One book July is something that myself, Carie Harling and Rhomany from Rhomany’s Realm have been doing for the last several years.  We initially came up with the challenge to challenge ourselves as well as others in the planner community to just put everything away and use one pen and one book. This allows you to just clear your mind of all the noise and focus on what is important to you and what your daily needs are. Every year since that first year it’s been a great success and people started flooding our social media and emails asking what it is that we will be doing this year!

In years past I have really loved and enjoyed doing this challenge because I have learned so much. I consider myself a seasoned planner but I constantly crave more and love to change things and play with so many different inserts and stickers and methods. In 2015 I decided to take a plain sketchbook that I found at Michaels and turn it into a book to catch everything!! Not only was the size something different but so was the concept. I had a lot of fun decorating the front cover. It was easy to do because the cover is made of a canvas and so drawing on there to personalize it was great fun!! I used ballpoint and colored pencil, just that simple!

A lot of the setup was inspired by Clark Danger and his youtube channel. When doing research I found his channel and I felt very inspired with how he put together his journals and kept organized. I also added sections into the journal to help break it up and keep me organized. I placed washi tape on those pages to help me tab to those sections. The sections are setup with anything and everything that you would want to have with you!! I have to say that this was one of my absolute favorite setups that I have ever done!

This is the first page of the book and I think it’s a great phrase to remind yourself of everyday. I did a video recently talking about how planners to me are little time capsules and with all your plans and appointments have captured your life at that moment in your life.


I will share some of the sections that I decided to place into this book.  In each section I had plenty of space to work with and with a blank page I was able to be very creative with how I wanted my pages to be setup!


You can add a bullet journal section and a hobonichi section, the options are endless!!

I felt so incredibly free with each of the sections and very liberated. I didn’t have any lines to follow and my brain just wrote down and did what it needed to do. I think that having preprinted planners is great because it guides you but it can also limit you on your own creativity and doesn’t all you to focus on what you need instead follows what someone else needs!

In the above pictures on the left, is an example of how I would lay out my week. With such a large amount of space to work with I have room to add lots of ephemera, notes and stickers and just have fun!! On the right hand side, the picture features some research that I was doing with water colors. I like to have a palette in each journal that I work  in and here I have them laid out just to see what they look like and how they play in this book!

Adding a section on this post (left picture) it I captured what I wanted to keep in this section. It was great to help me not just pile everything in or use the sections not in the way I intended for them to be used.  I initially was worried that writing notes would pose the problem of information getting lost but I actually think that I found a way to easily find everything I need. I drew lines around some information, added pictures and post its to help separate things I did not want to get lost and the result was something I just loved!! I still adore how all these pages turned out!!


If you know me then you know I love to memory keep and I did just that on these pages!! I sketched images of shows that I liked watching and used my pictures of memories that captured those special moments!!!

Last year I used a 5×7 Barron Fig book and did a lot of memory keeping in that book as well. I didn’t utilize it quite like I used my sketchbook but it’s still something I loved doing. I took that journal with me on our family vacation and captured many pieces of ephemera and many water color images. I thought I would feature the sketchbook version of my one book july because I feel as though it’s one of my most creative endeavors to date!!

I hope you join all of us this year as well. I can guarantee that even though you may hate it or feel challenged for the month in the end you will feel something and learn something new about yourself. It will definitely improve on your planning and organizing of your thoughts!




I love looking through all of my old journals and planners. I don’t have the planners from when I was in middle school and high school because my parents had a terrible flood in the basement and I lost them all!  As I was looking through them I stumbled upon my little pocket moleskine that I had when I worked in Clinical Informatics.

In my nursing career I worked for many years at the bedside I then worked more on the administrative side in informatics. I really loved and enjoyed this time in my career and worked very closely with physicians and nurses and ancillary at a different level.  During this time I had a desk but I had to be out on the units and on call for staff. I needed to be very portable and so my one planner was a pocket one! I did have a desk planner as well but I loved having this pocket planner for on the go.

As I hold this little planner in my hand all I can do is smile! I realized that by keeping these planners I am capturing little snippets of my life. I can look back and be reminded of all of my OB appointments when I was pregnant with my first daughter who is now almost 5. I am looking back at all of the projects, deadlines and go lives that I was a part of. I was 8 months pregnant during one of the go lives and remember waddling around and remembered how crazy my schedule was. As I flipped through the pages and saw all of the physician names which many are now retired or no longer at that hospital I was just flooded with all these memories. They all flashed before my eyes and I just could not help but smile. I loved this time of my life and to have all these wonderful memories come back made me realize how wonderful it is to have a planners. I am so grateful that I have always enjoyed having planners and having them capture my days. I was even putting a recipe at the back of this planner. I recall getting this from one of the ladies that I use to work with. I remember her sharing with me how this is a must try and I’m so glad that the post it’s are still here in the back.

I love that when I use this planner I don’t worry about my handwriting or what I am writing. Things get crossed off and I don’t really worry about the aesthetics of the planner. This is how I have been using planners all of my life. I was unaware of pretty planning until I became a member of the planner community. I do enjoy very much the beauty of decorating your planner but I still really enjoy so much how raw these pages are.

I never really realized  how a planner is able to capture so much. Something that most people don’t think twice about or think that it’s just something that you write down appointments is actually al little time capsule.



It’s capturing your life as it is happening. It’s having a little recorder  with you each and everyday capturing your schedule. When the year is over place it on your shelf and pull it out every so often and see how it jogs all of your memories!! I really have been so impressed and happy how this worked out for me!!


Let me help explain the title, ‘What I want from my planner when in the wild’ .  I believe it’s been a running joke in the planner community that when ever you see a planner that is not your own in public you snap a picture and say it’s “in the wild”. It’s pretty rare to see someone walking around with a filofax and so when you do, excitement floods you and you need to snap a picture. I have not had too many encounters of this but I did see a woman using her Kate spade planner on the plane once. I wanted to so badly flip through her planner and just see what she likes to keep in there. She was busy the entire flight writing things and flipping the pages, I just stared. She may have noticed but I could not help myself.

With that said now that my older daughter is nearly four and a half she seems to have a relatively busy little life and I now work outside of the home. I found that with two kids and having doctor appointments alone  needed a space in my planner. When going to appointments with my travelers notebook I noticed people staring at my notebook which I didn’t necessarily care but if I had any other embellishments then it was just distracting and I ended up having to pick things up off the floor, I even had a time that something went flying at the receptionist. I just need something clean, simple and secure. When I leave for work I really need a fair bit of information with me at one time. I need patient info, some key orders, address, family names, emergency contacts, log ins, patient ID and the list goes on. When taking out this magical planner, again ,something big and distracting I found I was losing things, If something was dangling it was really distracting when talking with patients. People are really focused on the distraction and well it just does not feel very professional to have stickers and ribbons and such popping out when discussing patient care.    

I automatically needed to look for something beautiful, functional and professional. A favorite was one I had found at Gigi New York but it is so so expensive. Luckily google helped me out and I found that on a site called graphic image I was able to find this beautiful cover at about the third of the cost. I don’t see it listed any longer and that might be why it was at such a discount but boy oh boy am I in love with it.  The look of this is just beautiful. It is a notebook cover. The beauty of this is that I can use it as a discbound system or really any kind of system. I have just placed the spiral notebook that it came with. A Leuchtturm A5 notebook fits perfectly as well, the possibilities are endless with a notebook cover.

I love the sleek and clean look. Yes, people still might ask but because I have a notebook in there they just assume that it is a notebook and I get fewer questions. Things do fall out and I just have a pen attached to a pen loop so I can always easily jot down thoughts, ideas and appointments.

This of course is not my ONLY planner because of course I have more but it works really great for when I am in the real world. I can easily and quickly grab it and it works at the grocery store, doctors office and at patient homes. For now its great! Do you love seeing planners in the wild too? Do you see many? Please let me know!





Do you like to listen? Let me clarify, do you like when someone shares stories and just talks and you listen? I was unaware how much I love to listen to stories but more recently I seek it out. What sparked this recent desire to listen, well I have two kids now so most of the time if I have any piece of electronic on it’s playing kids songs, a kids movie or a kids app. I spend a fair share of my time in the car, driving to doctors appointments, soccer practice, school and work and so I decided to find my own thing to listen to. In searching for the perfect thing to listen to I stumbled upon season one of the Serial podcast.  If you have not heard this I HIGHLY recommend that you grab a cup of your favorite drink and dive in. In a nutshell the podcast follows the very strange case of Hae Min Lee and her murder in 1999. Why do I say it’s strange, well her ex boyfriend Adnan Syed is placed into prison and is still serving from the time he was seventeen for a murder that they did not fully have evidence to put him away for. The story has so many twists and turns, one minute you are saying he is innocent the next maybe not so much. I listened to this everyday as often as I could. I would place one ear bud in my ear while cooking dinner, folding laundry and you guessed it while driving my car.

That was it for me I was addicted to listening to stories. I wanted more after this! I am currently listening to Missing Richard Simmons.  Just the same I began plugging an ear bud in my ear while taking Hank my dog for his walk. Could not stop listening to the tale, I had no idea how many lives Richard had changed and how weird his disappearance is. It’s just fascinating to just sit and listen and have a story be told to you. I can understand completely what my daughter feels when I read her stories at night before bed and how she pleads with me to just read her one more. There is something that really pleases my senses to just listen. It also allows me to multi task so I can do more than one thing like cooking dinner but still getting my fix.

Now the whole mysterious thing might not be your cup of tea and I can understand that, for example if I dare share any of these two podcasts with my husband he could not be more disinterested than if I took him to a nail salon and forced him to watch them paint my nails. I have recently become pretty obsessed with audible as well. I was hesitant at first because I really do love having a book in my hands and taking part in the act of reading but I have to say the other day I was folding laundry and I started to listen to Norse Mythology and before I knew it I was 7 chapters in and quickly looking for my notebook to take notes. I never realized how much I love storytelling up until now. I guess it was always kind of in the back of my mind that I loved them but never really allowed myself to be told them.  I like listening to other podcasts too but I find that my mind really loves stories and it makes tasks go by quickly and being stuck in traffic not really a bad thing.

Something else that I have noticed is that I really love to listen with headphones. I know this seems silly but I have tried to listen on my computer and it just does not have the same effect. When I put in my  I just am immersed and nothing else penetrates. I highly recommend this experience with all of you. Do you listen to podcasts or books on tape? If so please share because I just can’t get enough and I’m afraid of running out!!

During Halloween time I love to seek out some of the creepiest books out there. I usually turn to Stephen King or his son Joe Hill. Once I read Horns I was immediately obsessed with Joe Hill and  have read every one of his books since then. I think the creepiest by far is NOS4A2, that book is just terrifying. I love to be just scared senseless. Well, the other day while looking for something creepy I ran into  a thread of people sharing some of their favorite Stephen King books and Geralds’ Game was mentioned a few times. I had never heard of it before but happened to find it at a Half Price Books store. I was beyond excited and felt as though it was meant to be. geraldsgame

Without giving away much of the story I couldn’t wrap my head around how this could happen and how we could turn this into an entire book. I should have known that a master like Stephen King could take something so simple and twist it into something that is a complete nightmare! He really and truly turns something that seems innocent and fun into something that quickly becomes your absolute worst nightmare!

The book is of course written as any other Stephen King book with great detail so you feel the pain that the main character is experiencing as well as the creepiness of it all. Something I love about this author is that he holds onto the more classic feel of a horror scene. He is just so great about setting the scene whether it be in a hotel or even in a high school, he manages to just make it creepy. He does the same at this cabin, something that should be jovial and a place to spend happy summers suddenly is a desolate and creepy place.  A fun sex came turns bad and now as the reader we spend some painful minutes with the main character. There is a scene with some blood and gore so perhaps for those of you with a weak stomach you may want to skip a few pages. King manages to involve a dog in this book and not as a friendly companion but instead as a feared beast!

The book is told through the eyes of the main character and all of her feelings and voices. There were times that I wanted to put the book down because I was just so creeped out. I’m using the word creepy alot but it’s really and truly what I felt the whole entire time.

If you are searching for the creep factor and just some great classic horror entertainment give this book a whirl. It’s housed on my shelf with my other King favorites!

Have you read this book?!? If so please share your thoughts!


1 2 3 4

Please wait...

Subscribe to my newsletter!!

Want to be notified when an article is published? Enter your email address and name below to be the first to know!