I love being able to buy a dot grid journal a month or more before I need it for the month so that I can spend that time slowly working on the set-up of said journal, turning it into my planner, my hybrid-bujo.
Above is a picture of my Beechmore Books dot grid journal. (Not an affiliate link–just a basic plain old link to the product–or at least a similar product of theirs because the one linked is not the one I bought, but it is the one I found.) It was simply a very basic little planner/journal thing. Lovely paper. Dotted pages. Faux leather.
Then–I had to add more pages– 1 because I wanted to add some color and 2 because I needed more pages. I had found my stash of Christmas scrapbooking paper from last year…and I cut pieces to size…I ended up tipping in about twenty sheets or more of scrapbooking paper into this journal–which also meant I had to cut the spine to open it up in order to accommodate the forty-plus new pages.
At least with this journal that was the easy part. I guess I didn’t take any pictures of the sisal-esque ribbon I used to cover the spine (two layers of it) — but it is working well thus far on the journal.
I did mean tot take pictures of my very minimal spreads before I started to decorate and before i added the scrapbooking pages…alas, I guess I forgot–in my enthusiasm to get on with things and get the book ready for the month of December. I still have pages to fill out yet, but I have the majority of what I need there.
The planner starts out with a “Yay, it’s December” page. Nothing fancy. A little washi tape here and there.
Next is my monthly lay-out, along with spaces for my monthly focus, monthly word, monthly Tarot card, and weekly themes…which I do not think I have spoken yet here about those. Hopefully I will before the end of this week. Although it is already Wednesday and I am just getting started so…we’ll see how it goes, eh?
The next two pages are my Days To Remember spread and then my monthly quote (which I have not done yet). Days to remember are, yes, the same days/events/appointments/etc that I wrote on the monthly…only I wrote them out again on this page in a list form–why? Because sometimes checking the list is faster for me than checking the monthly–and yet–I need both. I get worse. I now have weekly spreads every week as well–and I write the same events/etc all over again there…and I also write said events on their appropriate daily pages as well. Why? So I do not forget them. And so when I call about the dog’s vet appointment and the lady on the phone tells me my appointment was at 11:30am and not the 1pm when I arrived–I have a vast quantity of material to check and double-check before I gently correct her (without an apology for the mix-up from her at all–ahem…I digress…)
Next is my single page One Word A Day Spread–this is the second month I am doing this–and I am actually enjoying it much more than I thought I would. When I tried it last month I had originally thought I would get tired of it and need to switch to at least a sentence or three by this month. Nope. One word a day is perfect.
The next spread has added sheets to it (tip-ins) and it’s for listing self-care practices. The spread is there–the practices I am still filling in.
Next is a two-page spread of Tarot card pulls…one Tarot card for every day.
Two two-day spreads for gratitude–and I am figuring that I will have to tip-in pages again this month as well. I do not limit myself when I write things I am grateful for…and I never have only a single thing to write down each day.
A Two-page spread called ‘Things To Learn About’ for both my youngest and for me.
With a tip-in, I have three pages of meal planning–a page for dinners, a page for breakfasts, and a page divided up for Yule and for Christmas. I prefer to keep a running list of ideas for dinner that we can whip up quickly because there are some days I just cannot eat what I thought I was going to cook for that day.
I started out with a two-page spread for my habit tracker, added two tip-ins and now have six pages. This month I used a stamp to create my mini-calendars to use to track things–and they took up a lot more room than my hand-drawn ones–although I like these stamped ones better because they are more visible and much clearer. I have also added some new things to track this month–I found out that tracking things this way is the best way for me to keep up with things…I like it.
Next two pages are my ‘to-do’, one page for business and one page for the house. This is where I make a detailed list of to-dos. Where I write down the teeniest tiniest step possible so that I can accomplish that one little thing, mark it off my list and as I go along those tiny things add up into huge results.
My favorite two pages are next: one for journaling prompts and one for writing prompts, just in case I need ideas throughout the month. I normally pull these prompts off of Pinterest. No one account. I do a search for whatever topic I am looking for…and seriously, one search is for ‘journal prompts’ and the other one is for ‘writing prompts’, so it’s not like I am digging for gold to find these things or anything.
I have a two-page spread for intentions for the month, which includes a spot to write out my core desired feelings for the month.
This month I took my ‘every day magic’ spread down to two pages and I plan to use ideas formed around the concept of ‘Coorie’, which basically is the Scottish form of hygge (which is Danish)…and here in this house our youngest is extremely proud of his Scottish heritage and anything Scottish is beyond the pale…and so we must have coorie instead of hygge. (You can read a little about coorie here, again, not an affiliate link. Just an article the boy and I read together.) Yet another spread I ned to fill in here.
Next I have a tip-in so I know this is where my actual month starts for writing daily bits. I used one of the blank pages to write some notes for my actual journal for next month (yes, already)…and then turn the page to the first double-page weekly spread…and then we go on to the dailies. I need two pages for each day. I added tip-ins for relevant days so I would remember holidays (like the Feast of St. Nicholas on the 6th, the Feast of St Lucia on the 13th)…for the New and the Full Moons I have the two-page daily and after that I have two pages set aside for the New/Full Moon so I can write, glue in collages, draw, whatever…I have the same two pages after the daily for the higher holidays (Yule, Christmas, so on).
I prefer to have my weeks begin on Monday…and so my weeks end on Sunday. After the Sunday dailies, I have two pages set aside for weekly reflections on one page and then the other page is for the coming week, with a weekly focus, weekly word, weekly Tarot card.
The page after that is set aside for the weekly quote, which usually coincides and/or expands upon the monthly quote. Then I tip in a page to designate the new week…and the page after is blank. After that we start our week over–the weekly spread, the daily pages, etc etc.
Towards the end of the book, after all the daily pages are complete, I have a two-page spread for monthly reflections, with a tip-in. Next is a two-page spread to create a farewell to December…and I thought it apropos to leave the next two pages to do a farewell to 2020 entirely. Next comes a two-page spread, with a tip-in, for the year-end reflections.
After that, there were fourteen pages left to the journal…and I needed them for holiday planning. Each two-page spread holds a holiday…and there are three tip-ins from there to the end of the book, the last one mostly for decoration. We are celebrating this year the Feast of St Nicholas, the Feast of St Lucia, Yule and Winter Solstice, Jolabbokaflod (it’s Icelandic, I know) and Christmas Eve, Christmas Day (which due to the nature of extended family gifts has four pages), and Boxing Day. And that brings us to the last page…and then the pocket in the back of the journal (it came that way…and has an elastic band to keep it closed as well. My only real problem with this journal is that that elastic band is too close to the color of the journal and I can’t see it when I reach for the journal–which is not all that much of a hardship at all.
I do have more to say about next month’s journal…but it is as yet still in the planning stages. You will be hearing more about that.
And there will be more pictures next time.
Leave any questions of comments below. Thank you.