This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Homemaker’s Friend. All opinions are 100% mine.
I’m a planner by nature. Always have been.
At the beginning of a new school year, I would sit down with my daily planner, class rubrics, and different colored pens. I’d start with English and work my way all the way through Science taking great care to write down all my deadlines, tests, and assignments for the entire year. Each subject had a color, and I’d even write in reminders for myself in the weeks leading up to an assignment. Test on October 15th? No problem. I’ll just write in the October 1 box to start studying.
I never missed an assignment.
Well, except for that one English assignment where I was supposed to fill out a college application to turn in. That was a God moment though and a story for another day. Remind me to tell you sometime. It’s pretty cool. I still have no idea how I forgot to do that assignment.
Anyway, back to daily planners – spiral bound and crisp. They have been by side for over ten years now. Okay, fine. More than fifteen years. Time flies.
Last year, I created a simple to-do list and calendar system to help me manage all the moving parts of my life. If you read this post, it explains in detail how I keep up with appointments and plan each day’s task.
However, a couple of things have changed. Because no matter how many systems I try, I always go back to my favorite method for creating a weekly to-do list as well as a daily running to-do list and that’s my daily planner.
Consider this post an addendum and the following is what I use for point #3 and #4 from my previous post.
Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner
I won the Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner in a giveaway.
At the time, I wasn’t using the paper and pen method. I was trying really hard to go all digital. But this planner peeked my curiosity.
Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner was created by a sweet, Christian woman who has been a homemaker for more than 20 years with six babies in her care! She might know a thing or two about keeping track of your daily life! You think?
I entered the giveaway and much to my surprise, I won! My Daily Planner 2014 showed up in my mailbox a few days later.
Scrolled across the front of the planner were these words:
Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established. ~Proverbs 16:3
Scripture. On the cover. Of my planner.
It was love at first sight.
As I thumbed the pages of the planner, I quickly realized that it was broken up into seven sections:
- Yearly Calendar
- Monthly Calendar
- Weekly Planning
- Tasks List
- Projects & Events
- Shopping Lists
Each section starts with a scripture or encouraging quote to help you think about what matters. It’s always good to be reminded of why we live intentionally.
Let me show you how I use my Daily Planner.
Update: Be sure to check out my Planning 101 Series featuring how to plan your time to be more intentional. I go even more in depth into my planning tips and tricks with more information on how I use this planner.
I use this section to jot down any dates I want to remember.
- Family Vacations
I use this section to see at a glance what’s coming up for the year.
In my eBook, Live for Him: A Grace-Filled Look at Planning, I walk you through how to create a mission statement and set goals. Then, I give you a step-by-step guide to breaking your yearly goals down into monthly goals.
In the Monthly Calendar section of my Daily Planner there is space for notes. I use this area to write down my monthly goals plus my intentional living checklist items! Then, as the month progresses, I just check each completed task off the list.
I also jot down any appointments or deadlines I need to remember on the appropriate date.
I use a colorful paper clip (it’s necessary to use color, folks!) to mark what month we are in. This makes it easy to flip quickly to the current month when I open my planner.
I keep a shared calendar for the family online that my husband and I can easily access.
But the truth is – sometimes I don’t want to pick up my phone or get on my computer. When I unplug, I unplug. This is the main reason I went back to paper and pen planning again!
Therefore, I jot dates down in my planner as well so it’s in both places. I keep the rule that the Google Calendar is the master calendar though.
This is where the rubber meets the road for me. This is hands down my favorite section in my Daily Planner.
I use a colorful binder clamp (it’s necessary to use color, folks!) to mark what week I am on. This makes it easy to flip quickly to the current week when I open my planner.
Fun fact: The binder clips in this picture are the ones I’ve been using since HIGH SCHOOL! I’ve had them for THAT long. No joke. I love them so much. I even have the original box they came in. I know I’ve lost a few along the way, but these things are the best thing since sliced bread. If you don’t have any, you’re missing out. These should do it. Of course, the packaging has changed …
Back to my planner …
For each week there is a tasks list section and a two page spread with entries for each day. Plus each day has a menu plan section for jotting down what you plan to feed your family each the day.
Not to mention, each week I have a new scripture to encourage me. 2014 is all about Proverbs!
At the beginning of each week, I use the tasks list section to brain dump all I need to complete during the week. I’m often overzealous, but I get it all out on paper what I hope to accomplish.
Then, I write in the mandatory to-dos for each day in their appropriate sections.
For example, Wednesday night’s are youth group. I’ll write in 6pm Youth Group for Wednesday. Tuesdays are days when I do Bible Study with a teen girl. I’ll write in 1pm Bible Study with K. So on and so forth.
Finally, I take my tasks list and assign each task to a day. This is usually when I see my overzealous list in a more realistic state. When I start assigning days, I quickly see that I’m trying to do too much and start crossing things off the main list.
I do use colored pens to help me see at a glance what kind of work I’m doing because this helps me work in batches. Working in batches makes me more productive!
For example, my computer work is written in with blue pen, family time is green, homemaking tasks are purple, anything outside the home is orange, etc.
The way I color it each week changes. I don’t always have the exact pens handy. Some weeks I write it all in with a black ink pen and come back with highlighters to give me a visual. Sometimes I write in my list with colored pencils. Whatever I have handy, I use it.
The Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner is small and spiral bound, so it’s easy to take with me, move around, tuck into purses, or lay flat on the counter. For this section (Weekly Planning) alone, My Daily Planner is a constant fixture in my home! No doubt about it, this section is worth it’s weight in gold for me.
Here are some past planning pages to give you another peek:
Tasks & Projects
I use these two sections to jot down ideas that come to me as I’m going through my day.
Again, I don’t like to hop on my phone or computer every time I need something. Therefore, if a blog post idea comes to me, I will add it to the tasks section where I keep a running list of ideas.
When I’m on my computer again, I’ll add the ideas to my master list on Trello. If I have a house project idea, then I’ll jot it down under projects and outline the idea into actionable steps. Then, when I’m on my computer, I’ll add it to my master list on Trello.
The Info section is not something I have used. I keep my contact information in my phone.
Another amazing part of the Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner is the Shopping Lists.
I hate writing my shopping list on a legal pad or notebook paper. I always feel like it’s such a waste of paper. I only use one little column! The rest of the paper is wasted unless I take the time to tear it apart and keep the other two thirds safely tucked away for next time. I’m not very good at keeping up with loose sheets of paper!
My Daily Planner has blank Shopping Lists that are perforated tucked in the back. Each page has three columns of shopping lists that you can easily tear off to take to the store with you.
When I create my menu plan each week, I just add what I need to one of these pint-size shopping lists, tear off easily, and head to the store. No more wasted paper!
I’ve been using my Daily Planner for almost seven months now, and I absolutely love it. I’ve tried really hard to go paperless with my planning, but it just simply didn’t work for me. Spiral-bound daily planners are the best way for me to plan my days with intention and actually stick to it.
It’s useless to plan if you’re using a system that isn’t working for you. I’ve always said that one of the most important parts of living intentionally is changing what isn’t working. Going back to my old faithful daily planners was a change that I had to make in order to have a system that worked for me.
The Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner is my favorite because it’s made by a fellow Christian mom and homemaker just like us. It has everything I need to keep my family organized and home running smoothly.
Want to learn more about how to plan your time to be more intentional?
Check out the Planning 101 series to learn more!
What about you? Do you think the Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner would help you plan your days with more intention? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
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