Wellll, I figured since I have had my Erin Condren Life Planner a little over a month now, and have gotten a chance to use it – I would do a little review for you guys!
It is no secret that I am a technology nerd, so yes it is kind of weird that I bought a paper planner. Honestly, it is kind of for Torrance too – because he is not a technology person.
We just wanted somewhere to combine all the craziness and keep track of everything, and honestly one of the main things I am using this for is finances.
I handle all the finances in the house, and he just likes to have a way to glance and see when and what I am paying, etc. so this is just a really good way to keep everything organized and in one place.
I will try to break it up into categories – so lets get to it!
Price & Shipping
It appears that price is the biggest complaint with these I think.
The base price for this planner was $50.
I opted for an 18 month planner so I could start using it now and continue through the end of next year. This added $5.
I did not opt for any of the “extras” you can add on (see below), such as personalized stickers, pictures, markers, etc. Which of course would have added to the cost.
I chose standard shipping, which was about $8.
My grand total came to $63.
Honestly, I didn’t feel that was too bad. I had gone to an office supply store near me and looked at some comprehensive planners and for the really good, detailed ones, even without some of the features of this one (and fun colors, etc), they were between $35-$50 anyway. So honestly, I don’t have too big of a complaint on the price, but I could see how some people would.
However, it DID take a while to get to me…. about 25 days to be exact from the day I ordered it until it arrived. I understand with personalization it would take a little longer, but that was a good amount of time, and it appears from their Facebook and Twitter accounts, that is a common issue, and hopefully they figure that out soon.
Design & Personalization
I think they do really good with this. There are a ton of different options you can choose, starting with the look of the actual planner itself. They have tons of covers to choose from that you can personalize with pictures, names, dates, etc.
I obviously opted for something colorful and since it is used to organize stuff for both Torrance & I, I went with our names and the year(s). (I was just gonna opt for “T&A Planner” but that sounded dirty like I was managing my prostitutes or something).
Along with the exterior, you can choose to add a lot of other personalized stuff like stickers, picture stickers, more plain stickers, markers, elastic bands to keep it closed, etc.
Honestly, it has a lot of stuff throughout, like the colors, little quotes, little design details here and there that just make it cute and more than just a boring calendar – and I like that.
I feel like overall it is going to be very durable – the front and back covers are laminated (and pretty thick), and the spiral spine is metal. It seems it should definitely hold up.
I know some people have complained about the size as well. It is a little bulky. And since I got the 18 month, mine is a little fat. But, for me it is functional. It mostly stays at home, but I bring it back and forth to work a few times a week usually and its not really a big deal, but I could see how if someone wanted to just throw it in their purse, it may be a little clunky for that.
I did not opt for anything additional, as I felt it came with enough stickers for me, plus, it comes with a couple sheets of blank colored stickers already that you can write whatever you want on them, and the stickers are something I like a lot actually. They stand out for marking significant things.
The calendar – monthly and weekly/daily views
So like I said, my primary idea for the planner was finances, and I basically that is what I use the monthly view for. At the beginning of the month I go through and fill out when I will be paying which bills, and what the amounts are (I have photoshopped the black ovals over the actual dollar amounts since I don’t need the world to know how much money we spend on everything).
I include other significant things throughout the month like birthdays, upcoming appointments, holidays, events, etc.
On this month view, as you can see they also include a little “notes” column off to the side. Mine is blank as I havent really found a need for it yet, but it does seem like it would be a good place to put monthly goals, etc.
Now for the weekly and daily view:
As you can see, they give you the week – starting on Monday (which I really like) and then each day is broken down into 3 blocks – morning, day, and night. (quick note: the weekly views directly follow each month’s monthly view – so you have a monthly view layout, and then the next four pages include the weekly/daily view, until the next month starts, etc).
This view also includes notes on the side (which I have opted to use for my “dinner menu” for the week), and then each day has a little notes spot underneath, which I have been using to sort of track my workouts – just which days I go to training and which days I go to cardio, etc. (just kind of a visual thing for me, so I can see if I was slacking that week or what).
I mostly use the daily blocks for my daily to-dos. Picking stuff up, mailing packages, out of the ordinary meetings for work, appointments, etc.
To be honest, at first I didn’t really think I was going to use this that much as just the monthly view layout, but once I had it in my hands I really like it now!
One of the extras I really like in here, is at the very beginning before the months start, there is an “important dates” list.
It is just a nice way to see what months are full of birthdays, etc ahead of time.
Some of the other “extras” included are tons of note pages at the back (both lined, and unlined), and then there is also a nice sturdy folder-style pocket, and also a zipping clear pocket as well.
They automatically include some fun things in the zip pocket for you too, like personalized gift labels!
Pretty cute (and you can add more if you want when ordering).
Bottom line, I really like the planner. It makes me feel organized and has helped with some of the chaos that has been my life lately. And it hasnt been that long since I started using it, but at this point I would definitely say I would order another in the future!
If you want some more info, you can check out the Erin Condren website (they have a ton of other fun stuff too!) and they actually have a nice, fun (detailed) video that goes along with the planners too that you can view here.
**Boring disclaimer: I was not compensated or asked to do this review, it was simply my own experience with a product I recently purchased and enjoyed**
- Do you use any type of organizer (electronic or paper)?