Thursday, February 27, 2014

Bullet Journalling

This is the system I'll be trying while I try to get my own pages printed. It seems like a great way to corral everything into one spot. If it works really well for me, then I might have to incorporate it into my system.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Arc Pink Quilted Organizer

I decided to keep pushing this organizer thing through even though I don't know how to print my pages off. I figure that can be the last piece of the puzzle and I can have all the supplies I need ready for when I do figure it out.

I went to Staples today and bought an Arc notebook, 1 inch discs and the Arc punch. I had only intended on buying the punch but I saw that the notebook that I wanted was limited edition and the store was almost out. I wasn't going to let them run out of what I wanted. So, I bought the pink quilted notebook. I fell in love with the quilted notebooks and originally wanted the black one. I didn't like that it was shiny though so I went with the pink. It's a beautiful soft pink that is feminine and cute but not childish.

It put me over my budget though. I am annoyed by that, but I have to acknowledge that I'm still figuring out this budget thing and investing in myself is worth the money. Next month, I am budgeting for the other supplies I'll need. It probably won't be until April that I get it all finished up, especially if I end up having to go to a professional printer.

I don't have my pages but the notebook came with lined pages that have a place for a title and a date. While I work on this printing issue, I'm going to use what I have to begin pulling all the stuff I have all over the place into one spot. Whenever I need to write something down, I grab the nearest notebook and write in that. Now I have multiple notebooks with all this random information in them. So, I'm going to sort through that information, put what needs kept in my new organizer and toss the rest. Then I can assign those notebooks for specific things instead of catch-alls. I need to train myself to put specific information in specific places.

Forgive the crappy photography but I wanted to show you what I will be working with.
 The flash made it look shinier than it is but I couldn't capture the quilting without the flash.
Here you can kind of see the paper that the notebook came with.

Despite all the problems, I'm really excited to see this finally starting to come together!

Oh, and I think there's some legal thing that says I have to tell you that I am not affiliated with Staples or any of their products and I bought these things with my own money. I think that's all I'm supposed to say.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Making A Life Organizer... Again!

In a recent post, I talked about my need to create a budgeting system. I've come up with something that I will be testing out for the next few months. But in my desire to maintain my finances, I found my desire to maintain other areas of my life rekindled. I want to create a life organizer. Not only would I be able to keep my budgeting system with me, but also all the other things I'm always trying to keep track of. If you read this blog, you might remember that well over a year ago, I created a planner template. You can read about it herehere, and here. I was never able to finish it because I couldn't afford it. I still love the Arc system at Staples but while I do think it will eventually pay for itself, it gets expensive really quick. Now, I can put it in my budget.

I feel the need to turn this planner into a life organizer because I feel like so many of the pieces of me are floating around and I'm constantly trying to catch them. I see a life organizer as a way to pull those pieces into one place. That's my hope anyways.

I modified my original template a bit and added the part of my budgeting system that I want to carry with me.

I've been working on developing morning and nighttime rituals. I've been reading about how creative people need times of the day where they are operating on auto-pilot. It supposedly frees the mind for creativity. The concept makes sense to me so I've been trying to turn these rituals into habits. Then I came across The Flylady and her control journal. She suggests putting your routines into your control journal. I thought it was an interesting idea  so I am putting them in towards the front of my organizer.

I'm also working on creating a gratitude section. I have such a negative attitude and I'm tired of it. I want to change that. I saw this incredible gratitude mandala here and I want to make my own on a regular basis. I had already put a Blessings line on the daily pages so I could write down something good about each day. At the end of each month I plan to list the blessings that I wrote each day and then make my own gratitude mandala. The goal is to remind myself of all the beauty and simple pleasures in this world and hopefully change my attitude.

I need to put an ideas section in it as well. I should be able to buy already made sheets for that. However, I will probably get annoyed by the last of uniformity and decide that I need to make my own to match the rest of my organizer.

I can't figure out how to print out the pages though. I want to do half size pages so that my organizer will fit in my purse. So, I either need to be able print 2-sided pages on landscape but neither of the printers here will do that, or I need to find precut half size sheets and print on those. I don't want to cut them myself because that always seems to turn out wrong somehow. So, at the moment, even when I finish creating the pages I still won't be able to do anything with them. There's always something in the way.

Quote: Annie Dillard

"If we listened to our intellect, we’d never have a love affair. We’d never have a friendship. We’d never go into business because we’d be too cynical. Well, that’s nonsense. You've got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down."

~Annie Dillard

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Beginner's Budgeting Attempt

Now that I'm finally working again, I need to start working on the life improvements that I haven't been able to work on because they required money. The problem is that I have a huge list but I'm only working part-time. So in order to do the things I want to do, I need to watch my money like a hawk. I was incredibly fortunate in the past. I was making plenty of money for my lifestyle and didn't have to be very careful. Now, I have to be extremely careful. I've almost created a plan, I'm stuck at one part though. I'm a bit nervous about how implementing it into my life is going to go once I complete it.

The first part of my plan is to keep track of a monthly budget and actual spending. I found an Excel template that I really liked, except that I found it difficult to personalize. So, I just made one inspired by the template I liked. I've taken Excel classes so I know it well enough that making a template is pretty easy. However, that is the only easy part. Figuring out the numbers was a huge pain and I'm pretty sure that they are going to have to change as the months go on. I plan on printing it at the end of each month so that I have record of it and can track how my spending changes over time.

I am also religiously using my transaction register that came with my check book. It's a great way to keep track of how daily spending affects my bank account. Every single debit and credit gets logged in that thing.

The part I'm having trouble with is how to keep track of my budget when I am actually shopping. I've broken down my budget, giving myself allowances for things like clothes, toiletries, and groceries. But I haven't figured out how to keep that budget on me as well as keep track of how much I've already spent on each thing. I hope that made sense. How do other people watch their budget when they aren't at their computer? Do they just print it off and keep it with them? Or do they have a separate sheet that tracks spending and categorizes it?

Once I come up with a solution, I'll be on my way to hopefully having a budgeting system that works for me. I'm a bit stuck at the moment though.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Six Word Saturday

I'm so tired of the cold

Ironically, that last time I did a Six Word Saturday, I was talking about how great the weather was. But the last couple of months have been brutal. Between the polar vortex bringing temperatures down to single digits, a snow storm, and an ice storm, I'm exhausted. One of the reasons I moved to the south was to experience warmer winters for a change. That obviously didn't happen. It's been colder here than back home. I don't need it to be hot. I'm happy wearing sweaters, boots and coats. I just would like it to be a bit warmer and to stay that way for awhile.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Broken Email Link

In my frustration, I forgot to post about this when I first noticed it. The "Email Me" link I used to have over there ---> stopped working. Well, the link worked but Windows Live stopped updating. So, if any of you tried to email me and I didn't respond, my apologies, I never received your email. I'm working on fixing it but I really don't have the tech skills I need for this so it will probably take a while. In the meantime, I'll just post my email address in its place. I know that is pretty inconvenient but it's the best I can do at the moment.

Thank you for understanding.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Quote: Chris Abani

What I've come to learn is that the world is never saved in grand messianic gestures, but in the simple accumulation of gentle, soft, almost invisible acts of compassion. 

- Chris Abani

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Quote: Isaac Asimov

"I write for the same reason I breathe- because if I didn't, I would die."

-Isaac Asimov

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Truth About Writing

Baring my soul
Displaying my tears
Placing my essence on the page
For all the world to see
Pen to paper
Scrolling script
Traces of my heart
Dripping all over the page
To tell my story
To be remembered
Changing the world
One poem at a time
Sharing my words
Incomplete and unrefined
I'd rather be imperfect
Than to be nothing
Desiring to share a piece of myself
To create my legacy
Time to open up another vein
And bleed

Creative Commons License
The Truth About Writing by Porcelain Lotus is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Shared at:
Imaginary Garden With Real Toads: Open Link Monday
Poets United: Poetry Pantry #188

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Quote: Ayn Rand

"I started my life with a single absolute: that the world was mine to shape in the image of my highest values and never to be given up to a lesser standard, no matter how long or hard the struggle."

-Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

I wonder if my life would have been different if I had been taught this. My whole life I've been taught to conform and change in order to fit into the tiny box that society has created for us all. If I ever have children, I will make sure that they learn this as children instead of as adults, after wasting too much time trying to be someone else.