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Meet Mrudula Reddi – Traveler’s notebook user

Hi all — This is the last installment for 2016 of planner lovers from around the world. Today, I am introducing you to Mrudula who is located in India. I have seen her videos on You Tube and I thought that her ideas and proposals for us, planner people, were amazing. I am here featuring her story and her planner ideas. I hope you enjoy! Thank you for reading and happy end of the year.

Who are you? What is your name –it can be your name on Instagram if you want to– where are you from and where do you live?

My name is Mrudula Reddy, I am a landscape architect in India. I’m known as journalingmylife on You tube and journalingmylifehere on Instagram.  I was born is a small town call Narasaraopet, which is located in southern India. I am a south Indian and have had the pleasure of traveling quite a bit around the world with my parents. Currently, I work for the Government of Andhra Pradesh as an In-house landscape architect which involves a lot of traveling too.

What notebooks do you currently use, what for and why these particular notebooks?

I am using quite a few now,

  • I have a Taroko shop FN size TN that I use to house my bible and a notebook for Sunday church.
  • Another is a standard Midori Traveler’s notebook in brown which I use onsite when I have to travel and record site markings.
  • I have my EDC which is a pocket wide from Naked cow in the flapjack leather that  I use the MOST, It has a few inserts but the heart is a pocket  moleskine planner which I cannot live without..;)

I also have two beautiful brown mavericks, one FN size and one Extra wide for my husband, who I roped into travelers notebooks too..^_^

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Why do you journal and why did you decide to open your YouTube channel?

I love stationary, let me start off there. I have started my planner journey in 2016, but found out about  the planner community a few months after that, I felt so inspired by the setup videos I saw and felt there weren’t any Indian planners on youtube so I thought as a hobby I will go ahead and try putting up a video, and after that I just enjoyed doing it so much more than I expected, I love the way everyone in the planner community are so kind and positive.

Why did you decide to start journaling or using planners? and why do you like it?

My grandfather visited my family once in Texas and the first thing he asked me was for a diary, I was a little girl and I went with him to a local dollar store and bought a book with him. He wrote everything we did during his stay with us, shortly after leaving back to India, he passed away. I decided to keep that diary he kept as a memory, and every time I look through it I feel closer to him. I’m sentimental and forgetful, I needed a planner and putting pen to paper feels so safe, and long lasting.

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What drives you to continue writing things down on paper instead of using technology?

There is a person called Bulletjournaljoy on Instagram, she posted a picture of a stack of her finished bullet journals. That picture is so motivational and compelling to me. I wanted me own stack of books that I could flip through and relive my memories.

What is your dream and what would you say to people who are working to achieve their own dreams?

My dream is to simply have no regret. That sounds so simple but so hard to achieve. Looking back at my life thus far, I revisit a few of my pivotal life changing decisions I made that brought me where I am. I can say I have no regrets thus far. Take the chance and do what you want to, live life with no regrets, that’s the best gift you can give yourself.

What are your favorite stationery shops?

What a tough question to answer! I have OCD, (my husband believes that) I liked MUJI, I went there recently with a friend and I enjoyed how interesting the stationary there is and how well organized it was. Definite OCD porn. Haha..! I picked, but a few things that I use every day.  I like stationary with more of a function than an aesthetic.  I need to go to more stationary shops to add to my love for MUJI.

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Who are your favorite journalers, entrepreneurs or people that you look up to?

Bulletjournaljoy is my kind of people, I also like Desiree from mommyreporter, Siopaopei, Byabya, and of course jose naranja.

How did you learn to journal the way you do, and what keeps you inspired?

I have a simple motto, function above aesthetic. I like washi and stickers but I prefer them to have a reason which is greater than just an aesthetic value.  I sometimes sit in front of the tv and enjoy using washi, but for day to day, the fact that my planner helps me with my work and life is simply what motivates me. I love being organized enough to not forget birthdays and plans. Instagram always helps. 😉

Tell us about 2017, what are the next steps and how do your journals help you get there? Where do you want to be next year with your YouTube channel?

I’m so excited to answer this question! I have added to my EDC for next year, and I hope to put out more content which is relatable to others and also fulfilling to me personally. I would like to get more exposure to India and Indian planners.

Thankyou for having me on your blog, I appreciate it. Have an amazing day

With regards from India.

Mrudula Reddi

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Thank you so much Mrudula, for being my guest this month and for sharing with us all your insight into your planner system and your favorite stationery. I appreciate the time you took to answer my questions.

Have a fantastic 2017 you all!

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When in doubt, be a unicorn – Happy Monday!

Stationery Mondays

The other day I went to Black Ink, which is a store that sells Japanese goods, including stationery. They have a great variety of all-paper things, and I could easily spend HOURS there! I have written about this store before and you can read about it here

The shop has a great variety of erasers. I was looking into the bowl full of cute erasers and i found this one. I love it and for some reason, this little guy makes me smile so he lives on my desk. I hope it’ll make you smile too! Have a great Monday and a great week. Leave me your comments below and let me know if you like cute erasers.

Thanks for reading this short post,

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Planner inspiration – The weekend

During the week, I am great at keeping my time organized, because I carry my Hobonichi where I plan my days, both for work and personal life. During the weekends, however, it is a different story. I don’t use my planners much because my days are more relaxed. I do keep a log of what should be happening and what I should be doing to be ready for the week. It is not a strict plan that I stick to.

I thought it would be nice to post and write about how my weekends look like, with a planner but without a strict step by step plan of the day. How do you keep inspired during the weekends and how do you use your planners?

Thanks for reading!

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Best websites to find Hobonichi covers

One of the ways to buy a cover for your Hobonichi is through the official Hobonichi websitewebsite. However, if you live outside Japan and you have ordered from the Hobonichi store, you soon noticed that the shipping costs are sometimes equal to half the price of a Hobonichi book or more –depending on where you live.

What happened to me was that I placed an order for a set of things but I didn’t order a cover for my weeks Hobonichi. When I received the order I regretted not having ordered a cover, but I didn’t want to place an order whose shipping would be much more expensive than the articles themselves. This is when I started looking into alternatives for my weeks cover, and I found a few options which I thought I should share with you.

Here they are:

  • What I ended up buying for my weeks was a Filofax Saffiano Zipped binder. The reason why I loved it was because the Hobonichi weeks fits perfectly, it was tons of pockets and also –the best feature of all– the rings are removable and you can use it simply as a weeks cover!

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  • You have Jepens.com which sells both, the hobonichi covers and the book in A6. Actually, I bought my Hobonichi in A6 from this shop and shipping was free.
  • Kawaii Tokio on Etsy sells covers and some accessories as well
  • Lunablue bags also sells covers on Etsy, and basically Etsy has a myriad of options to find a cover for your books
  • Amazon also sells some covers
  • FoxyFix sells leather covers, beware of choosing a cover that’s the right size and width.
  • Gillio Giramondo has amazing leather covers as well, although more on the pricey side

So, here you have them. If you placed your Hobonichi order but forgot or didn’t want to order a cover, there are many options out there where shipping is less expensive and that are great options for your Hobonichi books.

If you have ordered covers from other places, do let me know in the comments. Thank you for stopping by!

Em Jorden

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Benefits of carrying of home planner – My beloved fluoro Filofax

In 2016 I decided to have a household or home planner for me to track my expenses, bills, payments and other information exclusively. At first,

I wasn’t sure how exactly I would set it up, but then, after realizing that I didn’t like my Erin Condren planner and that I wasn’t using my favorite of favorites Pink Fluoro Filofax binder, I went ahead and combined both.

I did destroy my $100, Erin Condren, I saved the covers and pull out the pages, punched them and inserted them in my Filofax binder. I created some kind of tracking system where I would use the monthly inserts to keep track of deadlines to pay bills, have an overview of our budget, and keep some control of our finances. This is the first time I carry a planner only to keep the financial matters in one single place, and it worked great!

Every month, I was able to sit down at my desk and go over our bills, take our my planner, see what was paid last month, what needs to be paid, what are the due bills and even see whether our phone bill had gone up or whether we needed to pay more for our credit card this month or not. It worked! The reasons why I believe it did work are the following:

  • All your financial matters and home related numbers and bills are in one single place
  • You can use your calendar pages or any inserts to keep track of financial issues as needed.
  • You can then store the bills you paid, and file them later if you need to without losing them
  • You have a clear overview of your expenses, you can compare the numbers to the previous month and make an estimate for the next month based on past information.
  • A financial binder or home binder allows you to keep all together in one place, and have quick access to it if you need to.
  • You avoid paper clutter because you can easily store everything in there, or file in that moment or later. There is only so much you can store in your binder so at some point you will need to get rid of your papers!
  • You can use any inserts, dated or undated or use any customized inserts if you wish. You can use anything! Even plain paper
  • It saves you time and keeps your bills and numbers organized!

     
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I plan on continuing using my good Fluoro Filofax in 2017, and use some inserts from Yellow Paper house that I bought in 2014 and never really got to use. They are already punched and ready for me to insert in my binder next year.

I strongly encourage you to take any binder, especially if you have one with big rings and customize it to your needs, allocate a use to it and create the habit of looking into it every time you need to. Believe me, it will make your life easy and will save you time and energy over time.

Here you go! Filofax binders or ring binders for that matter are ideal for this kind of planner because you can put in or take out any pages as the year progresses. In this binder, I keep only 4 months at a time because I also keep tons of notes in the back.

Here are a few more pictures of how it looks like on the inside but you can definitely come up with your own setup, there are a million ideas out there and you can also refer to Philofaxy in case you need to print new inserts. They have a great section of resources for
printables!

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I hope this idea will help you make up your mind about how to enhance your good habits or create new ones, and use your new or old binders to keep a more organized life. Remember that the least number of things you store in your brain the more space you will have in your mind for those things that really matter.

Let me know if you decide to keep a financial planner and if you use one already, do let me know how it is working for you and what makes it work?

A well-organized planner will help you reach your financial goals much better because it will allow you to keep a clear view of where you’re spending your money and what you can do to adjust your budget, spend less and do meaningful things.

Planners help us keep track of where things go in our lives and choose the direction we want to go once we see how we spend our time and what we do it with. After all, we are the ones taken the decisions of where our money and time go, you are the one writing your own story. I hope this will inspire you to continue finding your own system.

Thank you for reading and don’t forget to share this post if you liked it. Until next time!

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2016 planner reflections

It’s almost October, and for all planner people out there, this is about the time you start thinking about what planner you will be getting for next year. For me, this has been a year where I found myself spending very little money on planner goods – I had to, or I’d be broke!.

I didn’t buy any ring planners at all this year because I found myself using them very little. I did try out the new covers for traveler’s notebooks that Webster’s pages launched this year, I bought one of the covers and I have written about it here on my blog. I also bought the Passion Planner because I wanted to try it out. I used it weekly until I found myself writing the same thing over and over because mostly my schedule looks the same week by week. This planner is nice but not for me.

This year was the first year I also started using my Hobonichi in A6. I used it as a work planner and I loved it until I decided that, maybe, I should try something else, I used it every day and it was working fine. The problem was that the A6 Hobonichi doesn’t have a weekly layout, and I realized that I was forgetting things.  I needed to have that weekly view of my time. I stopped using it in July and changed it for a Day Designer planner that I bought at Target for $12. The Day Designer has a day on one page but I ran into the same problem, the lack of a weekly view doesn’t work for me. Especially for work!

I absolutely love the Hobonichi techo  planner! Towards the end of last month, I started using my hobonichi more consistently again. After all, it always worked for me as a planner, except not for work. I continued using it as a diary or journal, to keep track of things and to note down reminders or things that I didn’t want to forget. It kind of became my on the go planner/notebook/journal. I carry it back and forth between work and home.

With the new year coming and the fact that Hobonichis are yearly planners I started thinking about what planner(s) I will be using next year. One thing I know is that I don’t want to use multiple planners because I find myself losing information or not remembering where I wrote certain things down. Right now, I have too many things to remember and my mind has no more storage space, so I decided that I need only ONE PLANNER.

After much thinking and even considering buying a set of DIYFish inserts, I also thought of buying a set of Franklin Covey inserts for my Franklin Covey planner which has huge rings. I want to have a planner that has enough space to have a weekly, monthly and daily overview, and I thought that the Franklin Covey planners could be a great option. After looking into which one to buy I couldn’t decide. Mostly, I think I am tired of using ring planners. It is not working for me because I don’t have time to be setting it up, changing the pages, perforating inserts and so on. Even if I buy pre-made inserts I still don’t see myself feeling as productive as I do with a bound planner.

This said, this year I went ahead and bought ALL THREE sizes of the Hobonichi techo 2017! Yes, all three sizes! I will be downsizing this coming year and I don’t want to keep jumping from notebook to notebook or planner to planner, I find myself losing things and also losing inspiration to continue using either my journals or notebooks. The hobonichi planner is the one book that I actually use every day because I love everything about it. The paper is fantastic, the layout, the flexibility and how quirky it is.

In conclusion, after using probably most planners out there in the market, after using ring planners for many many years and especially, using a hobonichi book for one year, I have realized that I am a hobonichi person! Just because right now, this planner seems to be the one I am most excited about using, even after suspending its use for work for a month or two I still went back and continued using it for different things. I couldn’t give it up.

So for for now, I have sold many of the planners that I had and kept my most loved binders, the ones I continue using for different purposes. I won’t be buying new ring bound planners, just because even this week I realized how little I use the day designer and how little I like it. I have kept three Filofax binders, the ones I absolutely love and use for other things, I have two Franklin Covey planners that I want to have because of the size of the rings, I have two traveler’s notebooks – one large and one field notes size – and my hobonichis. I use the Martha Stewart notebooks for various uses for work.

2017 will be a one planner for all year, I have no idea how it will go but I am willing to try, in fact, I can’t wait to try. My hope is that one book will house my different lists, tasks and notes and that I will stop losing notes just because I can’t remember where I wrote them down!

What are your planner plans for 2017? Have you bought your 2017 planner or have you decided which one you will be using?

I’d love to hear so please leave me a comment with your thoughts!

Happy plans!

Em Jorden

 

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Having multiple planners – Effective or confusing?

If you read my blog – thanks so much if you do – you will notice that I haven’t posted much lately, and the reason is simple. I am reaching the point where I am reassessing my planning system and how I want to go forward from here on.

I use multiple planners like many of you, for so long I thought that this system was working for me, using a planner for my home management, another for work, another for journaling and also another planner for my personal stuff. It did work, for many months it worked. Now, half way through 2016 I am finding myself feeling overwhelmed with so many planners and I am starting to question whether having just one or two planners should actually be enough.

If I had to choose only a planner or two I think I would use my hobonichi, and my A5 Filofax ring planner, or maybe my day designer. fI do see no that having multiple planners can be ineffective because I forget things or I can’t remember in which planner I wrote them down! That defeats the purpose of having a planner.

For now, I am still pondering my options and what is it that I will be doing, but for now I am leaning towards considering having a planner or two. Anyway, stay tuned fore more news on how the second half of the year goes by with the dilemmas of planner systems.

How’s your half of the year going so far and how’s your planning system working for you?

Do let me know, I’d love to know!

Thank you for reading!

Em J

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