Few things bring as much peace and joy to my heart as a new, clean planner, just waiting to bring order to the chaos of my life. While some moms prefer the convenience of digital planners on their phones, others, like myself, need to write, sticky-note, and bookmark on paper. To kickstart 2024 on a positive note, we’ve assembled a guide on what to consider when choosing your planner and handpicked three options that seamlessly blend functionality, versatility, and a touch of personal style.
What to Look For in a Planner
- Size – Consider how and where you will use your planner to determine the best size(s). If you want to keep track of a calendar only, then a pocket size might work, which is around 3.5 x 5.5 inches. If you want to include notes or have multiple daily appointments, then an A5 (5.8 x 8.3 inches) or Half-Letter (5.5 x 8.5 inches) offers more space while still compact enough to fit in a large purse or backpack. If you’d like to insert standard printer paper and have ample space for planning and note-taking, a Letter size of 8.5 x 11 inches offers the most convenient option, especially if this will live on your desk.
- Layout/Format – Choose a layout that complements your organizational needs and preferences. If you have lots of meetings or tasks in a day, then an hourly or daily layout offers a detailed breakdown. Weekly layouts provide a broader overview, while monthly layouts allow you to plan on a larger scale. Combining weekly and monthly layouts in one planner offers the best of both worlds. Also, look at horizontal vs vertical formats to identify the one that complements the natural flow of your thoughts and aligns with the structure of your schedule.
- Binding – The type of binding can significantly impact your planner’s functionality and durability. Spiral or disc bindings, commonly found in notebooks, allow the planner to lay flat for easy writing and note-taking. Stitched or sewn bindings provide a more polished and professional appearance while ensuring durability. If you prefer a sleek and classic look, opt for a bound planner with a hard or soft cover.
- Customization – Assess how much flexibility you need in adapting the planner to your unique planning style and daily routines. If you like simplicity, look for planners that keep it clean with space for the basics or that have built-in features like dedicated space for notes or habit trackers. Some people like planners that allow you to personalize your experience, whether it’s through removable pages, customizable covers, or additional inserts.
My Top 3 Planner Choices for 2024
- Happy Planner: The Happy Planner, designed by Me & My Big Ideas (MAMBI), offers users a unique blend of creativity and customization. With its disc-bound system, diverse designs, and various sizes, it caters to those seeking a personalized planning experience. Beyond a scheduling tool, the Happy Planner becomes a canvas for individual expression and organization.
- Disc-bound system, allowing users to effortlessly add, remove, and rearrange pages.
- Various sizes, layouts, and formats, catering to the diverse lifestyles of its users.
- The planners come in a variety of themes, patterns, and styles, catering to a broad range of tastes and preferences.
- In addition to planners, Happy Planner offers a comprehensive line of accessories including stickers, inserts, dividers, and more.
Where to Find It
- In Waco: JOANN Fabric and Crafts, Hobby Lobby, Michaels, Walmart
- Online: The Happy Planner
2. Agenda 52: Agenda 52 by The Paper Studio provides a a dynamic planning experience, catering to those who appreciate flexibility and individual expression. This planner line offers a spiral-bound format for those who appreciate ready-to-use simplicity and two sizes of binder-bound formats for ultimate customization. These planners, exclusive to Hobby Lobby, are known for their trendiness and well-designed appeal, as well as their affordability and the abundance of options for cute accessories.
- All formats include month-at-a-glance pages, divider tabs, and special pages at the start and end of each month.
- Mix & match covers and inserts for the binder-bound formats.
- Accessories galore, including stickers, pens, sticky notes, tabs, decorative pom-poms, notebooks, and so much more.
- If you choose the binder-bound format, be sure to grab the specialized hole-punch so you can insert your own pages as needed.
Where to Find It
- In Waco: Hobby Lobby
- Online: Hobby Lobby
3. Moleskin Planners: Moleskin Planners are the fusion of elegance and efficiency. The hard-bound format reflects the traditional Moleskin look, but this line added a unique spiral-bound format as well. Made by the Italian company known for form and function notebooks, these planners provide structured planning with a refined personal style.
- Premium quality paper ensures a smooth and enjoyable writing experience Moleskin is known for.
- A wide variety of sizes and layouts allow you to pick the right structure for your organizational style with ready-to-use convenience.
- Lie-flat design facilitates ease of use, ensuring a seamless and comfortable writing experience across the planner’s pages.
- Details such as rounded corners, elastic closure, and matching ribbon bookmark add elegant and functional touches.
Where to Find It
- In Waco: Target, Barnes & Noble
- Online: Moleskin
Remember, finding the perfect fit may require a little trial and error, but we hope we have provided some helpful guidelines when choosing your next planner! However you choose to get organized for the upcoming year – make it a good one!