⏲ Read time: 5-7 minutes
If there’s one thing to know about me, it’s that I’m a creature of habit and I love structure and routines. I live, breathe and die by my agenda and it’s something I reference multiple times a day. It’s something I take an immense pride in and dedicate a lot of time to.
For the first time in three years, I’ve opted to buy something other than a Lilly Pulitzer agenda. It’s not because I’ve grown sick of Lilly, because a splash of color is always needed in our lives, but it’s more so because I wanted to try something different. Lilly agendas/planners will always be a favorite and something I’ll always go back to, but sometimes it doesn’t hurt to try something new.
I’m an avid lover of Kate Spade and the aesthetics are very clean and simplistic, which is definitely my style. This year, I picked up the Dahlia 17-month medium agenda. I notice that the price was relatively the same as Lilly, though the medium agendas are noticeably smaller in size, which has been a slight adjustment to get used to.
I always keep my planner on my desk at work, so picking up something cute has always resulted in a conversation starter for me. Plus, who doesn’t love cute office supplies?!
The biggest thing I love about the Kate Spade agendas is the abundance of note pages inside. At first, I thought that it was unnecessary because I seldom use note pages to write things down, but I’ve grown to love the idea of them because it’s a loose way to practice budget journaling without the full commitment of buying a blank journal and starting things from scratch.
Once you open the agenda, there’s a double-sided front pocket that’s perfect for keeping a small notebook. I picked up a pack of three at Marshall’s forever ago and I’ve used them as brainstorming tools as well as a password holder.
Each week, I schedule at least two brainstorm sessions for myself: one for future posts and the other to budget what I need/want to do for each post. I keep all my ideas in this notebook, right within reach whenever creativity strikes.
The agenda also comes with a sheet of reusable stickers that can be used throughout and I keep those in the opposite side pocket, along with any other important cards/documents needed.
This year, I’ve created another tracker to help with my fitness resolution, but unlike the Lilly tracker, this one is the very first thing I’ve sectioned off using a small binder clip. The goal is to lose 30-40 pounds this year, with an emphasis of 3-5 pounds per month.
Each month, I will weigh myself on the first day of the month as well as the last day of the month to see how many pounds I’ve lost while also keeping a running tally of my year total. I will create a new workout split each month, which will be created on a separate calendar that will be folded and placed in the monthly blotter.
Each month has two facing note pages and I’ve decided to take my own crack at budget journaling with these. I love the idea of budget journaling, however, I don’t have the time to fully commit to an entire journal and create my own layout each month.
On the left side, I’ve created a ‘Year in Review’ section to highlight all of the things that I did in the year, breaking it down by each month. This will change each month, playing off a theme of a holiday or something pertaining to that month.
For example, in November I created a section called ‘What I’m Grateful For’ to play off of Thanksgiving and in February, I’m considering of making a ‘What I Love’ section for Valentine’s Day. I’m also considering of creating a ‘Mood Tracker’, again playing off the budget journal concept.
On the right side, I will list my goals for the upcoming month, which will be found on the corresponding Goal Digger/Getter blog post. Instead of just writing them down on the website, I will keep myself more accountable by being able to see the goals daily. I’ve also listed my Resolutions for the month here and I’m undecided if I want to create its own specific section each month, tuning up and adjusting them as we go through the year.
When you flip the page, there’s a cute quote/title page for each month, followed by the monthly blotter. Here is where I’ll list any important appointments or dates I need to see at a quick glance.
On the left hand side, there’s a Notes section that I’ve made into a To-Do List. I’ll list any important things that need to be done by the month’s end, like ordering something specific like contacts or scheduling a hair appointment.
I’ve also indicated paydays with a green dollar sign and any scheduled days off from work. Last year, I started tracking my period by using a small red dot, just to track patterns so I can consult with my doctor if I have any issues at my annual appointment.
Past the monthly blotter is a weekly split, which is broken down by daily sections. This is the most important thing I look for when buying planners because I like to have plenty of room to jot down the daily things I need to do.
I write down my work schedule each day, which is a standard Monday-Friday, 8:30-4:30, in pen.
I will highlight any important dates or birthdays I need to know, as well as if I’m out of town for trips to make it a bit more colorful. For anything that isn’t concrete, like dinner plans or things I need to do like pick up a prescription, I write in pencil.
I’ve recently adopted the idea of keeping my daily agenda as a blog planner as well. Each day, I dedicate time to work on this site so I’m constantly creating content and so I’m not running ramped, I’ve started brainstorming ideas weekly and plotting when to post what. I write loose points in pencil and highlight days that I’m posting content, as a reminder to promote it on my social media pages.
Each week, I’m picking a motivational quote that can be used in relatively every aspect of my life and sticking it at the bottom of the page.
How do you organize your planners? Are you interested in seeing a monthly update or my monthly workout splits? Let me know in a comment!