Using Month at a Glance
Posted on March 17 2017
Hello again planner friends! I often get asked what I do with my month at a glance layout. Do I really use it? Do I decorate? How do I decorate it and still have it be usable? How do you fit everything into those boxes? For me, the month at a glance is the heart of my planner. I keep the entire year worth of month at a glances in my planner at all times, usually covered in sticky notes. That’s the secret. Sticky notes. Since things change so much, I can make sure I know what is going on months out, and not worry about having to erase, cover up, or move things around, I just put it all on sticky notes and change as needed. About two weeks before the new month starts, I sit down and do my monthly layout for the upcoming month. Monthly layouts are one of my favorite things to do because Limelife always has the same amount of boxes on the month no matter what, meaning, there is usually empty space to get creative or add a little extra decoration. Right now I am slightly obsessed with mermaids. After the winter we have had here, I think I am really ready for warmer weather, so I decided to do an ocean/mermaid spread for this month. March is also be a month of multiple sports for both our boys, so there is a CRAZY amount of information that I need to cram into this layout, that’s why I thought this would be a good month to share with you all how I do my monthly layouts.
Let's get started! First I wanted to stamp out my decorative background which I will color later. This is not a pretty picture that I am sharing, this is a real life picture. Stamping large stamps can be difficult, so I wanted to show what I use to make it a little easier. I always stamp on a hard surface, and to make sure that when I apply pressure that it disperses evenly, I stamp on a board that a friend cut for me. I use a large block and walk my fingers back and forth on it to try to make sure the entire stamp gets down on the paper. I also use old scraps of paper for any overhang from a stamp so it doesn’t get on my table or board.
Next, it’s washi time. I have some amazing mermaid themed washi that I have been excited to use in a layout. Washi can really be the ‘tie it all together’ element of a layout, so I picked three washi tapes to allow myself some freedom with color choices for ink.
This next part is what makes the crazy busy life possible to fit in a monthly layout….stamps, small stamps, color coding inks, and minimal handwriting. I have big handwriting, and so if I tried to fit this all into the boxes by just writing, I would miss stuff because of how messy it would end up being. The “barely holding it together mom” would emerge more often than not if my month at a glances weren’t usable and holding life together for us.
With the important information down, all the functional stamping done, it is time to do the creative stuff! Prismacolor soft core colored pencils work amazingly well on Limelife paper! It’s so easy to blend the colors. For example, for the little fish in the photo, I layed yellow down first as the all over base color. I added some blue and blended it out into the tropical green color. I added a little orange next by outlining the face and blended out to create the sherbert color for the face. Between the pencils, the paper, and the blending pencil, the colors can become so vibrant and look like pens. I also used glitter gel pens to add little accent details. Just by adding little details like that can be a game changer for your layouts and decorations. The fish becomes more interesting, the mermaid jumps off the page more.
Amidsts all the craziness, our planning can keep us grounded and feeling a little less overwhelmed, and more confident in handling life. I hope I was able to provide some inspiration on how to use your monthly layout and get everything down on those pages that you need!
Thanks for stopping by the blog and see you soon!