I’m a scheduler, and I love my To-Do lists more than anything. But…life is COMPLEX, and I can’t wander around with a million bits of paper with to do lists written on each. In managing this blog I need to be able to see at a glance all the days in the week – and the month – so I can plan out what I want to (ideally) post here. I’ve tried a digital calendar, which I’ve found doesn’t work for me because I like to jot ideas down on the side, rotate ideas for posts in and out of the hopper, or brainstorm away from the computer. I’ve tried a date book, which is too small for me to see the whole month at the size I need. And no matter what offline solution I’ve tried, I was constantly erasing things and having to rewrite posts on new days if I made the smallest change. Sooooo frustrating!
But now I think I’ve found the best solution to my blog planning problems: a DIY Blog Calendar, that uses washi tape as a way to organize posts once you’ve brainstormed them. No erasing necessary! And it’s super easy to put together. Here’s how to make your own DIY Washi Tape Blog Planner (which is yes, quite intuitive from the photos):
1. Print out your favorite calendar for the month. I turn off all my scheduled events and print a month’s view of iCal just so I can get the structure. I prefer to have a piece of paper for each month as I go, rather than using a laminated sheet and a dry erase marker, but you could do that too.
2. Tear small pieces of washi tape off, folding one edge under about 3/6″. This creates a tab for easy removal. I like to create a theme for my tape colors: one color is for DIY projects or my own designs; the other is for sponsored posts, reviews, or outfits.
3. Now comes the fun part: brainstorm! Write ideas for your posts, sponsored posts, reviews, whatever on each piece of tape. (I found that ballpoint pen or Sharpie worked best on the waxy washi tape.)
4. Then, once brainstormed, schedule into your calendar by sticking into the appropriate days. Some ideas won’t have a place just yet, so I left them floating at the top, ready to rotate into next month if needs be.
5. Follow the calendar for your posting schedule. At the beginning of each week stick your posts into the day you actually posted them (in case you missed any or the schedule moved around). Then you’ll always be up to date – and won’t miss any posts!
I like that this is a permanent way to collect your thoughts and keep your blog schedule on hand, but you can still move ideas around as you go. You could use this for anything; it doesn’t have to be a blog calendar! It could be just general life or a to-do list, and the washi tape makes it look so pretty!
Last week I shared how to make some easy pastel-colored French macarons, and today I’m going to share what to do with the ones you’ve made. You don’t want them just sitting around, right? How about making them into something even better, like a cute little stack holding a message of love for your sweetheart? It looks adorable sitting on a desk, makes a great gift for children or teachers, and is quite easy to make as the clay is soft enough to poke holes into without power equipment. Here’s how:
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I am just in love with Minieco‘s website – it’s so colorful and fun, my day is instantly brightened. Plus the author offers tons of downloadable paper templates and the origami-lover in me just can’t stay away. I particularly am drawn to the paper gemstone templates since they seem such a paradox. Precious gemstones! Made of cheap materials! By your own two hands! I needed some accent pieces for my seemingly-unending home office makeover, and so immediately decided to bump up the glam factor by using a glitter cardstock and making 2 coordinating gemstones for my desk. Here’s how:
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I am the only one drooling over completely-coordinated office accessories? I have most certainly fallen into the rabbit-hole of inspiration with Pinterest’s never-ending supply of inspirational office environments…and my own home office re-do that has been months in the making. I finally settled on a palette of white with pops of gold and cobalt blue for my office makeover, and to follow my own rules of things being easy on the eye and in a coordinating color palette I decided the pushpins for my inspiration corkboard desperately needed a facelift. I know, it’s total obsessing over the details. But it’s these details that can turn something run-of-the-mill into a statement. AND they make a great gift for a special someone. Here’s how to make your own:
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Though I rarely cover non-wearable DIY’s on this blog, I’ve been struggling with what to showcase for V-day for awhile. In the past I’ve found that making non-edibles for my guy has not gone over well. In Hub’s case, he has always thanked me sincerely, and then proceeded to never wear or use whatever I have funneled hours into making. The sweater I hand-knitted him sat in the closet for 9 years until he finally admitted he wasn’t really a “sweater-person” and I finally gave it to Goodwill. The notebook I made, with the cover fashioned from one of his favorite shirts that he threw out, and then hand-bound…gathering dust in the bottom of his desk drawer. Yet everything edible I’ve ever made him he’s devoured within 24 hours, and loved. (Do you know any guys like that? I think maybe it’s a guy-thing.) So I was going back and forth between making something for my husband to wear (that he won’t) and showcasing it on this blog…since this is a wearables DIY blog…or making him something to eat and mentioning it.
So after many nights in thought I decided to forget the wearables idea (since I hate creating useless things more than anything)…and made Hub his favorite dessert: cheesecake, with chocolate swirls.
But…I made something else, too…for Lil Tot. Erasers…in the shape of chocolates! I made them using a make-your-own-erasers kit bought in Japan (but it’s also available on Etsy here, shipped straight from Japan to you.)
Sometimes I enjoy fiddly, time-consuming crafts like clay crafting and deko-sweets, and because these kits come with plastic molds in them, making tiny chocolates, donuts, cakes, and ice cream is super-simple! Then you dump the finished piece into the included box, add water, and zap in the microwave for about 3 minutes to let the binding agents evaporate.* Allow to cool and you have a fully usable eraser!
This eraser clay is soooo fun, and already I’m thinking of new tiny edibles to create with the remaining colors. And think of the trading potential at your little ones’ schools! (I hear those food-shaped eraser packs are the new tradeables among the Elementary set lately…)
I made a swirl chocolate with a dollop of whipped cream, a heart-shaped chocolate, and a chocolate square with icing lines and an almond on top.
I also made a pink chocolate truffle, a chocolate square with a pink heart, and two chocolate pieces that look like they were snapped off of a chocolate bar.
They’re so adorable it seems like almost a shame to use them!
If you’d rather not order kits like this from Japan, Sculpey also manufactures Eraser Clay that cures by being baked in the oven – so you can create your own erasers in a variety of different shapes and colors. However, if you want to create chocolates, you’d have to buy either the 8-bar Set or the Shape and Bake Kit since the 6-packs don’t contain brown. (And you can’t make delicious-looking chocolate without brown!!;-) I haven’t used this stuff before so can’t recommend it one way or the other…has anyone else played around with the Sculpey brand of eraser clay?
Tomorrow I’ll be taking the in-laws to the slopes of Mt. Hood…and Lil Tot will have his first-ever skiing adventure! I’ll be stiff and sore from attempting to ski for the first time in…oh, 9 years or so…and looking extremely unfashionable as all my ski-wear is circa 1992 and I just haven’t seen the need to update it since. (Likely photos from tomorrow I’ll be keeping under lock and key lest word get out I have a neon…multicolored….ski…poncho. Yikes!!!) And since I posted about the V-day erasers today, tomorrow I’ll also be sharing my DIY Links of the Week from the past week…and there’s some great ones, so stay tuned!
Hope everyone had a lovely day – whether you celebrated the holiday or not! * x */ (That’s a kiss – kinda;-)
*since U.S. microwaves tend to be 1000+ KiloWatts and Japanese microwaves are either 500KW or 600KW, I adjust the microwave times by subtracting about 10 – 30 seconds off the times recommended in the kits.