(Psssst…. click here for a review of the new 2015 Erin Condren planner!)
You may remember back in June that I did a full review of my Erin Condren Life Planner that I used from July 2013 – June 2014. I was a little unsure at the time of whether I would purchase a new planner since I was no longer a student, but I did end up pulling the trigger in June. An added bonus was that I had a coupon for $10 off!
I’ve been using my new planner for a month, so I thought I would share my (updated) thoughts…
The hardest part about picking out the Erin Condren planner is deciding which cover to get. They are all so fun and colorful! You may remember last year that I got a purple design, so I wanted to get something completely different this year.
So after looking at all of the covers about a million times, I completely fell in love with the mermaid design:
It just looks so ‘out there’ that it’s just kind of awesome…. plus, her hair reminds me of how mine looks when I wake up in the morning . Butttttt, as much as I loved this cover, I would be carrying my planner with me to work. I knew the mermaid design might not look very professional, so I ended up designing my own cover instead.
The process of ordering the collage cover was kind of frustrating. The pictures wouldn’t format correctly on the Erin Condren website (sometimes it would let me drag and center the photos and other times it wouldn’t), and I had to re-do the entire thing several times. After over an hour of trying to get everything right, I was happy with the design and submitted it to be ordered. I did have another small mishap with my order, which you can read about here.
Despite all of that, I LOVE the way my planner turned out.
I decided to include my favorite pictures of my husband, family, pets and places. I love that I get to see all of these in one place every time I pull my planner out.
Layout of the Erin Condren Life Planner
Here’s a run down of what is included in the 2014 planner:
- 2014 / 2015 / 2016 / 2017 yearly calendars
- Monthly calendar with tabs
- Weekly calendar
- Notes section with both lined and plain paper
- 4 pages of stickers (2 pre-printed, 2 blank)
- Double-sided folder with pocket
- Zip Pouch
- Accessories like a ruler, paperclip, labels, etc.
New Changes with the 2014 planner (with my honest opinions):
Removable cover: So I guess if you get tired of one cover then it is nice that you can purchase a new one. But honestly, it seems a little excessive to put an additional $10.95 (plus shipping) towards a planner that is already costly. This feature was a deterrent to me because I was worried the cover would come loose easier. I even got a comment about it on my 2013 EC Planner review post. I’m happy to report that the cover seems nice and sturdy (although I’ve never tried to take it off for this reason).
Separate perpetual calendar: You may remember in the 2013 planner that the perpetual calendar was in the front of the planner.
In the 2014 model, the calendar is in a little booklet that can be tucked away in the back pocket.
I see why they did this since it is kind of annoying to have to re-copy the information from the perpetual calendar every year. But for me personally, I would rather have the calendar as part of my planner than as something separate. The booklet was too bulky to keep in the back pocket so I removed it… I will probably lose it by 2015
Repositionable stickers: I really like this update. You can now remove a sticker and place it elsewhere if your plans change. I’ve used this several times when re-scheduling appointments.
How I Use my Planner
My life has changed so much since I purchased my first planner! I was doing my dietetic internship and working part-time back in 2013, so there were lots of assignments and due dates… my planner kept me sane!
Now that I’m no longer a student and have a job that is pretty routine (come in, see patients, go home), there’s a lot less to keep track of. But I’m still using my planner and loving it!
This is where I keep track of my work schedule and things like trips, pay days, reminders, special events and of course football games. I really love the “Notes” section in the right margin. I have a list of our bills and cross them off as I pay them. You can see how the month of September looks already and it’s not even here yet
Every Sunday night, I sit down with my planner and tentatively plan out my week. This includes reminding myself of any appointments I have, things that are due, errands that need to be run, etc. I also use this time to meal plan and schedule my workouts for the week. This little routine has really helped me with sticking to an exercise regimen, planning meals successfully and feeling prepared for the week ahead.
Folder and Zip Pouch:
I generally stick coupons and business cards back here, as well as use it as a temporary holder for important paperwork until I get home. I’ve currently got an Ulta coupon hanging out back there.
What I Would Like to See Changed in 2015
Hey, a girl can dream, right?
I would really like it if EC offered an option for the weekly calendar to start on Sunday instead of Monday. I just think of my week starting on Sunday. Maybe one day they will offer the option to choose Sunday or Monday weeks. Erin- hear a sister out on this one!
I would personally rather have the days divided up into 3 sections without the “morning / afternoon / night” headings. I ignore these headings and use them more like “work stuff / personal stuff / workouts & reminders”
My thoughts on the Erin Condren Life Planner
So… the big question: do I think the EC planner is worth the price tag? Yes, absolutely. Here are just a few reasons why I think it’s better than your average planner.
- The cover and coil binding are extremely durable. I toss it in my bag every single day and it has never gotten damaged. I cannot say this for *any* other planner I have ever used.
- It’s big enough to actually be able to write things but small enough to fit perfectly in my work bag
- This goes along with the size, but I like that the monthly calendar is big enough to actually be able to write things, especially when you have a busy day. The list area in the right margin is great as well!
- Ink doesn’t bleed through the pages because they are nice and thick
- The layout of the weekly calendar is awesome. I love being able to make a list of things to do for the week and having it on the same page as the actual week. Having the days divided up into different sections is great for planning things out.
- The pockets and zip pouch in the back add a nice touch for organization.
So those are my thoughts about the new Erin Condren Planner. It would make the perfect gift for the paper planner lover in your life
If you are thinking of ordering a planner then I would love your support by using my referral link. Thank you!!