Bullet Journal Layout: November 2018

Good morning internet! As of Thursday evening, I’ve returned from a week away in Arizona to visit the grandparents. It was kind of a working and not-working vacation. We did some inventory sourcing at a few thrift stores, and spent some time catching up on work or meeting a few goals that needed to be dealt with. In all honesty, we (I) didn’t get as much done as planned for a variety of reasons, but the time away and relaxing did a world of good. I was feeling rather depressed and really needed a change of scenery to get myself back to normal.

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So now that I’m home and feeling inspired and rejuvenated, let’s talk about November. It’s a busy month, so I’m glad I got my layouts settled months in advance. This month’s theme is lightbulbs, which has been very fun to doodle and play with. I usually don’t do much drawing in my spreads, so I pushed myself out of my comfort zone and was very happy with the results! It’s paired with a autumn-colored ginkgo leaf washi tape and bright orange and yellow Tombow Dual Brush pens (933 for the orange, 055 for the yellow from the Bright color pack).

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I have really been experimenting in this bullet journal. I’ve been doing much more doodling and trying out stickers and playing with paper textures and brush lettering effects. It has been a lot of fun! This month I also decided to not use my ruler and save myself some strain. I’ve found being obsessed over having a perfect and neat journal is too much stress for me. I’m a messy person, and my journal is going to reflect that.

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What is your bullet journal theme for November?

 

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Migration to My Second Bullet Journal

Hey! Long time, no see! Depression and chaos has had me pretty busy lately. But, I wanted to talk about my new bullet journal! Last month, in September, I finished my first bullet journal and have migrated into my second. My first journal was a Peter Pauper Press, A5 grid notebook. It was a great notebook with good paper that held up well for about 11 months, and it cost around $10.

For my new bullet journal, I moved into a Leuchtturm 1917, which seems to be a favorite in the community. I got it in Nordic Blue and added an awesome vinyl sticker from Etsy! I was so excited to get into this journal and see what all the hype was about. I literally squealed when it arrived! It was a gift for my birthday, which was awesome because it gave me time to work on the migration process while I finished filling out my first bullet journal.

The color on my bullet journal was absolutely gorgeous and the sticker I chose looks  beautiful on the cover. I was really looking forward to the dot grid, which looks much cleaner than grid lines. I also love that it has archival stickers, so I can label the spines and fronts of my journals. I actually used one set of stickers on my old journal, since there were extras. I also love that it has a table of contents that I can fill out, without having to build one myself and worry about how many pages I will need. There is definitely plenty of space for what I will need! Now, I will mention that the pages in this journal can be a small bit thin, and they do ghost. That doesn’t really bother me since I don’t do much in the way of water color or heavy marker work, but I know it bothers some people.

Now my old journal is not completely inactive. I actually have pages and collections that are still being used: my weight and exercise data sheet, my beauty projects, shows and books I am working on, etc. These are things I didn’t want to have to rewrite, since they were only partially used in the old journal. So I created a page called “Page Threading” in my new journal that references where these collections are in case I am looking for them in the future.

The biggest change I made in my new bullet journal, was I was moving all my collections to the back. Aside from a few necessary life things I wanted in the front, I have started my various collections at the back of my notebook (medical notes, notes for work, loan tracking, savings tracking) and I am working forward as I add to them. From the front, I am working my monthly and weekly/daily spreads. At some point, the day-to-day stuff and my collections will meet when I fill the journal.

I have also started implementing some color coding. I have a few categories for types of spreads:  mood lines, work, life stuff, collections, and maintenance/guides. These are marked along the edges of the pages toward the bottom, and I guess it helps me find a few things or at least categorize them. I am still figuring out how to make the best use of them. I know some people use colored pens as they write to help certain types of tasks or notes stand out, but I personally prefer just to use black pens so I don’t have to worry about carrying everything with me when I’m out and about and find it rather messy-looking when everything is in half a dozen different colors. One form of color coding I do like, though, is month to month. Each month has a theme color, and that main color is marked on the edge of the page. It makes it very easy to skip around between months when I am looking for things.

I don’t think I’ll go any deeper into my journal stuff today, and I will probably add pictures to this later (unless I forget). With my depression, I just kind of needed to get a blog post OUT, and not let making things pretty and perfect hold me back from sharing my thoughts.

 

*Transparency: None of these links are affiliated. I’m not getting any sort of money through clicking them. I just want to share the materials I use!

Planning for Future Months!

My first bullet journal is completely full! All I have left is to fill in my September spreads I have already laid out. With no new spreads or collections to create, I’m feeling a little bit antsy. I love the process of planning and drawing up spreads! Even better, taking all the new things I’ve learned in between months and putting them to use in new spreads. I plan on getting a new journal in early September for my birthday. I am so excited at the prospect of a brand new journal with fresh pages and going though my first migration!

While I anxiously wait for that new journal, I’m scratching the itch with some pre-journal planning. I’ve taken the time to use what I have learned to solidify what pages I want, and which ones I don’t. OneNote has been a great place to lay out my spread ideas in a two-column table. It’s easy to edit and move around, unlike when I am planning it with sketches and lists in my notebook.

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I have also put a mini notebook to good use! I am already planning out the themes for my next journal, so I took a mini notebook I had laying around and dedicated it to ideas and swatches for my future monthly themes. For October 2018, I decided I wanted to do a dandelion theme. I picked out a few washi tapes I had on hand, wrote down my theme, and sketched out a rough draft for my title page. On the next page I sketched out a dandelion for practice.

I am not a huge fan of the stereotypical themes for months. You know, pumpkins and spooky things for October and November, or Christmas themes for December. I have ordered some new washi tapes and stickers to suit those new themes and expand my little collection. You can never have enough washi! So far I have my dandelion theme for October planned out, I want to do a fall leaf and lightbulb theme for November, and deer for December! I can’t wait for those washi tapes to show up in my mailbox! Though because I ordered them from Aliexpress.com, it will take them about a month to arrive (great place to get cheap washi!).

Question of the day: What is your theme for September? I have a minimalist theme planned!

August 2018: Plan With Me!

This is a small bit late! Things have been crazy this week with Vacation Bible School!

I am so optimistic for August! Diving into fresh, empty spreads is my favorite part about the beginning of the month. I had actually drawn out my spreads in July when I was feeling pretty inspired. So by this point, there are a few changes I would like to make and a few spreads I’ve decided I don’t need. Lesson learned: don’t work too far ahead!

August was inspired by a post I stumbled across on Pinterest (unfortunately I can’t find it now). I loved the clean lines of the triangle paired with the subtle floral design. I used my favorite pens, Zebra Mildliners, in gray and purple as the color theme for the month. I love how simple and cool they are, and how well they pair with the muted watercolors I used for the flowers. I also kept my typical calendar. I honestly don’t spend much time using my full calendar, so I may change the way I do this in the future.

 

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My first spread is an events page, and a budgeting page. During July, I decided I didn’t need this events page, and that I needed more room for budgeting, since I often overflow with one page. I found that it works much better for me to include events in my weekly spreads where I can see them at all times, instead of having to flip through to my monthly events overview. In the future, I want to devote a two page spread to my budgeting so I have more room to work and don’t have to tape in extra pieces of paper.

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My next spread is my brain dump, and my monthly tracker. I only started using a brain dump last month, and I’ve really enjoyed having a place to contain all the brain-spam and tackle larger projects in my own time. I’ve already migrated a few things from last month that I thought were important enough to keep as I go into this month, and I’ll be adding a few more things as I reflect on my goals for this month. My tracker is getting a bit crowded with all the things I want to keep track of, so I may slim down my tracker for next month as I find what works, what doesn’t, and what really needs to be tracked. Though I do consider my tracker to be more of a to-do list than a tracker, to keep my recurring tasks from clogging up my dailies.

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The meat of my months are my weekly/daily spreads! I love how efficient this layout is. I have space to journal, my events for the week are in view, and I have confined spaces for my daily tasks. I’ve said this before, but I exist in lists. I like having space to write down everything I need to remember to do so I can plan out my day. I keep things as flexible as possible, keeping in mind that there is always tomorrow if I need more time to get things done. The biggest goal is just to get everything done within the span of the week. With my little recurring tasks kept in my tracker, it prevents my dailies from getting chaotic and crowded.

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I did start experimenting with my weekly layouts a bit. I hate taking the time with a ruler to draw out the boxes. I’ve started using brackets to create the boxes, which takes far less time and strain on the neck.

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I have another memories page for this month. I love these because it gives me a place to experiment! I can doodle, glue things in, play with different writing styles, and just have fun with it.

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Finally, my morning pages! In July I was writing a couple lines of whatever was on my mind. As relieving as that could be, I hated how messy and chaotic it looked. This month I opted for something a little more friendly-looking and open. It’s a couple lines about my day, my mood, and how I feel. I really like how it turned out so far, and I don’t plan on making it so…. rough and raw.

With my spreads laid out, I am super excited to jump into this month and see what happens!

What’s your August Bullet Journal theme?

July 2018: Flip-Through

Today is July 31st! The last day of July! You know what that means: it’s time to look back through this month’s spreads and see how I did. This month started out feeling slow, then suddenly flew by. Maybe it’s because I spent a week of it out of town, and a few weeks ahead of that trip freaking out about said trip. Either way, I feel like it was a great month where I made progress on my personal goals and implementing new spreads that I hadn’t tried before.

Starting with my monthly title page, I absolutely loved the summery watermelon theme! It was fun, and I’m glad I didn’t stick with the typical Independence day theme that I see pretty often in July spreads. It was also my first try at faux calligraphy, and I’m very happy with how it turned out. The title page was paired with a simplified monthly calendar that I really enjoy.

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I did start out the month with a monthly events overview, before later deciding that I don’t need it. I’ll be using my weekly spreads to hold my events where I  can see them and use them more effectively. I also kept up with my budgeting page, which ended up shorter than others due to the way my funds worked out in preparation for my trip. I am super proud of myself for effectively doing some saving in preparation for August’s Amazon Prime Bill.

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In my weekly spreads, I did better at finishing everything (or nearly everything) that I had set out for myself during the months. I also started implementing washi tape with reminders of my bigger goals for that specific week. I have been trying to work on habits from week to week in order to better myself.

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A big event in July was my trip to Las Vegas, NV for EbayOpen 2018! This was my first time really putting my journal into “vacation mode”. I discussed this in a previous post in more detail, but I essentially traded out my daily tasks for mini diary entries about the day. Though in the end it felt a bit repetitive considering I was also doing diary entries in my reflection box, and in my junk journal.

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I set aside a few pages for notes from Ebay Open, and then put in my memories page for the month. I really experimented with doodling, stamping, and adding in scraps of things that represented my subscriptions and adventures throughout the month (ie: a stamp from my sandwich box at the coffee shop, the card and a sample of yarn from my Darn Good Yarn box, and an adorable piece of packaging from my Ipsy bag!).

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This was also my first month experimenting with a brain dump and a tracker. I am definitely learning what I like and what I don’t like about these spreads and adjusting them accordingly. My tracker is a bit too messy and it bothers me, so I will be trying to improve it as I go through August. But, I did add a few more things to my daily routine I thought were important.

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July turned out really awesome and I’m so proud of my work!

Question of the day: What was your favorite thing about July?

Bullet Journal in Vacation-Mode!

This week I went to Vegas for a conference called Ebay Open. Ebay Open is a conference for Ebay sellers to get together, learn, network, and meet up. My mom and I have been reselling clothing for about 9 months now, so this was our first time attending the conference. I have to say, it was so awesome! I felt confident in who I was and my passion for what my mom and I do together.

So since I was on a working vacation…what happened with my bullet journal? I didn’t have tasks to complete, and I wasn’t home to keep up with my normal daily tasks. I still found ways to incorporate my bullet journal into my day, though not in the same way I normally would.

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I kept up with my habit tracker, using a dash to mark the tasks that I didn’t have to do. I still brought my books and my writing practice with me to do in my spare time. Obviously, I wasn’t as strict with myself as I am when I’m home. I didn’t have a lot of down time to spend practicing my handwriting or doing some reading. However, I did keep up with  my morning pages, and converted my typical daily task boxes into space to write about my day!

I actually added a few new things to my habit tracker just before I left for my trip, and during my trip. I decided I needed to set aside more time to be quiet, meditate, and read my Bible. Those were things I was neglecting, and I needed to build the habit again. Meditation is a new thing that I’m trying for just a few minutes in the evening to re-center myself, relax, and exist.

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When I wasn’t enjoying the resort or the conference, I was spending time in my junk journal. If you haven’t seen a junk journal before, they are exactly the way they sound. They’re a unique way to capture memories with anything you have on hand. I use scraps of paper, little printed pieces of maps or things I’ve picked up in my adventures. This mess of found items and craft supplies create a place for me to capture memories, journal about my adventures, and inspire myself to explore more!

How do you use your bullet journal during vacation?

Welcome July 2018! (Week 1: 1st – 7th)

The month has begun, and I am so eager to start filling up these empty spreads! This month I am trying out some new pages and systems that I haven’t tried before, or that I am trying again. Examples of new things are morning pages, brain dumps, and a cleaning calendar; on the other hand, I am trying to use a habit tracker again to keep those recurring, daily tasks from cluttering my spreads.

I have already picked out a good habit, and a bad habit to work on. I am still trying to build a habit of reading a little bit every day. The goal is to read at least 5 pages from a book every single day. I have hardly touched a book since I graduated from college, and I would like to fall in love with reading again. I am even exploring some genres of books (devotionals or lifestyle books) that I haven’t been willing to read on my own in the past. As for my habit breaking goal for this week, I’m trying to be really conscious about picking up after myself. My family tends to nag and complain because I leave a hurricane behind me wherever I go (so they say). Even just in my personal space, I want to get out of that “I’ll do it later” mind set, and take care of it when I see it or as soon as possible.

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At the end of this week, I was so thrilled to find out that I had completed everything! No migration at all! It has helped to have a brain dump where I can toss everything that I want to do, but doesn’t need to get done right now, or is a project in progress. It feels so good not to have to migrate those kinds of things when I don’t plan on completing them yet. But they are still somewhere I can easily find them and work on them at a different pace. I’d rather not have to migrate stuff about thank you notes that I’m waiting on from some one else. (Note: This post is late, so my habit tracker is filled in a bit more)

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How was your first week of July?