I just realized that I started all this planner talk without showcasing my actual paper planner!
The one my husband choose for me was the Happy Planner by MAMBI (My Life). Obviously, I added my online alias to the cover. The pink diamond sticker was swag from an author. There’s a quote sticker that I put on the back, too.
As for the inside, I added the “Year at a Glance” printable from MAMBI and some pinwheel embellishments along with a picture of my family.
I love the simplicity of it, as that’s how I like my stuff. It’s an 18-month planner, but it started in July of 2015, so I only have 12 months to play with. Still, it’s not bad since that’s a whole year. And with the way my obsession is going, I might end up getting the 2016-17 editions in a few months and start using that come July (Any idea why these planners always start in July?!)! I won’t let this current one go to waste though as BG1 has shown considerable interest in paper planning after watching me do it, so I’ll probably give this one to her when I make the switch.
The Happy Planner follows the vertical layout, which is different from what I remember when I used to have a paper planner in high school. They were horizontal. But I’ve been using the planner for the past month and it’s not bad. If you need a lot of space to write long to-do’s and such, then maybe you’ll like the horizontal layout more, but if you’re used to writing shorthand, then this might work for you.
It also uses discs to hold the pages together as opposed to being spiral-bound or anything else. It’s different, but I like the look. Pulling the pages out and putting them back in is really easy to do, which is plus for the planner as compared to a spiral-bound planner. Even though the hole punch is kind of different, there’s a very easy (albeit tedious) hack to create the holes that will work for the discs. If you want to see a post or video on the hack, let me know in the comments.
I was considering whether or not to do a bit of journaling in the planner as well, just to keep everything in one place, but I haven’t decided just yet. I do want to start journaling again, because I feel like it helps me mentally to write things out, but I kind of want to find a pretty notebook to do it in. In any case, I’ve been using part of the planner for my lists from the Listers Gotta List Challenge, created by The Reset Girl.
I’ve added a bunch of lined notebook and graph paper to the planner as well for the lists and for any notes that I want to take.
I got the paper with a coupon, of course, and I also bought a couple packs of extra discs recently (on clearance) for if I ever want to change up the look of my planner and for when I inevitably switch and modify the planner for BG1.
I also tried my hand at a DIY and created a pocket/folder for the planner, as there isn’t one in there (that’s a downside). They do sell some folders separately, but I didn’t want to have to pay for that, so I made my own using washi tape and a sheet protector. I know there are others who use divider sheets, too. If you want to see a DIY post or video on it, let me know in the comments.
What I love about this planner is that it resembles the Erin Condren Life Planner so much, yet it is so much more affordable. The ECLP is kind of like the “big guns” in the planner world, but I just can’t see the logic in shelling out so much cash (like $80) for a paper planner. With my budget, I was hesitant to even get The Happy Planner at its original price, which is $24.99. Luckily, my husband was able to get it for $12.48 during the holiday season, which made me feel less guilty for starting up this new hobby.
Little did he or I know that this would quickly turn into my current obsession. It’s terrible now though because there are SO many cute accessories that go along with paper planning and I seriously want it all!
Right now, the planners are all on sale on the MAMBI shop for $12.48, but if you have a Michael’s near you, they have the planner on clearance for only $7.99! Not bad for such a pretty planner, right?
I’ve already converted quite a few people in my life onto The Happy Planner, which makes me all kinds of giddy inside. I am seriously loving this hobby/obsession and I feel like it’s exactly what I needed right now. If anything, it’s sparked my need to creativity.
So, do you paper plan? I’d love to know what you use and how you decorate your planners.