My diary/ planner for 2017


So you all know I’m a big fan of the Shining Year planners.

I pre-ordered the diary this year too and it arrived just before Christmas. (if you’re ordering and you’re in South Africa, buy the digital version!)

It is gorgeous and colourful, and has nice, thick, non-bleedy paper for my Pentel gel pens. It also has some good goals pages before and after each month. As you know I do a Goals Night on the last night of each month and this will really help me to simplify my monthly goals review process.

There is only one thing “wrong” with it.

It’s huge. It’s more than double the thickness of last year’s diary and about 5 cm longer.

I can’t see myself carrying this diary to and from work daily, as I’m accustomed to doing with my yearly diaries.

I actually took it to church on New Year’s Day to test it out on a short trip and my shoulder was falling off.

So I know I won’t be able to carry it around on a daily basis.

I’m not going to buy another diary largely because everything is so big this year (Confession – I’ve looked). The 2017 version of the style I used in 2016 has awful covers and while I love the insides, I can’t bring myself to see those covers daily.

If you’ve read my post about choosing the perfect diary/ planner, you’ll remember I always say you’ve got to have something you want to use and that will inspire you to actually use it.

Do I just bullet journal on a daily basis while out and about, and keep my Shining Planner at home to update as and when?

What do all these people with the ginormous planners do? Do they leave them at home? Do they cart them around?

Also, if I had even the slightest bit of design skills, I’d just make my own darn planner. Because nobody makes exactly the one I want. Legami is the closest but I don’t think Exclusives got them in this year 🙁

What do you think I should do? What would you do?

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  1. You use both, as and when needed. So the Shining one could be a desk one – at work during the week, at home on weekends, and bullet journal is your carry around for notes one. Make sense? Something for you?

    • Marcia Francois says:

      Thank you! It’s somehow so clear when it’s other people’s problems 🙂 HA! I would have said the same to someone else. And I tried it that way for the last few days on my home desk – MUCH easier on my back 🙂

  2. Pretty! I’m still flirting with the bullet journal idea even though I have NO artistic skills and the worst handwriting ever. I plan to experiment.

  3. Terisha says:

    Cassey’s suggestion is good. I would do the same. I use a diary and bullet journal. The bullet journal is to ensure I keep up with the smalller and more personal goals and my diary is for more work stuff, meetings appointments etc

    • Marcia Francois says:

      Tell me more about your diary, T. Do you use a daily planner or a weekly planner?

      • Terisha says:

        I use a daily planner. I tend to procrastinate a lot of recent. So I figured the daily planner might be the choice to help keep me on track. Its a normal diary from CNA – just in the most beautiful colour. Its on the big side too, but I prefer that and have used this size for years.

  4. This must be killing you… I so totally get your frustration. I used to keep a “slim” week at a glance moleskin, it was perfect… blog ideas packed into the appropriate days and everything else I needed. Then I progressed to a page a day… too fat, too clunky… and then moleskin got horrendously expensive and I got what I thought I really liked from typo… an 18 month diary, it started mid-year… and well a new year means a new diary so after half a year I tossed it. Then I tried a week at a glance pad on my desk… um it is always underneath what I am working on. All the moans!!! I just can’t find what I am looking for, so I am trying to create something I can use, though I hate reinventing the wheel. I am trying a calendar at a glance spread, on a double page, calendar on one page and the opposite page for doodling. I need/have to have a ton of space for doodles, mid-wandering and brainstorming… but so far… no working journal this year and ho hum almost no blog posts… yes there is a connection. I need pen and paper to blog… and I need it with me wherever I am!!! I know I have to get over it, and I will, but maybe not for a day or three!!!

    • Marcia Francois says:


      Thank you for telling me all your diary woes – I don’t feel so alone!

      I bought an 18-month one twice (WHY???) and both times abandoned after 6 months too.

      I actually think you and I like the same sort of diary/ planner – weekly down the one side with lined paper on the other side. But you like the plain black one and I like Legami’s gorgeous bright colours. Don’t laugh but I actually went to Exclusive Books last week (when I was on my date with Connor) and asked them why they didn’t have any Legami diaries. They didn’t order any 🙁

      I actually think both of us need to tell EVERYONE to pool their money and just buy us a diary we like for next year.

      Cost per use is a lot lower when you think we would use it daily 🙂

      However, back to you – can I suggest a monthly calendar on a clipboard against the side of your bookcase for blog editorial planning (print my free one or ones on my pinterest board)? And then grab a bullet journal with lines for doodling/ daily lists/ etc. At the very least, it will give you a post 🙂 – Se7en plus 1 tips for bullet journalling


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