I love to plan. I’m a planner. I like to have everything all planned out and organized. I was one of those kids that got really excited on the first day of school when the school would hand out the planners for the school year. I would of course keep track of my homework in it, but I also was in band and played sports so it was a great way for me to learn to keep track of everything at an early age. I am also a doodler. It was something that I was able to just do my little doodles in. With that being said I really like planners and I really find it hard just to choose one. I really need to just have one though. I really do get overwhelmed easily and having more than one planner just adds to clutter that I just don’t need or want. This year I chose to use the Happy Planner along with dabbling with a Bullet Journal. Previously I had used Plum Paper Family Planner. I decided to give the Happy Planner a try. Well, I have decided to go back to Plum Paper and I would like to share why. The opinion is my own and I have not been compensated for anything stated.
(left Happy Planner, right Plum Paper)
Last school year I had two planners. I had my Happy Planner for personal and then I had my Simple Plan Homeschool Planner for homeschool planning. I was going to go back to Simple Plan for this coming school year, but I decided: 1) it’s a bit bulky. I liked that it had tons of space for planning, but I really didn’t want something so big since we don’t always do school at home. 2) I felt there was a lot in there that I just didn’t use. You can’t beat the price of it though. It is super affordable and maybe I should have added it to this list to compare, but it really should be compared with other teacher planners. If you are looking just for a homeschool planner Simple Plan is definitely one to consider.
I started looking into what planner I wanted to use this school year and decided to go back to Plum Paper. I was really considering their small teacher planner. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to fit both girls schooling in the little squares though. I also thought it would be great if I could use the planner for schooling and personal. I decided to look at their other layouts and decided on their horizontal layout 1. I almost wrote it off and didn’t even look at the horizontal layouts and I am so glad I did. When I saw this specific horizontal view ideas started popping in my head so I knew it was the one for me. I almost went with the vertical hourly layout just because I like to have my day planned out like that (it keeps me on task), but again it came down to space.
I chose the horizontal layout for a few reasons. I liked the list page on the left side. It has a notes section up on top and that will be where I write down the weeks memory verse. I will be seeing it several times a day, plus during Bible time in the morning with the kids. I thought it would really help me to memorize it too along with the kids.
For the list section I will be using that for all the planning. The girls are color coded so all I have to do is use blue for Sofia, red for Adeline, and purple for both. I really don’t need to have a check list or anything like that for the day. I just need a glance to see what we are doing for the day. I’m at the early stages of planning. I’m still waiting on science curriculum to get in and then I usually plan a month at a time. There is also a notes page at the beginning of each month that I will be writing down my supply list for school each day.
So, how does it compare to the Happy Planner? I really think it’s the disc system I don’t like. I thought it would be easy for me to customize and add to my planner, but I never really added to it. The only thing I added were pockets (Plum Paper already comes with pockets). The spiral bound Plum Paper pages turn easier and it is easier for me to flip to the month I need or week that I am currently on. I also thought I might like the vertical layout of morning, afternoon, and evening, but I just couldn’t get into it. I know some people love it, but it just isn’t for me. I also need room to write so I think that’s why I like this horizontal layout better. I may not have something going on each day, but there is plenty of room on each day that I can write a quote one of the kids said or a quote that I liked from reading or a Bible verse from my study that I really want to focus on for the day or week. I do enjoy decorating my Happy Planner, but I haven’t been very consistent. Sofia now wants a planner to decorate and I think it is an excellent idea for her to start the habit of planning. I will be getting her the Happy Planner student planner for this coming school year to teach her how to plan and do independent work, along with her getting to be creative.
For size they are about the same size. Plum paper is a little smaller, but not much. The Plum Paper fits in my purse so if I do need to take it along somewhere I can easily place it in my purse and go.
(Plum Paper on top, Happy Planner on bottom)
So, how do they compare on the inside. At the beginning of each month they both have a similar page. The Happy Planner is fun and cute. I like that it already tells me what holidays are in that month. Plum Paper is a little bit more streamlined, clean. I like both so I don’t really have a preference. The fun side of me likes the Happy Planner, but the serious, less clutter me likes the Plum Paper.
I chose a horizontal view, but Plum Paper does offer a vertical view like the Happy Planner. I chose Plum Paper because there are so many options of layouts, plus the covers, plus the add on’s. It really is a tough decision.
A new thing that I am excited about in the Plum Paper is the ideas, plans, and goals page. I’m going to be using that to write down what I plan to sew for each month. There are also pages with the whole year at a glance. I will be using those pages to keep track of our school days. I like that there are notes pages at the beginning and end of each month, along with notes page at the front of the planner and in the back of the planner. I always thought about getting extra notes pages for my Happy Planner, but I never did. I like having notes pages because I do use them for planning vacation/trips, doodling, keeping track of what I have been reading, and so on and so on.
We will see as the school year goes on how my new planner works. I may do a follow up blog post to show if it is going well or not with using this planner as a homeschool planner and as a personal planner. I do want to say that I do know there are homeschool planners that are also personal planners, but I felt they had a lot of extras that I wouldn’t use. I like simple. I really did look into other planners before I went with Plum Paper. I think that is the great thing about all these different planner companies. There are so many choices and you can choose what works best for you.