My daughter started school today.  My boys start in 2 weeks and although none of this is my first rodeo, I had a mild moment of panic last week when it hit me that I need to get my *ahem* SELF together.  (If I’m being honest, it was really another word that started with an “s”, but I try to be good in front of company).

You see, I adore summertime.  I’ve worked from home for the last 4.5 years, but even when I worked ULTRA-full time (because when you’re in the mortgage industry there is no such thing as JUST full time)  getting a break from picking up and dropping off the 3 Musketeers was enough to have me shouting praise to Jesus ALMIGHTY.  “Why, yes sir I WILL take those additional 20 minutes and stop by Starbucks and no I will NOT feel bad about it.”

Back to my point…
Now that I work from home and have a bit more flexibility, my summers are…how do I say it?  Less productive. By the time summer rolls around, I’m so ready for a break from our schedule that I feel it’s only appropriate for me to also reap the same benefits as my children.  I sleep in, cook less and surf Facebook more than a sane person should…someone should seriously limit my screen time from June – August.  Queen Llama starting school today brought back the old Kia.  The one that has a routine and is up at 6 am, making breakfast, cleaning and done with housework by 8am.

With most big transitions, I choose a word for motivation that symbolizes where I need to focus.  For the upcoming school year, I really just want to NEED to make things SIMPLE. That’s my word. I won’t bore you with just how busy I am- we’re all busy.  Being busy doesn’t make us unique.  What makes us unique is how we prioritize and keep what matters most first.  How can we create beautiful experiences with those we love in spite of the “busy”?

One thing I quickly identified that I could simplify was planning.  Let me tell you, your girl LOVES to plan and to plan one needs a great planner. Problem is, I have several great planners.  I like to color code them.  I like to use pretty washi tape, with only the best pens. Seriously, my planner looks like a Craft Queen Pinterest Heaux.

For me, a planner represents a somewhat organized life and that’s something worth aspiring to, right?  Only I found myself buying several expensive planners that I LOVED, but I would still need additional notebooks for other things…like meal planning and budgeting.  My planners were BULKY and HEAVY and the OPPOSITE of SIMPLE.  After a few months of getting a new one and the “honeymoon phase” wore off, I’d find myself leaving it at home… then I’d be out and need it.  Suddenly, chasing the somewhat organized life was kind of a chore.

Enter May Designs.

These little notebooks are a stationery obsessed girl’s JOY mixed with an organization queen (or wanna be!) and busy mom’s LOVE LANGUAGE.(Read: I am all these things.  I’ve just described myself.)  It’s Heavenly.

They’re small and super functional.
Vivid and brightly colored.
Can be personalized (for real, monogram ALL. THE. THINGS.).
Fits easily in your bag.
The bomb-diggity EV-AH-REE-THANG.

I was surprised how many different notebooks they had for specific functions.  I personally decided that getting the Academic Agenda, the Meal Planner and Budget Planner in the Classic (5in x8in) size would be the perfect combination to get me where I wanted to be:  Simply Organized.  But, they also have teacher planners, health + fitness journals… I even saw some for Adult Coloring!

Super Happy Side Note: I’ve learned that all 3 of my notebooks fit perfectly inside my new favorite Rubie Mini pouch in Cherry that I got from Thirty-One Gifts new fall catalog.  STAAAAHP.  It’s like Cindy Monroe knew exactly how I needed to keep thing simple.  She gets me This makes them even more easy to carry around and not have to fret about the kids jacking them up… or in my case, RC getting goldfish and apple juice all over them.

Isn't this just perfect to throw in your handbag in go?

Isn’t this just perfect to throw in your handbag in go?

The 3 places that I need to stay on top of is our schedule, our finances and most importantly, what we’re going to eat. (I should have put the eating one first.  I wake up thinking about dinner.)  That decision of what TYPE of planners to get was easy, the hard part was choosing my design and personalization and by hard I mean FUN because: STATIONERY.

I now interrupt this conversation to show you what each one looks like on the inside.

Here’s my Academic Agenda! I’m using this as a mobile planner of course!


Here’s the Budget Planner:
I was MOST impressed by how thorough this budget planner is.  If you’re a Dave Ramsey fan, this will easily translate to his teachings.  Even if you don’t even know where to begin budgeting, this is great because it literally breaks down EVERYTHING for you.

And my absolute most favoritest one (favoritest is a word!) the Meal Planner!
I think this one is my favorite, because of what I plan to do with it after it’s complete.  I’ll use these as gifts!  For a Bride or new mom as she starts her new chapter, she’ll get one of these that is full of already completed meal plans, grocery list and recipes…and a brand new one for her to start her own tradition!  Of course, I’ll be doing a TON of these for Queen Llama and any future daughters-in-law too!  Lawd, I’m getting misty eyed just thinking about it!

So, now that you know how I’m planning on being SIMPLY ORGANIZED this school year… it’s time for a giveaway- actually TWO GIVEAWAYS!  I have partnered with the LOVELY team at May Designs to giveaway TWO notebooks of the winner’s choice.  One will winner will be from our Facebook Page, the other on our Instagram!  The contest is open through midnight, August 10th and there are several ways to gain entries.  Rules on how to win are on both Facebook + IG, just look for #ExperienceMayDesigns!  Winner will be announced FRIDAY, August 12th.

So…tell me!  What was your favorite tip on how I’m using my May Designs notebooks that YOU might adopt for your organization? HINT: This is probably one way to earn an entry!

**As always, all thoughts, ideas and views expressed in this post are my own; even though May Designs was SUPER awesome and provided TWO notebooks to giveaway to my audience!**



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