Welcome 2013! Planning the Year Ahead


Welcome 2013! I know I’m about two weeks late in wishing you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR, but I’ve been a little busyphoto 1 planning, partying, purging and preparing. (Like what I did there? The Grammar Nerd in me does too.) I’ve been cleaning out closets, desk drawers and junk to welcome in the New Year fresh! I’ve been partying because of all the holidays and also babies on the way (my friends’ not mine), and planning and preparing for a few new projects I have coming up. Some which pertain to this little blog here. Expect to see more Q & A’s, more reviews and more product participation from some of my favorite things.

Speaking of favorite things, one of my favorite things ever is anything stationary. I’m talking pens, markers, pencils, stamps, cute note cards, notebooks and agendas. ALL OF IT! I’m a hoarder of cute paper goods. I love sending hand written cards for holidays and for no reason at all, giving them to people who impact me and it’s always a cute way to say thank you or I love you to those you care about. I mean, sometimes it’s nice to get something other than a text, right?

This is what it takes to keep me organized and sane so far for 2013.

This is what it takes to keep me organized and sane so far for 2013.

With that said, I’m obsessed with cute notebooks. Luckily, I’m a writer so I tend to use lots of them. I use notebooks during brainstorming meetings with editors, for interviews and for planning out new projects. The OCD in me only comes out when it comes to work, so I tend to have a different notebook for each project/client I’m working on. I don’t like scrambling through notes that don’t pertain to a particular subject while in a meeting. It can get messy when you’re juggling a few different accounts. I also have smaller notebooks in my purse at ALL times. As for these, I also tend to separate them by project and jot notes and ideas on them as they come. So as you can see, I have a bit of a compulsive vice when it comes to stationary. Can we add cute pencil cases to my list above now? Thanks.

So with the new year, I needed a new agenda to begin my planning for all the ideas floating through my head. I don’t know what it is about a new year, but all of a sudden I want to tackle things I’ve been meaning to do but haven’t. Like write that novel that only has like 4 pages written, or get working on the Children’s book idea that’s been an idea in my head for years? I think part of my procrastination is that I don’t know how it’ll end or sometimes where to begin, but hopefully 2013 will be THE YEAR. I’ll get back to you in 12 months if it happened or not. So after growing through some Ingstagram photos of fellow bloggers, I realized I wasn’t photo 1-1the only one searching for a cute 2013 agenda. I saw some cute ones and headed out on my search. The first one I saw was a cute gold and beige striped agenda, though it’s not as fancy as I would’ve liked, it called my attention. For some reason for 2013 I’ve been leaning towards all things glittery and sparkly. It has the month view and week view which I wanted and cost me less than $10 at my local Target store. It’s made by Greenroom, and from other Target purchases I already knew I liked many of their products. However, it’s a little large to carry in all of my purses, so I’m still searching for something I can take along with me wherever I go, and not just to my meetings with Editors. This blogger, also had some cute black and gold notebooks she mentioned she found at Home Goods, so off I went to copy those as well. She had purchased the regular notebook size ones, but I found the mini notebooks, which came in a pack of 3 and are perfect for my purse and daily ideas. These cost a very frugal $5.

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Now in my search I found a few new products that now I’m dying to invest in. The first is May Books. This is a GENIUS IDEA! Especially if you’re a paper good fein like myself. You can pick the design of your notebooks, agenda or even notecards. If you’re designing a notebook, you can choose what type of pages you want inside, whether dots, lines, graphs, or blank pages or an agenda and if you choose an agenda you can pick from two different options. You can even choose to have the inside as a meal planner, a calorie + exercise journal, wedding diary or a baby bump diary for expecting moms and a baby girl or baby boy diary to keep track of their feedings, doctor notes and more. After you design the cover and the inside pages, you can also choose if you want your name, your monogram or any other saying on the cover. It’s a smart way to label notebooks for different projects for crazy people like me. I am absolutely in love with these and the website says the outside is made of canvas, so I’m assuming they’re a bit durable. I’ll let you all know once I get my hands on one. Aside from notebooks, you can also design your own notecards and pick the lining inside the envelopes too! The prices are affordable starting at around $12 and ranging to $30 for the personalized notecards. Now, isn’t that the cutest idea you’ve ever heard of?

Here are some of their designs I’m coveting and plan to order soon….

This is one of the book covers.

This is one of the book covers. photo from may books

These notecards seem like something essential to add to my blog as Thank Yous to brands and interviewees.

These notecards seem like something essential to add to my blog as Thank Yous to brands and interviewees. photo from may books

You can even customize what they say on the back side where your note would go on.

You can even customize what they say on the back side where your note would go on. photo from may books

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photo from mom Agenda

My other recent discovery was the momAgenda. Which is basically an agenda for moms, with spaces to schedule what each of your kids has going on that week, plus a space for your own needs. It includes pages to plan vacations, packing lists, and other things you might need to jot down. For those of you thinking, “Well, I’m not a mom.” I thought the same thing and the company has something for us too. If you choose the myAgenda tab on the mom Agenda site, you’ll get one with the same extra spaces for those juggling multiple projects or even gym time or meals. You can personalize these with your name on the cover as well. The only thing I didn’t like is that it’s a 17-month calendar year, and personally, I don’t like bringing in the previous year when planning for a new one. That’s my own personal, ridiculous pet peeve.

They have extra spaces to schedule your other activities or all of your kids...depending if you choose a momAgenda or a myAgenda.

They have extra spaces to schedule your other activities or all of your kids…depending if you choose a momAgenda or a myAgenda. photo from momAgenda

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photo from momAgenda

photo from gallery leather

photo from gallery leather

This other brand was the agenda I had for 2012 but this year they added a metallic line, which of course I think has my name all over it. I purchased my 2012 one at Barnes and Noble, though they don’t carry all the colors. You can also include your name on the larger journals and agendas and your initials on the small one. I’m also thinking of this as a cute and trendy journal, because aside from all the work writing I do, I still journal for myself. It keeps me sane and allows me to figure things out and see how far along I come in a year when I look back at old entries. I guess there’s a trend here, I want to personalize everything!

I blame my all girls, private school upbringing for my obsession with agendas and stationary. Every year on the first day of school the school gave us an agenda to plan our loads of homework and assignments. Of course, we probably spent more time decorating the days on our agenda than actually studying, but at least something stuck around into my adult life.

These beauties I found at Home Goods.

These beauties I found at Home Goods.

How do you organize yourself? Are you a freelancer, reporter or blogger – how do you stay organized? What are your favorite secret places to go for cute stationary? How do you use your agenda to better fit your life – work, kids, time with friends or significant other, meals and gym time? Share your tips to help us all get ready to tackle 2013!

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