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Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Attending to the Days

Yesterday was the first day in a couple of weeks that things fell back into a bit of a routine.  For the past two weeks I've briefly skimmed over the mail just in case it was something that needed my immediate attention, but for the most part none of it was anything that couldn't wait and so I tossed it into my pending file and forgot about it.  But yesterday the lovely leisure of Christmas and the week between Christmas and New Year's came to a close and it was time to begin working on organizing a few things and resuming our days.

One thing I've always tried to do is to bring a bit of loveliness to every task and yesterday was no exception.  That wasn't hard since I already had everything I needed, my planners, a few post its and pads, some little fruit bowls that I picked up recently for organizing bits and baubles, some washi tape in lovely colors and my home keeping binder which I make myself every year.  I am particularly loving this year's layout.  Switching from Word to Pages and figuring out graphics was a little tricky, but I think I've finally got the hang of it and I'm so happy with the way it turned out.  You can see a better copy of my January calendar in this post, and there's even a link to download a copy if your interested.  Here's a little close up in the picture on the right, as well.

I actually have three planners, all which are featured in this picture.  My home keeping binder is my biggest planner and I keep it out and refer to it daily.  This is where I keep track of seasonal and liturgical celebrations and fun little ways to make every day special.  By the way, today is National Chocolate Covered Cherry day and I just happen to have a box that my mom was given as a gift, but since she doesn't care for them she gave it to me.  I'll have to treat myself to few later today!  I have daily sheets for each day of the week, which you can see in the picture on the left below.  I was working on filling all of these in when I took this picture, but pleasantly enough the first week of 2017 appears to be a little quieter than usual, for the moment, anyway! I'm always tweaking and editing these forms, but this is what I've come up with for now.  I'll play around with for a few weeks to make sure it works well for me.  In the past I've added lots of pretty embellishments to the daily pages, and I rather prefer that, but that takes a lot of time to develop and tweak and uses a lot more ink to print, and since these pages are printed weekly I decided to keep the dailies plain and simple this year. This is also where I keep up with daily home keeping tasks, I note any appointments we have coming up, which is the only thing that is duplicated across all three planners.  There's nothing like three reminders to keep you on top of things!  My homekeeping planner is also where I make notes about projects I'd like to do.  My mom's front yard needs some work, especially the flower beds and I was thinking of planting some holly bushes just outside my bedroom window.  And so I did a little research and printed out an article about holly bushes.  Did you know that there is a male and female species and that only the female bushes produce berries?  But!  Unless you buy the more expensive variety that produces berries without the need of male, you need to plant both.  Isn't that interesting! I tucked that article behind the page where I had made a note to look into planting some in the spring and at the end of the month I'll forward that note to around March or April and move the article there.  This is just one example of how I organize my thoughts and ideas.

My second planner is a Lett's Torino Week to Week planner in Red.  I read about this planner in a post on another friend's Facebook page and since I was looking for a new planner I decided to give it a try.  I don't know if you are familiar with Swagbacks, but I spend some time here and there doing tasks and completing surveys so that I can earn some gift cards.  Once my classes were done for the semester I took a couple of days and spent some time in earnest and before I knew it had enough to get myself a $25.00 Amazon gift card which was just enough to purchase this planner and a small travel journal for my purse, a small Moleskine planner in a lovely shade of green which I purchased used but in "Like New" condition for a bit cheaper than the standard price.  I use the Tornio planner primarily for school, but I still list other appointments here as well so that I can make sure that things don't interfere with my school work, especially on days when I have tests.  And then my small Moleskin planner is the one that I carry with me at all times.  Since it's actually a travel journal there is lots of room for writing.  I carry over appointments into this planner as well, but from there it's a toss up as to what else gets added.  For instance, this coming Thursday is Bird Day, and since I LOVE birds I've decided to try to set my bird feeder back up outside my window.  It's been packed away since we moved here last year and I miss my little feathered friends.   Since I don't want to forget I made a note in my homekeeping binder to find my feeder and the hanging pole in the garage tomorrow and then in my Moleskin planner I've written a reminder to pick up some inexpensive bird seed while I'm out on Thursday.  I also have a dear friend who has a birthday coming up soon which is noted on the calendar in my homekeeping binder, but in my Moleskin planner I've made a note to pick up a birthday card. Do you see how these two planners especially work well together,? at least it does for me.  I suppose I could keep track of all of it in one place, but carrying around a big binder, which I tried one year, just isn't really practical. Also, I don't know about you, but I don't have the best memory so having reminders written down in more than one place helps to stay on top of things!

One of the things I have in my home keeping binder the I'm particularly loving this year are these delightful little note pads that I found in the dollar section at Target just before Christmas.  They add a lovely splash of color to my binder and I keep them along with some post it notes tucked away in the pockets in the front of the binder.  I'm a bit OCD when it comes to color coordinating, but as I've often said, if you must be responsible at least make it pretty!

Well, this post is getting rather long so I'll wrap it up for now!  I'm always interested in how other people organize and manage their lives and I've seen several things my friends have posted recently on their blogs and Facebook showcasing their planners and how they use them and I thought I'd jump in the bandwagon and join the fun!  I'd love to hear what tools and resources you use as well, so feel free to share your thoughts and ideas in the comments!  I'd love to here for you!

Until then, take joy, my friends!

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