Wednesday, January 29, 2014

How to Make a Personal Planner

My Planner Today

I am sure you know the saying, "one man's trash is another man's treasure." Well I have also figured out that one woman's organization is not necessarily another woman's organization. As I continue to work on my purge and getting some New Years organization working, as well as working on being a better manager of my time, I realize that I have to organize in a way that works best for me. This has proved to be most true in the form of a working calendar.

This past year I decided to go digital, I used Cozi and while this is an awesome app, I realized I am a paper girl and function best when I have the good old fashion pen and paper. Cozi is great and if you can get everyone in your family on board it can be really great because it merges each person in your family's calendar. Since I was the only one using it, it didn't really prove to be advantageous. I highly recommend this app if you can get your whole family on board.

I even asked FB friends what they use and it was a mix with digital and pen and paper, as well as several suggestions for both. So as I researched several kinds, some were customizable some not, but boy there are some super cute planners out there. When I purchased planners in the past, I would like a feature, then I would find something else that would have a feature that I liked better and nothing ever had everything. Sometimes I would even switch mid year. Yes I had a day planner at one time and although I liked it, I didn't like the investment because I like to change things up a bit from time to time and it still didn't have everything for my situation.

After researching I decided to put together my own planner, no it isn't as cute as some that I found but I knew a few things I wanted and liked the idea of being able to add and change as I go. I actually started last fall and I continue to tweak it, but so far it is working for me. I bought an Avery Binder the 8.5x5.5  size that is just black, but I am able to change the look by changing the slip in part of the front cover, it currently has a pic of Mr. Wonderful and me and my feeble attempt at a monogram. It also has a secure front pocket on the inside that allows me to keep a few things that I use often, stamps, post-its, address labels and a pencil.

My first page has everything listed that I have included up to this point. The first section is my calendar. I found one that was fill in the dates, not my favorite but it was best because I prefer the month at a glance type. Behind the month at a glance I use Simple Organized Living's daily to do sheet. I don't particularly like that it is not customizable, but it works for now, until I have time to make my own.

Next up is for my shopping lists that I make, this is for small lists that I make to pick up sale items at certain stores, not my major shopping list found here. I have a pocket that I use to include coupons that I might need for a quick trip in the store. Following that is a section I set up for my Bible study class. It has my class roster, a verse I am learning and sheets of loose leaf paper to write out my lesson plans and notes. Behind the Bible Study section I have also included a section for prayer requests and a few note cards. If I am caught out I can jot a quick note of encouragement to someone and be ready to address it when I get home.

The next section is for cards, you know the frequent shopper cards, or punch cards you get from stores. It also includes a few business cards that I may not have included in my phone yet. The final tab is just paper that I currently have a few goals scribbled on. This also has room to write things when I am making a call perhaps of things I should remember.

As I said I started this late last fall, so I included a section marked Christmas that had my shopping list. A place to include receipts in case I needed to make returns as well as coupons I intended to use to finish my shopping. After Christmas I took this section out, but I will add it back in a little later in the year.

Although I don't carry this in my purse, I made sure it will fit if needed. I like being able to change what isn't working, as well as add things as needed. So far, my homemade planner is working for me! What do you use for a planner? Are you digital or paper and pencil?

Linking with:  The ScoopGrace at HomeThrifty ThursdayWise Woman


  1. I have tried apps, but also always come back to paper. I buy the $1 mini notepads at the Dollar Store, and write down everything that I can think of, from vacation plans, recipes, TV schedules, but I need to get as organized as you, and put them in a binder together.

    1. I am loving my binder, I would recommend it because you can put what you want in it. I will sometimes put a recipe I want to try in mine and if I am out I can pick up the ingredients! Thanks for stopping by.

  2. Thanks for sharing your ideas! I'm also a paper and pen type person, but I do have Wunderlist on my computer and use it to kind of coordinate everything -- like I've listed all of my shopping haunts and can keep a running list of things I might want to look at when I'm at that particular store (this syncs to my iPhone so I always have this list at hand). I use this system when I am out and about, because I don't want to pack around my planner binder. I used to do that all the time, but it was such a juggling act to keep track of the planner and my purse -- love that I now have access to everything on my phone. I have been using the same basic 8.5x5.5 3-ring notebook for years. I just purchased a new binder at Staples and they have some that are really colorful, but still less than $5. Somewhere online I found a daily planner sheet that I liked and have been making copies of that as I need them (usually a couple of months at a time). The rest of my binder has categories that work for me. I've even been adding bits of washi tape in different places on my daily pages just to emphasize something but mainly for the fun of it! I've been seeing a lot of expensive planners (like filofax) showing up in blogland. There are some bloggers who have several of these going at the same time. That just seems confusing to me. I like everything in one spot.

    1. I love that idea, because I don't want to carry mine around everywhere either. Although my problem is an older phone and is super slow! Thanks for coming for a visit!