One of things you guys may not know about me is my love of stationary and planners/journals. I LOVE them. I don’t even want to count how many notebooks I have around the house that I won’t use because I love them too much. There is something sad about using a notebook for the very first time for me. It’s so bizarre, I know.

It’s kind of the same with planners. I love to collect them, but hate using them. I have found that I need to though. My life isn’t super busy or anything, but I tend to forget the little things we have planned and I like to take little notes about things. I have been searching and searching for planner peace. I still don’t think I am there, but right now I am trying out the Filofax Finsbury and thought I would share my thoughts and set up.

Ok. I got the Finsbury in a trade. I traded my Pear Saffiano for it. When I first opened my package I was super excited. It is really nice leather and very soft and just feels nice. I thought it was going to be the PERFECT one to keep with me. So like my everything planner. It’s lightweight too which is a huge plus! Some planners are quite heavy from the get go!

I sat down to prep it and get it all loaded up and the darn thing will not lay flat. AT ALL. I have messed with it and messed with it and it doesn’t seem too hopeful. I was very sad. I almost cried. (I’m a girl. What can I say? It was quite a sad moment).

I thought about selling it, but went to YouTube and Pinterest to watch some videos and find pictures instead. I looked at pictures for HOURS in the wee hours of the morning while up with baby.  I decided the planner could be awesome if I stuck with it for a wee bit. Some people’s do lay flat. Flatter than mine does, so I am hopeful that eventually it will break in. Hubby was willing to work on it a lot, but it made me nervous. I really don’t want to damage the rings, so I am going to just use it daily for a while and hope that does the trick!

Here were my favorite, most helpful YouTube videos!
Filofax Finsbury Setup by My Planner
My Personal Filofax Finsbury by bunniegirl83

And this blog post by The Little Red Moose (I could have swore that I watched a youtube video by her about her Finsbury, but it’s not showing in her YouTube so now I’m all confused! If I find it, I will link you!)

They made it look really awesome so I decided I would give it a go before I gave up on it. Here is how I set it up.

On the front inside cover there are 6 card slots and one big slot. I’m not really comfortable putting my bank and insurance cards in there so I put some Oli clips, page flags (that were an awesome RAK from a sweet girlie in a FB group. She has an Etsy shop with dividers and dashboards HERE), and sticky notes. In the back big pocket I have a bit of washi on a laminated card (that were part of the same RAK mentioned!) and some more sticky notes. I didn’t want to put too much in there because I don’t want it to become too bulky to carry in my already heave diaper bag, but I wanted to put a few things in there to try to weigh it down to help with the laying flat issue.

I got some beautiful dividers from a girlie in one of my favorite Facebook groups who is also on Instagram! She has all kinds of cuteness you can buy and is the sweetest! I loved these blush glam papers and the dividers are perfection!  I like to keep the front dashboard clear. It doesn’t bother me to flip to the cover to get to my sticky notes. I am really in love with them. She put the tab part at the top for me. With the Finsbury, the pen loop is on that right side so I was worried about having side tabs.

First section is a year at a glance page, the registration number and contact info if lost and my monthly pages from the amazing shop The Planner Market. They are so perfect! I haven’t prettied them up yet because I am waiting for stickers I ordered to come in (later blog post!). I have written in the dates though.

Next section is weekly pages. I also got the weekly pages from The Planner Market. They are amazing and she is amazing. I LOVE them and she has been so sweet and kind to me! I’m a homeschooling mama of 4 so I don’t have tons of time to pretty up planner pages like a lot of people do. I wish I did because I love being creative in that way, but alas I do not. I only have a black and white laser printer that we bought for important documents we had to print a year or two ago so I HATE using it for unnecessary things. I could probably print black and white inserts on it, but I wanted something cute and already pretty and these were perfection!!!

Next section is for my meals. I try to plan out meals a wee bit in advance. Usually 10-20 meals at a time. It’s easier some weeks than others. This is where I keep a list of  what meals we have on hand. Some are ready in the freezer and some I just need to make up. I am going to work on color coding them so I know which is which. I was just in a hurry this past week so they are just written out. I used the sheets that came with the filofax. I just started with the grids, but I don’t have a preference for those or anything. I stuck a washi tape at the top and labeled it with the date. I also have been writing down which meals I make that everyone in the family liked. That doesn’t happen very often so I like to keep track so I know to add it to the rotation. I stuck a cutie little tab in the meals section so I know where to find those.

Next up is Notes from The Planner Market (I told you I love her!). This is just for any kind of jot down info or lists. The paper is really awesome quality. I feel like I could use markers on them without it bleeding through. This is for things I want to keep in the planner. Design ideas, etc.

For one of my sections I cut down and punched some Target dollar spot notepads and some paper sheets that were given to me. I use these to jot down any random thing I need to remember. Shopping lists, todo lists that aren’t part of daily to do’s. etc. Any little bit or sometimes I just doodle or test out new pens. Apparently Target note pads are super hard to find. So if you are reading this and are hoarding a bunch, please let me have some that don’t cost me an arm and a leg or my first born child! I love them and they are so handy! One of the best things about them is that I don’t feel bad using them because they are cheap! I use these for things that I will want to take out eventually.

At the back I have two little business card holders. In my trade she sent me two of these, that she made or someone else made? Not sure, but I do appreciate and use these. They aren’t very sturdy so I do plan on replacing them eventually. I feel like maybe they could get torn up easily. I stick business cards I need back there and appointment cards. There was one time hubby took the baby to the dr and they tried to say we didn’t have an appointment. I had it written down, but I had also kept the appointment card so he showed it to them and they went ahead and saw them. I decided that I was going to keep them all even if I have written it down.

In the very back there is a zippered pocket. I don’t put anything in there at the moment. Maybe something will come up one day that I will want to keep, but for now it is empty so as not to add bulk. The pen loop is also in the back. It is not a stretchy one but is also leather like the planner. I try not to stick fat pens in there. If it has a cap I actually prefer to clip it to the loop instead of putting the whole pen in it.

So there you go! I love my set up for sure. Hoping I eventually love the binder. If not then I suppose I will sell it or trade it for something different. I need planner peace! I will come back in a month after I have been using it frequently and let you know!

Here is a quick YouTube walk through. It has no  sound or anything. Just showing the dividers and set up in full.

  • Filofax Finsbury — I recommend Pens and Leather. I got this one in a trade, but I have purchased from them before and they have the best prices. Just be sure to pay attention to the description. It will say if it’s actually instock or they are awaiting a shipment. 
  • Dividers — There are oodles on Etsy for sure, but I am linking to where I bought mine. She will post what she has for sale on her Instagram and you can comment if you want them.
  • Inserts and some sticky notes — I used the Dakota inserts from The Planner Market. She has a few though! I also picked up some sticky notes from her. They are super cute and she’s awesome!
  • Cute-C Shoppe [Etsy] — Picked up a few adorable sticky notes from here. I think the Matryoshka doll ones I am using came from here. She doesn’t have much in her shop at the moment, but she was a sweetie and even sent a gift with purchase I wasn’t expecting.
  • home-garden-guru [ebay seller] — I bought a big lot of those cute crown pens everyone loves from this person. I only linked to the pens because their store has tons of stuff and they are hard to find. They were a great price and I got 10 of them. Woot! 
  • Kikki.k [pink pen] – The pink pen I keep with me is from kikki.k. It’s their everyday ballpoint pen. I don’t think this one is available anymore, but I do love the goodies they have! 
I have my eye on a few other planner goodies so one day I will do a blog post of my favorite little bits for you.