Sunday, February 7, 2016

Journals & Planners

I am back! I know that I have been MIA for a few month already...and look at this! Already it's February of 2016! Oh me, oh my...where has time gone! Well, I am going to try my best to stay focused and try to update this blog more frequently than I have been doing. And on that note, I would like to share with you what I have started getting into, well not really just starting, I have been doing this for a few years...but now I want to share with you my journals and planners in my life. I have a this obsessions (for lack of a better, less creepy word!). I LOVE and adore journals and planners...always have, always will...however I have noticed that I was doing more with them.

As this new year was starting, I was reflecting on time management and how I can improve my sleeping habits. I seriously have horrible sleeping habits. I am NOT as young as I use to be and I can't always be sleeping so late...but then how to get everything all done that I need to get done?! Well, I have always been one to have a planner...so I had to re-evaluate my life and how I am doing things, better planning and all that jazz. When I started thinking about that, I realized that I really did rely on my planners a lot.

I have always had a journal for as long as I can remember. I have plenty journals in storage that I have finished and that is one thing that I couldn't seem to get rid of when I moved over seas. I knew that I had to downsize a lot...but not my journals. I couldn't throw those out! So without further ado, let me present to you my current planners and journals that are my life.

 

These are my journals and planners. I have two different kinds of planners, and three types of journals. I will also be sharing with you my current two favorite daily devotionals that go along with one of my journals. And I am always getting asked what pens I like to use with my journals and planners so I will be sharing two of my favorite ones. :)

So I wake up early in the morning and the first thing I do is go to the bathroom, drink lemon water and then I sit down to read a short devotional and then write in my Devotional/Reflection (DR) Journal.



I got this idea a few years ago from my friend Agape Joy. When I was going through a tough time in life, I had a heart to heart with her and she asked me the if I ever had devotionals in the morning. I had responded that I didn't have time for that...and she told me to make time. Then she encouraged me to read her DR Journal. She had taken a planner and she would just use that and write each day what her reflection to her devotional was for that day...and it was powerful. I loved that idea...but it wasn't until a couple months ago that I remembered that I had wanted to do that...and you know what?! I can't go through my day without out reading a short devotion and writing something--my reflection about it. It's my own quiet time in the morning that I like to have with God and myself.

Even though I have finished this devotional book, I wanted to share it with you right now.



Each devotional is very short and very to the point and it makes you think about how wonderful this "Guy" is that wrote you these Love Letters through The Bible just for YOU.



I liked it so much that I read through it twice. I have to admit though, I was already reading this book before I remembered what Agape Joy did with her DR Journal...so it wasn't until the second time I was going through this book that I started my very own DR Journal. If you only have a short time in the morning for devotionals, I suggest you get this book. I love this book and I will always recommend it. This book was actually a thrift store find...I love books, and this book actually caught my attention...and its not something that I would look for, but when I saw it, I knew that I had to get it. It was only 25 cents so what could I loose. Little did I know that this would become my favorite go-to book when I am looking for encouragement.

The devotional that I am reading now is:



I like this devotional because each devotionasl are also short and something meaningful to me. I also love how each day has a song that goes with the devotional...and if you didn't know already, I am a music person...and anything with music will catch my attention and help me understand something even better.



At the end of the daily devotional they have question that you can reflect on and helps guide your thoughts through thought-provoking questions. And I like that.

My DR Journal is a plain notebook that I had. I fix it up monthly so that I have guides of where to write...and I make it look fun, because I like fun. :)



As you can see, I like bright colors...and I usually have quotes on the page as well, but this one didn't really leave much room...so stickers and washi tape it is! :) So I do this daily. The bookmark that you see there was a note written to me from my sister back in 2005. I had kept in my wallet for the longest time, but then it was started to get weathered so I backed it on black card stock paper and laminated it. And now I use it as a bookmark. Yes, I am sentimental like that! :)

After I write in my DR Journal, I take out my Happy "Journal" and write in there. It is actually a Happy Planner...but I journal in it instead.



I don't really know where I got this idea, I think more, I saw this DIY Planner in Ben Franklin's one day and I really wanted it...and so when I opened it I wondered what I could use it for...and then this idea came to me!



So, each day has three sections: Morning, Afternooon, and Evening. Like I said, it was suppose to be a planner...and I think I might try this as a planner one of these years, but for now, I really love using it as a...Checkpoint Journal. (Whoa, I just came up with that right now! I didn't really know what I called it until now!)



So, like I said each day comes in three sections...(sorry, I didn't really go close to it to get a good shot, but I didn't want to share the whole world my specific thoughts! :) But if you can read that tiny...then feel free to try to read it! :)) But in the morning, afternoon, and evening time I will write what I am feeling at that moment. I like doing this because I feel like I hold too much inside throughout the day...but by doing this, I am able to write things out, or I just write something that inspired me at that time or something I don't want to forget. Basically in that little box, it's whatever I want to do at the moment...whether it's to put a quote that I came across, write lyrics to a song, draw a picture... whatever I want to do. It's good that I have tiny handwriting! I think someone with bigger handwriting, this might be hard to do because the space is very limited...but it's just perfect for me. On the side notes area, I like to write prayer requests. That way when I am writing in here, I can see the prayer requests and say a quick prayer for whoever needs prayer.

The last journal I have is my "regular" journal that I write in right before bed.



My sister bought me this one. She gave it to me and told me that it reminded her of me and so she got it for me...so when I needed a new journal, I decided to use this one. In this, I write more details and everything. Basically like a journal/diary someone would keep.

 

This kind of journal is the one that I have always had...every so often I like taking out one of my older journals and just read what I was going through. I think that is why I like keeping journals, it's like a book that I'm just writing at the moment of my life. Yeah, that...a record of my life, in my own words, and raw emotion. I don't know what made me start writing in a journal, but I've always been a journal keeper...and I don't see myself stopping anytime in the future.

And that is it for my journals! The two planners that I like to keep are the ones that help me with my time management and try to get things organized. I mean, yes, that is what a planner is for! I know that if I don't write something down, I will forget it! And so that is why I have these planners.

The one that I keep with me at all times is my Passion Planner. I love my Passion Planner!



This is actually the first time I have used this planner and I love it! I hope that they will never discontinue it, because I really love this planner! I actually heard about it through Kickstarter.com and got it as a reward for supporting the company. It really helps you plan out your goals and keeps you focused on reaching your goals.



This was my last week's weekly entry. I love color and so I like carrying around colorful pens and highlighters to help me with that. I like using the vertical version as opposed to the horizontal layout. This is the first time I've used this layout and I have found that I like this layout. Nothing wrong with the horizontal layout, but I really did want to try this layout and I find that I like it.



Here is a closer view of this week's page...I have yet to fill it out still. But as you can see towards the lower part of the day in pink highlighter is says that that is when I plan out my next day...or in this case this next week. I usually plan out Sunday on Saturday...so that's what I did there. Since I mentioned that I am trying to improve my sleeping habits, 10:30PM is highlighted purple so that I can visually see that I have to start getting ready for bed. I try to be in bed by 11:30...so that gives me enough time to take a shower (if I haven't already), brush/dental floss my teeth, face masks (if I use one that day), get my diffuser ready with my favorite oils, and write in my journal before telling myself that I have to lay down and try to go to sleep. Notice I said the word, TRY...I really do have a hard time going to sleep...but so far I'm doing pretty good with at least getting In bed at that time. And I figured that if I wasn't sleepy at least used this time to think and just relax. 

So, I keep this planner on me at all times so that I can pencil in appointments and events. I got the compact size of this planner so that I can easily carry it with me. The Classic size of this planner is bigger. If you want to check out these planners and see if they are what you are looking for, just go here: http://www.passionplanner.com/ They also have an Academic version of this planner if you want to use it for school.

I can not stress enough how much I love this planner. So you should go out and check it out! :)

Well, when I used to only have one planner, I noticed that there were a lot of things that I just wanted to remember...list-wise. I have this other thing that I'm {obsessed} about and that was lists. I was keeping a separate notebook for things I just didn't want to forget that was not appointment/event related. Just like something like "Vacuum today" or something...and then while I was on Pinterest I saw that there was something called the "Bullet Journal" going around and I told myself that that was something that I was doing already! So I looked up what exactly it entailed, and I realized that it wasn't EXACTLY what  I was doing, but in a way I was. Just not to the extent of everything about it. What I like about this planner type is that it's totally customize-able. I tried several different ways of doing it until I fell into a layout that I liked and worked for me.

I love using graph paper for things like this...and a few weeks ago I was able to buy eight graph paper notebooks because they were on sale at Office Depot for only 15 cents! This particular Office Depot was going to close and so they had all these ridiculous sales! My sister told me about it...and I loved it! I got a lot of things for school and just for me...but now I'm going off on a tangent! *laughs* Well, for this one on the outside, it looks plain...



Later on when I have more time, I will decorate it to how I like it...but for now, I like how it is. I love this color. It reminds me of the ocean. And anything about the ocean, makes me feel at home. :)



So, like I mentioned, I went through several different layouts before finding one that I liked and this is the one I liked for the beginning of each month. It shows me a glance of the month and whatever pressing matter I should remember at a glace. This is where I put birthdays and just planned events already and things like that. It also has this months focus on the top and also quotes for this month. I love quotes and I love finding ones that are meaningful to me at the moment...and so that is how my front page looks like.



Here is what last weeks page looks like. On the left side, that is the daily lists of things that I want to remember. On the left side I have just random things that I want to remember that week. For last week on the right side, the black is the things that I need to get done sometime that week, or something I don't want to forget to do and the pink is the notes that I need to write down somewhere so I won't forget. On the top of the right hand side are check list boxes that I can X off on the corresponding days. I did that because I noticed that I wrote those things down EVERY day, when I really didn't need to. This way, I know that I have to do it, but just X it if I did.



Here is this weeks page. As you can see, I love color! :) On the right hand side, the circles are the things that I need to do and the asterisk are just notes of things I need to remember. I know that one of the things of Bullet "Journals" they have this index thingy that I don't do and this key guide as to what the symbols mean. I didn't make one because since this is mine and I don't care for people to be looking at it, I already know what the symbols mean and I don't need a reminder.



So, here is a close up on the check lists boxes and how I do my notes and things to-do. Not complicated and organized enough for me. :) When I was making this weeks, I realized my mistake after I got to the "Saturday" on my boxes and couldn't figure out why I had one more box! I must have been really out of it since I forgot to start on "Sunday!"....oh well, for this week it went on the end, since I didn't want to white it out and mess everything up! *laughs*




Here is a close up of how I write my days...and the check mark means that I finished what I needed to do.



Some other marks that I use is the arrow pointed to the right means that I didn't get to it that day and that I need to transfer it over to the next day. A check and an arrow means that I started, but wasn't able to finish...so finish it the next day. Two other marks that I do is on the right side of the paper in my notes and to-do lists, if there is an arrow pointing left means that I had written it on a specific day already and if there is an X in the circle means I don't have to do that thing anymore. See, so easy peasy! And I love it! I love my lists and I refer to this a lot!

Okay, I get asked a lot about the pens that I use. I have my favorite pens that I use when I sit down and plan things out...but when it comes to spur of the moment something I need to write down, I just use any kine pen that I have around. Like, I'm not going to NOT write in my planners/journals just because I don't have one of my favorite pens with me!



I bring this pencil case with me to work and it is always in my work bag when I leave the house.
 


I like using these pens in my "Bullet Planner" and my Passion Planner...they don't leak through to the other pages and they are bright in color. I actually got this set at Office Depot when they were having their sale. I normal don't like medium print size, but these ones, I have fallen in love with. :)



These pens are called the Paper Mate Flair in Medium. I like the bright colors these have. There are packs that have a lot more colors than these, but these colors do me just fine. :)



These pens I carry in my bag/purse, if they fit in the bag/purse I decide to carry that day! I will always carry my Passion Planner with me...but if these pens just can't fit, I won't make a big deal about it. (Do you like the Ipsy GlamBag that I used to store my pens! :))



I usually use these pens in my journals or just to write. I love how these pens write...the tips are small enough that my letters don't smear together.



They are the same version as my other ones, Paper Mate Flair, except these ones are the Ultra Fine tipped pens...and that is my favorite kind of pens! Since I have super micro-sized handwriting, these pens help me write clearly...and they allow me to write small. Other pens I have to make a conscious effort to write bigger so that my letters won't run together...these ones I don't really have to worry about. Ultra Fine is the way to go! :)

I do use other pens, but these are the ones that I love to use with my planners and journals. And highlighters. I use highlighters a lot as well. And stickers, and washi tape, and post-its...and a whole bunch of other things! I just love all stationary they make me happy and I can double use them for my letter writing hobby! :)



So that is my hobby...and I don't see it as a phase...it's a way of life for me. :)

Well, I hope that I can get on track with this blog again. It was always fun for me...so I hope to see you soon! Aloha!