This is a post I have anticipated writing for over a month now! It’s my review of my Erin Condren Life Planner. I mentioned in a previous post, that I’m not exactly sure where on the internet that I first heard about this little gem, but when I started doing my research to see if I was going to invest, I quickly found out that these babies are plastered all over the web! For good reason too.
First, I should start off by saying I have always been a little type-A. Virgo, first born, all the typical cliche stuff that goes towards making someone anal and obsessive. I had a day planner in 5th grade. It was Babysitter Club themed. I still have my planners from University too. I flip through them and giggle when I happen to find them while cleaning. So, when I found out about the Erin Condren planner I was naturally quite excited. Then when I saw how awesome the designs are and how you can customize them, I was ecstatic. Even with the expensive shipping costs ($39.99 to Canada!) I knew I really wanted one, so as a birthday present to myself I indulged.
Erin Condren thinks of everything. Just look at how the package arrived…
So pretty! That’s one of the things that really sold me on the planner. The pretty little details are everywhere and they aren’t just pretty they are functional. Below are pictures of my planner, along with the pens and pen holder I ordered. It also came with some beautiful gift tags and calling cards (free!).
Inside is a two year overview of 2013/2014, double paged monthly overview and weekly views, which are divided into morning, day and night. There is a notes and goals page along one side of the weekly layout which I love. I put down all my monthly to dos. Anything I don’t get done in given week gets moved to the next week. You will also see that there are lines below the days. I am not sure what I will be using this space for but I have heard that a lot of people use them to schedule blog posts, meal planning or exercise.
I have been using it for a few weeks now, and I really do love it. For a long time I have been using my calendar and a to do app in my iPhone, and well it is convenient since I always have my phone on me, and its small and easy to just grab and go, I really didn’t like not being able to see my month laid out ahead of me. In my iPhone I could see that I had something on a specific day, but without going right into the appointment I couldn’t quickly see if it was in the morning or evening or if it was an hour or all day. Plus, there is something so cathartic about building a to do seeing your to do list all checked off.
A view of October, as things start to get a little busier.
You can see I am already making great use of the stickers that come with the planner. There are pre-filled ones (you can see the Birthday and Party ones I’ve used in the picture above) and the blank ones that I have also used. I think if I order the planner again I will take advantage of the ability to customize the stickers, especially since the planner uses an American calendar, so it would be nice to have special stickers to indicate Canadian holidays (Thanksgiving is in October, people!).
So, as I live with the planner a little more I will get a better understanding of what I like and dislike but I already have a list of pros and cons.
- Beautiful design, fully customizable
- Sturdy construction – heavily laminated front and back calendar, laminated tabs and pages laminated next to the coils so they don’t tear out with heavy use, metal coil doesn’t bend
- Love the morning, day, night design of the individual days. In my personal life there are a lot of things that need to be done but not at a specific time. I really enjoy having the freedom to enter a time myself, or just have a general time of day to assign my task to.
- The birthday and anniversary pages will make it very easy to transfer to next years planner
- The stickers! I never thought I would be a 32 year old obsessing over stickers, but I really love seeing the stickers in my monthly view. They draw my attention to certain days and make fun events seem even more fun
- The pens I ordered (additional $8.95) are bright and more like fine tipped markers.
- I always have enough space to write what I need to. I never feel like my writing is cramped or that I need to resort to some sort of short form I will inevitably forget later.
- The double sided folder and zippy pouch in the back are handy for small items and bills. I like that there’s no chance of anything falling out with the zippy pouch.
- Lots of note paper in the back, both lined and unlined. I haven’t used any of mine yet, but I bet I will fill them soon enough.
- The $10 gift card and 10% off code for my next order
- The price. The planner starts at $50 USD. I upgraded to an 18 month calendar for an additional $5, plus the $8.95 pens, and the $2.50 pen holder. Even this wouldn’t be so bad, but shipping to Canada is $39.95, which regardless of how pretty the package is seems to be a lot of money. I honestly think the company would see a lot more Canadian orders if they could find a way to reduce this shipping cost.
- The contacts page. This is the one place where my iPhone has the upper hand. I know maybe 4 phone numbers off by heart, and the rest are all stored in my phone. Since there is not likely to be an occasion where I have my planner and not my phone, this seems like wasted space.
- With so much customization of the planner available it would be nice if there was an option to choose between an American calendar or a Canadian calendar. I would like to see Victoria Day, Boxing Day, Canada Day and Thanksgiving all on their proper day. I don’t have much need to know when Veterans Day, but Remembrance Day is important to me. It would also be nice if this was free since as a Canadian I am already paying a premium for the planner.
Even with the price I am really satisfied with my planner and love using it. I honestly haven’t even posted all the picture of the great features here. As I mentioned in the pros list, there are note pages, and a double sided pocked and zip pouch. There are pages for your contacts, including doctors, housekeepers, baby sitters, and various other people one might need to contact. Not to mention all the beautiful little quotes and adorable little graphics next to special holidays.
I hope this helped anyone thinking about purchasing the Erin Condren planner. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them in the comments and I will be happy to answer. For more information on the planner visit Erin Condren.