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You want to document your stories and remember all the details of your daily life… You want to have a place where you can add  photos, and write notes to remind yourself of the funny moments, the milestones and even the low-lights! but knowing where to start can feel so overwhelming!   I got you! Welcome to this guide for getting started Memory Planning!  

What is a memory planner? 

If you typically use a planner to write down goals, appointments and to-do’s for future days, where you write down what you hope will happen; a memory planner is the opposite. In a memory planner you document what happened in your days after the fact. It’s planning in reverse! It’s a calendar based journal where you include little details of what happened each day, with the intention of jogging your memory and summarizing the day so that later you can remember those stories. 

Have you ever thought back over a week, or a month or even an entire year… and thought “wow, that was a blur”! What that really means is that all the things that happened, all the experiences, work, celebrations, stress, people, places and things have all smooshed together with no beginning and no end because the details have been forgotten.  Then, when you look at a photo, and your brain remembers a few of those forgotten details, the memories take shape again and it’s amazing what you DO remember. The stories are more distinct. You know what happened when, and what you spent your time doing, where you went and who you were with. Life takes shape, and you stop the blur.  That’s exactly why I call my monthly online workshop: “STOP THE BLUR”.

A memory planner can be as simple and basic or as creative and complicated as you choose. No matter how you execute the story telling, the result is the same: you will be able to remember. Here’s what you need to get started: 

  1. PLANNER: Any planner can be a memory planner! There is some personal preference here. You want it to be easy to write in, and have a good amount of space for each day so that you can add photos and information as desired. I like to use a planner that has a “monthly” view and a daily/weekly view. Right now I love using my Storyline Chapters planner insert books. They are notebook style, and very simple in construction and design. The weekly layout is a simple, open format allowing for space to write! I like that the book opens flat and its’ not too bulky to work in. 
  2. PENS: I am picky about pens. I like a smooth, fine tip for lots of writing. I like pens with different tips for making titles, drawing boxes, doodles etc.  For the basic writing I love the PILOT G2 .38 black gel pen. Its my all time favorite! I also love the Kelly Creates pens with 6 different point sizes, as well as her brush pens! It’s important for you to find what works for you! 
  3. Pencil and eraser: Sometimes I just like to do a little sketching w/ a pencil before I write in pen. Keep a pencil and WHITE ERASER handy!
  4. RULER: keep a small scale ruler at the ready so you can draw lines, boxes, tables etc. I love to use rulers that double as stencils for bullet points, and alphas like my “Color Fresh” metal ruler.
  5. PHOTOS: adding photos will immediately add detail and joy to looking back in your memory planner.  There are several ways to add photos, but my favorite is using these photo sticker templates! All you have to do is download the templates from my website here, drop your photos in and print from your desktop inkjet printer! The photo stickers are HP quality, archival paper and look fabulous when they print!

Once you have the above basics, then you can add the color and fun! Here’s what you will see me reaching for over and over. Don’t feel like you need to have everything at once. You can look to just add to your supplies little by little! Use what you have! 


*Colored Pencils: I like to add color to my days with colored pencils because there are so many colors to choose from, and you never have to worry about them soaking through the paper to the other side. I love Prismacolor pencils!

*alphabet stamps: it’s fun to mix things up by adding titles and key words on your pages with alphabet stamps. I like my “honey and spice” stamps because there are 2 different fonts and each letter is available in different sizes to mix and match and create so many different looks. 

*INKS: I like to choose inks that are light in color, that don’t soak through the pages, and also don’t overpower the photos and writing. I like the TIM HOLTZ distress oxide inks!

*washi tape: if you are like me, you already have a healthy collection of washi tape! Keep them out where you can use them in little bits and pieces to add color!


*adhesive: I have 2 go-to adhesives: the sticky thumb tape runner, and the Ranger Glossy Accents. 

*bone folder: This I use all the time for scoring and folding paper as I create little interactive elements for my pages

*stapler: This is another essential tool for quickly attaching add-ons in place

*trimmer: I love my FISCARS trimmer – use it all the time for cutting and scoring

*scissors: get some that you like, and don’t cut through glue. 

*utility knife and cutting mat: I find myself using a utility knife for little cutting jobs. I love the WE R knife. It’s solid, and comfortable in my hand. 

*circle punches: I basically have every circle punch from 1/2” to 2” and I use them all the time for various purposes! It’s just good to start that collection!

BIG TOOLS: These are NOT REQUIRED tools, but I use them all the time and love the possibilities they afford:

*sewing machine: yes… I only sew paper. I reach for my sewing machine again and again. It can do things that glue just can’t!

*MINC MACHINE: This will double as a foil applicator and a laminator.  Add a “LASER PRINTER” to your arsenal  if you have a MINC so that you can print and add foil all the time!

*DIGITAL CUTTER”: I have a Cricut Maker – I love it. I use it all the time for my planner, cards, scrapbooking, cardmaking, t-shirts and sweatshirts and campaign posters for my kids. I also use it to cut out my monthly printable and other fun stuff! 

This list got real long, real quick! You do not have to have all these items in order to get started! In fact, the best thing for you to do is START where you are! You will know what items you want to start adding to your collection! You might also find you already have a lot of these items and you are already ready to get started!  Your memory planner will evolve. You will learn what you like and how you like to include stuff. You will develop a style and a process for documenting that works for you! 

As I mentioned above, I teach a monthly online class called “STOP THE BLUR”. It comes out on the 15th of every month. I share my actual personal memory planner and process – So you see me creating in real time! Each month I create a process video of a full week in my planner. I also share 3 technique videos of ideas you can try to incorporate into your planner that month. The ideas can be incorporated into your planner over and over! I love to share HOW TO create fun interactive elements, include details in a bullet pointed format, and add photos! Each month is different, and FULL of fresh ideas! For all that, it’s only $10/per month! 

I also created a FREE introduction course for memory planning! This will give you a better idea of WHY I love memory planning, and also the stuff you need to get started! You can find that FREE CLASS here!

I love memory planning because it accomplishes 3 important things: 

  1. remembering. I like to remember what we did. I like to look back and reminisce! 
  2. I love the creative process. Every day is fun and different! I love that! 
  3. Maybe the most helpful of all is the mental health benefits of taking time to look back and processing the things that went on in your life. Hindsight is always 20/20, and it’s easier to see the good and the blessings more clearly as you look back. Taking the  time to recognize and acknowledge all the you accomplish is also such a healthy exercise! 

There is so much goodness in our lives, and if we don’t take the time to appreciate it, we might miss it. It might become a bluR!

Plan to join me in 2021! You will be SO glad that you took the time to tell YOUR STORY! You will love being able to remember what happened and hold onto the memories!  IT’s going to be an epic journey… come be part of the FUN! SIGN UP NOW!!

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