How I Bullet Journal

I start this post on a dreary Wednesday morning after a long, impromptu hiatus. What better time to journal than when the the weather is this yucky? Now, that’s what! Granted, I had started this post a little while back, but as Life so often does, it got in the way. I hope this past weekend treated everyone well and that you’re ready to read my little tidbit of info in the Bullet Journal corner of the Intertubes!

How It All Started

I began using the Bullet Journal system back in August of 2016 after using spending the summer using The Happy Planner (HP) by Me and My Big Ideas (MAMBI). I love MAMBIs discbound planner system. The discs make it super easy to remove pages and decorate, write, plan, etc., and add the page back into the planner. The problem I ran into was that there wasn’t enough space in both the vertical layouts (Classic and later Big) and the horizontal layout of the Mini when it came it out (which is so adorable and handy, y’all!). Pinterest came to my rescue! (Seriously, what would us Crafters do without Pinterest?)

When I had been looking into the HP, I vaguely recalled having seen some info on this other system called the Bullet Journal. But, as I’m sure many others before have done, I got hung up on the word “journal” and passed it by because “planner” hadn’t been in the title. After some research, I regret not having taken the time in the first place to look into it when I began my Path to Planning Peace.

The Bullet Journal (Bujo) system is simplistic in its idea. Ryder Carroll, the creator of the system, designed it to be whatever you needed and to be forgiving if you didn’t get to something, such as a task for example, that day. The even better part? You don’t need to go out and buy a fancy, pre-printed planner; You can simply use any notebook of your choice and any pen (or pencil!) of your choice.

Yes, you read it correctly. Any notebook. Any pen. Boom. You already got the supplies you need to use the system. Now, the more gung-ho users of the system will get really fancy with brush pens, draw, add stickers (or use stamps), and use washi (crafting) tape. Don’t let those things deter you from using the system because you don’t need them if you just need a single place to keep track of all the things you need to keep track of. Some people don’t need the extras to be productive, some people need to use the extras to do the same thing. As the saying goes, “You do you.”

The Notebook Cover

After looking through the available discbound systems, I decided on the TUL system. At first, I bought the fancy Junior size leather cover, but more recently as evidenced by my Instagram post, I went with the Letter sized, clear polyproplene cover.

20170418_100906

I chose this cover with the idea in mind that I could take any 12″ x 12″ cardstock scrapbook paper that suited my mood or season. The cardstock used in the above photo will probably be my “go-to” cover. It’s not overstated, but just bold enough for my tastes to be eye catching. Compared to the regular HP covers, the polyproplene over that TUL makes is a little more physically flexible than MAMBIs so if that’s one of your concerns, I’d go with the leather option (although they’re rather limited in terms of color, IMO, as well as being a limited edition). In terms of flexibility and creativity, I think I’ll stick with the clear poly cover for the time being.

Inside the Notebook

No, not The Notebook, just my notebook ;). If you’ve skimmed through this post, then I’m sure you’ll notice that instead of an Index from the traditional Bujo, I have everything organized by tabs. While the Index of a traditional Bujo is a great idea, for me, organizing my content with tabs makes things speedier.

The Future Log, aka Year-At-A-Glance

My monthly section actually isn’t organized within a tab as you can see. Because it’s the first thing you turn to after the Index in a traditional Bujo, it’s the same within my notebook as well.

20170418_101002

I use TULs dated monthly and weekly calendar, but you might notice that it looks a little odd. That would be due to the fact that I foolishly didn’t pay attention to what I was buying when I purchased it and I ended up with a 2018 calendar instead of a 2017 one and that’s okay! I broke out my month/days/dates stamp collection by Recollections and simply stamped over the dates. Above, I created what I needed for the month of May and put washi/crafting tape over the “wrong” month and holidays.

Dailies/Weeklies, aka Tasks

20170418_101024

I’m a planner that uses Daily and Weekly spreads. It’s essentially a necessity for me since I work in retail and retail can often have an ever changing schedule. So my dailies include when I work, any appointments, and any tasks I need to try and complete.

20170420_112211

Until recently, I was using a spread that incorporated sidebars where I could include the week in a mini-calendar, weekly to-dos, trackers, and anything that came up to plan for the next week. However, with a larger sized notebook, utilizing the same spread was certainly doable, I quickly came to realize that incorporating the same weekly/daily spread was not going to work. A lot of space was going to be wasted due to the fact that I was a daily planner so I thought back to the times I used the Classic HP and decided to try a vertical-like layout.

So far, I can see some advantages. I still have plenty of space to add more tasks as they come up on a given day and still have room for notes or even to meal plan. And, as you can see, I’ve livened up the spread even more by adding a piece of snail mail I recieved on the 19th – a memory to look back on in the future! ^_^

Trackers

There are lots of things I keep track of every month. I have the common habit tracker, but I’ll be using the tracking tab for other things. Please forgive my typo if you spot it. It just goes to show that you shouldn’t plan at two o’clock in the morning!

20170418_101507

Included in the things I’ll be tracking is a list I need to keep track of for a hobby of mine, sleep, and for May specifically, every day I don’t spend money on materialistic items that I really don’t need, but certainly want (ie, a No Spend log).

Collections

The next tab is where my Collections go.

20170418_101531

When I first started adding things to this tab, it also included crochet related things until I realized that all those things should be going into the Yarnbending tab. Oops? Now, my Collections includes things such as books I want to read, what I’m currently reading, and movies I want to see. There is certainly plenty to add (I plan to add a wine list soon), but I’m curious to know what you’ve got in your collections!

 

I’m sure from some of the tabs in the pictures above, you noticed that I have recipes. I also have a Yarnbending tab for projects I’m working on, but, at the time of this post, I have yet to transfer them from my junior size notebook to the letter sized one.

If you made it this far, congrats! You get a gold star because that was a little TL;DR-y ^_^;. I hope you enjoyed the read, found it interesting at least, or found some inspiration from it. If you did, please comment down below and I hope y’all enjoy your weekend.

Trying New Things

I’m really excited for October and not just because of Halloween. I recently came across a lovely post (either in one of the Bullet Journal groups I’m in on Facebook or just browsing Instagram) for writing down thoughts for a Book of the Month (BOM) the individual was reading. It’s a pretty great idea so I’m going to give it a shot for the last three months of 2016 and see how it goes! Hopefully, it’ll let me get my points across better for any potential reviews I do, fingers crossed.

20161001_153631

Another feature I’m giving a try in my journal is a time tracker inspired by Boho Berry. I think it might be nice–and a good idea–to see what I’m doing time-wise and how I can plan hobbies and fun time around appointments and work. The time tracker will probably need some tweaking to see what works and what doesn’t, but that’s the beauty of the Bujo system! You use what works and get rid of what doesn’t! :D

20161001_171504

The cute little bat featured on my goals page is part of an illustration set made by Hanna Stüker on Creative Market.

Pink Carnations, Jack the Ripper, & Robin Hood, Oh My!

I’ve been reading a book on-and-off by Lauren Willig called The Secret History of the Pink Carnation. The book was pitched to me a while back when Waldenbooks and Borders was still around as a historical fiction novel. That’s true, to some extent, but the true focus is on the romance between the two leads, which is why I’m semi-dragging my feet in completing the novel. I don’t mind romance in my books, but when you’re lead to believe one thing and you get another… So, I’m only really picking the book up and progressing with it when I need something on the lighthearted side.

Instead, I recently purchased a couple YA novels titled Stalking Jack the Ripper and Shadow of the Wolf. The contents of the former is rather obvious, but I found the twist rather intriguing to pick it up: Supposedly, the main character falls in love with Jack? WHO KNOWS! The premise is kind of vague on that, but the back of the hardcover hints at it? I’ll see once I crack open the book and start reading. However, the book I’m more excited about is the latter because I’m a sucker for Robin Hood adaptations and that’s what Shadow of the Wolf is. Plus, it’s the first in a trilogy and it sounds ominous which is perfect for October, so bonus!

What books do you plan on reading in October?

Bookish Thoughts & Other Stuff

24612163I recently started reading The Girl on the Train. At this point, I’m about 44 – 45 pages in and I’m on the fence on whether or not to continue. The book is interesting, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not compelling me to consistently turn the page, so to speak. If I have to be honest, the trailer for the movie grabs my attention much better than the book is, so I wonder if it’s just me or if the book just has a slow start? Again, I suppose I’m still too early in the book to make such an assessment, so I’ll try and get into at least triple digit page numbers before I make a decision.

Continue reading “Bookish Thoughts & Other Stuff”

How to Hang a Witch

Written by Adriana Mather, a 12th generation descendant of Cotton Mather, How to Hang a Witch introduces us to Samantha Mather, a fictional descendant of Cotton. Samantha and her stepmother, Vivian, have recently moved to Salem after her father mysteriously slips into a coma. Upon her arrival and attendance to the local high school, Samantha quickly realizes that the Mather name doesn’t inspire much toward positive interactions for her. In fact, it’s quite the opposite as Samantha is bullied by a group of students dubbed The Descendants. You won’t need to be a genius as to why this group of students are named such.

Bullying is one of two prominent themes throughout the book. It irked me quite a lot that the Descendants were incredibly quick to judge Samantha based solely on the fact that she was a descendant of Cotton instead of getting to know the girl first. Her neighbors son, Jaxon, is the only student that, from the beginning, is actually nice to her. However, the Descendants treatment of Samantha only continues to feed into the second theme of the book: History repeating itself.

As the book continues, Samantha is frequently accused of being the cause of various incidents not only in school, but around town all involving various family members of the Descendants. Once a ghost by the name of Elijah makes his presence known to Samantha, the two quickly discover the correlating events of present day Salem with that of it’s past as the hysteria surrounding Samantha’s presence continues to escalate. A large chunk of the novel is Samantha and Elijah trying to solve this “curse” while she also tries to mend some bridges in order to get some help from some of the Descendants.

Continue reading “How to Hang a Witch”

Fall Colors

Yep. Fall colors. About a week or so ago, I had posted to Instagram and joked, “Only I would start a fall colors blanket on the first day of spring.” No lie, that’s exactly what I did after I gave up on the other ripple blanket I attempted to start three separate times with zero success.

This time around, however, I’m happy to report that this go around has proven to be much more successful than the last. I am almost 16 rows into the project and i haven’t had to start over once so that, to me, is significant progress! Due to that, I am very excited about this blanket and I can’t wait to finish it ♥.

I Guess?

Well, I finally figured out what I’d been doing wrong. I was basing my experience on Attic24’s Neat Ripple pattern when I was looking at another one for measurement and the number of chains for my starting chain. Who knew that 300 is a multiple of 12 and not 14? This girl sure didn’t. Math, as you might guess, is not my strong suit, and I looked up the multiples only after a few restarts.

So what pattern am I actually following? That would be Stephanie Gages Rugged Ripples pattern on Ravelry (which I found via VeryPink.com). It’s a pattern that calls for multiples of 12 instead of Attic24’s 14. The gist in both cases is the same, however, so instead of 4 DCs between decreases and increases, it’s 3. But, even after six rows, I’m still not sure if I’m working this pattern up correctly because it seems like every other row I come up short a stitch? So far, knock on wood,  it doesn’t look like my work is shrinking in width, but I guess I won’t know until I work up more of it. If all else fails, I’ll simply start a new one with a starting chain in a multiple of 14 this time. XD