February is the new January

This morning I finally logged back into my blogger account after a very long time. I have been thinking about it since December, but never had the time or the inspiration to come back to this space. Things have been quite intense lately and all my energies have been sucked up by something else, aka looking after a toddler and a newborn. I had so many plans for this 2015, including keeping this blog alive with regular posts and projects. Needless to say, that hasn’t happen so far, but it’s never to late to start. So February has become my new January this year, and although I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep it up, I’ve lined up a few projects I would love to carry through the year and a few things I would like to accomplish in the next few months. Patience is not one of my main virtue, but persistence is; so slowly but surely I will get things done. Here to a new productive and fun year!
The planner I’m using is the Ogami professional notebook

My Personal Blogging Editorial Calendar

It has only been this year that I started to blog more regularly and started planning in advance my blog’s posts. The switch happened after reading an article from Kam of Campfire Chic in her ‘better blogging’ archive (this one). Before then, I never really thought myself as a blogger, and still don’t to be honest, but reality is I have been blogging since 2009 and that makes me a blogger. I don’t want to start talking about the reasons why I blog, that is a possible subject for another post, but I started to enjoy the weekly tasks, the coming up with a topic and, most of all, the record of things I have been building up during the past five years.

My editorial calendar is very simple and flexible. Since I’m using the Moleskine 12-month diaries this year, I have downloaded one of their free templates (the weekly notebook alternative template in pocket size, here). I have printed out 13 pages to cover the 52 weeks in a year and folded each in 3 pieces to nicely fit at the back of each monthly diary.

The tedious part was writing down the month/week/day on each page, but I did that while watching some tv and didn’t take too long after all.

Since my planning is more or less on a weekly basis, I tend to shift things around very often, especially is something comes up at the last minute and I want to blog about it. For this reason I use post-it notes, the index ones, as they perfectly fit in the space allocated for each day. I write down the topic and I stick it on the planner, and eventually move it around.

I was originally planning to use a colour coding system since I have some recurring topics I write about, like The Pick of the Month, the 52 project, and so on, but it wasn’t worth the effort so I just stuck to orange for the 52 project blog posts, which go live every (!) Monday and to green for all the posts that goes into my other blog SketchingIn Colour (Tuesdays and Thursdays only!).

So far this method has worked wonderfully for me; it gives me the flexibility and organisation I need to stick to my plans and gives me time to plan and schedule in advance, especially when I’m too busy or on holiday.

How do you plan your blog posts?

Weekly planners

I’m totally in love with Jennine Zlatkis work (see my previous rubber stamping post). And now I’m obsessing over her journaling pages.  A few weeks ago, I gave it a go at making my own, and although the results are far from her beautiful work, I’m totally in love with them.
As usual, I worked with what I had available; I function much better this way than having to plan anything from scratch (too many options and I’m not good at choosing).
This is what I used:
  • 2 sheets of Fabriano Accademia watercolour paper 240gsm 27x35cm. These will make 10 10x15cm landscape weekly pages.
  • Staedler 0.3 pigment liner pen to draw the lines.
  • Watercolours for the background wash and the tiny paintings. I use artist’s Windsor and Newton.
  • Stamps, including a date stamp. I used mainly handmade stamps.
  • Ink pads. I’m currently using basic office inks + finger puppets ink, but I’m planning to upgrade to Stazon and Versacolor soon.
  • Coloured felted tip pens for the writing. I’m using Stabilo point 88.
  • Butterflies cut outs. You can download them from vintage printables
  • A ruler, scissors and a glue stick.

I have been using these to keep track of my creative activities, more like a weekly journal than a weekly plan. And it has been great! Not sure what I’m going to be doing with all of them once I’m done; I will probably make a mini book of some sort.
I already have some exciting ideas to use this type of journaling for documenting 2014; I will share it here once I have it exactly figure out how.