My Paper Planner Brand Reviews & Opinions
I am a passionate planner! Previously, I would purchase those cheap planners from the grocery store. Being able to write everything down in one place, like appointments and to do lists etc., was so useful. I loved it! After a few years using grocery store paper planners, my sister bought me an Erin Condren planner as an anniversary gift. I was so thankful! I had, I think, two more EC planners after that. Then, I found out that Michaels craft store created a Recollections brand planner that was almost identical to the Erin Condren planner. Yet, it was half the price plus Michaels frequently has high-value coupons available to use on the planners. I think I paid $18 for my Recollections planner. That price point was amazing compared to Erin Condren’s $60-$70 planners.
Mainly though, my decision to switch was influenced by EC’s lack of customer service and quality control. The year I made the switch to Recollections planners. I saw post after post in an EC Facebook group of members receiving their new EC planners with lousy mistakes. When they contacted EC, they were essentially told to just deal with it! Their planner had missing pages, duplicate months, grainy photo covers… These planners cost around $70 each! Nevertheless, the company was not jumping at the opportunity to fix their mistakes. I have heard their customer service and quality control has improved since then but that had turned me off from the company.
Then, I came across issues with my trusty Recollections brand!
I was content purchasing the inexpensive Recollections planner until recently. The other day I took a trip to my local Michaels store to pick up a new planner for next year. I looked back in September even (so I figured I had a few months in my old planner still). I wanted to pick one out early. In the store, the planners were picked over. There were hardly any medium sized planners left! On top of that, there were only vertical layout planners left. All of the covers I was interested in (when I looked online) were sold out in store. I was severely disappointed… I went online to see if I could locate one I wanted at a different Michaels location. It turns out they were sold out everywhere near me and many were even sold out online.
I guess the word had gotten around about the amazing, inexpensive Recollections planners… I currently do not have a planner for next year. Actually, I am open to suggestions! I don’t mind spending a little more for a good planner when I plan to use it for a whole year. Please comment down below if you have a paper planner suggestion.
My Favorite Electronic Planner
I have tried to use the calendar app on my phone. I even tried a mixture of the calendar app, reminder app, and notes app to take care of all of my planning and organizational needs. While those apps seem to cover every aspect I would need, I still felt like something was lacking. That is until I came across:
I had followed the blogger, Kayse Pratt, for some time and subscribed to her intentional mom kit (meal plans, cleaning schedules, etc.). She recently rebranded though. Her new website is called The Anchored Women and the Facebook group changed its name to The Anchored Women Community. The group definitely is sprinkled with religion. That doesn’t bother me but I just want others to be aware if they look into it. Anyway, I had followed her for some time before I came across her electronic home organization class. I RAN to that class when I saw it available! I love planning!
This wasn’t the first time I had heard about Trello. Different blogging Facebook groups had mentioned Trello before. It was mentioned how it was such a great organizational tool. I believe I had even downloaded it at one point. However, none of it made sense to me. I did not understand how it could work for organization.
After watching Kayse Pratt’s videos, I saw it all come together! It was wonderful to be able to see how to use this tool step by step. In her videos, she showed all of her boards and lists. Not only that, but she also showed what each button did and exactly how to use everything. It was impressive! My organizing and planning were going to change forever! I now tell everyone I can about Trello. When my mom friends say they’re stressed or complain to me about forgetting appointments, I tell them all about Trello!
Like, “Oh gosh! This new app I found is the only thing that saves my butt. It’s called Trello!” If interested, I explain. I could talk about planning and organizing all day… If they don’t care for it though, I’m not going to push it on someone. But I figure it doesn’t hurt to offer the information. I wish someone would have told me about it sooner! In real life, I don’t know anyone who shares my love of planning though…
I highly recommend Kayse Pratt’s class! It’s free!
Here is a link to Kayse Pratt’s video class in case you want to check it out: LINK. Otherwise, you can download Trello on your phone as an app. There’s even an app for Windows 10 on my laptop. Access is also available online though. If you just want a couple quicker videos on Trello, I’m sure there are some quick YouTube videos you could find.
The thing that sets Trello apart from any other option is 1) how customizable it is. There is literally no limits with it. And 2) that you can easily share certain boards on your Trello with certain people, perhaps your spouse for example. I choose to share my Family Schedule board and my Meal Plans board with my spouse. That way we can save time communicating about “What’s for dinner today?” or “What’s on the agenda for today?”
My Thoughts on the Paper vs. Computer Planner Debate
So I have a paper planner… and YES! I do love using Trello still. That probably sums up my verdict on this debate… I am someone who uses both forms of planning to stay organized.
It is important to me to use an electronic planning tool because that is something I can always carry with me. Meaning when I am at a doctors office trying to schedule another appointment, I can check on my phone and have my whole schedule in front of me. I never remember to bring my paper planner with me, nor do I really want to lug that thing around in my bag.
However… Sometimes it is SO nice to sit down and jot everything down on paper! Some may also refer to it as a “brain dump!” There are just certain things that need to be worked out on paper. I also just like to look at the overview of my month or year on a paper calendar. It’s difficult to get a good overview on a phone screen.
I’d love to hear from you on this subject! If you are into planning, what tools do you use? What are your favorite brands of planners? Do you have any tips for me? What about any tips for beginners? Please leave a comment and share your thoughts below!
And again, thanks for reading!
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