For as long as I can remember, I have LOVED all things organization. I used to create charts for my family as a child—these mostly had to do with family devotionals. Little Miss Super Spiritual here. I have always loved pens of all kinds and colors. One of my favorite things about having books is the ability to write in them. That was always something that made me sad about using iBooks for my reads. I wanted to physically use pretty pens to make notes. I could honestly spend lots of money on planners and such. However, for me, I’ve never quite found the right one for me. Each one had different features that I liked but never altogether. The one I was using a cute yellow + white stripe planner by BlueSky that I bought at Target. I have pinned so many different calendars and planners. I found great printable options on Esty or Pinterest (HERE AND HERE) but again not everything I wanted in one place. Not too long ago, I found a pin (and this one) about turning a Moleskine journal into a calendar. You had me at Moleskine. You see, those are my go to journals. I absolutely love writing on graph paper. I have no idea why. Maybe someone could physco analyze me about that one. It seriously makes me happy. For years, that journal has been my go-to for thoughts, scripture, & prayers. I am not much of a DIY gal. I have the ideas but I would much rather have someone else make it for me. That may be the perfectionist in me—I don’t like doing something that I might fail or be imperfect the first time. My husband on the other hand, desires excellence, but he enjoys the process of figuring it out. That’s why we make a good team. I can make him to do all the work ;-)
However, with this project, I knew I wanted to tackle it myself. I wanted to give it a try. I read over Kyla Roma's post about how to create your own planner out of a Moleskine journal. Then, I started figuring out the logistics. I took out my current journal and started drawing things in the back. I landed on what I really wanted and then realized that my journal wasn’t big enough. Whomp, Whomp. I should have done the math before purchasing and opening the new Moleskine journal. Based on my window of time to complete this project, I decided to create a 6 month planner so that I could use the Moleskine journal that I already purchased. I bought my last planner back in July when school started and I kind of loved getting to begin a “clean slate” in July so I can look forward to that in 6 months.
Here is the breakdown of my journal…
- Large squared Moleskine journal
- Pen (I used the fine point black sharpie)
- Ruler with a straight edge
- Coffee, wine or drink of choice
- Pandora or Spoifty
Here's what I have in my planner plus how to make each section. I apologize if this tutorial sounds wordy and confusing. I should probably update with a video tutorial. No hate :-)
MONTHLY: I have a monthly calendar. The monthly calendar spreads across 2 journal pages.
HOW TO CREATE THE MONTHLY PAGES
I left the first page of the journal blank. That way I could begin with two pages facing each other. From the top line, count 6 points down. Draw your line across both pages. Next count down 26 points from your line. From there, draw a line across both pages. Now, count over 8 points from the top line and draw a line down connecting the lines. Count over 7 points and draw a line down. Count over 7 points and draw a line down. Count over 8 points and draw a line down (this will cross over the middle of the journal). Count over 7 points and draw a line down. Count over 7 points and draw a line down. Next, create your horizontal lines. Count down 5 points from the top line. You will do this 4 times until you reach the bottom-line. I added little Post-it tabs to each month to make it easy to flip through.
WEEKLY: Then, I break it down weekly. The weekly pages spread across 2 journal pages. I left space at the bottom of each page to write notes or make lists.
HOW TO CREATE WEEKLY PAGES
The weekly dimensions are similar to the monthly ones. Start by counting down 6 points from the top point of the page. Draw your line across both pages. Next count down 26 points from your line. From there, draw a line across both pages. I decided to add a 2 square space to write the date so I drew a line across both pages at that point. Now, count across 9 points and draw a vertical line down to the other horizontal line. You will count across 9 points 4 more times. The spine of the journal should naturally separate Wednesday from Thursday (no need to draw a line). For Sunday, count down 12 lines in the Saturday column and draw a line across to the edge of the page. If you want the 2 square space for the date, then add that to Sunday as well.
MEAL PLANNING: Then, I have a page for the weekly meal plan. It has helped me significantly to plan out breakfast, lunch, and dinner for all family members. For whatever reason, I have a hard time packing lunches the night before school so I have found that if I know ahead of time what I want to pack, it cuts down the time significantly. Granted, I’m only packing two lunches but it does speed up the process for me. At the bottom of that page, I have a space for my shopping list. I am a total list maker. I wanted to keep all of my lists in one place rather than making my shopping lists on a separate piece of paper which eventually end up trashing my purse. This way, I can look back as I meal plan and use ideas from weeks past.
HOW TO CREATE MEAL PLAN PAGE
Count down 4 points from the top of the journal. Draw a horizontal line. Next count down 21 points from that line and draw another horizontal line. Remember you are just working on one page not two. For your vertical lines, the first line begins at point 3 from the left. The next one is 7 points from there and the last is another 8 points. The spine will be a natural line for you. Now let’s work on the horizontal lines. There are 3 squares for each row. You will repeat this until you get to your bottom line. This will leave plenty of space at the bottom for a shopping list.
BLOG CALENDAR: The final page for each week is my blog editorial calendar. I am a planner…hence why I love daily planners. No shock there. That means, that I function best when I have a plan. It is great to be able to write down ideas or topics, what needs to happen next and see the progress. I took inspiration from HERE.
I would have liked to include 2-4 black pages for each week or month for space to process ideas but just didn't have enough pages in my journal.
HOW TO CREATE AN EDITORIAL BLOG CALENDAR PAGE
Count down 4 points from the top of the journal. Draw a horizontal line. Next count down 30 points from your line and draw a horizontal line. You will have 5 rows across—each have 6 squares. Count out those squares and draw lines. Count from the spine, 4 points and draw a vertical line down to your bottom line. Your next column is 7 points from there. Repeat that one more time.
As you get going, you will definitely develop a rhythm and it will go faster. It was fun to play around with what I wanted and figure out exactly how to make it work.
I am pleased with the overall look and feel of this planner. My heart beats wildly at the squared paper. And I really like that it fits nicely in my purse. It makes it easy to take grocery shopping. The drawback is that you have to do it yourself. Moleskine does have a planner journal but again it wasn’t exactly what I needed. This project took me a couple of days to complete. It is tedious work—measuring, counting, drawing—but it was kind of a nice change of pace for me. I just put a little Jesus Culture on in the background and went to work.