BuJo Update: 2020 Reflections and 2021 Changes

Happy 2021, y’all!  Let’s do a bullet journal update.

And, yeah, I’m gonna pretend I didn’t just ghost this blog for months.

2020 Bujo Recap

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2020 saw me switch from an A5 Leuchtturm 1917, my preferred notebook since I started bujo in 2017, to a B6 size.  Initially, I did a notebook a month using custom notebooks from Good INKpressions.  However, the notebooks were coming from Spain and 2020 had a lot of unexpected issues come with it.  After April, it was just unsustainable to order from overseas and I switched to everyone’s favorite B6 — the Stalogy (not even mad about it, bro).

Other than the size swap, my monthly overview planning style stayed mostly the same.  What’s really gone bananas are my weekly and daily spreads — but more on those in a bit.  With that…on to 2021.

January Theme:

I’ve been basing my theme on whatever the Sweet Kawaii Design Monthly Subscription happens to be.  It’s announced two months in advance so it gives me some time to plan.  January’s theme was penguins and since I had a fair amount of penguin washi tape and stickers this worked out well.  I paired the penguins with some silver foil snowflakes that I had from my leftover Happy Planner sticker books to give some sparkle.  And since the colors of the kit were purple and blue, I decided I would be filling in my overview spreads with the Vintage Blue-Grey ink.

January Overview Spreads

As I said earlier, my planning style hasn’t changed much.  January starts off the same way as my other bujos: cover page, monthly calendar, goals, bills, register & order tracker (not pictured because I forgot to take a picture lolz), habits, meal tracker, gratitude, and self-care BINGO.

Weekly Spreads:

As you can see from this GIANT image (that I cannot resize), literally everything changed with the weekly. I went from a horizontal week-on-one-page to a vertical week-on-two page (or it would be on two pages but the week started on a Friday so…). I first tried out the hourly in November and didn’t love it but after reverting to a vertical half page daily in December, I realized the hourly is really the best option for my current situation. I’m not really that upset about it to be honest. It just took some finagling to work out how to utilize my stickers while also tracking time accordingly.

Also — this is the longest part of my setup each month. Drawing those lines and writing out the numbers IS A FEAT.

Daily Spreads:

The other giant change for 2021 is the switch from day-on-one -page with no time tracker to day-on-two-page with an hourly schedule. I started this in November 2020 thinking that I wanted the extra space for memory keeping and I loved it so much it’s staying. It’s a great space for notes, memories, and using up all those extra bits of my craft stash.

Final Thoughts:

I’m excited to see what happens in my bujo this year. I’ve made a lot of changes but overall I definitely feel like I’ve got planner peace. Ask me again in 6 months (I’ll just tell you if I remember to blog). Stay tuned for a planning to plan post where I explain my process for each month!

Supplies for January:

Book Review: Start With Why

Start with WhyStart with Why by Simon Sinek

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I wanted to love this book. I bought it when I was working in leadership & talent development and it sat on my shelf for years. Then my husband was asked to read it for a work book club and I thought “Great! We can read it together!”

It was not great.

I gave the book a really good try. I read parts 1 through 3 and made it 135 pages into the book before I just couldn’t anymore. It’s a good TEDTalk, it’s a poor book. A long article would have been plenty. Things I learned in the first 135 pages? The author really, really, really thinks Apple does amazing and innovative work and they are so the bee’s knees! Sinek also has a knack for writing the same sentence 3735385367345 different ways. It’s a little like padding in a college paper.

The topic is very important. I’m not going to dispute that. I always tell my son to know why he’s doing things and if he doesn’t, find the why. However, the execution of that explanation by the author is tedious and long and redundant. If you want the information from this book, watch the TEDTalk.

Book Review: The Invited

The InvitedThe Invited by Jennifer McMahon

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

First off, I love a good ghost story which means I adore Jennifer McMahon.

Secondly, is the main issue with the book. Nate and Helen leave the confines of urban sprawl for the freedom of backwoods Vermont where they intend to build a house. By themselves. Using YouTube videos. That bit of weirdness aside, the rest of the story is very compelling.

The story opens with the hanging of suspected witch, Hattie Breckenridge. Her story quickly intersects with Nate and Helen, a couple who drop everything to move onto a plot of 44-acres they snag at a deep discount from a man who is motivated and desperate to sell. Turns out, this haunted piece of land belongs to none other than Hattie. What ensues is a multi-generational ghost story and murder mystery that is nothing short of amazing.

Despite the mystery not being that mysterious, it was still a great story. The characters are engaging, the story is intriguing, and it’s just creepy enough to make you look over your shoulder after dark.

Book Review: The Library Book

The Library BookThe Library Book by Susan Orlean

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I really gave this book 2.5/5 stars.

I love a good metaphor or simile and I enjoy some alliteration every now and then as well. However, Susan Orlean uses all three of the above in nearly every sentence of every paragraph on every page. It got to be a lot and it really impeded my ability to read the actual story.

The meat of the book, however, is interesting and enjoyable, though also a bit of a struggle to get through. At it’s core, The Library Book is about the history of the Los Angeles Central library as seen through the lens of the 1986 fire that destroyed the building and left nearly 700,000 books damaged or destroyed. Orlean often weaves multiple story lines together which can be difficult to track as we jump to the distant past to the present to the near past while also looking to the future. While the information itself is interesting, many readers might find themselves having to slog through the intense and ever-growing cast of characters, dates, and facts.

Overall, it was a struggle for me to finish. The last few chapters especially felt like they dragged on far too long as Orlean discussed conference after conference after conference and included details interesting to her but perhaps not to the casual reader. I learned a great deal but probably would not recommend this book to others.

That Time I Was on a Podcast

That time was last night!  Jessica McWilliams , host of Planner Lifestyle Podcast interviewed me last night. We talked Sims, planning, addiction, and more!  There’s even a couple of shout outs in there and I reveal the future of Eternally Yours. Have not listened to it so I probably sound ridiculous.

I was a little bit nervous so it’s entirely possible I sound ridiculous.  Thanks, Jess, for inviting me to nerd out with you!