Plan With Me: March 2019 (Mid Month Edition)

So I’m late on this, like everything I wanted to do in the later half of February. If you forgive me for a hot minute, I can tell you why now.

WE HAVE A HOUSE!!!!!!! We got it for a steal, we’ve paid it outright, and will be making the MINIMAL renovations to it over the next month. The house really only needs cabinets and counter space, then the rest is minor TLC (paint to the bedrooms, a garage door fix, and yard work/fencing).

I’ll be posting a follow up blog on the story of how we got it, plus some updates (once we get there), and basic tips on how to pack, regardless if you’re moving into a starter home, your first apartment, or a potential forever home like we are!

Babe and I have moved at least 15 times between the both of us, and that includes some struggles, let me tell ya! That’s never minding babe helping others move, as a side job. He’s done a 100 moves easy. So we’re kind of tired of the whole moving thing.

Anyway, you came here for the planning, not the packing! Let’s get to it, shall we?

So it’s March, month of the Irish, and also the start of Lent. Are you doing anything for St Patrick’s Day? Mine’s going to be painting.

A lot of my “planning” is off my planner this time, as it’s a “check list” type. I guess I should say that it’s not so much on the monthly outlook but on to the weekly outlooks.

Weekly outlook for this week (week we’re signing and getting keys for our home:

With this move, babe has allowed me to have room to pace on packing things up. I think I collected enough boxes now haha! I’ll spare you the amount of boxes for now. I’ll share that in the moving post!

It’s such a simple looking month, but it’s so much! We have some projects we need to conquer at the house, but it’s very minor and very much a cosmetic thing, and not a “it needs major work” home. We are so fortunate and grateful on how this fell in our lap. That story will be in the moving post as well for ya’ll.

If this is any excuse for being rather absent/on the down low for the last near month now, I hope ya’ll will be ok with it! Post move, I can share my gardening journey, since I’m going to be starting that journey for the first time as an adult.

I hope the best for all of you, as we’ve seen some beautiful times as of this last month. How was February for ya’ll? How is March treating you? Let me know in the comments!

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Plan With Me: February 2019

One month down already into the book that is 2019! 11 more chapters to go, and what have you accomplished so far?

Outside of this last week, where I was down for the count (got a flu like thing, ugh), I did rather well on my goals. My main focus this past month was to form consistent habits. Fitness didn’t do the best, but she was present. Self care goals were good though!

Now to move onto the next chapter of 2019: February.

To plan my monthly outlook, I start with my workbook. I look at the goals I want to accomplish, and this year I’m trying on building off of the previous month, and not to be so all over the place on goals. Each quarter has a general theme, and from there I’m letting that guide my month.

I didn’t make some actual steady habits (fitness really), but I did good on others last month, so I want to keep with the good habits, and see if I can do better this month on my fitness goals. I want more yoga, since I seem to like that a lot more. Since it’s still cold and winter out, I will do my best for indoor workout, but come spring is when I really want to take it outdoors.

So this month is going to be a lot more of the same as January, but adding water intake goals, and more self-love practices. I want to learn/enjoy loving myself, in a frugal manner, but also do simple things like watch more on Netflix and YouTube that makes me feel joy.

I want my weekends to be all about relaxing and taking care of myself (fitness included), since I have no long weekends this month, like I have been enjoying. I want to sleep more, and better, I want to do a workout a week at least, yoga twice a week at least (honestly I like doing a few moves before bed too). I want to paint my nails and do hair masks over the weekend, so I can use up my nail polishes, and feel like a lady for awhile, even if the paint chips the first night back at work.

Next, I go into my planner, and organize bills due for the month, paydays, holidays, and any birthdays that may occur. In the side bar on the left, I usually write (or wrote for January….since I did get away from using a planner in the later months of 2018. Planners help so much, I feel, even just the monthly outlook) some of the major things I want to focus on.

For February, I want to keep posting on my planner page, keep up with the blog posts on here (5 planned out!), and working on a side project with my dad, on top of working on those habits.

I also am loosely planning on a date with babe, for Valentines Day, but not on the day itself, because it’s during our work week. With our dates, we never formally plan anything. Outside of seeing deals (like Lobster Fest at Red Lobster is going on) we don’t try too hard. Can you tell where we’re going this month? haha!

From there, sometimes I do my whiteboard monthly calendar, but I’m not feeling that this month, so I’m just leaving it clean. It’s a rather mild month, so I don’t feel the need to separate some of it out so I don’t feel lost looking at one “planner”.

My month is very laid back, as you can see. Mostly bills, work, off, sleep, and minor stuff so I don’t just lay around all day going crazy 3 days in.

What’s your month looking like? Let me know!

12 Days of Christmas: 2019 Plans and Goals

Oh boy, are you ready for 2019? I know I am! Especially since it’s now post-Christmas. If you need some last minute inspo for 2019, here’s your chance! From category goals, bucket list, to vibes (including music playlist!), this post has it all!

One of the easiest things you can do, is to set your vibes for the new year, regardless if it’s the actual new year, or if it’s YOUR new year (birthday). Mine is adding 5 too many playlists for each year. I start getting ideas early, based off those artists who release that year, and adding it to a hodge podge playlist, and things that still vibe with me (even older songs from the artists I love), and at the end of the year, I finalize a playlist. I’ll edit or update mid-year or before. If I’m taking a trip, like summer of 2018’s CA trip, I’ll make a trip playlist for that. I have a loose plan (as of writing this) of visiting family again, come fall 2019, so that’ll ensue a playlist, once it’s finalized.

I know a lot of us can’t afford big vacations (myself included….don’t think all the finances are one me….I’m SO grateful for my travels, and not financing it all, since I’m still a retail worker and working my budget out, let alone affording something as simple as a staycation in my area). If you can’t afford all those fancy things you see on insta, or your friends’ timeline, try some local things, either on the weekend, or try a weekend getaway. Try new restaurants. My dad and I tried some Mexican place in the late spring of 2017 and we never turned back!

Need ideas for a digital vision board for 2019? Music list for 2019? Click on each for ideas, and a look into mine. vision board is on Pinterest, and Music is on Google Music. Check out the Spotify version here!

I’m also going to share my planning journey on Instagram! So if you want to join this journey, and see if planning will help you, overall, feel free to join our family there! Follow me here for planning!

Let’s get into the nitty gritty shall we?!

Starting past what I’ve shared already, I’m currently using the Artist of Life goal planner, designed exclusively for 2019 from Aileen Xu of Lavendaire. I’ve used this the last 2 years, and was hesitant about updating it for 2019 but did it anyway. I updated my planner, to the Happy Planner (closest concept to mine) vertical BoHo style, instead of my typical of a standard desk one, and a big monthly style for meal planning.

For 2019, I’ve merged a lot to digital, most for econimical reasons, but in some aspects, it’s nice to have that edit-able aspect for meal planning, if something comes up that I need to move a “free day” around. I do like to add a few days each month for free days, as things can be spontaneous.

I LOVE routine and planning, but with those I love, and sometimes want to make time for (plus with sometimes getting free food), I have to mind and add in fluctuating meal plans especially. Prepping for things like blogging and social media isn’t too rough (depending on day really, and where we’re headed).

I currently have 33 things on my 2019 only bucket list. Most of it is the “grow the f*ck up and manage your budget” list, let alone losing some weight. Most of the weight, is more getting some of the sudden chronic issues under control for myself. In an odd way, it may help my man as well.

You’ll see a lot of the plans and updates, either monthly (foodie Friyays, monthly plans, quarterly updates) on our food/weight journey. Personally, I’d love to get myself to a sustainable 125-130 pounds (which won’t be this year…if I am heavier due to muscle weight, I’m okay, but I don’t want to be above 145 on a bad day.). Babe wants to be lesser than his current, but idk his goals, outside “not feeling sluggish” and “not this weight that I’m at now” type.

Trip wise, there’s some tentative plans I have for 2019. My dad and I have some plans, again this year. My grandparents and I are looking forward to more plans, but not near as drastic as this year’s was. All of it is still very loose, but that’s okay!

I’ll share things by the quarter and the month, throughout the year, which will give some suspense, as well as things to sort itself out.

What are some things you are planning for 2019? I’d love to see what you’re planning! And who knows, maybe you’ll inspire me and my plans!

Plan With Me: December 2018

This is the last month of 2018, can you believe it? It feels so odd for me. It’s like the year went by fast, then slow, but now that I’m looking back at the “slow”, I’m kind of like “Really? Where did almost 5 months go?”

I’ll be doing a 12 days of Christmas challenge at the end of the month, which will be better paced (plus shorter!) than my attempt at 31 days of Halloween.

Let’s jump into planning this month, shall we?

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A usual first step for me, after deciding what is happening that month, is laying it out on my whiteboard. Come next year (and really next month, if you think about it!), I’ll be doing things a little differently, so stay tuned! If you don’t already follow me on Instagram, you should. You get sneak peaks into my planning life, and into some of my posts on here! Plus, I’ll take polls and questions, that may feed into my posts!

Next is my budget, but I won’t share that. From there, I’ll start my grocery outlook.

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I usually start with what I have on hand, and what coupons I have in my arsenal. Sometimes (more often than I’d like to admit), I’ll land up having stuff that I don’t make in the list/outlook of dinners, due to leftovers, deals, or sometimes even just a tighter budget than I thought. I’m still working on this whole adulting thing here, so be easy on me haha!

This is my planning for this month. Very basic, but with the new year around the corner, I wanted to keep it simple, so that I could focus on the habits I want to build and create in the new year, plus have time to spend on how I want to create 2019 to be!

I’ve already started some habits, and some basic things like a vision board for 2019, but that’ll be shared later this month!

Are you changing up how you plan, in 2019? Share with me down below!

Retail Talk: Survive Inventory

Inventory depends on the store, and the company you’re working for. I can only speak from my experiences, at the store (let alone company) I work for. I hope my sharing will help those of you who are new to the retail world, regardless of how you get introduced into the retail world (after HS, during HS, as a higher up in the industry somehow…).

I work for the (or one of the…depending on how you calculate things, but it’s one of the top Fortune 10 companies, if I’m being polite) top retailers in the USA, let alone the world.

I’ve also made it 5 years there. I know that was half of a plug…but retail…I guess I’m alive and not on welfare, while doing alright overall, means something. Retail may make you feel dead or apathetic inside, over the years. I’ve been trying over the last two years to not let retail get to me like that.

For my company at least, with talking with others from various stores, Inventory is not all at the same time, company wide. It makes sense, in a way. If you have a regional, or even state/area specific company you’re dealing with on inventory, it makes sense to break things up, for transparency on their end.

Personally, inventory is more annoying and tedious than the regular holiday season. It’s a lot of “prim and proper” where as holiday season is more of “get it on the shelf so it can be sold”.

I have a lot of my own ideas of when inventory should happen, and how everyone should handle it, from management staff, to stocking staff, to maintenance staff.

My store has always done inventory during fall, which IMO, is the worst time to do it. It’s varied on date, but it’s during this whole “BTS to Halloween” time of year. Read my last Retail Talk to get some deets on that (It’ll open in a new tab so you can easily come back here).

It generally doesn’t matter when your store does inventory, it’s usually a headache. Yet the holiday stress doesn’t help any, is what makes it worse. Bless your heart if you’re in a store like mine, where it’s anywhere from right after Back to School, to Halloween or into even Thanksgiving themed stuff.

My store also does Lay-a-way pretty early on, somewhere starting late August to early September, through early to mid December. I believe we count the lay-a-ways as inventory, as they’re not exactly paid for. Don’t quote me on that for the company, let alone your store/company.

I’m not sure about other companies, but my store (and assuming for other stores corporate wide), makes us make it easier for the outside company that comes in, to count. That’s where it’s a patience-testing thing. Trust me, even with a butt load of patience, you may get irritated or bored from the night or two prior, let alone the week or month prior to inventory.

This is my first “I’m off for night shift’s prep” of inventory in all the years I’ve been there. This is/what would be my 6th inventory.

I hope your store allows you to team up with one other person, and allow you to execute the area you’re designated to, so you’re not bored out of your mind. Working with at least one other person makes it more manageable let alone less agonizing.

If you can’t do that, I advise a music playlist, YouTube playlist, audio book, or something to educate yourself, that you can sidetrack yourself in the dull hours of prepping for inventory. I know it’ll be difficult on your shift, management team, and where you work. Attempt to reason with them if you can.

Try to make a fun little game out of the zoning/facing when you’re stuck doing that for your shift. If it’s called something else, let me know, but zoning or facing is what I’ve heard it called. It’s where you make the merchandise look decent, straighten it up, and it may be different for your store’s every day look, compared to inventory.

My store used to do it two ways, but sometime last year (2017), my store went to always zoning how we zone for inventory (or a little not so nice, because ya know, time…). I recall last year I was teamed up with 2 other girls for about half the night.

Once the department was about half way done, I was pulled away for another smaller department that was lighter to deal with, but needed to be done. I think…haha. Night brain and working brain is going good right now…it’s all blurring together.

Learn what you can and can’t get away with it, and work with it as much as you can. It’ll make it more bearable and fun, if you can.

Have you worked retail? Do you work retail now? What’s your experience with inventory where you were/are at? I’d love to know some other experiences, from other stores and chains, big or small stores and chains (ma and pa to national/regional/global).

Birthday 2018: Life Update

There’s so many things I want to share in this post, so be prepared. Also, this is a start to finish in a day post, quite literally on my birthday, so also be prepared!

This post contains affilliate links. You get some, I get some! Treat Yo’ Self!

As you read this, or think of me today (when you’re reading this, even if it’s not when this goes live), listen to: this, this, and this. Yes, I will always reference my band, and yes, this blog will take me so much longer to write, because I had to stop and appreciate the videos. Watch the behind the scene’s of High Hopes here, because it’ll show you how obnoxious Brendon really is!

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Yes, I’m being so “basic” and making a mood board for 24. I’m all about setting goals and making sure I’m happy and setting myself up to be happy in the future, by pushing myself now. Of course in a healthy manner!

I have lyrics from one of the songs I suggested to listen to (Hey Look Ma, I Made It!), a planner, to keep planning for the future, and make amazing memories, as well as build myself in all aspects I can, and the film picture for Farmlands, which is from Lauren Southern. This film really inspired me back into my journey of investigative journalism.

A little known fact about me, is that I wanted to go to college for journalism, and investigative journalism was (and is) something I wanted to more focus on. I never went because I know my talents are decent, but the field is so overpopulated, and I didn’t want to waste my time, money (or really credit to pull out student loans) for a degree that would hinder me more than help me.

With things like Skillshare (2 free months if you sign up!), and freelance work, I want to make it happen. I have some ideas in the works, that I am going to start on this year, since the fire has been kindled underneath me. I’ll see where it takes me!

To continue onto some of my vision board for 24, I have cooking, savings, and photography goals and aspirations. All are overlapping as well as different.

Now let’s get into a tarot reading, because why not?! Here’s the spread I chose for today:
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Now, here’s my drawing, which by the way, was spot on, and I am glad I drew it!
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Yes, this is a hot mess, but it spoke to me! I won’t go into great detail here, but this spread called out that I should forgive and allow my past to be my past, be and create my confidence and leader self, and go after the goals that I wish to set up for myself, in aspects of betterment and what my soul longs for. This is going to be a good year for me (until I turn 25, and I can assess how 25 will treat me!).

For reference, my cards were:
1- Ace of Swords
2- Ten of Swords
3- Five of Swords
4- Seven of Cups (Reversed)
5- The Emperor IV
6- Judgement XX (Reversed)
7- Queen of Coins

So, with all of that in mind, that is the general gist of me turning another year older. I have some basic things planned in honor of my birthday, with those that are close and love.

What do you like to do for your birthday? Do you have any specific rituals you do each year, or do you try to do something different? Do you do anything at all? I’d love to know! Share in the comments what you do, or have done!

Plan With Me: September 2018

So this is my BIRTH MONTH!!! I’m playing it super chill this year, since summer was so packed full of events, and I did a lot last year for my birthday. I was planning on some events, but they’ve fallen through, sadly. Next year though. There’s next year, and next year will be a better year (hint: I’ll be worth a US quarter! I know I’m worth so much more than that, but it’s a cute joke!).

For this month, I have more content planned for you guys, and this will be more of a month for relaxing, taking long weekends, and enjoying alone time, and time with those I care about the most. Let’s get to planning, shall we?

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I usually start with my whiteboard, even though I should start with my Artist of Life Workbook review of the previous month. Wiping it clean allows me to have a clean slate of what will be in front of me, so I can just keep the past, well, the past. I set the month up numerically, then go into the review of the previous month, for what I didn’t finish.

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On the whiteboard, I note any plans, and for this month, it’s just my birthday and a live chat that I have in my Artist of Life Mastermind group, as you can see. Sometimes it’s as simple as that, and other times, it’s more complicated like June was.From there, I can easily see what is happening, and what days are where.

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Since it’s an easy glance, I go from there, into either my notebook, like this month, or into a digital note, usually on my phone, to plan out what blog posts I want to do that month. Then from the ideas, I set the date I want them to be posted on.

For this month, since I had things written out on paper, and I wrote down some notes, I took the themes of the blog posts, and put them on a sticky to-do note pad, and on the far side I write the tentative days I wanted to post them on.

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Past this, I don’t have much plans for the month, other than tentative plans of relaxing, and birthday dinner(s), depending if I feel like doing a solo date, and one with my dad, and if my guy and I go out.

I also planned out my meals for the month, since I’m doing a cleaning out of our cupboards this month. It’ll help me with some of the food days, plus clean out the stock we have, and I don’t feel bad for wasting it, or donating it.

I know there’s people who could use the help, and I’ve been there before (ironically, there’s a few canned goods that are left over from my dad’s raid of his pantry, since he’s doing a Keto meets low sodium diet).

I used to take a big monthly wall calendar to meal plan, but I noticed that I would forget what I was meal planning for the week, when I’d be shopping, and wonder why I would need one random ingredient, or something of the like, and dumb me would just not get it.

Now that I’ve gone digital, I can look at the meal plans on the go, and if I can’t recall why I need something, or if I need to tweak something, I can see what needs it, more on the fly. I love being frugal and prepared, and it’s so much easier. Plus, with trying to be more conscious of what I use, and why (really, the Konmari mentality, of if it truly brings me joy, and adds value to my life), I feel better by using what I already have.

What do you do to plan your month? Do you meal plan for the month, or by the week, if at all? I’d love to know your answers, truly!