(The Simplified Planner Review – by Emily Ley – is to help you make an educated decision on whether it fits your lifestyle. I was not asked to do this, nor was I given this for free. Enjoy!)
I’ve been waiting on reviewing this because I wanted to make sure I’d still be using my Simplified Planner since it’s not an inexpensive purchase (the 2014 was $56 plus shipping). I want to make sure what I share with you guys is something that’s worth your hard earned cash. Well, for me, it has been. I bought the planner last fall and had to wait until January to use it. They run the traditional calendar year, not academic, although it might change in the future. This review is just on the 2014 and I know that based on her blog, the 2015 had some minor edits. I also asked on my Facebook page for any questions and I’ll be answering those below too.
As you can tell, mine’s been through some wear and tear. The overall book is holding up well but some tabs are separating a bit since I use this a lot and carry it with me. I have the Rebecca Minkoff Mab Mini and this will fit in there. Primarily, though, I carry it to/from work in my laptop bag and it’s home the rest of the time, as I am. The overall size measures 9 inch wide (this is including the coil), 10 inches tall and just shy of 1.5 inches in height. Mine weighs 2lbs 5oz. I don’t have that many things stored in side, so that’s probably an accurate weight. The new 2015 Simplified Planner has 3 covers to choose from while this 2014 just had the happy stripes. Emily is a graphic design & paper lover by trade and I love the little details. Like the lines match up with the inside tabs, in order.
The inside pocket (which will remain in 2015) holds my checkbook, register, stamps and stickers. I use those for my blog posts I’m planning out. I love that they’re easy to lift and move around. They don’t affect the paper it’s stuck to. Emily is having some new flags for her planner. Might have to swoop some of those up!
Here’s the monthly view. Now if you’re looking at this, the right light blue tab is labeled May. In the 2015 one, when you hold and open the May tab, the spread will be on that next set of pages, instead of turning back one like it is now. I’m VERY excited for that. So how do I use the monthly spread for our lives? I use it for my editorial content for my blog. I use 2 colors each month (my type A has allowed me to use any 2 each month. Before I would use THE SAME two colors and that got to be a bit obsessive for me.). I always try to have 1 personal and 1 sponsored post a week. If things start getting busy, I work hard to add up another personal to balance things out. I’ve also started keeping track of mileage for my taxes as well as income earned from sponsored posts on the left sidebar titled Important Dates. I also keep note of bdays as well as trips Jon and I will be out of town for. It’s a basic overview of our lives. Each of these squares measure 1.5 inches.
Monday-Friday are each on their own page like this. The left column has the time slots for planning your day. The right column has To Do, Notes, and Dinner blocks. I don’t run into use of the time slots often since I don’t really plan out my day job information in here. But I do write in doctor appointments, Jon’s details if he has something going on, or plans when I’m off work for the day. Dinner. After I work through my menu on Sundays, I write out what we’re having (typically the main dish & sides). And, as Emily says, make this yours and make this messy. I can’t tell you often I’m scratching things out, moving stuff around. I used to like my planner to be all clean, and pretty. But life isn’t like that. I also stopped tracking the blog post titles on the daily pages when they’d be published. Such a waste of energy. I use the Notes section to track the bills that are due, and mark off when I pay them. I can’t tell you how much this has kept me on track. On the inside cover I have a large post it note with all our bills and all their due dates. I fill in 3 months at a time so I know what needs to be paid when.
Details: The lines for the hourly scheduling are 2.5 inches wide. The box measures 3.25″ x 7.75″. The To Do list has 12 bullet points and the lines are 2.25″ wide. Notes box is 2.75″ x 2″ and Dinner is 2.75″ x 1.75″.
Saturday & Sunday are shared one one page. The Saturday always has the same Notes section (where I list our dinners). Sunday does not. It has a Weekly Prep: Plan Meals, Tidy up, Write tasks, and Fill your Tank. One added element for the weekends is a small box to list what a happy memory is from the week. Here, we had just attended a birthday party for our friend’s son, who loves Daniel Tiger (as does Aubrey). His grandma made him a special Daniel Tiger birthday cake, just like the one in the first episode of the show. The kids even decorated it! She was stunned that it was exactly like the show! That was my happy memory for the week.
Oh look, another day in which I move up our dinner. Actually, I wrote it in the wrong spot and forgot to put it up on Saturday.
Months are the only things that have tabs. There is not a space for phone numbers or anything extra. This is strictly a planner. I’ve been tired of folks moving (us included) so now I only use a Google Drive doc to store all our addresses. I love love love this planner. After using it for 6 months, I know without a doubt it is worth the investment. I actually also purchased her Simplified Journal, a spin off of this,
Anyways, I know there is enough spots for me to write things out daily. I like that it’s simple. Each page is just white with black print. No crazy fonts, and no crazy colors. I bring in the colors by using the Sharpie Pens that do not bleed through to the next side. Running a small business, blog, family, and a new business venture can get extremely chaotic pretty quickly.
The Simplified Journal – Kelly Greenfrom: Emily Ley Paper, Inc.
Would Love to Know….