Monday, January 19, 2015

My so-called bullet journal

There's been a lot of buzz about bullet journals lately, and I will admit that I haven't look it up so I'm not entirely sure I know what one is.  I'm guessing it's some sort of checklist, but in a notebook/journal?

Anyway, I've never been a checklist sort of gal, mostly because looking at a long list of things to do tends to overwhelm me.


I made some goals this year not only for myself, but also for our homeschool.  But since it's not an official homeschool year yet (being just kindergarten), I haven't really been on top of making sure things get done.  It's been a bit relaxed - which can be a good thing - but not when I skip Izzy's reading lessons 3 days in a row or forget to play our folk song two weeks in a row.

Of course, skipping those things aren't going to ruin my children and they're still young so it's really not a biggie.  But, the purpose of me including these things is to ease our way into year one of AO in the fall.  There's going to be so much that's new that I feel it would make the transition easier by going ahead and getting our feet wet a little bit.

So, enter my so-called bullet journal.  (I guess it really can be called a journal because it's in a notebook and I haven't torn out the page.)

I figured I would make this bullet list for one week at a time.  The top half of the page has the weekly goals that I would like to accomplish with Izzy (and Addy for most of it, too).

On the left are the read-alouds.  These do not include all of our read-alouds, but these are the ones I definitely want to get to and the ones we usually read in the mornings (except for The Wizard of Oz) along with a Bible story and some poetry/rhymes.  For example, you can see that I would like to read one chapter of Old Mother West Wind this week.  The books are in no particular order - it doesn't matter the day I read the book or which book I pick first.  When I read a chapter, I'll check it off and we're done with it for the week.  This will also give us a taste of how we will read books when we officially begin AO - spread out and savored instead of wolfed down without tasting anything.  (I honestly don't know if my husband ever tastes his food because he eats so fast.)

The Wizard of Oz is the only one in which I have more than one chapter.  I guess I would consider it our "free read."  We usually read it in the afternoons or at night.

At the top right are the art/music boxes.  This is where I'm really inconsistent and need something to hold me accountable - hopefully it'll be this!  I have one box for each which means we'll listen to the song, or look at the art print, once that week.  We usually do this during lunch.

Same idea with the cooking, nature walk, and art time - once per week at least.  I originally had a goal of daily art time, but that hasn't really worked out so I scaled waaaaay back with a goal of once per week.  My kids are just too concerned with running around and playing and pretending than sitting down and drawing.

Lastly are Izzy's reading lessons.  I'm striving for doing these with her 5 days per week (hence the 5 boxes).  Now I know formal reading lessons are not necessary before age 6, but Izzy has an interest to learn to read (but it's not like a beg-me-everyday-to-teach-her-to-read interest that I've heard other kids have) and we're only spending 5 or 10 minutes on each lesson, so I think we're good.

Now to the bottom half - my goals for the week.  I posted the picture again so you wouldn't have to keep scrolling up and down.  These are a mixture of mother culture and household tasks.

I have 5 books going right now.  The Daughter of Time is an AO forum book discussion book so there are certain chapters to be read each week.  Les Miserables is another book discussion, but it's an unofficial one so it's a very light discussion.  I've never read LM, and honestly wasn't planning to anytime soon, but someone on the forums suggested reading it together, I thought why not?  The Count of Monte Cristo is a book that I've been reading since last year and my goal is to get through 3 chapters for the week.  Stepping Heavenward another 3 chapters (actually now I'm down to two chapters left), and The Pursuit of Holiness 2 chapters.

On the right, I have a goal of working in my nature journal once per week and taking a bath.  Yep, you read that right.  We've lived in our house for 4 1/2 years now and I think I've only taken like 5 or 6 baths.  I like to take baths (even though it always makes me think of Chandler on the show Friends when he was disgusted at the thought of taking a bath, saying you were just "stewing in your own filth."), but never thought I had the time.  It was really because I never said to my husband, "Hey, I'd like to take a bath.  Would you mind watching the girls?"  Now I do.  And he says, "Sure."  So there we go.  Plus, I always take a book with me so I'll be able to check off two boxes.  Whoop, whoop.

Lastly are my weekly cleaning goals.  Ugh.  I don't like to clean (does anyone?) and, as a result, I need a system to hold myself accountable and a way to tell what I have and haven't done.  I have the main cleaning areas to be done each week listed.  No particular order in which to do these - I'll just do something that needs to be done and check it off.  (Of course, if the bathroom gets super yucky before the next week, we'll deal with it.  Actually it's getting high-time to teach Izzy to clean the bathroom, don't ya think?  I mean, she'll be 6 in three months.)  Notice the kitchen is not on there.  That's because the kitchen is cleaned everyday.  I do not like dirty dishes in the sink or on the counters or a dirty floor (I just don't), so we take care of that right after meal times.  And, the girls help clean the kitchen with us.

This list took me about 5 or 10 minutes to put together and it's in one of those cheapo 70-page notebooks.  Quick and cheap.  That's how I like it.

Okay.  That's it!  We'll see how it goes!

Do you have a system for holding yourself accountable to get things done?


  1. I have a weekly schedule that I was using pretty faithfully until we started school. HA! I've been trying to tweak it a little since then to fit our new needs (I wrote about it here in a long, boring post if you're interested. teehee. )

    ANYWAY.. I love the idea of bullet journaling and so does my husband. I can't decide if I want to buy a new journal to help keep me motivated, or if I want to just use a notebook, in case I don't stay motivated!

    1. I liked your printables and I probably would have done something similar, but I'm out of printer ink and am too cheap to buy any right now, ha. I actually did this in an old notebook I found that was half used because, like you, I didn't know if I wanted to buy a new journal in case I couldn't stick with it!

  2. I do something similar, only typed and printed out. I put the sheets on my clipboard, and move them to the back when the week is over. It is working very well. I don't include my personal goals, though. I like that idea...maybe I'll have to add that in. :)

    1. Ooooh, I like the clipboard idea. I could keep it hung up in my kitchen or somewhere readily available for me to see and to remind me of what I need to do. Right now my notebook is just sitting on an end table, in a pile with 2 other notebooks and around 6 books. Probably not the best place...