Friday, December 23, 2016

Create Your Own Custom Day Planner

Create Your Own Custom Day Planner

I've bought dozens of different types of Day Planners. I've found a few that I like (In the Leafy Treetops has been one of my fav's). But I really struggle finding one that doesn't have loads of stuff I don't use, is the wrong size, or is too expensive.

For 2017 I googled "how to make your own day planner" and found several articles that aided me in my attempt to try something new and design my own, with pages that fit my specific work and home needs. It's nowhere near as cute as the ILT planners, or as professional looking as a Franklin, but it's functional and it's specific without a bunch of stuff I'll never use and it only cost me about $20. Not to mention it could be a lot cuter if I wanted to take the time to design it that way, I'm just not that patient.

What I need from a planner:

I'm a mom, a writer, and a Sunday School teacher. I have meals to plan, activities to chauffeur, book events to attend, writing targets/deadlines to make, and lessons to prepare. I have marketing to do, bills and budgets to balance, and scriptures to study. I have a house to clean and a husband to date:). I need a way to see my week (and month at a glance) to make sure I hit my goals and keep my priorities in order.

Since this is my first attempt, I'm sure I'll be keeping notes on things I want to include/not include when I design next year's planner. Here's the basic rundown of what I made for this year.

For the cover (top left), I bought an image off Shutterstock for an event I spoke at. It made me think of reaching for higher things so I used it here as well. I then topped it with a quote from one of my favorite movies, We Bought a Zoo, "If you do something for the right reasons, nothing can stop you." (I have an amazing friend who is talented with lettering and asked her to write this along with a few other favorite quotes for me.)

On the first page I have this quote:
Since my goals for this year are going to require a lot of courage I thought this was a good way to start.

My next page is a picture of my family, my number one priority, followed by a page containing my personal mission statement.

Each month starts with a quote on the left and a place to write inspiration or notes on the right (bottom right), followed by a goals page and a calendar (bottom left). I needed a place that showed me important events for the month and my marketing schedule, along with a full calendar to see at a glance.

My weekly pages (bottom middle) are specific to my day-to-day.
On the left is a column listing weekly tasks and goals, along with a spot for me to write how many hours to work on writing, marketing, research, and study, all with check boxes.
At the bottom of each day is a check-list for daily tasks. At the bottom right of the week is a space to write events or things to remember for that week.

At the back of the planner I included pages to write in birthdays and important notes.

I created everything in Microsoft Publisher and saved each page as a JPEG image.

Then I went to a photo book site that you can find 40% off coupons for all the time online, and created my planner with their online tool called BookWright.

What I liked about this is you can choose what size you want to make it, either a "trade magazine" which is about 8 1/2 by 11, or a 6x9 "paperback" photo book.

In BookWright you'll upload your pages and organize how you want. Create a cover and be as creative as you want. When designing your pages prior to upload you can add as much background or photos as you want, it won't affect the price. Just a word of caution, look at the size requirements for the book you are creating so when you make your pages you can create them that size, otherwise when you upload the images may be fuzzy.

The final cost will be dependent on how many pages you make your planner.

Once your pages are all uploaded, and your cover how you want it, you can save and purchase. It takes about a week to get it.

I wanted the functionality of a spiral binding so once I got my planner in the mail I went to our local print shop and had them do the spiral binding. It cost me $2.50.

It's definitely not the easy route to go this way. It took a few hours to design and upload. So this is probably not the way to go if you want something quick.

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