Archive of ‘Goals’ category

One Planner to Rule Them All: Plum Paper Planner Overview and Comparison

Welcome to my One Planner to Rule Them all mini-series!  I’ll be going over the two planners that I will be receiving, and giving the pros and cons of each, as well as a comparison of both.

After a few weeks of waiting, I finally received my Plum Paper Family Planner!  My experience with the company has been great.  Communication has been awesome — every question I’ve sent in has been answered in a timely manner (within about a day).  My planner also even shipped at the lower end of the time frame given!  You can’t really beat that.

It’s very obvious that this company cares about their customers, and making them happy.  Some people in the planner groups I’ve seen have mentioned a few little issues here and there.. Colors off on their customized covers, or they wanted to add in another insert, or switch around their order. Plum Paper has been very accommodating from what folks have been reported, making their mistakes right, sending corrections out to people really fast, etc.

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As you can see here, the planner came very well packaged.  It was wrapped in a generous amount of bubble wrap, and inside of a sturdy box.  It arrived without any kinds of damage, no dings, or scratches or anything like that.

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Plum Paper has a variety of covers for you to choose from, and you can even customize some aspects — whether or not you want a monogram, what name, quote, etc, you want on it, if you want a photo on it, and even what colors you’d like.  I went with owls, as you can see, but it was a hard choice!  There’s a lot of fun things to pick from!

The cover itself is made out of a decent card stock, with a frosted plastic over that. Some people choose to laminate their cardstock cover, and remove the frosted one.  That, however, involves uncoiling the planner, taking off the cover, taking it to get laminated, and then recoiling it all.  That terrifies me, so no thanks!

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The first page of the planner is a place to jot down your contact info in the event you should lose your book.  But seriously, who is going to let that kind of a thing happen?!  The paper used for the pages is just epic.  It’s nice and smooth, silky to the touch.  I just kind of want to sit and pet it….

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After that, you have a year at a glance, followed by next year at a glance.  The back of the last page of these is blank.

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After this you have your first month’s divider.  Since I was getting my planner right before the start of March, that was when I decided to have mine begin.  With Plum Paper, you can pick your starting month, and even add on extra months!  These month dividers are nice cardstock as well, they don’t feel as heavy as the cover, but they’re still great.  The tabs have lamination over them for protection. The backside of the divider is blank.  Some people like to use this space to decorate, or plug in some sticky notes to use later, etc.

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Right after the tab, you get a page for your notes.  There’s also one of these pages at the end of the month as well.

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And now we’re starting to get into the good stuff…. After your notes page, you get your monthly spread!  I’ve seen most people use these, and I’ll be using mine to note important things such as appointments, so I can see, at a glance, what I have coming up.

20150221_131442Here is the meat of this beast — your weekly layout.  Plum Paper has several versions to choose from.  You can do time slots, just one big column for the day, break it into morning, noon, and night, etc.  I went with what they call the Family Planner.  This one gives you several little sections that you can use for whatever you like.  Plum Paper gives you the option to have printed labels here, but I decided to leave all of mine blank, as I’m not entirely sure how I’m going to divide up my days yet!

20150221_131512At the end of your planner, you have this Special Dates section.  Honestly, for me, this probably wont see much use.  Any kind of special date I need to note is going to end up in the monthly/weekly spreads.  Though I can see the benefit to having everything all together like this.

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You also get a page to stick some contacts, and a list of holidays.  Given that I have a cellphone, I probably wont ever use the contacts page, since I store all of my numbers digitally.  I think most people do these days.  Having a list of holidays is nice, but again, these are something that’s noted through out the planner.

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Another calendar for next year, and a cardstock pocket to put some things in!  I think it’s a little redundant to put another calendar in the back of the book like this, when there’s one in the front.  I did order extra months, so it’s possible that’s why mine has 2016 in the front of it.  The pocket is double sided.  Good if you’re on the go, and still want your favorite stickers with you!

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And here is the back! Like the front, it is heavy cardstock, with a frosted cover over that.

To break it down-

Pros: Good size to write in, can customize, good quality, feels sturdy, can add in your own extras with coil clips, nice layout.

Cons: Big and bulky, a bit weighty.

Now to compare the two planners…. This one is a bit hard, because they’re both sort of designed for different things.  All-in-all, I have to say that the Plum Paper wins for me.  I just cannot deal with the time constraints that the Passion Planner forces you into.  That, and the shoddy quality of the product and the poor customer service is enough for me to advise everyone to stay far, far away from it.  The Passion Planner IS more compact.  Much more compact.  Plum Paper is about 9×7″, and at least an inch thick, where as the Passion Planner looks to be about 5×7″ and 1/2″ thick.

The freedom you get with the Plum Paper Planner is just really hard to beat, especially when you can pick out which layout will work best for you, and option that is not available with the Passion Planner.


All views expressed here are solely my own opinion.  I was not compensated in any way for this review, and have not received any benefit from writing this review.

One Planner to Rule Them All: Passion Planner Overview

Welcome to my One Planner to Rule Them all mini-series!  I’ll be going over the two planners that I will be receiving, and giving the pros and cons of each, as well as a comparison of both.

Last year in November, I came across the Passion Planner.  I have to admit, it got me very excited.  It looked lovely, and had some really good features about it, which definitely drew my interest.  I prompted placed an order via Kickstarter.  Unfortunately, after the campaign ended, it was all down hill from there.

Let me start off by saying that this is a fairly new company, that sold planners last year.  This year, they completely blew up.  They got thousands and thousands of orders.  Which is great for them, but not so great for people who ordered planners.

When I purchased mine it was slated for a January delivery.  I was okay with missing a couple weeks of the planner.  I did not receive mine until almost February. An entire month out of it, I wasn’t happy about.  It’s a planner that is dated January – December 2015.  Many other people have waited much longer, and are still waiting to receive them now.

What the company should have done, was to stop taking orders.  It was basically a girl running it out of her garage, she should have known that she couldn’t handle the capacity that she was getting.  It would have been the responsible thing to do, anyway.

I was fortunate enough to not get a planner with any notable flaws.  Many people have received planners that were printed incorrectly, and missing months or weeks, or even having duplicate months.  Several others have received planners that are coming off of their covers, or with pages just falling out of them.  I suppose that’s what happens when you outsource manufacturing to China and have them made cheaply.  You can read more about people’s woes on Passion Planner’s Facebook page.

passion plannerHere’s a shot of the cover.  It looks pretty nice, though it does feel rather thin, and doesn’t really feel like a quality material.  If you compare it to a Moleskin, for example, you can tell that the material used here wouldn’t stand up like a Moleskin would. I don’t have a ruler handy, but I’d have to guess it’s about 5″x7″ and maybe .75″ thick.

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This is the main feature that got me excited about the Passion Planner — Goal setting.  The planner walks you through setting up lifetime, short-term, and longer-term goals using this neat little chart system.  I was hoping to use it to get some things on track, like my business stuff, my blog, crafts, etc.  The paper feels okay, not super quality, but definitely better than average printer paper.

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Here’s a shot of what the monthly layout looks like. Again, more stuff to keep you goal oriented, which I liked!

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This would be the weekly spread.  More goal-oriented stuff, and I do like the little quotes that you find on each weekly spread.  Some of them are kind of fun!  What I don’t like about this, is that it’s broken down into a specific time.  That aspect of this book would never work for me, as I don’t run a typical schedule, and don’t really have things I have to do at a particular time, past be at an appointment or similar circumstance.  I also don’t wake up anywhere near that early, so my day does not end early either.

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After the end of the next monthly spread, you have these reflection pages.  I don’t know why they’re after the next month, rather than just before it, but it is what it is.  This is another aspect that I liked, it gives you some things to think about in terms of how the month went.

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In the back of the planner, you have this expandable pocket.  I have to admit, this thing feels very cheaply made, and I kind of expect it to just rip apart at some point. Also in the very back of the book you have some blank pages, and some grid pages, for notes or doodle or whatever.  I think I’d of opted to have these not included, since there’s a good amount of them.  Having more months, or not having them at all would of been better options.

I had actually emailed to cancel this order and get a refund because I got tired of waiting.  In the three weeks that I waited for a reply, my planner showed up.  I got an email a few days later saying that they couldn’t refund me because I received the item.  Well, of course I did, because they don’t answer emails in a timely fashion.

So, to break it down –

Pros: Good concept, goal setting, nice monthly spreads.

Cons: Timed weekly spreads, cheaply made, poor customer service, poor quality product with lots of issues, no way to add pages or expand the planner.

Given the issues that this company has had, I would not suggest purchasing from them, especially if you want your planner any time soon.  In fact, I’d probably run far, far away from them and over to a better planner and company!

Stay tuned for part two of my series in a couple of weeks, which will be on the Plum Paper Planner!


All views expressed here are solely my own opinion.  I was not compensated in any way for this review, and have not received any benefit from writing this review.

 

Update: 2014 Action Plan

So, earlier this year I posted my goals for 2014, you can see them in depth here.

The list:

Goals for 2014, in no specific order:

  • Learn C#
  • Spend more time doing hobbies
  • Keep the house cleaner
  • Get mostly out of the glider community
  • Play more games
  • Lose some weight
  • Furnish downstairs

So far I’ve only managed to complete one of these — I’m down to 3 glider groups, that I help admin.  Sugar Gliders, Gliderslist, and Safe Sewing for Suggies.  I’ve also been playing more games lately, but I don’t feel it is worthy enough to mark off at this point.  We’ve been playing a fair bit of MineCraft, and are currently enjoying the Skyblock mod.  We’ve also been tinking around in ESO.

 

I’ve been trying to do more hobbies more, and have been plucking away at my craft room, but haven’t been very successful there.  The other stuff I haven’t even attempted yet! LOL.

The 2014 Action Plan

So, since the 2013 Action Plan was a HUGE FLOP.  Let’s go about this in a different direction for this year.

Goals for 2014, in no specific order:

  1. Learn C#
  2. Spend more time doing hobbies
  3. Keep the house cleaner
  4. Get mostly out of the glider community
  5. Play more games
  6. Lose some weight
  7. Furnish downstairs

And that’s all I can think of for the moment…. LOL


Learn C#

This is something that I’ve been wanting to do for a while now.  My husband, Peter, programs most of his stuff in C#, and it would be nice to be able to help him at least a little bit.  Not to mention, since having lived with him, and having seen the types of programs and websites he’s made, I have to admit, it is pretty appealing!

I have a book I need to work through, I believe it is Head First C#.  I fiddled with it for about an hour, put it up, and never got it out again. 🙁  I spent some time last night looking for classes, but didn’t find much other than some 5-day thing for almost $3000?  Not sure how  you can learn C# in 5 days… and how that would be worth $3000…. but whatever.

 


Spend more time doing hobbies

I have all of these hobbies, and never get anything done with them!  I need to at least spin more, and knit more, and actually FINISH things.  I’m going to try, at least, to spin most of my stash.  Which will hopefully be easier done than said with my new toy I haven’t yet revealed because I haven’t received it yet. 😉

 


Keep the house cleaner

I’ll be the first one to admit that I’m lazy and don’t like to clean, so I don’t.  That and coupled with the back pain and anxiety, my house is usually pretty cluttered.  Going to try to keep up with it better this year.

 


Get mostly out of the glider community

Since I am getting out of gliders (at this point, I just have two left to find homes for), there’s really no point in staying in the community.  I do want to continue to make and sell scarves, at least, so chances are I will just stay in the ad groups, leave my FB page up, and market mostly through there, and Etsy.  All other groups I want to leave (sorry folks!).  This also includes doing a massive friends list clean off.

As those in the community know, it’s just a big ball of drama, with no end in sight.  Ain’t nobody got time for that.  I’m also of the belief that it is amplifying my anxiety to deal with the crap on a regular basis.

 


Play more games

Pete and I have several board games… some we’ve had for a year+ and haven’t even opened or played them yet…. I also have a ton of games on Steam and what not that I haven’t even touched yet… I need to play these things!  Pete also has many of the same games I do, and we enjoy playing them together, and with our other friends!

 


Lose some weight

Not too much to say about this one… I’m getting fat, need to nip it in the bud. LOL  Not going to attach a number to this goal, because some is better that none at this point!

 


Furnish downstairs

Our downstairs, where our living room, game room, kitchen, and dining room is is pretty sparse when it comes to furniture, especially storage furniture!  I want to get some cabinets, book cases, a new table for the game room, etc, to put down there.  Oh, and also get some things up on the walls!  You know, make it look like we’ve lived here for 3+ years together, rather than just moved in!

April Update

I haven’t sewn anything at all this month, so I probably wont get my goal of getting premades in the shop done.  At least I can blame it on having a job, right?

March Update

I suppose I should do an update for March before the month is over, eh?  I’ve been going to/doing PT for about a month now, after seeing the pain doctor who referred me there.  The short of it?  PT isn’t doing diddle for my back pain.  I guess it will be back to the pain doctor. 🙁  Not much to update other than that! LOL.

February: Complete!

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Well, I finally got all of my crap picked up in my disaster area. LOL.  I have a few things left out on my table — some cut cage set pieces I need to sew, and the fiber I’ve currently got on the wheel, and some misc. knitting and sewing sundries that I need handy, but other than that, I put all of the crap away!  Woo!

AND I finished it in February!  Go me!

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Another January Update

I’m currently on pill… I don’t know what number it is anymore.  Zoloft, woo.  It seems like it might be working a little bit, but definitely not enough.  I don’t know if upping the dose will do anything more, but who knows.  Still wish the psychiatrist would just let me take Xanax daily, cause that actually WORKS.

The next things she wants me to try is something where I have to do blood tests every few months… and the other one can give me some kind of a VERY bad rash that can be fatal or some crap?  The rash one is totally off the table.  And I don’t really want to diddle with blood tests, either.  I see her next week, so I’ll have to ask if there are any other options.

March: Update

So I went to see the pain specialist the other day.  He poked, prodded, and pushed on me in all kinds of uncomfortable and weird ways.  Long story short, there isn’t anything seriously wrong with my back!  Woo hoo!  He says it isn’t muscular, but he thinks it is the ligaments that connect the vertebrae.  He wants me to go do a round of PT and then come back and see him after to see how it went.

February: Update

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So we’re a little ahead of the game, here, and I’ve already started to get a move on my goal for February!  We went to target and purchased a few of the cubbie units, and I got two of them put together and started putting my fabric into them.  I have one more put together for on the other side of my craft tab;e that I will put my fiber and some other junk into.  It’s getting there, and I was supposed to have the mess cleaned up already (whoops!), but hopefully I’ll get it done within the next weekish.  I’ve been distracted by things like Minecraft….

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It’s still pretty sad, but much better than what it was!  You can actually kind of tell there is a table there now!  Another thing I need to do is get all of my art framed.  I have a few sheep/alpaca pics I’d lke to get up, I also need to hang up my seller’s permit, and my business degree!  It’ll be nice to have pretty things to look at!

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