monthly

In this new journal, I’m striving to use a more minimalist design. I still want to add some design and artistic flair into it, but I seem to have an issue where I wind up cluttering up the page, and oh-em-gee I just LOVE the pages I’ve seen with white space. January features a traditional calendar layout with a completed week at the end of the month in case I have something important to write before February begins. I’ve also added a notes section as well because I just like including a space for random notes.


week 1 January 1-7 dashboardWeek 1 Dashboard: January 1-7

Now that I’ve moved my menu plan and grocery list into a reusable collection, I had some extra space on my weekly dashboard. I like the idea of filling an entire page for this, but I may reduce it to half a page and go right into dailies!

I put in a quick glance at the week so that I can put any important appointments or events that may be going on. Plans with friends and family don’t get input into my future log, so this is the perfect space for it.

Ten ideas in ten minutes came from a great idea by Tricia Murdock (@chocmusings). She created a spread outlining tasks that only took 10 minutes to complete, and I adapted the design to be a mini brainstorming session. I’m sure most of these will wind up being silly and pointless, but I love trying new things!

Both the blog to-do’s and horizon + notes sections here serve the same purpose. Here is where I will input tasks I know I need to get done this week but haven’t assigned to a day yet, which is my number one reason for a dashboard!

 

 


Bring it on, 2018!

I’m all set for this new year, all set for January! I’m going to put some extra focus into dividing my dailies and getting a consistent style designed. I would like each day to begin the same way, but I’m still learning what I do and don’t like, what I need vs fresh ideas that don’t work for me, etc. Ready or not, January is here, and I hope this helped you get organized!

Stay tuned for my regularly scheduled blog post on Thursday, January 4, 2018, and don’t forget to share your ideas in the comments below!