Thursday, 21 January 2016

2016 Organization

As it turns out folks, real life is hard.  I wouldn't say I expected it to be "easy" when I got out of school.  But when I was ploughing through massive text book readings and had 5 big papers due and 3 major exams, I couldn't imagine being done school as being harder or busier.  Well... I'm just going to go ahead and say something I don't often say: I was WRONG.

Working nearly full time (part time as a floor nurse and part time as an instructor of the care aid [ie: nurse's aid] course) is hard.  Trying to maintain a marriage with a farmer (who also tends to be pretty busy, even in winter contrary to popular belief) when you are gone for 12 hours at a time (plus driving time) to work is hard.  There are some days when the only communication Brett and I get are a quick text at 3PM saying "Hey how's it going?  I am just finally sitting down for lunch."  And then because of Murphy's law and the fact that I am sitting down to attempt to eat, I will inevitably get a call from EMS saying they're five minutes out with a patient.  That all being said, who would have thought not getting lunch until 3PM could actually be kind of fun?  ER nursing can be pretty awesome.

With all that business, it is really important to keep our time organized.  Our house may be a disaster and in desperate need of tidying and vacuuming, but our time has to be organized.  Naturally, tools are required for such a big job.  For me, I have always needed a paper planner.  Some people can just keep stuff in their head or in their phone, these people are not me.  Over the years I have tried a number of different paper planners, and have landed on two that I really feel are a cut above.  Enter Emily Ley's Simplified Planner and Kate Spade's 17-month Large Agenda.

For 2015 I used the Kate Spade agenda and for 2016 I am using the Simplified Planner weekly edition.  As a direct comparison these two planners are fairly similar.  Both have three days per page and start the month with a full month view.  Both use really wonderful paper.  Both lay flat.

What I like about the simplified planner is that each day is split in half (long way down the page) between lines for what you are doing and check boxes for to do's.  The simplified planner also has a menu planning section for each day.

On the other hand, I like how the rings of the Kate Spade planner are enclosed inside the book style spine.

All in all, I don't think I could ever stray from the Simplified Planner.  It really is just too perfect.  That being said, it is a lot easier to get your hands on the Kate Spade planner (I've seen them all over the place).  Simplified Planner can be found at a number of stores around the US, and a few in Canada (check their website), but they sell out fast.  For instance, I waited on my computer for the website to open at 8AM on the launch day of the 2016 simplified planner and the happy stripe version sold out before I could even get it in my cart.  But guys, it is worth it!

The only thing I will do differently for 2017 is purchase the daily version of the simplified planner (which has one page per day).

Now for you phone only planners.  I found the paper-planner-only life just wasn't working for us because my darling husband just wouldn't look at my darn planner!  No matter where I left it in our house.  So, I downloaded the Cozi calendar app.  I particularly like this app because it magically links my phone to Brett's so when I update the calendar on my phone, it automatically updates his as well.  Its pretty slick.

So, if you don't have a planner already for 2016 and are wanting one, now is the time!  It isn't too late!

Are you done with my cheesy/nerdy love of day planners yet?  Yes?  Well, let me just finish with: paper planners can change your life, for real.

Have a lovely day!

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