I wanted to work for Franklin Covey.
kid you not....I actually remember one day my Junior year...I skipped school (sorry mom) and I sat at Barnes and Noble and poured over organizing books and time management books...I bought my first time management book - Time Management from the Inside Out by Julie Morgenstern that day (yes I find it a bit odd that my rebellious act of skipping school resulted in me buying a time management book but I've told y'all before I'M NOT NORMAL <3 )
SO since my teens I have had this concept in my mind that paper planners are just...well they are just lovely.
with that in mind, I went on a search...an almost 10 year search for the PERFECT planner, in my earlier days, it needed to accomodate my school & homework schedule as well as my ever changing social schedule, now it needs to keep track of my kids school & homework schedule as well as my own semi entertaining social schedule :)
but during this search I ran in to many roadblocks...I am willing to bet that I have tried almost every product out there...from the most tiny and simple to the most grand and opulant. I have tried a computer based calendar system...I've tried the post it note system...a wall calendar...a desk calendar...an expensive Franklin Covey Agenda...MULTIPLE 'mom planners"...I've even tried saying "to hell with it" and just not using anything (obviously that didn't last too long)
all of that trial and error was frusterating, wasteful and expensive. I was never happy...there was always some flaw in the system. and me being the perfectionistic insane OCD person that I am...I am just NOT ok with flaws. at. all.
So I thought to myself....Why do I need to follow the format that someone else has made for me? My life is different than that person...I have 2 kids...they have 4....I need to track my finances in my planner...they do it online...I don't need 20 pages for contacts, but it would be nice to keep a few of my frequently addressed friends in my contact section. I need a page for every day...and a 2 page monthly calendar...and my handwriting is big and bulky...and I want it to be semi portable...and cute...and I want all those inspirational quotes to be thigns that inspire ME....
BUT THATS JUST ME...and THATS the point.
Everyones Life is different...so why should we all conform to using the same planner?
and thats why I made my MOMager.
This is actually inside a Five Star "Flex Binder" they are about $12 each at an office supply store (might be a couple bucks cheaper at Walmart/Target) I love these because they are very similar in size weight and flexibility to a spiral notebook, yet they allow you to add and delete pages like a binder via the flex rings on the side.
Inside I keep a clear zipper pouch with some pens, extra labels and post its (see those pens? those are my FAVORITES...they are Le Pens...you usually have to go to specialty stationary stores to find them, but its worth the trip...they make writing pretty <3)
My first page is set in a hard laminate so it won't get damaged, it contains my favorite quote, and some emergency & "if found" info....I just put this on some fun zebra paper and added a little cut out that I made using my Cricut
behind my first page is a year at a glance for 2011, also laminated in the hard laminate
There are 5 sections in my MOMager, My Monthly Calendar, ToDo's (daily calendar), Contacts, Money, & Blog
On the first page of every month, I have my monthly goals sheet...I gave up on year long resolutions because that just seems silly to me, I do have a "5 year plan" and I will go in to more detail about that later but I baisically use this sheet as an at a glance for what my BIG to-do's are for this month (as you can see for the month of the February I had things like planning my daughters class valentines party, and finding a new house...big things go here...not "do the laundry on thursday")
My monthly pages are set between two pages, in my brain a week starts on Monday and ends on sunday...so thats the way it goes in paper, I also have a notes column on the side to jot down tiny reminders, appointment details, etc.....I use a color coding system for each person in my family, and use a couple other colors for bills, birthdays, etc
Did you know that I'm in <3 with Alice in Wonderland? i draw 99.9% of my daily affirmations and motivations from quotes from the book/movies...my MOMager is FULL of Alice quotes to serve as a reminder to me that "This is my dream, and I'll decide where it goes from here..." (my all time fave Alice quote and personal motto...taken from the Tim Burton Alice in Wonderland)
This is my Daily Page...this is what makes since to ME...I need an hourly blocking system to keep track of the flow of my day...I also need a to do area, I have some pre-typed To Dos and some little cues like "Blog:" - for me to insert what my blog topic is...or "Cardio" for me to insert how much cardio I did that day...below that is my "Contacts" box...just a way for me to remember who I need to call/email and what its in reference to...then a daily tracking of my spending just because we are REALLY trying to tighten down our daily spending...its almost like a diet journal...i'm less likely to buy something silly now because I know I have to write it down, so if its not worth it...its not getting bought!
This is my blog sheet...just a place to reference blog topics and brainstorm...I love the quote on these pages "But that's the trouble with me, I give myself very good advice, but I very seldom follow it" SO true haha
My finance Register...again, this goes in to my financial planning and budgeting...I'm going to have a more indepth post at a later date about how I track my expenses/bills/etc....I'm still finalizing that binder :)
My people page is where I keep those "frequently contacted" people...you know...moms, aunts, nanas...the people who love you an extra amount and send you little notes and goodies...the ones that are fun to write back to :)
And thats that kids. I also have some notebook paper in the back for meetings and extra jotting....this planner has served me perfectly. it fits fine in my purse (granted my purse is gigantic) its completely custom to my liking. and its something that I have formed a dependency on...and THAT is how you know you have reached planner success. :)