Monday, 5 August 2019

Mal Paper Daily Goal Setter Planner*

Hello lovelies! If you've been a regular reader of my blog for a while now, you will know how much I adore anything notebook and planner-related, whether that's list pads, weekly planner sheets, or more diary/agenda style planners. I write so many to do lists; ones for my daily schedule, ones for my weekly goals and much more. I was certainly in need of a more organised way of keeping track of my daily objectives that didn't leave me with a mass of random papers or 10+ new phone notes by the end of the week. I had actually been researching different types of planners, to find one that suited me when I received an email from Mål Paper very kindly offering to send me one of their Daily Goal Setter Planners*. I was delighted because this was such perfect timing, and I couldn't wait to see what this planner was like. I've had my Mål Paper planner for a couple of weeks now so it's time to tell you all what I think! I hope you all enjoy reading :) 

I wanted to start off by telling you all more about Mal Paper & their debut product. Firstly, I absolutely love the name of this company! Mål is the Swedish world for goals, and as my friends will know I really love languages, especially from the Nordic countries, so I can't say that this didn't make me instantly more interested in the planner, haha! Mal Paper's mission is to create stationery products that help people complete their goals, by promoting the habit of positive thinking and focusing on your most important tasks, without getting too overwhelmed when it comes to achieving  the milestones that allow you to work towards your long-term, mid-term and short-term goals. They are inspired by the Scandinavian 'clean and clutter-free way of living', and this definitely comes across in the daily goal setter planner.

'At Mal Paper, our aim is to help with your daily productivity, positivity and motivation. We create the tools you need to get your dreams down on paper and make your goals a reality'. 

The daily goal setter planner is available in three varieties, all with a hardback cover: pink, grey or black. Which one would you choose? I opted for black because it's one of my favourite colours, plus I feel like everything just looks more professional in black, don't you think? The planner is undated and has six months worth of planning space over 244 pages. The paper inside is ivory in colour, which I prefer so much more to white paper; again, I personally feel like this just makes the planner look a lot more high-quality and professional. Throughout the planner, you will find sections for monthly, weekly and daily planning, as well as advice on how to become a more efficient planner and how to have more success when setting goals and completing them. 

Oh, and there is also a document folder/pocket at the back of the planner to keep any loose notes in. I think this will be super handy for storing any important receipts, letters, tickets, etc. So, let's take a look inside the planner... 

I really like how this planner includes a contents page because right away, you just know
that it is going to be very organised and structured, which is a reflection of how I want my schedule to be! As you can see from the list of sections found within, the first seventeen pages are going to be dedicated to advice on how to use the planner more effectively. The daily goal setter planner is very detailed but in an easy to use way. The advice pages are very useful in explaining ways to help yourself get started when it comes to setting realistic and achievement goals, and providing tips on how you can start having a more positive outlook on completing your day-to-day tasks. After these pages, you will find the goal setter pages, featuring sections for recording your long-term goals, medium-term goals, and short-term goals. Then on to the monthly, weekly and daily pages, which make up the rest of the planner, other than a notes section at the back. I'm a big fan of how well set out and orderly this planner is! 

The advice sections start with the cheat sheet, and begin by explaining how you can make the most of your day, in terms of achieving more and working through your to-do-lists by following a morning and evening routine when using the daily goal setter planner. Each of the daily pages start with a section to list three things that you are grateful for and one to make a positive affirmation for the day, that you are encouraged to say aloud to yourself several times to help start of your morning on a brighter note that will hopefully carry through the rest of the day.  

Next, you write down the tasks that you want to accomplish that day, and grade them using the ABCDE method (attributed to Eat That Frog!, a book by Brian Tracy). This method involves marking the tasks you need to get done using a specific letter that indicates how important it is or whether it can wait until another day. You are advised to complete all of your A tasks, before moving on to the next letter as it is shown that you are more likely to accomplish more if you get the more important tasks completed first. It goes on to mention that if you complete some of your less important tasks first, it can often leave you feeling overwhelmed and pressured because your most important tasks are still not done yet, and personally I can totally recognise this problem in myself. It might seem easier at the time to complete the smaller tasks first but then I often run out of energy, made worse by the fact that I also struggle with chronic illnesses, and then I beat myself up about not having done the tasks that I wanted to complete the most! 

The evening routine involves checking off the tasks you have managed to get done, and reflecting on any that you haven't, thinking about why that may be and ways that you can have a better chance of doing it the next time you try. However, the most important thing that Mal Paper emphasises is that you reflect on the positive moments... 'Making a daily habit of reflecting on the great things that happened will build confidence in yourself to make things happen'. There is a section at the bottom of each daily page for you to record the greatest things that happened, as well as an option to rate your day.

I know that I've just been explaining the daily routines to you all, but I want to show you the planner sections in order, so above is an example of what the goal setter pages look like. As I mentioned before, there are pages for long (years), medium (six months to a year) and short-term (within a month) goals, each section being spread across two pages with space to set 14 goals in each.  Mal Paper advises you to include the four W's when recording your goals: what, when, why & who, as well as how, because this allows you to work out exactly what is required to ensure your goals are accomplished! 

The chea
t sheet for the goal setter part of the planner tells you to use something called the S.M.A.R.T method when setting your goals, which I think is another super useful tool. It can be challenging to set goals without worrying that you will not be able to complete them, but the format and suggestions in the daily goal setter planner make it a lot less daunting, as goals seem much more achievable. I have so far listed one goal into each of the sections: learning to drive in my long-term goals, writing my novel in my medium-term goals and in my short-term goals, to organise my bedroom/belongings in order to prepare to start decorating. I really like how the goal section is set out, as it helps me to break down my goals into achievable and for lack of a better word, more bite-size tasks. This makes them seem less overwhelming. I am feeling more confident that they are realistic goals that I can actually achieve thanks to this planner :) 

The latter parts of the planner are the monthly, weekly and daily reviews. The above photo shows the monthly review, which is set out very similar to the Filofax planner I own, with a calendar grid and an area for general notes. I am very glad the planner includes one of these as I like having a calendar to record appointments and important dates, such as pay days and when bills are due. The squares are a decent size for recording things so that's great. However, I would have liked the grey square for filling in the numbers to have been a little larger as it was a squeeze for me to keep my writing within the box. I also wish that the word 'day' along the top of the calendar wouldn't have been printed in the middle of the box because I have to write over the top of it to fill in the days of the week and that it looks a little messy as a result. I feel like they should have been kept blank, but that's all down to personal opinion and doesn't effect my use of the planner. 

The parts that are unique to the Mal Paper planner are the 'most important tasks of the month' and 'review/rate your month' sections under the calendar. These sections are brilliant as they help you to focus on prioritising certain tasks on your to-do-list, and I think it will be nice to be able to look back on the month with positivity. Even if you didn't manage to complete everything you wanted to, your top five most important tasks will likely have been accomplished using the guidance given within the planner. 

I really like that the daily goal setter planner is undated, because you can start using it whenever you want, and if you happen to be having a very stressful time where you don't feel like using your planner because you don't need anymore added pressure, you can put it away and go back to it when you're ready. 

As you can see, the weekly review is broken down into the 'five most important tasks of the week', 'tasks of secondary importance' and 'additional tasks'. I very much like this method of breaking down your to-do-lists and spreading them out into categories based on their importance, because it makes them more manageable. Once you have filled in the weekly review, it will be easier to allocate each task to various days throughout the week and write them onto your daily review pages, maybe adding one of your top five important task to each day so that they are more achievable. 

Mal Paper encourages you to refer back to your goals when setting your weekly tasks, so that you can include things that are stepping stones to help you to eventually complete your goals, which I think its a great habit to incorporate into your routine that will really help you to achieve your goals. I am definitely someone who needs all the help I can get with this, as I feel a lot of pressure to complete goals once I set them but don't really know where to start when it comes to making them actually happen, if they are not small, short-term goals. I'm hoping that the daily goal setter planner will give me the motivation and push I need! 

I absolutely love the partition pages spread throughout the daily review section of the planner. It definitely needed them to break up six months worth of pages! I am a big fan of the simplistic black page with white lettering, and who doesn't love a motivational quote!? It provides that little something to remind you to keep working to achieve your goals as you proceed through the planner :) There's a title page at the start of the daily review section that I think is fantastic because it reminds me of the dividers I had in my Pukka notebooks and ring binders at school. I just like when things are organised into clear-cut sections, and to be honest, I think it would have been great if each of the sections had one of these title pages. 

I can now finally show you the sections of the daily review pages that I mentioned when discussing the morning and evening routines earlier in my post. Each page begins with an area to list 'three things to be grateful for'. I do really like this feature as it reminds me of gratitude planners, however I feel like I would want to fill in this section at the end of the day when reflecting on the little things in life that make me happy during each new day VS in the morning, but I understand the idea is to start off your day thinking more positively so I've been giving it a go nonetheless :) 

Afterwards, you jot down a daily affirmation, which is a lovely concept :) I wrote on my page for August 1st 'today, I am going to kick anxiety's ass!' and repeating that multiple times to myself, as Mal Paper advises, did make me feel more content and less worried about all of the things I had to get done that day. 

You can then move onto 'today's tasks/notes', which is where you record your to-do-list. I like that there are circles to tick/check off your tasks as you complete them. I am used to having to draw my own tiny boxes on whatever list pad or notepaper I am normally using, haha! There's a column for grading each of your tasks using the ABCDE method notes in the cheat sheets, and there are three shaded lines for you to write the top three most important tasks of that particular day.  Another thing that I really like about the daily section of this planner is the amount of space that you are given; there are enough lines for 18 tasks, which is more than enough for one day in my opinion! 

Here is a look at the other part of the daily pages, the area relating to the suggested evening routine, where you can reflect on the best parts of your day and also give it a rating from 1-10. I think the 'great things that happened today' section is an excellent idea! I feel like this kind of makes the planner double as a diary in a way, giving you the ability to look back and remember lovely things that occurred on a given day :)

So other than the couple of notes pages and the document pocket at the back, that's everything that you will find inside the daily goal setter planner. As a whole, the layout is very organised and well-structured, and that is something that I really love about it. I usually opt for planners that allow for more creative freedom when it comes to structure, but I do struggle with organising my tasks so I want to try something different. As I am someone that feels more content with familiar routines, I am very curious to see if this more ordered way of planning will be the right one for me! What do you think of the methods and structure in this planner? Does it sound like something that would be helpful for you? 

I wanted to finish up my review by sharing some photos of how I have filled in my new planner. Although I am someone who finds simplicity aesthetically-pleasing so I love the way this planner looks, I am also someone who needs to add a little more character and colour into my planners to make it more inviting and to motivate myself to keep at it! So here's how I incorporated some of my personality into the pages... 

For the monthly review, I decided to create a key to make it easier to organise my calendar. I have colour-coded my pay days, my blogging schedule and one of my other hobbies, toy photography. I have symbols for recording when I receive mail or when I spend money (to help me keep track of my expenditure). I like to keep a note of special events/holidays that are happening each month so I have written those in. Lastly, I have added stickers throughout because I need to bring cuteness into every part of life apparently :D 

Overall, I am lovin' the daily goal setter planner and I'm looking forward to seeing how it helps me accomplish my to-do-lists and achieve my goals. I forgot to mention some features that I really like about the planner so I'll note them here. The cover is made of faux leather and has a somewhat padded feel to it, and this makes it more durable and easier to wipe clean if anything accidently spills onto it and such, which I think is fabulous. The simple gold lettering on the cover is so pretty! Also, the planner comes with two ribbon page-markers so you can easily find your monthly review and whichever daily review page you are currently writing on, so those are very handy. Oh, and at the bottom of the goal setter pages, there are some motivational quotes, and I think this is a wonderful detail to include :) I think £20.95 for this planner is a great price. It may look simple, but it is actually much more intricate and detailed inside and all of the advice sections will be very helpful to lots of people. Finally, I just want to say thankyou to Mal Paper for sending me one of their gorgeous planners  And I hope you all enjoyed my review! 

Thankyou for reading! 


What do you think of the Daily Goal Setter Planner?

Do you have a favourite feature?

(*) All posts/content marked with an asterisk signify that the item(s) featured have been gifted or sent to me for the purpose of review. I have kindly been sent the product featured in this post in exchange for a review. See my full disclaimer here.

Sunday, 4 August 2019

Stami Studios Super Cute Pin Club | Review

Hey everyone! Today's post is one for my fellow pin badge lovers & collectors! Due to the fact that I can't even blogger, I decided to wait until I'd received a few months worth of my Stami Studios Super Cute Pin Club subscriptions, and then do a 'big' post all about the fabulous pins I'd received! If you'd like to see the first ever pin I got from this awesome monthly subscription, check out this post. Now, without further ado, it's time to show you guys what I was sent! Enjoy! 

A photo of a kawaii cloud notebook with a Stami Studios leaflet on top

I just wanted to give you all a little information about the Stami Studios Super Cute Pin Club before I show you my pins from March, April, May and June This subscription as I mentioned is a monthly one. For just £7.00 each time, you are sent a surprise pin, designed by Sam Rostami, the artist behind Stami Studios. It's been really fun to get a pin each month with no particular theme advertised/set beforehand (well, you can see a teaser/preview over on Instagram, but I like to avoid them if I can). Who doesn't love surprises!? I think that the price is AMAZING! The pins are always of a great quality, and shipping for me here in the UK is free, although it's very affordable for shipping to other countries. Anyhow, you're all here to see the pins, so before I start rambling... here they are! 

A pin badge of an Animal Crossing girl in a basket of turnips

How flippin' adorable is this 'Turnip Lover' pin!? This was the pin that I was sent in March :) I think it's absolutely gorgeous, so bold and eye-catching! It is now also the largest pin in my ever-growing collection, and is super sturdy. I love it! If you're a fan of the fabulous game that is Animal Crossing, you'll be able to see that the design is based on that! I really adored playing Animal Crossing: Wild World on my Nintendo DS when I was a teenager, and will forever adore the characters because they are all so sweet! 

My favourite thing about this pin has to be the cheerful, excited expression on turnip girls face! It just reminds me of how hyper I get when I am excited, and it makes me smile everytime I look at the pin :D Hopefully when I wear it out and about, it will have the same effect on each person who sees it! I also really love the shade of pink used for the characters hair. It reminds me of candyfloss! What's the first thing that comes to mind when you see this particular shade of pink? Let me know in the comments :) I went through a phase when playing Animal Crossing, of refreshing the introduction part of the game until my character had pink hair so this pin is super nostalgic. I'm really happy with it! 

A pin badge of an Avocado with cute kittens inside

The next pin that I was sent, in April this year, was this superb Avocado cat, or Avocato! Because of this pin design, I am now going to forever think of these sweet little kitties everytime I see an avocado, haha! I am yet to try this fruit, but if I open one and I'm not greeted by two cats then I'm going to be disappointed :D This pin is quite small which I like, and it is he most subtle of all the pins that I've received from Stami Studios so far, but I very much like that about it. I appreciate simplicity, especially when something is simple yet very cute, just like this pin badge. 

What I love most about this pin are the solemn expressions on the cats faces... I don't know why but I have always found things with almost sombre looks on their faces that much more adorable! Who agrees? I also like that the kitties are holding hands, and think that this design adapted into two separate pins, one for each half, would make fantastic friendship pins! Did any of you guys used to have friendship necklaces or bracelets with your best friend back when you were at school? 

A pin badge of a cute tiger cub sitting in a bunch of colourful leaves

LOOK AT THIS LITTLE TIGER CUB!! Isn't it one of the most cutest things you've ever seen? Those sparkly blue eyes make me melt from cuteness overload! And those paws, and that tiny fang poking out of its mouth ^ . ^ Oh my gosh, this pin that I was sent in my April subscription is just wonderful! It was a lovely change to receive a pin badge designed in bright shades, rather than pastel (even though I still prefer pastel colour schemes). I'm lovin' the vibrant colours used for the leaves, as they make me picture a tiger cub hiding in a tropical jungle. As a nature nerd, I adore flora as much as fauna and leaves especially, so even though the tiger is lovely, I actually think the leaves are my favourite detail on this pin! Overall, the pin is so colourful that it really grabs your attention, and so I can't wait to wear it :)

A pin badge of a girl cosplaying as pikachu

The final pin that I have to show you guys today is this marvellous 'Pika Girl' that arrived through my letterbox in June! It was perfect timing to receive a cosplay themed pin as June is the month that my local MCM Comic Con event is held. I usually go every year, however this year I couldn't attend and therefore couldn't cosplay myself >.< so the next best thing is to get a cosplay pin, right? The first time I attended Manchester MCM four years ago, I cosplayed as Pichu so this pin seems like it was made just for me! When I first saw it, it brought back all those memories of my first convention, of being in awe of everyone's epic cosplay and how delighted I was to be in a huge hall filled with all kinds of nerdy and kawaii goodness! 

It's so tough to choose one favourite thing about this pin because I LOVE LOVE LOVE it! I really like the colour yellow, how inviting and happy it is, and I think the yellow and gold combination goes so well together. I love the fact that Pika girl is starry-eyed, because again it just takes me back to how wowed I was at my first con! The stars/sparkles are a really nice addition to her look, which I think is rather cheeky :D This is another reason I like the pin. She could be cosplaying or she could totally be dressing up in a sexy Pikachu costume XD I like her big rosy-red cheeks, too, and how the tail looks heart-shaped. Seriously though, what's not to love about this pin?? 

A collection of four pin badges made by Stami Studios

So those are my last four months worth of Super Cute Pin Club arrivals :) I'd love to know which is your personal favourite and why? It was a challenge for me to choose between Turnip Lover and Pika Girl, but to be honest, Pika has to be the winner for me! I am over the moon with all of my new pins though, and I cannot recommend this subscription service enough. It's really nice to have random pins sent to me every month, and even though I've been a subscriber since February, I still can't believe how inexpensive it is! If you love pin badges, then you should definitely sign yourself up :) 

A photo of a presentation card holding a pikachu girl pin badge

Before I finish up my post, I wanted to show you all how each of my pins arrived. They come inside a simple, plain padded envelope, and inside is the card that you can see the cover of in my first photograph. Opening up this card, you are greeted by a little thankyou note and your pin. The kawaii cats printed on this card are sooooo cute, and I love the oranges, yellows and pinks. Makes me think of fruit salad sweets :D The sparkles are pretty too! 

As a member of the pin club, you get 20% off any order on the Stami Studios website, plus access to special member shop where you can purchase some pins that are not available to non-subscribers, as well as the cutest free downloadable wallpapers for your phone. Anyhow, I hope you all enjoyed checking out these gorgeous pin badges. Have a wonderful week, lovelies! 

Thankyou for reading! 

Are you a pin collector?

If so, what new pins have you been buying lately? 

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Saturday, 3 August 2019

July 2019 Kawaii & Geeky Wishlist

Happy Saturday! I hope you're all having a fabulous start to the weekend, and the new month, too! There were so many things that I wanted to do last month, but it just wasn't to be, like my monthly kawaii & geeky wishlist! Oops, it's here now though! At this point, I may as well get 'it's better late than never' tattooed on me because it's turning out to be my own personal catchphrase :D I've started this month off in a much more productive way, and I have the fullest of intentions of continuing this way, so fingers crossed I can maintain it! I hope you all have the best months. Here's to August being a time for us to all get some stuff completed that we've been putting off for ages (self-projection much). Enjoy reading my July wishlist, even if it is late, haha! 

1. The Magician Tarot Notebook I have always loved the design of artwork on tarot cards. I think they are beautiful! My love for the tarot cards aesthetic first started when I was in my early teens and discovered Wes Craven's The People Under the Stairs, which soon became one of my favourite horror movies and still is! At the beginning of the movie, it features tarot cards, but I don't want to spoil things so I won't explain why :) You should totally check out this movie if you're into 80's horror though. Anyhow, this notebook really caught my eye because of its fantasy and horror theme. As an alternative person, the cover is right up my street! It is part of a series, too, featuring other tarot card cover designs, and to be honest I just want them all. 

2. Llama Lap Warmer How adorable is this fluffy llama lap warmer!? Alpacas are one of my favourite animals and with llamas being in the same family as them, I can't help but love them too! I know that it's not the season for hot water bottles or warmers of any kind, but I would love to pick up this lap warmer to put away for those cold Autumn nights. I have been after a lap warmer style plushie for ages now, because all the ones that I've ever come across seem to be lavender scented, and I am personally not a fan of the smell of lavender at all. I just find it too overpowering and it makes me feel sick, so the fact that this Llama one is unscented (as far as the item description has me to believe) makes me so glad. Plus, it just looks super soft and snuggly! 

3. Funko Rainbow Troll Pop! Vinyl Figure Funko needs to calm down making so many amazing Pop! Vinyl lately because I already own 104 Pops and I would appreciate having some money left in my bank account after each payday! However... I need this new Rainbow Troll in my life :D Just looking at it hits me with so much nostalgia and its multi-coloured hair looks fabulous. I have a mighty need to add it to my collection, but my bank account is safe for now because it's only available on pre-order at the moment. Who else had trolls toys when they were a kid? 

4. What The Duck Psyduck Pin This pin by I am Luna Sol is so sweet!! I've always thought that Psyduck was a pretty cute Pokemon, especially when it turned its head side-to-side in confusion like you see dogs do, but this pin just makes me see Psyduck is a much more adorable light! The little sparkles in its eyes are lovely, and I love the yellow and gold combination. I think it's super pretty! But my favourite thing about this pin is the 'what the duck' slogan :D It's so relatable, and grouped with Psyduck's confused expression just reminds me of myself reacting to stupid things I see happening on the internet, or takes me back to my mathematics lessons at school... because Psyduck's expression perfectly reflects my own when dealing with the mindfuck that is numbers, haha! 

5. Sass & Belle Roarsome Dinosaur Backpack There's not one Sass & Belle product that I don't love! They make the most wonderful things, and I would happily buy them all if I had more spending money. However, there are some items that I just have to have, and that includes this backpack! As much as I love my trusty Vans X Hello Kitty backpack that has been with me for years & years now, I do feel like it would be nice to have a variety of backpacks to choose from and to coordinate with my outfits and/or mood on a particular day :) I am a big fan of dinosaurs, and even more so, when they are colourful, and even though I don't 100% trust myself not to ruin something white, I want this bag so much! Fellow dinosaur lovers, I would love to know your favourite in the comments. 

6. Animals of Farthing Wood A4 Print The artwork created by Sushi Studios never fails to awe me. It is honestly incredible, and I cannot wait until the day when I get my own place where I have all the walls available to cover with their work! Right now though, I can definitely find a space to fill with this beautiful A4 piece based on the 90's cartoon show, The Animals of Farthing Wood. Not only did I enjoy this show as a small child (listening to the theme song still makes my heart happy), but I have had a lifelong love for forest animals (maybe this show is one of the reasons for that!) so there is just so much that appeals to me in this print! It's only £6 as well, which is great considering it's A4 :) What were your favourite cartoons when you were a kid? 

7. Pusheen Dinosheen Mystery Series If you've been a regular reader of my blog for a while, you will be well aware of how much I am a fan of Pusheen the cat. I can't imagine that I'm never not going to love anything that is made by the creators of Pusheen! One of my favourite versions of this adorable chubby kitty that has been made is the Dinosheen, and I just found out last month that they have released a mystery series of plush keyrings, with 7 different prehistoric Pusheens to collect. Oh my gosh, I have to have them all! 

8. Unicorn Die-Cut Magazine File I am someone who constantly writes notes on loose sheets of paper or on random memo pages (even though I own way 'too many' notebooks) and then accumulates massive piles of them all over her room. Therefore, I am certainly in need of some sort of file or whatever they are called to throw them into, so I can stop having to dig through papers to get into my drawers or actually get back some of my floorspace :D I own ring binders and such, but it's so much easier to have a box to put things into, and this one from Paperchase is gorgeous! It has unicorns and stars and moons and all the galactic colours so what's not to love about it!? 

9. Watercolour Turtles Phone Case The final item that I'm including in my monthly wishlist is probably the one I am in most need of, and is the item I need to prioritise getting the most, as much as I have a mighty need for everything I have featured in today's post. I usually have a chibified fandom-related design on my phone, but I wanted to opt for something a little different this time. This design by PooSparkles (what an awesome name!)on Etsy is super pretty and is done in watercolours, which I absolutely love! I like how the colours are mild but still very eye-catching, and it has a reptile on it so it is impossible for me not to love it! 

Thankyou for reading! 


Do you have a favourite item that's featured in my post? 

What's on your wishlist this month?

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