How To: Plan with Paper and Technology!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Happy Wednesday, blogger friends!

I am a die-hard paper fanatic. Putting pen to paper is tried and true, a dependable way to plan your day and make sure you aren't losing anything, forgetting anything, and it can be really therapeutic to just sit down and write or draw it all out.

But, we live in a digital age. There are SO MANY digital planning websites, apps, and resources, and it makes paper planners sometimes seem obsolete or at the very least, archaic.

So, what do you do if you are a super busy person with a lot of moving parts in your life, deadlines, and things to do, but you love the feeling of putting pen to paper and getting all of the messy stuff sorted out? My solution is to use both a paper planner and a technological planner.

These are some of my tips for keeping two calendars - one in the cloud, one on the ground - to keep your life organized and ensure maximum productivity!

Step One: Put it in the Cloud
I use my digital calendar for three primary purposes: forward planning, on the go planning, and regular/repeated plans.

If I get a due date or an appointment that is more than a month in the future, I put it in my iCal and put a reminder on to make sure I remember it. That way, when I go to plan out my month, I can pop into my calendar and know what's happening at a glance.

Although I carry my planner everywhere I go, there are times and places where pulling out my Erin Condren planner just is not an option. If I'm with friends, at a stoplight, or out and about and need to reference a date or put something in my planner, I put it in my iCal and sync it all up!

For those things that happen regularly and you don't want to write them down week after week, setting up repeated events on your calendar is a really simple and easy way to make note of things that happen regularly. I use this mostly for class, work, and my internship.

Step Two: Write it All Down
I love using my paper planner for two, yet seemingly incongruent reasons: To sort out the messy stuff, and to make it all pretty.

I have a Leuchtturm1917 notebook that I carry around with me that I can use to just get everything down on paper. This means to-do lists, blog post ideas, random thoughts and lists, meeting notes, etc. This is where I do the messy stuff, the daily lists, the daily plans. If I am just struggling with putting everything I need to do together, I figure it out in this book.

I also have an Erin Condren Life Planner. This makes my crazy messy notebook nice and neat. I use stickers, washi, and other embellishments to make it beautiful (this particular Paris-themed set is from PopFizzPaper on Etsy!). In some ways, this is a creative release, as I get to use so many fun materials to make an otherwise boring planner something pretty! I don't always have the time, energy, or patience to make my planner pretty, but it is something I enjoy. If pretty planning isn't your thing... don't stress, it certainly isn't the only way to use a paper planner. I would recommend choosing a paper planner you find visually appealing, but also keeps function in the forefront of your use.

Step Three: Sync
At a minimum, you should sync your paper calendar and your digital calendar once a week. I tend to sync my calendars daily, or at least every other day as part of my evening routine. Make sure you put the time for events or due dates in both places, just in case you can't access your paper calendar on the go, or if you don't want to use your technology. It only takes about 15 minutes, and it's a great way to see what is coming up the next day, or even over the next week.

How do you plan best? Do you use a tech solution for planning, or are you old-school paper and pen (or pencil!)?

Have a great week!

The Space + 4 Thoughts on Senior Year

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Happy Wednesday!

It has been a week since I started my last year of college.

Let me just take a moment. My last year of college. WHAT?! I am absolutely shocked that I am already a senior in college, and that I turned 22 last Wednesday. I feel like everything is happening so fast! I literally only have one year of college left. Where did the time go? I've been trying to make sense of the crazy start to this crazy year, and I have been having so many thoughts and feelings that it's hard to put into words. But here, I've tried to identify four thoughts that have summed up my general thoughts and feelings about my senior year. Be forewarned, these things are all over the place.

Like my brain.

1. Things have come full circle. 
My dad dropped me off on my first day of class. Just like kindergarten. I'm using a backpack (which I DETEST - I feel like a turtle), because I may graduate without a clue of what I want to do in my life, but I refuse to graduate with a bad back at 22. I actually really love school again. I'm getting to study what I want to study, and I have formed relationships with professors and peers that have made the process of learning so much fun, just like it was in elementary school.

2. *internal screaming*
I don't have a plan. I have an idea of an inkling of a perhaps-I-shall-plan, but no actual plan (coming from the girl with a billion and a half planners). And it kind of makes me want to scream.

Also, I'm writing a thesis. And I'm terrified. Words of encouragement? Anyone?

It has been a year since I studied abroad in France. A whole entire year.

France is calling my name SO BAD. I have literally thought about Caen every day. Every single day. I just have to go back... I have to find my way back. There are some things in the works, and I'm being intentionally vague because I will be so sad if none of it works out. Positive vibes appreciated.

4. The Space.
There's a quote that has been speaking to me for a few weeks now, and I've been meditating on it and thinking about it.

I definitely feel like I'm in that space. I'm no longer a child, a kid, naive and insecure. And I'm not yet an adult, a professional, confident and wise. I'm somewhere in between. I'm riding the space between, and I am doing my best to honor it, because I know that this time and these feelings I have - however complicated and irrational - will never happen again.

This year, I want to live in, breathe, enjoy, and honor this amazing, beautiful, terrifying space.

So, basically, this year is going to be one crazy, awesome, infuriating, emotional hell of a ride! Who else is feeling this way? You are not alone!

Weekend Reading: Stationery

Friday, September 18, 2015

Happy Friday and (almost) weekend!!

I always love seeing what other people read, and what kinds of articles my friends and fellow bloggers find on the internet. Lately I have found a lot of articles about planning and stationery, and I've rounded up some of my favorites for your reading pleasure! Enjoy!

Going along with my post about the importance of ALWAYS having good stationery, a blog post about why you should handwrite notes in our digital age.

It's no secret I love my planner, and if you're super organized, the pretty planning trend is something you should definitely look into. 

Why do we love stationery? BECAUSE IT'S AMAZING. Okay, so that's not the only reason, but it is one of the most important. #neverenoughpens #stationerylove #stationeryaddict

There is just something about looking at endless instagram feeds of beautiful notebooks, and this article dives into the reasoning why.

If you think watching cat videos on YouTube is addicting, then maybe you should try watching videos of people planning.

Have a great weekend! Happy reading. :)

BIRTHDAY! 22 Before 23

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Today is my birthday, and you guessed it, I'm now 22 years old! 21 was an amazing year, full of so many adventures and lessons, light, positivity, and confidence. Maya Angelou said, "there are years that ask questions, and years that answer." For me, 20 was a year of questions... what I wanted to do, who I wanted to be, where I wanted to go, where I see myself in 1 year, 5 years, and 10 years, who I wanted to surround myself with, etc. 21 answered a lot of those questions. A lot has happened this year, and I want to celebrate!

While I want to celebrate the awesome year that was 21, I also want to do what I do best: Plan. 22 is going to be an awesome year, with my last year of college, my job, and figuring out what to do with my next steps. I thought I would make a list, because I LOVE these lists, of 22 things I want to do before I turn 23.

I have 365 days to do all the things on this list!

1. Improve my calligraphy and hand-lettering skill.
2. Learn how to use an oblique calligraphy pen.
3. Finally finish my Study Abroad Journal!
4. Move to France.
5. Take a photography class.
6. Simplify my life... practice minimalism.
7. Do my thesis research in France.
8. Take a post-graduation trip with my best friend.
9. Start a YouTube channel.
10. Graduate from DU with Distinction in History.
11. Learn how to bake macarons.
12. Start sharing some of my creative writing.
13. Be more vocal about social issues I am passionate about.
14. Take my health more seriously, make exercise a priority.
15. Go to Japan with my dad in March.
16. Go somewhere in Colorado that I've never been before.
17. Re-read the entire Harry Potter series.
18. Start a creative stationery and paper goods business.
19. Make a difference in someone else's life.
20. Hug an elephant. [I LOVE Elephants]
21. See the ocean!
22. Learn how to love myself.

This is certainly a hefty list... but these are all things I have been wanting to do and there is no time like the present!

How do you celebrate your birthday?

Moustache Stationery Box: Unboxing and Review!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Happy Tuesday, happy paper people! I had a different post planned out for today, but I got my first ever Moustache Stationery box in the mail last week, and I just had to do a blog post about it because it made me so happy!

There are seriously TONS of scrapbooking, planner, and stationery monthly subscription boxes that you can sign up for. Most of the ones I had found were super cutesy and girly, and while they are beautiful, they just aren't right for me. Then, I watched a YouTube video by My Life Mits (who is awesome - check out her instagram account @mylifemits) about this stationery subscription box called Moustache Stationery, and I knew I had to give it a go.

Moustache Stationery is relatively young in the stationery subscription box world, but I'm such a fan of the company already. For $39.95 each month, you get a box of high-quality, unique, and all around awesome stationery items. In the past, they have included brands such as Caran D'Ache, Leuchtterm 1917, and Tombow.

My first box was the August box, and the theme is Made in America! I think this has something to do with the fact that they just opened a fulfillment center in the USA, so everything in this box was - you guessed it - Made in America.

This is the view of the box when you first open it... I love the card!

The main thing in this box that I love is the Fisher Space Pen. They are so fun, as they write from any angle, underwater, etc. This particular pen is really cool because it has the Moustache Stationery moustache on it! I have been using this pen all week, and I love it. Plus it's compact enough that I can carry it in my planner, and it's perfect for using while traveling because of the pressurized ink cartridge, which won't have issues on flights or changes in altitude (#coloradoproud). Along with the pen, they included a fine tipped ballpoint refill so you can use this pen for a very long time.

How adorable are these little notepads? One has the Moustache Stationery branding on it, and the other has the classic Write Notepads & Co. branding. Plus, each notebook you buy provides a notebook to a child in a Baltimore school. I think these notepads are wonderful, and perfect for making lists. There are so many pages, and the paper is really high quality, and I definitely think I will order more from this company in the future!

Finally, these recipe cards and postcards came from Impression Paperie, a little letterpressed stationery boutique based out of Louisiana. I love the "Don't Type Write" postcards! You get three of each the kraft paper postcards and recipe cards. I can't wait to send some postcards!

Overall, I was a huge fan of this box. I liked that the products included came from more recognizable brands, like Fisher Space Pen, as well as smaller companies, like the Impression Paperie cards. I feel like the $39.95price was a bit expensive for the box, but I am overall pleased with the box and its contents. With other stationery subscriptions I've ordered in the past, I feel like I always use maybe 1/3 of the contents of the box, whereas I have used almost everything in this box, or have plans to use it (some awesome postcards will be sent to my friends in the future!). The only thing I am not sure about yet are the recipe cards, as I don't really cook, but they may make a cute gift to my cousin who loves to bake. Overall, I am so pleased with this box, and I will certainly continue my subscription to Moustache Stationery in the future!

For more information about the box and the products included, check out the description here!

Do you have any favorite subscription boxes? 

Summer Favorites | September To-Do!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

This summer was pretty low-key in terms of action and events and things that I did... but much busier than summers past because of all the new experiences I had! Last summer, I spent most of my time preparing for France, plus balancing two internships. I went to Los Angeles to get my visa, made lists on lists of things to see in Europe, and blogged regularly (again... sorry about my falling off the grid for too long).

As September starts, and I start preparing to go back to school (which needs to happen because my brain is rotting!) I want to soak up the last remaining rays of summer before it is officially over. So, my favorites of the summer so far, and my fun to-do list for September!

One // Working at a museum! (and actually getting paid...)

Two // Getting to know some pretty awesome people at my library internship.

Three // Washington DC!

Four // Reading great books and reading for fun!

Five // Ed Sheeran at Red Rocks with my best friend!

Six // Finding the planner community.

Seven // Returning to creativity.

One // Have an awesome birthday! I'm turning 22... and I don't know what to do!

Two // Have a picnic in a park before it's too cold and the grass dies.

Three // Take a little trip to Boulder to go to an adorable stationery/paper goods store called Two Hands Paperie.

Four // Move! My parents are moving from our apartment to an urban loft on the other side of the city, and I'm excited for the change!

Five // Read two more books for fun. I'm thinking The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry and A Moveable Feast.

Six // Enjoy my last first day of school. 

Seven // Make something new for my room. 

What did you do this summer? How do you celebrate your birthday?

4 Reasons to ALWAYS Have Stationery

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

I am such a huge stationery and papergoods nerd, so I definitely always keep a wide variety of notecards and stationery on hand because I thoroughly enjoy writing cards and thank you notes. However, I have also found that having stationery on hand is SO helpful and important in my daily life, as situations always arise where I find having some good stationery definitely makes an impression, especially in our digital day and age. Here are four reasons why I think you should always have good, quality stationery in your arsenal!

1. Thank You Notes
Did you ask a professor or a boss to serve as a recommendation for an application? Write them a thank you note! Thank you notes go SUCH a long way and make a great impression, plus it shows that you recognize that the person who you are writing a thank you note to helped you in some way, and you are genuinely thankful for that help. My personal mantra for thank you notes is write them early, and write them often!

2. Friendship Notes
There is nothing I love more than just giving my good friends a card to say, "I'm thinking about you" or "I love that we are friends because you rock!" Writing a quick, heartfelt note to a friend (or even someone you barely know!) is an easy way to give them a mood boost.

3. Condolence Notes
When someone dies, it can be really hard to know what to say. When my grandmother died, my best friend sent me a note with his condolences, and it was so heartfelt and made me feel so thankful. Just sending someone a little card saying, "I know you're having a hard time, and I'm thinking about you" can really go such a long way to someone grieving.

4. Birthday Notes
Facebook has officially ruined birthdays! I love nothing more than just to write a nice, beautiful card for my close friends' birthdays, because it is so much more thoughtful and nice than a quick "happy bday" on a facebook wall.

My Picks:

My favorite place to buy stationery is Paper Source. They have such a great selection, and their cards are always such fantastic quality and so cute! I am almost out of the little elephant cards, and I'm going to be so sad when they're gone!

I have also really been loving these cute little cards from the Target Dollar Spot. The envelopes are not great, and they aren't as high quality as the cards from Paper Source, but they are only ONE DOLLAR, and they are adorable! Perfect for the spontaneous note.

How do you use stationery? Where are your favorites from?