Last week, I was hit by the realization that Christmas is mere weeks away. Which means that the new year is not too far behind.
How did that happen?!
As November has been passing by, I’ve been more and more concerned about making sure I don’t make the same productivity and time management mistakes as I did this year. I need a planner and I need it to be one that I will stick with.
Confession: I’m a Faux Planner Addict.
What does that mean? It means that I ove buying planners and I adore looking at other people’s “spreads”, but I tend to not use my planners beyond a few weeks. There has only been one time in the history of me trying to get my life together that I’ve used a planner for the better part of a year.
That planner was the “Do It All Mom Planner” by Orange Circle Studio. I just bought the 2017-2018 edition and I am still in love.
What I Love About It
The first time that I bought this planner, it featured a mom and her son on the cover. Considering I’m a single mom with one son, that was kind of perfect. This year’s cover is a bit different, but still really cute.
The cover is also hard rather than soft, which is a bonus as far as durability. It’s also the kind of material that if you spill something on it, you may be able to wipe it off without much trouble.
Handy Folder Compartment
Another thing about the cover that I love is that it has a little folder on it. It’s the perfect place to hold things like coupons, receipts, and lists.
This planner is small enough for me to slip it into my purse, but not so small that I can’t do anything with it.
The layout is wonderful! It has a year at-a-glance (well, 17 months at-a-glance) and monthly pages. Each weekly spread is two pages long with plenty of space for writing. One thing I think puts this planner in a different class is that on the weekly pages, they have 6 different blank sections that you can use however you wish. I think the intended purpose is to use one space for each family member, but since it’s blank, you can get creative. Personally, I break them down into Mom, The Kid, Homeschool, Biz, Blog, and Other Stuff. That way, on any given day, I can jot down anything important in each of those sections. I know that some people prefer to have separate planners for various aspects of their lives. As for me, I prefer being able to do as much as I can with one planner.
Aligned with its theme, each weekly spread has a quote about parenting or motherhood at the top. For example, the quote for last week was “But kids don’t stay with you if you do it right. It’s the one job where, the better you are, the more surely you won’t be needed in the long run”. I like reading them and seeing how they make me feel.
Perforated Lists & Graphing Paper
If you’re a list person (I am), they have 20 pages of perforated to-do lists and shopping lists. They also have a few pages of graphing paper, which I plan to use to doodle.
Rate Your Year
Something new about this year’s planner is a Rate Your Year page. The idea I to use a key you create to keep track of each day of the year on a scale from “A Horrible Day” to “A Great Day”. I think this could be a good way to reflect on the year.
Track Your Goals
Another cool feature is a page where you list your goals. I plan to use this page to brainstorm some of the big things I want to achieve in 2018 and to write down when each goal was met.
There are stickers for all kinds of things, such as birthdays, holidays, appointments, school events, and vacations.
You don’t have to worry much about things falling out of your planner because it includes an attached ribbon enclosure. It’s stretchy, too, so it can grow with your planner.
Last, but not least, the planner didn’t cost me my soul or my firstborn child, lol. I got mine for a bit over $10 (not including tax and shipping is free if you either have Amazon Prime or spend over $25). Definitely more affordable than some other planners on the market that have comparable features.
All in all, I’m excited to use my planner. It think it ranks highly when it comes to planners for busy moms. It’s also a great planner for frugal moms. Even if I decide to buy some accessories like stickers and washi tape (spoiler: I will), it is still a great product at a value that can’t really be beat. I highly recommend grabbing one of your own.