#VIPlanner Sneak Peek: Color

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It’s no secret that I’m wild about COLOR and I love embracing and celebrating that fact through all of our products. But over the years we’ve seen lots of feedback from shoppers wanting a more subtle color scheme. Sooooo, ask and ye shall receive! I am so excited to introduce a more monochromatic, stylish spin on the colorful LifePlanner™….we’ve saved a seat for NEUTRALS!

That’s right….this year we have a new option that is primarily black and shades of grey, with just subtle pops of color throughout the book. When I say neutral, I don’t mean boring, lackluster or missing any of the key design elements that make an #ECLifePlanner so special.

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This stylish colorway embraces the design elements of Midcentury Circles (inspired by the tile I chose for our remodel, see blog post here!) but has a more sophisticated vibe than our Colorful Classic. With Calligraphy back in fashion, we’ve felt it was appropriate to illustrate each month by hand, as well as the stunning inspirational quotes. Black and greys blended with ivory and an occasion pop of pastel make for a book that you can pare down or pile it on! Meaning if you’re a gal who likes simple sophistication, this is your book. However, it might also be the perfect “canvas” for the gal who wants to create her own weekly color scheme and can pile her personality on each page with stickers, washi tape and other accessories!

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For all my colorful enthusiasts, don’t worry…we still have you covered! Gorgeous gemstone hues are seen throughout the book in motivational quotes, pops of pattern and in the mulitcolored Midcentury Circles design. Colorful tabs and bright accessories further enhance this colorful classic. Decisions, decisions…which color scheme will you choose?

BLOGGER TAKEOVER: Organizing with Kayse Pratt

Kayse Pratt for Erin CondrenHi there! I’m Kayse, wife of a musician and mom of 2 extremely loud children. I stay home with my kiddos & work from home during naptimes. I write mainly to moms, sharing Biblical encouragement and practical resources over on my blog, called The Only Hope I’ve Got. I’m so excited to be hanging out with you today!

Things you should know about me… I’m fully addicted to Chick Fil A’s Sweet Tea, I love a good fiction novel, and I’m an organizing junkie. I could talk to you about those first couple of things all day long, but today, let’s talk about getting organized!

I’ve been called “organized and responsible” for as long as I can remember (I live on the wild side, folks!), but becoming a mom kind of turned my organized life on it’s head. Our two kiddos are anything BUT organized, and they seem to bring a tornado with them wherever they go. Life isn’t as “plannable” as it used to be, and I’m doing a lot more flying by the seat of my pants than I ever expected to.

Still, I’m passionate this stuff, because I really believe that getting organized brings a sense of peace and calm into your home. And a peaceful home is good for the soul. (And the family.) So today, I’d love to share with you the 3 organizing tools that I just can’t live without!

 

1. My Home Journal

I’m a list maker, and while I love a good planner, I’ve always got a notebook full of lists going somewhere. I’ve got one notebook where I just brain dump everything – my meal plans, my to-do lists, my shopping lists – all of it! I keep everything somewhat organized by week, and then I can transfer necessary items into my daily planner, or keep tabs on lists that are more ongoing. I LOVE using the new EC notebooks for this, especially because I can use that little section on the side for my grocery list! Keeping a Home Journal has been revolutionary for me in keeping all of my important information in one place. Instead of writing lists on scraps of paper, or post-its that just get lost, I’ve got everything in one spot, and can stay much more organized in the day-to-day projects of being a homemaker.

2. Our Chore Chart

I love my children, but there are no free rides in our house! We are determined to raise our kids into responsible citizens who know the value of hard work. We have a lot of fun too, don’t get me wrong, but as they get older, I’m happy to pass more responsibilities onto them, as they become appropriate.

We use the FUNctional Family Chore Chart each day so the kids can see exactly what they need to do & check off their tasks as they complete them. They are just 5- and 2-years-old right now, so chores are still exciting! They have so much fun drawing their checkmarks in their boxes, and bringing me their reward cards to fill in with happy faces.

The chore chart is great for teaching responsibility, but it’s also a vital tool for keeping our home running smoothly & staying organized. Everyone shares the load!

Kayse Pratt for Erin Condren

3. The Stop Settling For Overwhelmed Course

As a work-from-home mom, I’ve found that it’s easy to get really overwhelmed by life. Managing the house, the kids, the food, and my business? I tend to hit a wall every six months or so where I just feel like I CANNOT DO ALL THE THINGS ANYMORE.

When that happens, I stop, take a step back, and seriously look at everything that’s overwhelming me. I evaluate what season of life I’m in, and what I can realistically handle. I make hard decisions, say no to things that have slipped into our lives that maybe weren’t all that important, and create a routine that actually works for us in the season we’re in – keeping the important things important.

This process helps me find focus and organization every. single. time. And at this point in my life, it’s what I keep coming back to when I get overwhelmed. It’s like my reset button! So, I wrote down my entire process, and turned it into a course for overwhelmed women. In 10 days, we work together to create a routine that actually works, for the exact season of life you’re in right now. (You can read more about the course here, if you’re interested!)

I use it myself, at least twice a year. It’s a staple for me!

Kayse Pratt for Erin Condren

Being a mom is such a huge blessing and also an enormous responsibility. It’s such a huge job! Staying organized is one of the only ways I stay sane, and I’m so grateful for anything that makes life a little easier!

Thanks so much for letting me crash the EC blog today! I’d love to connect with all of you over at my place, or on Facebook, Pinterest, or Instagram!

May the FOURTH be with you: #ECootd

An #ECootd in the spirit of this Star Wars-themed day!

MAY THE FOURTH BE WITH YOU! (Get it? Today is May 4th! ha!)

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Armed with my light saber (aka: wrap roll) I’m feeling like a Jedi Warrior with my Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader socks on (borrowed from my son).

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sweater: Kate Spade

pants: Cartonnier (from Anthropologie)

shoes: Jeffrey Campbell (from PixieMarket.com)

We Love Teachers: Teach For America Partnership!

I truly have the utmost respect for Teachers. As I’ve mentioned, both my parents were educators and have been the most incredible role models to me and THOUSANDS of students they have influenced over the decades they spent in the classroom. It’s one of the toughest jobs and also one of the most important careers since they are shaping our youth around the world. Teachers are typically challenged with over crowded classrooms and limited resources, yet they somehow find the energy and passion to approach each day with a positive attitude that will inspire children in their formative years. Creating an inspirational Lesson Planner has been a dream of mine for many years. I was thrilled to collaborate with focus groups on this project and I’m extremely proud of how the planner continues to evolve year after year.

Last year I was feeling very “Oprah-like” as we surprised many schools with Teacher’s Lesson Planners for their entire staff! Teachers give so much of themselves day after day to our youth, it felt good to give something in return. Teachers4 This year we are taking our philanthropic efforts one step further. Teach For America is an organization that I have admired for many years and we’ve been determined to find a way to collaborate and help with their efforts nationwide. TFA is on a mission to enlist, develop, and mobilize as many as possible of our nation’s most promising future leaders to grow and strengthen the movement for educational equity and excellence. This is a tough challenge with obstacles such as racism, outdated policies, lack of resources, and much more. To make things right we must come together as students, teachers, principals, activists, social entrepreneurs, politicians, and all others to disrupt the causes of injustice and create solutions.

I am proud to say that EC can help with this mission by donating $1 from every single Teacher’s Lesson Planner sold to Teach For America in support of their work with communities to expand educational opportunity for children facing the challenges of poverty.

You can help us give back to our nation’s highest-need kids in classrooms across the country by spreading the word to all the teachers you know! To learn more about Teach For America, visit their website: www.teachforamerica.org.

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Teach For America

25 Broadway, 12th Floor

New York, NY 10004

$1 of the purchase price from the sale of each Teacher Lesson Planner sold in the continental United States will be contributed to TEACH FOR AMERICA. This contribution is not tax deductible by purchasers. The promotion shall last until 5/31/2016.

 

#VIPlanner Sneak Peek: Accessories

We have so many new features and exciting new accessories, it’s been tough to decide what to “sneak” without giving too much away! As #VIPlanners, you get the first glimpse inside the book… and we hope you like what you see! All year we had people asking, “what is the best pen to use on the dashboards?” Well, guess what? We spent all year developing the cutest set of Wet Erase Markers the world has ever seen! Ok, so I might be a bit biased, but I am SO excited to finally be able to sell these beauties, perfect for using on any snap-in dashboard. Just like the pens used on transparencies for overhead projectors, these markers will stay on until you want to wipe them off. Unlike DRY Erase markers, these WET Erase Markers don’t smudge off easily. Just wipe away with water when you are ready to start fresh again.

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Speaking of dashboards… we obviously have to launch with a stunning new one that features “Midcentury Circles” design elements found throughout the LifePlanner™ Stylized Organizer. Clip it in, plan it out and use Wet Erase Markers to make note of what to do today and wipe away (with water) in time for tomorrow!

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Finally… drumroll… each cover now features a wipe away whiteboard on the inside cover! That’s right, the front inside cover has a lined whiteboard and the back inside cover is blank. Jot down your to-dos or doodle your dreams, both are now included in your LifePlanner™.
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I better stop now before I reveal everything….stay tuned! There are so many more surprises in store!

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