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Friday, March 31, 2017

Journaling and Planning: March 2017 update

Wow, the first quarter of the year was quite a crazy time for me!

For disclaimers about how I personally use this Journal/Planner system, please refer to these previous posts: December review (evolution of a Quilter's PlannerNovember reviewOctober review, September review.

January started strong with planning, lists and other tracking activity... and by the end of the month I was totally overwhelmed and rarely doing much in my Quilter's Planner...

February was still crazy and I didn't do any tracking at all...

That's the beauty of the disc bound system that I used to transform my Quilter's planner: empty pages are bothering me? I just take them out, and they are gone without traces :)
Since I am manually numbering the pages for my index system, none will ever know what happened... well, you now know, but that's different :)

So in March I decided to get back into the planning and tracking routine... with no pressure but some commitment to a Ketchup month :) :) :)

Below you can see the daily tracker (quite sparse, but not too sparse), the Free Motion Daily Doodle spread, the weekly/monthly todos, the week-by-week daily activities (with the Weekly Specials recipes meals at the bottom), the "Doodle an Artist" spread and the Fitness Mandalas.
(click on each picture if you want to see them in more details)

This month, in my "Doodle an Artist" I picked Kara Walker, an African American artist that will be my inspiration for the piece I will make for the Art with Fabric Blog Hop (coming in May).

As usual I tried to "Steal like an Artist" and extract part of her pieces that spoke to me and that I will be able to use in my piece for the Blog Hop. In the meantime, if you are curious to see more about Kara Walker you can check this video  or this other video.

About the Fitness Mandalas, I have few notes:
In January I had a different idea on how to set this up: I was using each wedge as a day and the amount of decorations depended on the number of steps I took. Since I am not so consistent the Mandala looked pretty ugly at the end :)
Then I decided to use a color scale for each range of step count and then I draw the mandala designs on top: in this way the inconsistency is actually interesting because different colors add visual impact :) however I hated coloring the last days of the month because the circles were so big and coloring with pens is not very pleasant.
So for April I decided to use again color coding, but I will split the mandala in two: one half will be step count and the other half water intake (as tracked by my smart bottle). In this way it will be cheerful, visually appealing and not too difficult to draw/color.

Finally I added a spread to keep track of my Weekly Specials recipes.
I am not good at meal planning or meal prepping...
I am good at cooking and baking for events, but everyday cooking is just too much for me to deal with. So I decided that a good  mid point was to "force" myself to find two new things to make every week and then I can keep these recipes for future reference.
The things can be easy spread, hummus or other sauces or full meals or cakes or cookies or salad. Really anything new :)
With this method, from last January, I collected a good list of things that I cooked that I loved (especially the recipes with the Instant Pot), others that were just ok, and others that I totally hated :)
I don't want to write any of those recipes again since they are already in my planner, but I need a way to find them: so I designed the "If you don't try, you'll never know" (a quote from my favorite Disney Movie (The Sword in the Stone)

I am all set up for April: I changed up few things that I want to track, dropped some, added others: this is the beauty of this planning style, you can change it up to suit your mood and style!

If you have any question about my planner, my spreads, my comments, etc, don't hesitate to comment below. Also please share planning, tracking and productivity tips, as those are always welcome!!!!

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