I like to think I have a pretty good memory. I’ve never really had a strong need for a personal planner, calendar, etc. But I have to admit, the idea of having a baby and trying to remember a million different things at once is scary. Yes, there are apps that will help you remember when you last breastfed or that your seemingly endless stock of baby wipes has disappeared overnight and you need to buy more. But none of these apps seem to be all-encompassing. I love to do things on mobile, but I don’t like having to skip around to 30 different apps that all specialize in something different. That’s why ultimately I decided it was best to put pen to paper with a trusty custom personal planner. But if you’re going to invest in a personal planner, go big or go home is my philosophy. I didn’t want to run out to the nearest Staples and pick up a generic notebook. I wanted a fully customizable one that I would actually get some use out of. You know, one I would be bummed if I lost.
Meet Your Personal Planner
If you’ve never heard of this website, Personal Planner allows you fully customize a planner that will meet your specific needs. It is a personal planner after all. It should be personalizable. In a nutshell, you can pick from a variety of sizes and then walk through the process of customizing. The customization options include things like colors, design, starting and ending months, personal dates, format, etc. I’ll talk more about all the bells and whistles when I show you what I did with mine, but just know that there is likely an option for anything you want to add.
How It Works And What You’ll Get
Designing this thing is not a quick process. I mean it totally can be. But if you’re like me and it takes you ten minutes to decide if you want ruled or unruled, then plan to invest a half hour or so.
Starting off with something fairly easy, you’ll get to pick the size you want. They start at mini and go all the way up to A5. For reference, I got the A5 and think it’s the perfect size. 5.8″x8.3″, or roughly a standard letter-sized sheet folded in half.
You’ll pick your cover design, color, pattern, text, and starting and ending months. If you want to upload your own picture you can do that. Or you can pick from a variety of fun quotes. There are a lot of options here and you can check out the website to see everything. I went with a bird drawing because I thought it was cute.
Here’s where you can pick how you want the days of the week laid out, stripes or no stripes, holidays, and personal dates. As you can see, I added our little girl’s due date. You can also take it a step further by adding icons for weather and logging your workouts. And at the bottom, you will be able to add modules. There is a list you can pick from including things like to dos, exams, food, ideas, preschool, workout, etc. For mine, I chose a general to do list, dinners, and a blank section.
For extra organization, you can customize the pages in the back of your planner. Choose from things like yearly overview, squared pages, ruled pages, sheets of music, maps, address list, coloring book, or blank pages. I chose the yearly overview, maps (because we love to travel), and ruled pages. The last step is an owner info page. Here’s where you put a cute little message that tells someone how to return it if it gets lost. After that you’re all done!
Tips on staying organized with a new baby
Using a planner is only half the battle. Here are some other ways to keep things in check as a new parent.
- Create a file folder for bills so they don’t pile up all over the house.
- Use websites like Pinterest to keep track of all your favorite recipes and parenting articles. Then you will always know where to find them. (Husbands: You’ll know she’s been on Pinterest when you start eating salads out of mason jars for dinner.)
- Spend 10 minutes each night preparing for the next day. Have everything ready to go and check for any appointments so you’ll start the day off on the right foot.
- Have a plan for dealing with clothes baby will outgrow. Whether you’ll be storing them, donating them, giving them to a pregnant friend, make sure you are prepared.
- Labels are your new best friend. Stock up before baby arrives and put them on everything – food, breastmilk, clothes, hangers, toy bins.
- Keep a checklist handy for any baby items you need for an outing. Then double check it before you leave to make sure you didn’t miss anything.
- Continuously make sure the nursery is laid out appropriately. The diaper pail should be within arm’s reach of the changing area and the books go by the rocking chair.
- You’re going to have a million adorable new baby pictures on your phone and camera. Decide where you will store the collection you amass. Dropbox is a classic choice. Try out Lifecake for a fun timeline of your baby’s memories.
- And if you do use a personal planner or organizer, make sure you have it when you need it. Keep it in your purse, the diaper bag, or on a nightstand. Somewhere easily accessible.
For all those parents out there looking for a way to get organized, personal-planner.com has offered to give away one of their customizable personal planners. You’ll get to the pick the size and do all the fun personalization. Enter below to win!