18 February 2010

Mrs. Merl's "Must-Haves"

I want to introduce a new feature to my blog. Hopefully, one that will help me to post more often and get rolling with getting more wonderful information and ideas out there for people to consider. It will be "Mrs. Merl's Must-Haves!" There are so many great things out there. Some that are obvious and some that are less obvious. Many things I feel like I can hardly live without and some that are just those luxuries that we feel like we can't live without. Some things are extremely inexpensive and some maybe not so inexpensive. Some you can buy, some you might be able to make. Who knows what we "Must-Have." One of my absolute "Must-Haves" is a planner. Yeah, I know most people use their cell phones for this today. I have to say, for me, there is nothing like sitting down in the morning with a cup of tea and getting an idea of the day before me; written out by my own hand in a lovely book of real paper. I feel more calm using a planner than when I have ever used an electronic version. This year, I splurged on a planner. I figured if it was something I would use the whole year and if it was going to help me maintain my sanity it should be one I loved! I happened to purchase one from Hoffman Media, the company that publishes the ladies periodical "Victoria." Special Note: Most planners are now on SALE for HALF OFF! So it is the perfect time to pick one up and try it out!! In fact, the one I have is a great deal at half off and with free shipping...add to your bliss!

Some of my absolute musts for planner include:

  • A large area to write on each day
  • Being able to see my week at a glance
  • Good paper quality
  • Inspiring ephemera (you can add this to a plain planner if you can't find the perfect one!)
  • A binding style that will last the whole year
Just make sure you open planners up and look at them. Some of them have such poor layouts, I am not sure what they are supposed to be organizing. Check several out and really think about what you do in a day, a week, a month. What do you need to write down and remember? Do you only have big events that you plan? Do you write out plans for each day like I do? Really assess your personal needs. Then grab the one that calls to you!! Then make it your best friend and get yourself planning!

Special Addition!
To really enhance my planning, I created a planner cover to protect it through the year and bought a great pen as a companion for my planner. It really adds a touch of personal expression and personalizes the whole process!
The cover has a little special pizazz!
And a place to hold my special pen!!


  1. as always, i'm happy to see a new post on here - and i think this is a great idea. i always like a peek into other people's preferences and helpful hints. i've been getting planners for free through a friend who did mary kay (gag), they had the perfect layout for those of us that freelance and must know every second of every day plus the big picture. this year, however, i "hacked" my own out of an artist's book. a lot of people hack moleskine's, but they're pricey - so i got a bigger version of plain paper, cut up a tiny calender for my monthly views, hand-drew hundreds of lines for my weekly views, and left lots of blank pages for info, inspirations (recipes, quotes, phone numbers), etc. i thought having a journal of sorts would be a good idea during this year, given the circumstances (c: so far so good. i can't settle on a pen yet, still searching for my favorite. -jenn.

  2. This is such a wonderful post Stephanie!!! I love that you made your own cover!!! You're so crafty!!! I must say, if I don't know exactly what I have going on for the next few weeks I don't feel right... and it bugs me till I figure it out!!! Thanks for the wonderful post!!