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Bright colors and whimsical designs
Erin Condren Classic Life Planners are the best planners for moms who love bright colors and whimsical designs. The company implemented a major design change this year, and the heavy-duty, laminated cover can be switched out for a different cover — making it a perfect choice if you can't commit to a single design for an entire year. Beyond the fantastic, and customizable, designs, the Life Planner maximizes planning space for busy moms. Each month begins with a two-page spread, as does each week. Every day is broken into three large sections, so nothing will slip through the cracks (ErinCondren.com, starting at $50).
Ultimate organization for the whole family
Juggling kids' activities, play dates and class reminders is a struggle for moms. The weekly planning area in the momAgenda Personal Portfolio takes some of the stress out of weekly planning. The two-page weekly planning area includes a separate area for mom and up to four kids. Having everyone's must-haves for the week on a single page is a practical, time-saving way to organize your week. momAgenda Personal Portfolios use a three-ring binder system, so you only need to buy yearly inserts after you purchase your first portfolio — unless, of course, you change your mind about which of the beautiful colors you want to use (momAgenda.com, $75).
Take Martha Stewart's home advice
Martha Stewart Home Office™ with Avery™ Wirebound Planner is a soft blue planner that looks sweet but houses an organizational powerhouse. Monthly and weekly planning pages are minimally designed, which leaves the majority of page room for your scheduling needs. Two customizable rows in the weekly section can be used however you need, from meal planning to extracurricular activities. Martha Stewart's seasonal tips let you bring a little bit of the lifestyle guru with you wherever you go (Staples, $23).
Build the planner you need
Franklin Planners, a division of Franklin Covey, have a wide range of options so moms can design a planner that works for them. With Build Your Own Bundle, you can choose between wire-bound and ring-bound planner pages in different designs and sizes. There are countless options for planner accessories, like address pages and zipper pouches. Finally, you can choose the binder in which to keep your personally-built planner — the zippered binder keeps everything safely inside the planner, even when you don't feel so together (Franklin Covey, starting at $70).
DIY paper planners
If none of the paper planners you've seen look like they'd work for your scheduling needs, there are printable options online from which you can pick and choose to build your own planner. Buttoned Up® has a fantastic Daily Schedule Form that allows you to break down what you have to do each day into manageable time slots. The daily sheet also has spaces for the things you must accomplish and a place to jot notes that might arise during the day. One of the wonderful things about printable options is their budget-friendly nature. Many are free to download — like the Buttoned Up one we love — or available at a very low cost, and you can keep them in any folder or small binder you already have at home. (GetButtonedUp.com, free).
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