One of my aspirations for the year 2019 is to learn more about myself. I’m learning the importance of understanding my strengths, challenge areas, tendencies, and dispositions and how those influence the key aspects of my life. Discovering what I’m made of has been both a humbling and fun experience, and it has brought clarity to many of my interests and aversions. Today we’re chatting about my interest in planning and organization (Any Enneagram 4s and 1s out there?) and the products I’ve counted on to nurture my orderly soul in the most fun ways!
Many of you know about my undying love for Bloom planners. I discovered their product line of organization supplies just before starting graduate school and have been hooked since! I started out with a simple undated planner (great for making to-do lists) before giving their Daily Planner and Vision Planner a spin. I discovered that my organization needs and interests are best met with the Daily Planner, though I will go into detail about all the products I’ve purchased and used. One of my favorite things about Bloom is that it not only contributes to my life as a student but also in my roles as a wife, writer, reader, and creative soul. So whether that’s you or a friend or family member, keep reading and head on over to Bloom’s website to check it all out!
First and foremost, let’s talk about the free stuff. Bloom gives access to free resources (organization templates, wallpapers, pre-designed to-do lists) for those who sign up with them, which is also absolutely free. ALL of my devices have a Bloom wallpaper set as the background. The designs are colorful, intricate, and nice for adding artistic enjoyment to our often mechanical interactions with our devices. The organization templates and pre-made to-do lists have made me feel less like a hamster running mad in its wheel as I prepare to tackle writing projects and a weekend out of town (Yes. YES. There is a life-saving packing list template that is just a download away!). These resources have brought a lot of structured fun and helped me slow down long enough to get my thoughts and needs on paper. Always a plus for an overactive mind.
The Vision Planner and Daily Planner are my student life OGs. Both are great, though I will say Bloom really captures the fullness of the term “Vision” in their Vision Planner. One of the unique qualities about this dated planner is its monthly vision page. There are eight boxes for you to pen your monthly goals in the area of personal growth, relationships, family and home, etc. In conjunction with those monthly goals is a page for documenting the week-by-week steps you plan to take to make those goals happen. The Vision Planner is among the more spacious planners, and let’s face it, spread-out calendars are just the best. I purchased the Vision Planner for the year 2018 and enjoyed seeing the aspects of goal-setting and bringing a vision to life that I hadn’t thought of prior. It really helps slow down the fast-pacedness of completing rushing through a to-do list and moving on to the next thing. I highly recommend this planner for visionaries and detail-oriented goal setters. I personally found myself drawn to the features it shares with the Daily Planner, which has come to be my Tried and True.
The Daily Planner does a great job at keeping me afloat and rocking my world. I’ve tried both the soft and hard cover and will say that decision is strictly based on preference. Both are extremely durable and have survived the tossing and turning of being thrown into my backpack and taken on a wild ride of evening/all-day classes. The Daily Planner is extremely straight forward; think your typical calendar planner, then slap on an artistically professional design as the front and back covers. One of my favorite things about Bloom planners is that the designs are timeless and designed for organizers of all ages. They also have gender-neutral planners with impressive designs, which beats having to go with a simple bleh-black planner because selection is scarce (Unless bleh-black is your thing. Then by all means…).
Now, on from the planners and onto the most recent favorites in my home. The first is Bloom’s Grocery List Planning Pad. I’ve used this every week since I got it, and it helps a ton since my husband and I have a specific time allotted for sitting down and making a grocery list. There are sixty sheets, so if you go grocery shopping every week, then you’re set with a pre-made list for over a year! Holla! My favorite thing about the Grocery List Pad is that it sticks right to your fridge; there are two magnets on the back, and in the six months I’ve used mine, they have yet to give way. This product has my husband’s utmost approval; that and the Magnetic Bookmarks, which makes me laugh because they are designed with pinks, purples, and cutesy designs. He’s all for the practicality of them, which I agree has changed the game in my life as an avid reader and graduate student. They’re essentially thin folding magnets that sandwich your pages like an alligator. Just snap it on or slide it off and voila! I have fun placing them along the top, side, and bottom of the pages; no two of my books are bookmarked the same! Careful not to be too rough with thin pages. As with the Grocery List Pad, the magnets are solid, so place the bookmark along the middle of the edge of the page to avoid tearing. My favorite thing about the Magnetic Bookmarks is how weighted they are. I’ll often use one even while I’m reading to avoid the back and forth battle of last-read pages giving way to the weight of the book. This is particularly helpful when I’m in the beginning and end chapters of a book.
My final life-saving Bloom product is the line of one-inch binders. When I first started grad school, I was replacing my binders after every semester. Truth be told, I needed a binder with some durability and backbone, but the trade-off was less quality binders that fit all my class documents in one place. This eventually didn’t work for me in the long haul, so I decided to give Bloom’s one-inch binders a spin. That meant using a binder for each class, which was my initial hesitancy, but I quickly developed a preference for having my classes separated this way, especially since I knew I was carrying the subject materials I needed and no excess. The binders are halfway through their second semester and holding up just fine; I don’t anticipate them giving way, and to say the designs are stinkin’ cute is an understatement. That’s pretty much a given with Bloom products: darlin’ and durable.
As far as accessories go, Bloom’s weighted ink pen is easily my #1. The planner stickers add fun and creativity to the grueling work of getting details planned and worked out, and the Belief Cards are a special way to encourage yourself and those in your sphere of influence. I stopped by my former coworker’s office last week and saw the card I’d gifted her months ago still taped to her computer monitor! Check out my post on how I use Bloom’s Belief Cards on the Bloom Blog, and peruse the products above while you’re at it!Happy planning!