Week in Review (January 27 – February 2, 2014)

The last week of January is one of my absolute favorites.  Not only is it when my birthday (January 28) just happens to fall, but we also celebrate Don’s birthday on February 1.  I love how we get to celebrate both of our special days within the same week!

Please accept my apologies in advance for my overuse of variations of the word “celebrate” in this post 😉

OJ_MHWL_02-05-2014_01I’m a big fan of birthdays.  There’s nothing quite like celebrating the day on which someone you treasure was born!  As for my own birthday, I like to think of the day as a celebration in three parts: 1) a celebration of gratitude for the past year, 2) a celebration of excitement for the next new chapter in my life, and 3) a celebration of the blessing of life and gratefulness for the opportunity to live, breathe, and love on this beautiful planet.  I mentioned in last week’s vlog that I was feeling a bit unexcited about my upcoming birthday, which is extremely uncharacteristic of me.  Fortunately, that was only temporary!  I realized what was bothering me, dealt with it emotionally, and was able to move beyond it to get back to my usual celebratory self.  And did we ever celebrate!

My husband makes a big to-do out of my special day, complete with cake, balloons, and presents in bed right when I wake up.  I decided to take a half day and went downtown in the early afternoon for my annual birthday shopping trip (you can see what goodies I picked up here if you like).  Then, Don met me downtown for dinner at Topolobampo, a Rick Bayless Mexican fine dining restaurant we’ve been wanting to go to for years.  Scrumptious!  It was the perfect day 🙂

Just a few days later we celebrated Don’s birthday in the style that best suits him.  I picked up a frozen apple pancake from Walker Bros, a local breakfast diner style restaurant that Don loves.  My husband is one of those rare types that does not get terribly excited about presents.  He has few needs for material items he doesn’t already own and little desire for extra things, which makes gift giving a bit of a challenge as I like to have something for him to open during holiday celebrations.  I was pretty excited about the big present I came up with to give him this year: a ping pong conversion table top for his pool table.  He loves it!  Success!  We spent much of the day laughing between rounds.  The nice part is that it folds into flat pieces (albeit quite heavy – two people required!) for easy storage in a closet we have right by the pool table.  All that ping pong makes you work up an appetite (lol), so we headed over to Hackney’s, a local restaurant known for their burgers and onion loaf, for Don’s special birthday dinner per his request.  Two very different birthday celebrations for two very different people.  We both know how to celebrate each other right!

OJ_MHWL_02-05-2014_02The time in-between our celebrations was a normal week for me, or as normal as it’s been since settling into my new schedule this year.  What I love most about working with a schedule is that it opens up time for more of those “small moments” I talked about in my last WIR while still being very productive.  I’ve been enjoying reading while I eat breakfast, catching up on YouTube and flipping through catalogues during lunch, and my nightly planning sessions for the next day.  I love “savoring the art of the small,” finding pleasure in appreciating the little things: savoring a hot bowl of homemade turkey soup, cupping a treasured mug filled with soothing tea, seeing my pup all snuggled up in bed on a chilly morning, treasuring a thoughtful gift from my husband, using my favorite kinds of pens in my planner.  The list could go on and on.  It’s the little things that make my life feel full and happy on a daily basis.

OJ_MHWL_02-05-2014_03Something else I’ve become rather fond of in the past week is Instagram, and when I say “fond,” I mean downright obsessed.  I blame the wonders and joys of stumbling upon a bunch of self-proclaimed #PlannerAddicts.  I’ve enjoyed following Toni from A Bowl Full of Lemons on Instagram for awhile now.  She often posts beautiful pictures of her planners, so I decided to ask her if there were others on Instagram that she knew of who did the same.  As it turns out, there’s a lot of planner lovers out there and a plethora of Instagrammers who love to share pics!  I started following a bunch of these lovely ladies and wanted to share the joy of their beautiful Instagram accounts with you.  Some of these ladies also have blogs and/or Etsy shops where they sell custom planner inserts and charms (you can find links in their Instagram profiles).  If you love looking at planner pics as much as I do, I recommend checking out these ladies and showing them some love:


These ladies have inspired me to look at my planners as more than just organizational tools, but also creative outlets.  I’m having so much fun scheming and dreaming about how I can dress up my Filofax and add to my planner collection down the line.

You can watch this week’s vlog here if you’d like:

If you know of any other #PlannerAddicts (or Planner Enthusiasts as I like to call them.  I think “addicts” carries a bit of a negative connotation and I see only positivity and joy from the ladies listed above) please let me know so I can check them out.  Sharing is caring!  I hope you are all having a great week 🙂


* Post contains affiliate links. This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are genuinely my own. *


26 thoughts on “Week in Review (January 27 – February 2, 2014)”

  1. Hi Jen! I love each and everyone of your planner addicts gals!!! Their ideas inspire me! I know you are a busy gal, but when you get a chance check out my IG…..I am a huge planner addict and live to decorate my pages 🙂 take care…Candi

  2. Hi Jen,
    Thank you for your wonderful videos and blogposts!
    So, I’m kinda obsessed now with the mint Kikki K planner, thank you very much! I checked out the website and can only find the large size and it’s listed as available in stores only!! Did you call one of the stores directly and order?



  3. I am a planner enthusiast as well. Carie Harling is a fav to watch on YouTube and Instagram. You can find her @clfharling

  4. I just had a thought looking at #planneraddicts on instagram. Do you know if there is a monthly subscription box for planner items? I’m not too into decorating my planner but with a box subscription I might be!
    I hope all is going well. I enjoy watching all your videos and I think this new schedule is going well.

  5. Oooooh what a lovely week, many many happy returns to you both. Nothing wrong with being an addicted, I am a self confessed planner addict my self lol! Are you following the monthly challenges? I am doing #filofaxphotoadayfeb by @yayitsfriday but there is also #planneraddictspotd I think they are the right spelling! Enjoy your eye candy.
    P.s. a little filo love is in the post to you right now.
    Much love

  6. Facebook group ‘Filofax Decorated Pages’ is a wonderful bunch of people who I have just discovered and have been really enjoying their posts and decorating ideas, and they are a very warm and welcoming group.

  7. Sounds like you and Don both had great birthdays! 🙂 My husband is very much like Don in the fact that he doesn’t want many material things which makes it impossible to shop for him, so I have to listen carefully to what he’s been saying and go off of that! I am a planner enthusiast as well, so I can’t wait to see what you end up doing with your planners! 🙂

  8. Hi Jen

    Fab vlog and thanks for sharing planner instagram accounts…you could also check out cathy_vee she has fab planners, Kate Spade and Filofax and also does Project Life! Looks like you and Don had lovely birthdays 🙂 Just an idea for a video/blog post….could you possibly do a video highlighting your favourite etsy sellers?! I know you use etsy for a variety of items and I’d love to have a look at the sellers. I always forget to write down some of the ones you mention and can never find which video it was in lol!

    Hope you’re having a nice time away!

    1. That’s a great idea! I will share my favorite Etsy shops sometime this year, maybe after I’ve found a few more favorites 🙂

  9. Jen you mentioned you might do a haul on the Kikki K items you purchased…. PLEASE DO!!! I am new to the planner world (mine is a sad little Staples one)and would love to see what you thought about the items you purchased. My anniversary is in May and I want to ask for a pretty planner….so if you don’t mind please show us your goodies. 🙂

  10. Hey Jen~ Happy Belated Birthday to you & Don!
    I love instagram too!! I try to post at least 1 picture everyday but sometimes it ends up being more!
    I also love planners!!! I have 3 Erin Condren planners. Last year I used a Filofax and was not planning on using it again this year because I thought the Erin Condren one would work out for me but I really needed something that I could carry in my purse so I ordered another Filofax. I’m waiting for it to come in~~~hopefully today!
    Love you vlogs! And I am following you on instagram too!

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