My Favorite Pages from My 2020 Bullet Journal

Hey hey, it’s MJ, 

            If you want to see a lot of pages from my 2020 Bullet Journal you can I wrote three posts about it this year one for January-April, one for May-August, and the last from September-December. I don’t really have much of a lead up to this post it’s just going to be some of my absolute favorite pages, some will be repeats from those aforementioned posts and some will be pages that I didn’t show so here we go.

I am going to start with just my random lead up pages that I really enjoyed: 

            My cover for 2020 was so hopeful, here we are with 2020 vision and man did this year suck so I guess now we can say hindsight is 2020 or something. I just like simple yearly covers because my monthly covers are so involved.

            My bookcases with all of the books that I read this year and I hit my goal of 40, you can read about all the books that I read (1,2,3, & 4) because why not. I really enjoy seeing these shelves fill up as the year goes on because that just means that I read another book. 

            My self-care page is a little better than last year’s and I really liked it, my page this year is different so that is something that evolves every year and last year was one of those years where we all needed to think about good ways to practice self-care and these were some of the things that work for me. 

On to monthly pages (again all of these have been featured on the blog before so just roll with me): 

Don’t judge my kanji and stuff, it’s been like a decade since I have actually written much in Japanese.

            My January mood tracker, I love Studio Ghibli and have for years and the soot sprites from Spirited Away and I wanted to have them in my bullet journal, they are super cute and fun. 

            My April cover, again I chose themes of series that I love and so putting the Avengers tower in on my April cover was really awesome and this one was one that took me such a long time to color but I am really proud of it. 

            My May cover, it’s Star Wars because Star Wars, I didn’t hate the new trilogy and let’s be real the porg’s are my favorite (if you search porg on Pinterest it gets mad and thinks you are searching up something that starts with por and ends with n, I’m not a promise I am just looking for CGI puffins.)

            My last page of May, I just really liked drawing Baby Yoda, one of my goals this year is to actually get Disney+ and actually watch the show because it’s such a phenomenon. I just love the character of The Child and how cute he is. 

            My August cover, Tolkien’s Middle Earth is one of those universe’s that I grew up in. I was in fourth grade when the Fellowship of the Ring came out and that was my first PG-13 movies that I ever saw. The Hobbit came out when I was in college and those movies were cinematically amazing. I still want to go to New Zealand and actually go see the beautiful landscape that is immortalized in those films. 

            Random pages because I messed up, I did a worry tree which I will probably put at the very back of my current year bullet journal as well as well as an inspirational quote page. I just needed a break in my months I guess even subconsciously because I missed some pages. I like quote breaks and sometimes you just need a little quote that lifts you up.

            My November cover, I love Doctor Who and this one took me a long time as well but I wanted to put the TARDIS in my bullet journal. There isn’t much else besides the fact that the oil paint pen I used bled through to both of the pages on either side but it’s fine because the dots look pretty cool.

            So those are some of my favorite pages, I really enjoyed my bullet journal last year and my goal again this year is to bullet journal for the whole year and this year is Disney themed which is difficult but guess what, I’m doing it. 

            I’ll see everyone later in the week with another post, I hope everyone has a great couple of days! 

            -MJ 

2020 Bullet Journal Update #3

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

         I cannot believe that I am writing my last bullet journal update of the year. ( you can read the first and the second if you want) In truth I have been done with my bullet journal since about August, I had a lot of time and I am already almost done with January of next year because again; I had the time this week.

         Actually all of the non-creative pages for next year are done because then I can focus on the fun stuff instead of the weekly and monthly layouts. I know I mentioned that in post #2 this year but I felt like it’s been a while since then. 

         This post will look about the same as that one actually, month by month because that just makes sense to me at the moment and it’s a really organized why to put my thoughts down on paper. I know we aren’t really into December yet but bear with me. 

September Theme: 

         I grew up on Harry Potter, it came out when I was in like second or third grade and then the first movie came out when I was in fourth grade; I know because we went as a class to go see it after our teacher read it to us. (My fourth grade teacher was the best.) I love the world and the characters but I have had to separate myself from liking the author after recent comments. 

Cover: The Hogwarts crest and Hedwig wearing the sorting hat, I took a ridiculous amount of time on the crest and it’s still not perfect but that’s totally cool because I don’t want it to be perfect. 

Habit Tracker Drawing: I had to have a nod to the Marauders Map in here somewhere and putting it at the bottom of this tracker was a great choice if I do say so myself. I would love to have a map like the Marauders Map in my life, I would also love to have magic but you know. 

Mood Tracker: I got this idea from Pinterest and I ran with it, I had other ideas but none of them were as cool as this one so roll with me on it. 

The Last Page: Again, Pinterest. I have never really seen the spells like this and some of them could be wrong, I was not going to go and watch all eight films to find out. I didn’t want to do a quote page or a movie check list for this month and I really liked this idea when I saw it. 

October Theme: 

         Disney, because, duh. Next year everything is Disney; it’s a full year of different movies and characters next year. This month however is just general Disney no specific theme.

Cover: Well I wanted a double page like last month, I found the castle and traced it because art is hard, I did the same with Steamboat Willy but that one printed out funny so I had quite a time with it. I liked the idea of having a lot of color on one side and black and white on the other it just made so much sense to me and made me really happy while I was working on it no matter the frustration or blending or trying to get the character correct. 

Mood Tracker: I have seen Up a total of once and I know that Up is Pixar but it’s still Disney in my mind, it’s really cute and I know that the house isn’t colored in this picture, I didn’t realize it wasn’t until halfway through October and I just never retook the picture because I kind of like having the mood trackers blank. 

Quotes Page: All of the quotes on this page are from movies I am not using next year and I do like doing quotes when it’s a big universe that I am working on. 

November Theme:

         Doctor Who, because November. I have watched most of new Who, everything but 13 because I don’t have BBC America, I’ll watch it eventually. I love Doctor Who though, my graduation caps from college were two halves an 11thDoctor quote and it was one of those shows that I can watch over and over again because I love the stories and the characters. 

Cover: The TARDIS in the time stream or just floating through the galaxy, I tried really hard on the galaxy so work with me on it, I have drawn the TARDIS more than I would like to admit also so there’s that. 

Mood Tracker: In reality I am writing this before the end of November but the scarf looks nothing like Tom Baker’s iconic 4th Doctor scarf because of the colors that I use for my mood tracker but it’s the spirit that counts right? This was the only thing I thought of for the mood tracker because this scarf lends itself to a mood tracker and it’s just so iconic. 

Quotes Page: All new Who I think and one from Torchwood because that was a great show, well most of it. I picked my favorite quotes from the show that I quote every once in a while. Attack eyebrows is one of my favorite funny Doctor Who quotes and a few that made me cry when I watched them. 

December Theme: 

         I love the character of Sherlock Holmes, book version, Disney version, RDJ version, and the BBC version. I watched it over the summer again and if you forget about the last episode it’s fine. 

Cover: The left is hand drawn from a reference picture and the right, I cheated on. I printed it off the internet and drew some stuff on it because I could not draw that brocade. 

Mood Tracker: I like this one but it’s not my favorite, I messed up on some of the pods and I should have made them the days of the month but I am an idiot so roll with me again. The London Eye is so iconic just because it’s London and if I ever make it there I want to at least go see it. 

Quotes Page: I did limit this to the BBC version of Sherlock because there are some really good lines in the show and everything that Moriarty says is iconic so many of them are from him. 

         2020 has been insane and I am looking forward to what my Bullet Journal will look like next year, I don’t even really know yet but I am working on it. This year was a lot of fun to do and even though this year has been trial after trial I found myself with the time and the focus to get this year finished and even start on next year so I am not spending the year playing catch up each month.

         I will do a favorite pages post but not a what I am doing different post because I’m pretty much doing the same layout that I did this year because it worked really well for me and why ruin a good thing?

         I hope everyone has a great rest of the week and I will see you over the weekend with another post! 

         -MJ 

What do I use in My Bullet Journal?

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            I have been Bullet journaling to various degrees of success since 2018, that doesn’t feel like it’s been that long ago but it also feels like it’s been about 30 years since then. What I would give to go back to early 2018 and warn myself of what was to come and hope that somehow my timeline wouldn’t still shift into this hellscape we are currently in, I try not to swear but man y’all 2020 has just taken me by the front of my shirt and punched me in the face; repeatedly. 

            That is not the point of this post though but I like my stream of consciousness moments on my blog because it gives all of you reading this a view into my brain, it’s a scary place sometimes. I also just had my first Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew from Starbucks of the season and I am jazzed up on caffeine! 

            I have been Bullet Journaling for almost three years now and that is so hard to believe but this year is the first year where I have actually done all 12 months and I am happy to say that my 2020 Bullet Journal (you can see it so far in updates 1 and 2) is complete.

            What supplies do I use for my bullet journal?

Medium (A5) Leuchtturm 1917 Dotted Journal:

            They make a “bullet journal” version now but I don’t like it so I just buy the normal journal they will run you like $20 at Barnes and Noble, that’s where I get mine. I have had various colors over the years my first was Berry, second was I think a shade called Nordic Blue which was a nice icy light blue, this year is green but it’s not on the Barnes and Noble website anymore so I had to look on the Lecuhtturm website and it’s called Fresh Green, and next year is Powder which is a baby pink. This was the one that was suggested to me by a number of blogs on the internet when I was considering Bullet Journaling at the end of 2017. Thank you Pinterest for getting me hooked on another thing.

Fine line Pens in Various colors:

            I bought mine at Michaels when I started and they don’t actually have them anymore but the brand doesn’t really matter as long as it is colors you like and will use in your journal. I use mine for my habit trackers, my mood tracker, and a whole bunch of various other things in my bullet journal because I love colored pens and these are fine line markers so they are great and they don’t bleed through the paper. Mine came in a set of 20 and I think they were under $10 so find ones that work for your purposes, you don’t have to buy the fancy ones to get good results. Store them tip down they least longer! Sharpie also makes a nice selection of colored Sharpie pens which I also use!

Markers in Various Colors: 

            Again from Michaels in like late 2017 so they are old but they still work for what I need them to do, I use them for covers, for mood trackers, and for a lot of my large lettering. You do not want a large tipped marker though, medium tip at most and you may want to try them to make sure they don’t go through the paper and bleed onto the other side because that’s not fun. I store these tip down as well! 

Highlighters:

            I found pastel highlighters at Wal-Mart in 2018 and have not been able to find them there since which makes me upset because if I need more I will have to order them. I got a set of six from Mild Color and I really like them because I use them to highlight important things as well as making sure I know what week I am in. I use these for more than my bullet journal but they are used primarily there. When I replace them I will probably go with Zebra brand because they also have some really nice pastel highlighters. 

Colored Pencils:

            Does not matter the brand! I have a set that I got for Christmas a few years ago after salivating over it for years but I have a set of 150 Prismacolor colored pencils and I love them. I was so afraid to use them because they are very expensive but I used them for almost every cover if not every cover this year and a few last year and I love them so much! Crayola, RoseArt, any of the regular brands work just as well but I am going to use what I have because I love them so much. 

A straight edge: 

            I didn’t use a ruler until I started on working on my Bullet Journal for next year, I don’t even use a ruler I use the edge of the card that comes with my IPSY bags, it’s folded in half but it’s the perfect size for my Bullet Journal, it makes things look cleaner and I am kicking myself for not using one sooner because it made things SO MUCH easier! 

Washi Tape: 

            I have never bought a full priced tube or pack of Washi Tape I just wait for them to go on clearance and buy them then. I use it for mostly my habit trackers to make the pages look nice but I love the fun of washi tape. 

Stickers and Things: 

            There are a lot of premade journals out there, I love the versatility of a bullet journal because I can create as I go but I always have a bunch of stickers and things at my disposal, some come from those other planners, again clearance section! Why spend more than you have to, I mean really. I love stickers and tiny note pads, I don’t use them too frequently in my Bullet Journal but I have them so I can when I want.

A Good Black Fine Liner Pen:

            This is the MOST IMPORTANT thing for your Bullet Journal, you do a lot of outlining and all of the shapes are mostly a fine line black pen, all of the habit trackers, the weekly spreads, the daily tasks, the calendars that I do, and most of the covers have black outlines or sections and I use a black Sharpie Pen. I love this pen, it is the only one I use for my Bullet Journal and I have used about four since I started Bullet Journaling, I know the one I am using right now is already half gone because I already did the basic pages and layouts for next year so eventually I will have to get out another one. The tip does wear down on this one so the lines for written words sometimes get a little thick but you can always have a second one out just for lettering, which I should but don’t. 

            You don’t have to spend a bunch of money if you want to start Bullet Journaling, it’s supposed to be fun and creative instead of buying a planner that isn’t customizable to you, I love the freedom of a Bullet Journal because there is no set standard you can do whatever you want with it. I used to buy a planner every year because I needed it for school but now that I am out of school (I still have dreams about missing work during my master’s program and I have been out of it for over two years) I have the choice to allow my creativity one more outlet. In college I swore by the Lilly Pulitzer planners and I still would if I was in college because I loved them and they were what I needed at the time. Planners have become such a big craze in the last several years and I got caught up in it. You learn with every new planner, every new year brings new challenges and insights that you learn from years past.

            You can check out all of my other Bullet Journal related posts, I will list them so you can click at will! What I did Differently in my 2019 BuJo, Some of my fave 2018 pages, Some of my fave 2019 pages, and a random update from last year.

            Do you Bullet Journal? Any tips or tricks I am missing that you swear by? Let me know!

            Hope y’all have a great start to your week and I will see you with another post soon!

                        -MJ

2020 Bullet Journal Update 2

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            So truth time, I am done with my 2020 bullet journal because I made a promise to myself this year that I would bullet journal the whole year not skip a single month and I didn’t so I am really proud of myself for that one. Quarantine really did allow me to spend some time on creative pursuits and that’s about the only upside to it.  I also have all of my “base pages” done for next year so all of my month things all I have to do next year is the pages at the front, the covers, the mood tracker, and the miscellaneous pages at the end of every month. So I really am going for it with this bullet journaling thing; only took three years to do every month, good job MJ. 

            So let’s review my last four months May, June, July, and August. My art is still not all that great but I am trying and at the moment that’s all that matters because practice does make perfect and that’s all I can ask for at the moment. 

            This post will probably look different than my original bullet journal update this year because I want to organize my thoughts differently in this one.

May Theme: 

Like last year was Star Wars themed because May the Force Be With You is just fitting for May. I am not going to show my mood tracker because it’s all very fanciful lightsabers and I don’t want to deal with the inaccuracy of colors on here. 

Cover: It is a much more expanded version of last year and I found a cute porg drawing on Pinterest because I love the porgs and I wanted them in my bullet journal again this year. The Falcon is a little less detailed than last year but I have been doing more with my covers this year so having nods to the new trilogy and the original trilogy on this page was great. The Death Star up in the corner was a lot of fun to draw though it’s not perfect. 

Movie Checklist: I haven’t seen all of the Star Wars movies I am missing Episode III and the the stand alone films which I want to watch but it’s just sitting down and watching them when you know all of the spoilers because of the internet but I also haven’t see The Mandalorian but The Child had to be a part of my bullet journal and I was really proud of how it turned out after again a tutorial off Pinterest 

June Theme:

            I am a child of the 90’s so I remember the original Pokémon and how big of a deal it was when it came out; I still have my Pokémon cards but because of that Pokémon has been a part of my life for most of my life, it came out here in what the late nineties so I was in my very early elementary school years at that point. 

Cover: Eevee is my favorite Pokémon and I know how cliché that is  but it is, my buddy on Pokémon Go is an Eevee named Monet and I love him. So the Eevee-lutions became my cover and I had to draw about half of them twice because I put the originals on the wrong page like an idiot but it gave me a lot of practice drawing them. 

Mood Tracker: Poké Balls and I feel like that’s just an obvious choice and I was going to pattern them like all the Poké Balls but I figured just the standard would do best here. 

Final Page: I watched the original series as a kid and I loved the section of “who’s that Pokémon” and I chose another favorite which is Piplup the penguin Pokémon who was also one of my buddies on Pokémon Go and I named him Orwell.

July Theme: 

           Okay so video games have always been a part of my life I just don’t play many of them and I love watching gaming content on the internet but I pretty much have had mostly Nintendo systems from the Game Boy Advanced to the Switch so July’s theme was video games. 

Cover: Lots of Nintendo and from video games I have mostly played (have not played a Kirby game but he’s so iconic) but I took a lot of time on this cover and it’s not half bad in my opinion. 

Habit Tracker Drawing: It’s Pac-Man I have played my fair share of Pac-Man and I thought it would make a cute little drawing to go with my habit trackers. 

Mood Tracker: Also have played a lot of Tetris and I really messed up on some of the pieces because I am an idiot but it worked and it was Tetris themed. 

Final Page: I have been playing a lot of Animal Crossing, there is a whole post about my Animal Crossing New Horizons fun but this at the time was my house and my outfit and I figured why not wo a full page drawing of it because I had no idea what else to do. 

August Theme:

            I grew up on Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, my fourth grade teacher read us The Hobbit and I have been a fan ever since so August was Tolkien themed and I have loved it since I came up with the concept.

Cover: Bilbo’s house in the Shire, the Lonely Mountain and a quote, I know the map on the side is not actually correct but it was most of the major locations from The Hobbit series and I really enjoyed doing this cover. 

Mood Tracker: Cartoonish Smaug because I wanted Smaug in my bullet journal but I didn’t want him to be menacing and this was something I found on the internet and again did my own rendition because there are a lot of people who are a whole heck of a lot more creative than me when it comes to art and I sometimes need help.

Final Page: Quotes from the world of Tolkien, it’s all The Hobbit and lord of The Rings because I have most of the things he wrote but I hadn’t read all of them and I could have had more quotes but I have a meme quote in there too which I kind of love. 

So there it is my second bullet journal update of the year and I cannot believe we are far enough into it that I have two updates because we are almost in month nine of the year which I am still processing March so I have no idea what day it is anymore. I cannot wait to show everyone the rest of the year in December because my late year themes are some of my faves so I am looking forward to sharing those. 

I will see y’all later in the week with another post so I hope it’s a good week!

-MJ

Bullet Journal Update

I am going to be completely honest with everyone, I believe in transparency and to be honest the last few weeks have just been emotionally difficult for me. I know why but I don’t really have a reason that I have been feeling the way that I have been feeling. I have all of the rest of the posts mapped out for this month and I am hoping that soon enough I will snap myself out of this funk that I have been in for the last 3-4 weeks. I am also writing this pretty late at night because I am in Northwest Arkansas and today we have been battered with some pretty severe storms and I am waiting for a watch to expire before I even try to go to bed. 

            I just wanted to hop on and post an update on my Bullet Journal, you can read about my BuJo journey in My Favorite Pages from Last Year (2018) and What I’m Doing Differently This Year. 

            I will say this year it has kept me slightly more organized because I have added more trackers and have actually been using it every day. Granted I started out strong in 2018 so I am hoping to actually Bullet Journal all 12 months this year. 

            I have been doing a few different things actually, one was two habit trackers and It’s been helping to remind me to do certain things and for the most part I have been keeping myself more accountable on things because of it. I also am implementing my monthly spread as of this month because I want to have my schedules all in one place not three. Right now it’s just for blog posts soon enough I hope it’s for the restart of my YouTube channel and various other events that I have during any given month (I am a home body, most of the time it’s just, MJ leave the house, it’s been days, you need help.

            I also have been putting a little bit more time in my monthly covers, I have an idea on what my themes will be next year and I am not going to spoil it until I make a post about my Bullet Journal at the end of the year.

            Here are some of my favorite pages so far: 

I switched my weekly layout this year and I am finding that this is actually a lot more functional for me.
I for sure used the same quote last year but it’s still a good quote, like I said I am taking my time on my monthly covers or at least trying to.
I am continually changing and updating my habit tracker because i find that there are things that get dropped from being tracked or things that I need to track and don’t.
Coming up with a creative mood tracker is hard but I am a huge fan of Edison bulbs and I chose this as my theme in April.
That’s right, May is Star Wars themed! Don’t mind my very angry looking porg, I am not super great at drawing. Also if you type “porg” without Star Wars in Pinterest it gets mad at you and thinks you are looking for something else, get your mind out of the gutter Pinterest!

            Side note: I am not going to put these in a “gallery” because it seems that when you do that with a bunch of pictures nothing formats to be the same size an that’s just annoying. 

            I know this really isn’t a long post, I have been writing a lot of what feel like novel length posts recently and I need to step back from that because sometimes that gives me anxiety and I really don’t need more than what I already have. 

            Do you have a Bullet Journal? Do you want tips from me on my experiences? Any advice from more experienced Bullet Journalists (I don’t know what else to call it.)? 

            I will see everyone on Saturday/Sunday with a new post, have a good rest of your week!

            -MJ