Tag: goals

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.


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.


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!


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….


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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!


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.

passion planner

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.

passion planner

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

passion planner

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.

passion planner

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.

passion planner

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.


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

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….

2013-01-22 16.30.51

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!

January: Update

Went to see the psychiatrist today — it went rather well!  I found her much easier to talk to than what I had expected, but then again the couple of people that reviewed her said that they found her easy to talk to as well!  She prescribed me some new medication to try, and wants to see me back in about a week and a half.  Hopefully this new stuff works, cause I’m about tired of this anxiety crap!  I’m also tired of the medication game, trying pill after pill until I find one that actually DOES something for me.  Blah.  It is what it is, I guess!

February Planning


It’s a bit early, but I’m starting to plan what I want to do with my crazy sewing/craft mess.  Saying it is a disaster is pretty much an understatement at this point.  It’s out of control, really.  I have a lot of fabric, fiber, and yarn, and I don’t have many places to put it.  So, unfortunately, I’m going to have to buy some more storage furniture.  My mind naturally went to Ikea’s Expedit series, and their big ass cubby thing that they have.  The downside to that, though, is that we don’t have an Ikea here.  We do have a company that’ll drive to Ikea, pick up what you want, and deliver it… but it’s like an extra $100, bringing a $200 piece of furniture up to $300.  That’s just too much to pay for a thing from Ikea!

I already have a 2×4 cubby thing from Target, though the cubbies aren’t as big as the ones from Ikea. I think the Ikea ones are about 13″x13″x14″, and the ones from Target are about 10″x10″x10.  The Ikea unit is 5 cubbies by 5 cubbies, the target comes in a 3 cubbies by 4 cubbies.  With Target I can go to the store and buy the damn thing.. Ikea I have to ship it/have it delivered.

As mentioned, I already have a 2×4 (8) cubby unit, if I get another 3×4 (12) cubby unit to stack on top of it that will give me 5×4, or 20 cubbies, for $70, since that’s the price of the 12 cubby unit.  Now, I will want another 8 cubby and 12 cubby unit for the other side of my sewing table.  That’ll be $122.  Which brings us to $192.  So for the price of less than what one Ikea unit will cost me, I’ll get way more storage!  Also the inserts for the Target units are MUCH cheaper than the Ikea ones.  Granted they are fabric, but they aren’t bad at all!  I can get a two pack of the fabric boxes for the price of one of the cheap Ikea plastic ones!

And so we have a point of reference… Here is my not-so-awesome, highly embarrassing, disaster area! (Sorry Pete!)  Don’t ask me how I work on it, because I really don’t know! LOL.  Also.. there’s 3 llamas and a sheep living on it….


And apparently a dog.  He’s rocking his new Thundershirt!  But more on that in a later post. 🙂

The 2013 Action Plan



Everyone is doing these happy little monthly goals things, so I figured I would jump off the bridge too. I mean, why not?  It’s good to have goals, isn’t it?  Or at least that is what they tell us in school!



Get anxiety under control!  As most of my friends know, I suffer with anxiety, to the point that it interferes with my daily life.  I’ve tried a few different medications with no luck.  Starting this month I’ll be seeing a psychiatrist (and our medical doesn’t cover mental health, so whoopie for that!) who will hopefully be able to help me get my medication straightened out so I can go back to being me again!



Clean disaster area.. I mean my craft area… and get some better organization for it.  It always looks like something exploded on that table.  Right now there are three llamas on it, a sheep, a painting, all kinds of fabric, my sewing machine, my thread box, a ton of fabric I’ve already cut out, blah blah blah.  I have MAYBE a 20×20 space to cut fabric in.  It’s pretty redonkulous!



I’ve been suffering from chronic back pain for several years now.  It’s time to get it taken care of.  Over the last 5-6 years I’ll get random spurts of bad pain.  Some so bad I can’t get out of bed, or it hurts to walk, or even stand up.  Forget trying to bend over to flush the toilet!  My general doc has referred me over to a pain specalist, and of course instead of going NOW I get the joy of waiting until March, when our new policy year starts for our medical.  Since we have a deductable to meet, it’s kind of silly to go this close to the end of the policy year!


Get premades in the shop!  I sew and vend goods for sugar gliders.  My shop has been very bare and that is something else I need to try to stay on top of.  Until then, I’ll keep an eye out for good fabric sales, so I’ll have plenty of fabric stock to be able to work through!



Walk dogs every day!  I have two Pomeranians, Bug and Bear.  I’m horrible about walking them.  They get plenty of exercise running around our large back yard like a couple of crazy people (especially now, with the snow! LOL), but the poor kids should still be walked on a regular basis.



Spin every day.  In October of 2012 I bought a spinning wheel!  It was a hefty purchase at about $600.  I’d like to make better use of it, and get better at spinning in general, so I need to sit down and spin.  Even if it is only 10 minutes every day, it’ll make a difference.



Actually knit something and finish it.  I love love love to knit (and hence the spinning wheel to make my own yarn!) but I am completely horrid when it comes to finishing anything. I recently frogged a sweater I started two winters ago so I could restart it.  The damn thing is bulky weight. It should have taken a week tops!  So yeah.  July I will have a pattern picked out, some yarn ready, and I will finish a damn project!



Get Bear to stop barking.  This will be a fun one… not.  Chances are it will require spending money to get him into a trainer, because I can’t get him to stop.  I’ve tried playing with him more, walking him more, cuddling him more, non-shock bark collars, ignoring him, making loud noises to deter him, pretty much everything.  He’s driving us both nuts over here, and it needs to come to a stop.



Create a new product for my sugar glider vending business.  I already have one product unique to me, but more can’t hurt, right?  So for the month of September I will be brainstorming and coming up with something new for the cute little fuzzies!



Make a Halloween costume.  I wanted to do this last year, but put it off, didn’t want to spend the money, blah blah blah.  This year I am going to do it.  I can sew, I craft, I can make things, damnit.  There’s no excuse not to do it!



Write a book.  Oh, NaNoWriMo, how I hate you.  Calling to me year, after year, after year for the past several.  This year I will tackle you!  I will defeat you!



Relax and enjoy the holidays.  Sorry, December, but I ain’t doing jack during you!  Sucks to be you!