Thursday, February 9, 2017

I Need a Simple Planner!

Have you ever wished that there was a simple system to help you stay organized?  Maybe you are new to the planning arena, or maybe you are just overwhelmed with all of the options that are available.  Either way, the Simplicity Planner might be just what you are wishing for!

Unfortunately, most planners don't come with instructions.
They hardly ever say...  

"Do this first!"  
"While you are doing xxx, write down yyy."  
"Use this page when..."

And so after trying them for a week or two we just go back to the "envelope system"... you know, where you write things on the closest envelope...

So I thought it would be fun to take you on a tour through the Simplicity Planner using my week as an example.  There are lots of pictures, so I'll wait here while you grab a cup of coffee. 

All set??

Let's start at the beginning...  Your binder.  The standard binder that comes with a Simplicity Set is one of these...  


The colored ones are covered with a canvas type material, and the brown one on the right is faux leather.  They are all well-made, beautiful binders with the Day-Timer logo on them.  I started out with a green binder and it held up for years!!

We also have a lovely Floral Tapestry binder available as an upgrade to the system.  Some ladies have chosen to get the free binder with their system and then purchased the floral binder separately.  That way they can use one for either storage or as a separate quiet time binder and one for the rest of their pages.  These binders are all open binders with either a snap or slip closure.  If you are looking for a zipped binder you'll find some in our shop HERE.


When you order the Simplicity System you also get to choose a full-color tab set .  This is the Sheep Hear My Voice tab set.  Isn't it gorgeous??  There are six different full color tab sets to choose from, as well as a few other one color sets.  And they are all priced affordably so you can change the look of your planner as often you desire!


The first thing that I like to do as I begin to plan is to fill out my menu for the week using the Weekly Menu Planner pages...


The menu planning pages run from Monday - Sunday.  You can be as detailed or sparse as you want.  Sometimes I will actually write which meat I need to take out of the freezer on the day I should take it out.  Or I might write in the time that something needs to go in the oven.

See the pretty page marker/ruler ??  I love those flowers!


The Simplicity Page (under the marker) Is your catch all page.  I've used the top to write a verse that I need to remember, but you can use it for notes, a verse you are memorizing, whatever you'd like!  The Simplicity Page gives you places to write down prayer requests, things to do during the week, people to call or write, special days, and errands.  I like to call it "Grand Central Station" because it is where all the "trains of thought" meet. :)

Here is the weekly view...


The page on the left is undated and runs from Sunday - Saturday.  It is lightly ruled into three sections.  I used the first section for appointments - which I transferred from my monthly calendar. The second section is filled with must dos, and I used the third section for notes and reminders.  Others like to use the sections for morning, afternoon and evening, or use two sections for things to do and one section for their menus, and there are others that don't bother with the lines at all!  You can try all the different ideas and find the one that suits you best.  As I fill out my weekly schedule during my planning section, I add things to my Simplicity Page as I think of them or am reminded of them.  For example... when I wrote bulk trash I thought about the things in the garage that I needed to take out and wrote myself a reminder on the Simplicity page.  It can work the opposite way as well.  When I wrote - "Make Valentine Cards", I was reminded to add it to my Friday schedule.

One thing that is helpful when writing down appointments is to write down the time you need to leave as well as the appointment time.  I wrote my leaving times in red so they would stand out.



Another page that I set up during my planning time is this Household Organizer page.  This page can be used for SO many things.  Think Christmas present ideas by person, housekeeping tasks by day, or splitting a large project into smaller pieces.  I decided to make a Habit and Goal tracker for my week. I've been learning hand lettering, so I lettered a title in one of the boxes, then filled in other boxes to remind me to drink water, blog, stitch, make cards and work on my end of month bookkeeping.  It is a great way to break larger tasks into smaller goals and see your progress.

So - when I begin my day.  I work on my daily morning tasks first - getting up, getting dressed, laying out clothes for tomorrow, starting a load of laundry, fixing my hair and makeup and eating breakfast.  Then I look at my Simplicity Spread to remind myself of my appointments for the day and my tasks.  I look at the Things to Do section on the Simplicity Page to see if I can work any of them into my day.  Then I sit down to have my quiet time.  


The Quiet Time Journal pages give me just enough room to write down a verse that spoke to me, a thought or two, and an aspiration or goal for the day.  There is also a special focus to think about.

Then I start my day.  As part of my normal Wednesday work yesterday I was restocking paper goods and noticed I was running low on a few items.  I turned to my Shopping List (available separately from the Simplicity Starter Set) and jotted them down.


I also kept thinking of extra things to do that I didn't want to stop for just then.  These a wrote on a Things to Do sheet (also available separately).  I can add these to my daily work this week as I have time, or transfer them to next week's work during my next planning session.



At the end of the day I try to review my pages and mark off things that have been done, and maybe transfer some of the undone tasks to another day.  If you do the review nightly and weekly it helps to keep things from falling through the cracks. :)

I hope this has given you an overview of the system.  There are a few more pages included in the Starter Set that I didn't cover - the monthly Calendar, the Promise Pack pages, etc., but these are the basics.  It is a wonderful week at a glance system that can be adapted to serve you well!

I hope this has been helpful!  Be sure to drop me a line at gracewrks@gmail.com or leave a comment and let me know if there is a certain topic you would like to see me cover on the blog.  I would love to be a blessing to you!


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