Plan With Me for April!

It’s almost April!  I can’t believe how quickly the last couple of months have flown by.  This is a big month for me because I’m due with my first baby!  I think the reason it takes 9 months to make a baby is that it takes 9 months to prepare for a baby, lol!

Because everything is about to get a lot busier, I need to simplify my life, my bullet journal, and my planning routine.  For me, setting up for April was all about simplification, calmness, and ease of use.  I really focused on getting rid of visual clutter because it was starting to become too cumbersome.

Check out the video below for an overview of my setup for April, a review of March, and an interesting look at how my habit tracker has evolved over the last three months.

Thank you for hanging out with me and I’ll see you next time!!

The supplies I used in the video above are the following:*
My BuJo: Leuchtturm Medium Hardcover Dots
Pens: Pilot Hi-Tec-C Maica

Happy Journaling!

*These are affiliate links.  If you purchase any of these items through the link, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.  I will only link to items that I have purchased, used, and would be willing to purchase again.  Thank you for your support!

 

Simplifying my BuJo routine

As I enter my last month of pregnancy, I’m finding that I am even more exhausted that I thought possible.  And it’s a double edged sword because I’m also the busiest I have been since this journey started!  I feel a sense of urgency to finish the baby’s room, get our hospital bags packed, finish shopping, doing laundry, cleaning, etc.  And, with the pregnant belly, every task takes more energy than it should.

All of this preparation while being so exhausted has really pushed my drive for simplification.  So how do I simplify without losing accountability, intention, and purposefulness?  One easy way is in simplifying by bullet journal.

I don’t want to lose any of the mindfulness and reminders that my bullet journal provides on a daily basis because those are the things that keep me grounded.  So there isn’t any content that I want to eliminate, but I can make using the journal easier.

There are a few small changes I’ll be making for April with my setup and dailies to make things easier and faster.  I’ll do an April Setup post and video and show you more about that later.  But for now, one of the biggest changes is with my radar chart for wellness tracking.

I’m not getting rid of it!  I love it too much!  I also find it very useful to see how events influence my overall wellbeing and it helps me to adjust my vision, outlook, and attitude.  But, I can make it easier to use.  Rather than doing a radar chart, or spider graph, which requires a stamp, stamping ink, ruler, etc. I’m incorporating wellness tracking into my daily header.  There were too many days where I was ready to update my tracker but I wasn’t at home with all of my supplies and it was frustrating.  I’ve decided that if anything gets frustrating, it isn’t worth it!  So I’m changing it!

I’ve taken a lot of inspiration from bullet journalists on Instagram such as @bujo.auslife and @logthatlife for their beautiful minimalism and @trekkiechickplans for how she implemented the wellness tracker without using the spider chart.  This is the idea page that I used to test out different ways of graphing my happiness, calmness, fulfillment, physical health, and energy directly into my daily header.

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This provides all of the data and information that I need, a splash of color, and it’s a more calm, serene, faster, and easier way to start my dailies.  Plus, I love looking at it.  It’s not as busy and gives me a sense of peacefulness to see it all day.

I’m testing it out over the last few days of March, I’ll let you know how it goes!  Also, stay tuned for my April Plan With Me video to see the other changes that I’m implementing in an effort to minimize, simplify, and declutter by bullet journal.

The supplies I used in the photo above are the following:*
My BuJo: Leuchtturm Medium Hardcover Dots
Pens: Pilot Hi-Tec-C Maica

Happy Journaling!

*These are affiliate links.  If you purchase any of these items through the link, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.  I will only link to items that I have purchased, used, and would be willing to purchase again.  Thank you for your support!

Time Management With My Bullet Journal

The #PlanWithMeChallenge prompt for March 20th is Time Management.  There are a lot of great time trackers that bullet journalists use, like the one from Kara at Boho Berry, but they don’t work well for me.  I spend such a big chunk of my day at work, that it would just be depressing to look at a 24 hour timeline, lol!

My free time tends to come in multiple small chunks during the day, and I try to make the most of the time I have.  Even if it’s only 5-10 minutes.  So, what should I do if I have 10 minutes?  Or 30 minutes?

To answer that question, I made a quick ‘time is on my side’ reminder page in my bullet journal.  That way, when I have a spare few minutes I can refer to this page for ideas to keep me motivated and moving forward.

I also made a quick video explaining the page and showing how I set it up.  Please watch if you can, I tried to keep it short.  And as always, links to the products used in the photo and video are at the bottom of the post.

 

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The supplies I used in the photo above are the following:*
My BuJo: Leuchtturm Medium Hardcover Dots
Black marker pens: Sakura Pigma Micron-01
Pens for color: Pilot Hi-Tec-C Maica, Extra Fine

Happy Journaling!

*These are affiliate links.  If you purchase any of these items through the link, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.  I will only link to items that I have purchased, used, and would be willing to purchase again.  Thank you for your support!

The Obligatory Pen Test!

I have a deep love affair with pens.  I would estimate that my pen collection is in the hundreds.  There are pens from all over the world: Japan, Korea, Germany, USA, etc.  Some of them I even brought back as souvenirs from Japan, though this isn’t working out well because I want to keep them instead of use them, lol!

Needless to say, when it came time to select a notebook and pen set for my bullet journal, I was very picky.  I knew I wanted a Leuchtturm1917 for the journal, so I did a lot of online searching on how it handles different pens.  I don’t like when pens feather on the page and I especially don’t like it when they bleed through!  I can handle a little shadowing on the backside, but bleeding through is a definite ‘no-go’ for me.  I like every page to look as clean as possible and bleed-through makes it too messy.

Keep in mind, this is my personal preference and whatever pens you choose are the right pens for you!  The important part is to actually do the journaling and planning, right?  But, if you’re looking for a little more information on how different pens behave in the Leuchtturm notebook, I’ve done a quick pen test.

I’ve seen some of these pens tested on other sites and I know that my opinions are going to conflict a bit… one of the biggest differences is the Stabilo fine markers.  I see them used a lot online for bullet journaling in the Leuchtturm, but I can’t use them because they bleed through.  So, without any further ado: the obligatory pen test begins!

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I tried to use the same or similar colors for each pen type for a more fair comparison.  And I used different types of pens: fountain pens, rollerballs, felt tip, and even a highlighter.  On the writing side, I don’t see much of any feathering.  There is a tiny bit from the Pilot Metropolitan fountain pen, but you really have to search for it to find it.  All in all, the Leuchtturm handled the front side of all of these pens really well.

The backside of the page is another story though…

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Oh no!  The Pilot Metropolitan, even though it’s a fine nib, bled through the worst.  I was really disappointed about this one.

Here are close-up views of the backside of the page.  The pens are listed, with links, below…

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Sakura Pigma Micron-01 These are my favorite for the Leuchtturm.  All of the pens ghost but these have a great solid black line without any bleed through.  Love these!!!  I only wish the color selection were better.

Pilot Metropolitan Fountain Pen, Silver Barrel, Fine Nib  This one about broke my heart.  It might be better with an ink that isn’t so ‘wet’ but it bleeds right through.  I can’t stand how the opposite side of the page looks.

Staedtler Triplus Fineliner  Great for color, but there is a tiny bit of bleed through at the line-stops.  Whenever you stop drawing, it leaves a thick bead of ink and that bead will bleed through a little.  I’m learning to live with it though because for color, they perform the best for me.

Stabilo 88 Point  For adult coloring books, drawing, etc these are wonderful.  But they bleed through too much for my Leuchtturm.  The Staedtler Fineliners have enough color choices and better performance so I stick with those.

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Pilot Hi-Tec-C Maica  These gel pens are wonderful, but sometimes they clog up a little bit when you start writing.  If you don’t mind having a scribble pad to get the ink flowing, they’re fantastic, write smoothly, don’t bleed through, and dry quickly.

Zebra MILDLINER  I absolutely love the color of these!  They are my favorite highlighters, but they bleed through so I avoid them in my bullet journal.

Pilot G2  This really surprised me.  The Pilot G-2 07 makes a thick inky black line, but it didn’t bleed through for me at all!  When looking for a gel pen with a thick line, this is my go-to pen.

Paper Mate Flair  Another nice surprise!  I expected it to bleed like the Stabilo but it didn’t.  There is a tiny bit, but I can live with that.  And, they do have some neat color options.

I know this isn’t a very exciting post, but I hope you found it useful.

Happy journaling and happy planning!

 

New Bullet Journal Collection: Everyday Adventures!

Last weekend we went out to lunch and as we sat there, we brainstormed about what kind of mini-adventure we could have for the afternoon.  That’s when I realized that there were so many local things that I wanted to do, try, explore, and see but I couldn’t remember any of them when it really mattered!

I decided right then and there that I needed an Everyday Adventures collection in my bullet journal.  Now, whenever I see an article in the paper, or something mentioned on the news, etc. I can write it down.

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In the spread, I created a column to shade in when we had done the adventure, what page in the journal it’s recorded on, about how much it would cost, how long it would take, and a brief description.  Now, when we are out and about looking for something to do, I can refer to this page for ideas.  I’m adding in everything from restaurants that I want to try, museums I want to go to, gardens to visit, and everything in between.

For the costing I tried to estimate the whole adventure: entrance fees, food and snacks, gas if it’s far away, souvenirs,  etc.  Right now, it’s just my husband and myself, but pretty soon I’ll be adding in baby friendly adventures too!

I also think this page is a great example of accepting my mistakes.  There are 4 big mistakes on this spread that really bug me… but I’m going to leave them alone!  I am working on getting more comfortable with things not being perfect.  But it’s tough.  Real tough!  Can you spot them?

The supplies I used in the photo above are the following:*
My BuJo: Leuchtturm Medium Hardcover Dots Lemon
Pens for color: Staedtler Triplus Fineliner
Black pen for decorations: Sakura Micron-01
Writing pen: Pilot Hi-Tec-C Maica Gel Ink Pen Black, 0.4 mm

Happy Journaling!

 

*These are affiliate links.  If you purchase any of these items through the link, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.  I will only link to items that I have purchased, used, and would be willing to purchase again.  Thank you for your support!

 

 

Plan With Me: March Dashboard Setup

Hello March!  I am very excited about March for a number of reasons: it’s a new month in my bullet journal where I get to try out a bunch of new ideas, it’s my birthday month, it’s one month closer to the long beautiful warm days of summer, spring is about to start in full swing, and it’s one month closer to meeting my baby!  There is so much to look forward to 🙂

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After all of the trial and error and learning about bullet journaling in February, I have set up my March ‘dashboard’ to start the month off right.  Well, right for me anyway!  But that’s the great thing about bullet journaling, you can pick and choose, combine, eliminate, and make it your own.

The biggest improvement in my journal was beginning the month with a dashboard.  I have multiple pages that I’ll be using all month long: Monthly Spread, March Memories, Habit Tracker, Baby Weight, Wellness, Smile Log, Brain Dump, Next Month (I want to change), and the Plan With Me Challenge.  I put all of these pages at the beginning of the month and folded wash tape over the edge for easy locating.

If you have the opportunity, please check out the March Setup video that I made.

In case you can’t watch the video, here are some photos of the various pages along with a short explanation.

The biggest change is the dashboard itself.  As I added pages in February, I found myself spending too much time searching for them.  This month, I wanted them all in one place in the journal and each page has washi tape folded over the edge so that I can easily flip to them.  After the dashboard I’ll start my daily pages, new collections, and random pages here and there until April comes.

Monthly Spread: Kept it the same as February.  I have a column for all day, appointments or events, and weekly tasks.  I also kept the monthly tasks and weekly tracker sections.

March Memories: This is my first time doing a monthly memories page and I’m really looking forward to it!  As it gets filled in, I’ll share an update.

Habit Tracker: One of my absolute favorite bullet journal pages!  Thank you Kara (Boho Berry)!  I updated the daily tasks but kept the basics of it the same.  Last month, I had too many numbers, so this time it’s only going to be color fills.

Baby Weight: Kept it the same as last month because it worked really well for tracking my pregnancy weight gain.

Wellness: This is a big change from last month.  I’m going to graph my radar chart wellness scores here as a bar graph.  I’m excited to see how it fills up!

Smile Log: Basic gratitude log.

Brain Dump: For random thoughts, tasks without a deadline, etc.

Next Month (I want to change): I loved this page last month so I kept it.  As I find things that I want to change in my bullet journal, I jot them down here.  That way, when setting up for April, I have a quick reference of all the ideas and changes that I want to implement.

Plan With Me Challenge: This is my first month doing the #PlanWithMeChallenge and I’m really excited to join in.  I’ve had a blast seeing everyone’s submissions!  Please check out the hosts! Tiny Ray of Sunshine, Pretty Prints and Paper, and Boho Berry.

The supplies I used in the video and photos above are the following:*
My BuJo: Leuchtturm Medium Hardcover Dots Lemon
Pens for color: Staedtler Triplus Fineliner
Writing pen: Sakura Micron-01

Happy Journaling!

 

*These are affiliate links.  If you purchase any of these items through the link, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.  I will only link to items that I have purchased, used, and would be willing to purchase again.  Thank you for your support!