Thursday, May 26, 2016

My Bullet Journal Update

As I set up my June layout, I decided to take some time to reflect. Kara @boho.berry has been vocal in her defense of people who bullet journal in any format they choose.  I hadn't seen or heard of these haters because I rarely read comments people leave on posts.  I also gave up Facebook in March, so I'm missing the negativity in the bullet journal groups there. But after I saw Kara giving her passionate plea for us to all get along, I went digging around in some places I had never looked, like Reddit.  And I was immediately confronted with people either whining that they were afraid of posting their own bullet journals because of their own fear, or those chiming in saying that artsy bullet journals "weren't real bullet journals".  What?!  Whenever you say someone's anything isn't "real" you're being an asshole.  Whatever it might be.  A variation isn't a "fake."  It's what they want or need or can afford.  I would like a Leuchtturm1917 in every color and size, but I don't have $$$ for that.  So I make do with a few of them and whatever other notebooks I have come upon that suit my needs.  Some days my bullet journal is a brain dump notebook, other times it's a checklist, or a calendar, or a photo album.  Some days are heavy washi tape days, and others are heavier in marker or colored pens.  I can't draw, but I'm jealous of those who can doodle the weather icons or little images of themselves or their objects.  I'm not self-employed, so I don't do too much "scheduling" for myself.  I struggle to get to work - in fact, every day this week I've had a bullet of "Work the full day" and I've crossed it out every day and modified the time I actually worked or didn't.

I'm gonna take a step on my soapbox here...
Now the people who are whining about themselves not being able to put up photos of their own work... <heavy sigh> That's on you.  Maybe you don't want people to see your messy writing, or the things you keep track of, or whatever the case may be.  It might be insecurity.  It might be privacy. (My grandfather used to write "Boom" on the big wall calendar when my grandmother had a bowel movement... my mom worked in the basement doing hair and her customers would come upstairs to use their phone and some would ask what that meant, written in bold sharpie on their wall calendar.  You think you've got something to be embarrassed about? Ha! )  But if you're not sharing what you want to share because you're afraid of what someone you don't know might have to say about it, I would ask you to push yourself.  Give those people the finger and show them that your work is just as valid, even if it's not pretty.  I've foregone posting pages because they have my kids names written out and they've expressed that they don't want their names on my website.  I've made the choice not to post them.  But I'm not whining saying "oh, poor me, I am afraid of some criticism from strangers I will never meet, so I can't participate in a community I want to be a part of."  Nothing frustrates me more than Bullies.  And if you stand by and silently let them continue, they will.  14 years ago I had a run-in with a group of cloth diaper moms over breastfeeding.  Here we all were, trying to be supportive of each other's desire to use cloth diapers, and I was being attacked by these people because I was not going to breast feed my daughter.  I was called a child abuser!  And people were getting away with this behavior because nobody would stand up to them.  I got dozens of messages privately from people who wanted to say they supported me but would never say so in public for fear of the jackasses that would call them names.  

My bullet journal is serving it's purpose for me...  I jot down the little tidbits about my day that I want to remember.  I keep track of my weight, steps and sleep from my Fitbit app.  I draw a calendar so I can mark my appointments and the time I will see my children.  I keep track of my books (I'm doing a Goodreads challenge for 100 books read this year.)  In my past bullet journal I was writing out song lyrics, but that feeling has passed, so this journal doesn't have many songs written in it.  I've written out some of the #scribe30day challenge responses in it.

Yesterday I drew out my blog post planner for the next few months.  I drew out a grid of the calendar for now thru the end of July.  Then I used my little checkbox stamper to put a mark in the days I plan to post to my blog.  Unfortunately the pretty Colorbox Paintbox inkpads are slow-drying inks and it takes FOREVER for them to dry, so I have to be patient when I use them and not turn the page too fast.

My first foray into Bullet Journaling was back in 2014, when Ryder was using a Moleskine and nobody was talking about bullet journaling.  It wasn't inspiring to me.  Even back then I was using washi tape and colored pens.  I needed to make it interesting.  But I didn't stick with it.  I needed more structure.  Now with all the people who are sharing their layouts, it's easy to pick a different layout every day/week/month.  I have designed and then abandoned a new layout just about every week since I've been back at it.  There is no right & wrong.  There is only what works or doesn't for me.  And the great thing is that the only commitment is to keep trying.  You can just turn the page and begin with something new.  And nobody is gonna complain about it.  Nobody says it has to be perfect!

I'm most excited that my younger daughter C wanted to start bullet journaling.  She got a Moleskine from Michaels on Clearance.  It's the lined version since they didn't have graph or dot grid leftover.  She also picked out some washi tape to get her started.  I wound some of it off onto a used itunes giftcard so she can carry it with her in her purse.  I had her watch the video on bulletjournal.com so that she understood the basics, even though I know she's seen mine and the ones I've shown her online from some of my favorite bujo people.  And this is what I love about the Bullet Journal.  My 12 year old can get something out of this just as much as I can at 39, and how other people of any age can.   I think that my autistic 14 year old daughter will eventually give it a go, too.  She likes to draw, so she would have little doodles of her ideas in it.  My younger daughter likes to write stories and songs, and draws people pretty well.  I have none of that talent.  So I will stick to my washi tape and stickers.  As long as Michaels keeps putting out those coupons, I'm golden.

Speaking of Michaels Coupons, I had a 50% off Recollections washi & stickers that I used at 2 different stores today.  I got 3 of the big tubes of washi tape and some border stickers in a "family" theme.  Yesterday I had gotten these 3 smaller sets of washi tape with 40% off coupons, so I should be set for a good long while.  I also got more of the clearanced cardstock tags that I can wind the washi tape around and then fit about 15 tapes with me in a library pocket stuck to the inside cover of my journal.  I liked the idea of using the embroidery thread bobbins, but the tape seems to be unsticking from itself and catching on other stuff in my planner supply bag.  And it's not really saving as much space as I'd originally expected.

Anyone have anything interesting to add?

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