Getting Organized with The Happy Planner

me & my BIG ideas Photo 2
I whole-heartidly believe organization is the key to success, followed by a slue of other “keys,” but we won’t get into all that today. Being organized is especially crucial when it comes to education, and higher education at that, due to the amount of work that is assigned, meetings that need to be attended, and extracurriculars that are taking place to get your mind off of all the upcoming tests and quizzes. I can honestly say I would be lost without my planner, non-functioning, and maybe even dead beneath the piles of drive-thru food wrappers that occupy my bed (my bed is actually really clean). If you are a frequent visitor here, or to any of my social media accounts (follow me if you’re not!!!!), you might have noticed how often I stress the importance of owning a planner and actually using it.

As a senior in college (GASP!), I have figured out for the most part what works for me and what doesn’t when it comes to planners. I realized very quickly that I cannot use an hourly planner because I started planning way to many naps a day and didn’t have enough space to write down homework assignments and upcoming tests but what I did realize was that I work really well with planners that are monthly and daily. I basically organize my planner by only putting important meetings, appointments, and deadlines in the monthly view portion of my planner so that I can see the “big picture” for the month and not have any surprises and then I use the weekly view to write down all my assignments, deadlines, appointments, meetings, etc. My most recent planner adventure was to try to color code each class I’m taking so I wasn’t constantly writing down the name of the class, but I keep getting confused, so I’m not so sure long that will last (stay tuned)!

The Happy Planner Photo 5
I’m a picky person – I’m a picky eater, I’m picky when it comes to clothes, and I am especially picky about planners. Would you believe me when I say that this is the first planner I’ve ever owned without having the opportunity to look through it and physically hold it before bringing it home with me? It’s amazing how different two planners are – from the way they are bound, to the font choices and coloring, to the way they are set up. When I found out I was going to be sent The Happy Planner (use code: HCRACHEL for 20% off!), I was excited but then I realized that I was actually worried about getting it. What if I didn’t like it? What if it was perfect except for the way it was set up inside? Disclosure: I almost bought a back-up planner just in case I didn’t like this one. I honestly was like, well, I could buy a back up planner and if I don’t like this one, I could just write about it as honestly as possible, then chuck it in the corner and use the one I purchased for myself. Don’t worry, I talked myself out of it and I’m glad I did.

You’re probably wondering what even is The Happy Planner (use code: HCRACHEL for 20% off your purchase!) and who are the people behind me & my BIG ideas, and you know, this is something I thought I should cover before getting into my likes/dislikes of the planner since it’s pretty interesting stuff!

me & my BIG ideas started off as a garage-based company ran by a mother-daughter after some conversation about scrapbooking and the need for stickers in the scrapbooking world during a baseball game in 1998. These two women went to their longtime friend and artist, Kay McConaughey to help them create 12 unique sticker designs. After attending their first trade show, the women realized they were onto something big and used their strengths in design and creative mindsets to bring more products to the market. The company quickly grew, forcing them out of their garage and into a 40,000 square foot building in Southern California. Now their products are sold internationally and are taking the scrapbooking and planning world by storm.

The Happy Planner is an expandable, disc bound 18-month planner system that allows for the ultimate customization. With five different planner options and even a recipe book, plus the endless amount of stickers, inserts (recipes, budget, grocery shopping, to do, dividers, etc.), and disc color options, there is in fact a Happy Planner for everyone.

The Happy Planner Photo 1
I’ve never been one to decorate my planners, simply because I’m not very creative when it comes to that kind of stuff. Thankfully, The Happy Planner Instagram gave me lots of inspiration on how to decorate my planner and how I want it to look. With school just starting, I’m just getting back into the swing of things and I don’t have a ton on my plate right now so my planner seems a little empty and quite frankly, looking a little blah! I’m currently working on this situation and trying to add as much color into my planning life as possible, because that’s what makes a hectic life more fun! Am I right or am I right?

Overall, I’m very happy with my planner and a even more happy I didn’t purchase a backup (that would have been a waste of money fo’ sho). The only thing I’m not extremely crazy about is how the days are broken into morning, afternoon, and evening. I’ve never had a planner that had the days broken up like this before (apparently it’s a hot thing right now though), so it’s taken a little time to get used to, BUT it’s starting to grow on me! Truly! It actually makes my days seem longer than they are and it allows me to have my homework assignments split up, which makes me think I have less work to do than I really do (booooya!).

I basically think everyone needs this planner (my roommate is clearly jealous of it) and what makes it so much better is that I have a coupon code (oooohhh, ahhhhh) for 20% off your purchase until December 31, 2015!!! Use code: HCRACHEL to get the discount and be sure to let me know what you end up purchasing!

The Happy Planner Photo 6
Shop my favorites:
Planner | Gold Foil Dividers | Planner Covers | Home Planner Inserts | To Do Stickers: Gold FoilBrightNeutral | Notepads | Puffy Stickers: IconsTo-Do | Inspiration Cards | Stickers: Don’t ForgetGet It DoneAlphabet and IconImportant | Note and Graph Paper | Pocket Folders | Gold Expandable Rings (also come in 3 other colors! I need the pink!)

Happy planning! Don’t forget to head over to The Happy Planner Instagram to get inspiration on how to decorate your planner (my lifeline) and to let me know in the comments below what your favorite planner is, what you are going to be purchasing, and any tips you have for me when it comes to organizing your life!

What are your favorites from me & my BIG ideas?
XO, Rachel
This post is sponsored by me & my BIG ideas and Her Campus Media. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Seashells + Sparkles possible!
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  1. September 17, 2015 / 8:21 AM

    I am picky about everything too!! I love this planner! I can see why some people wouldn't like the days broken up, but when I was in college I loved planners like that because when I had random free times I would get some assignments done and it was nice to know which assignment I had time for and assigned them to the correct place. Now that I work a job 8-5 and rarely have meetings I would hate a planner that had the days broken up like that.

  2. September 17, 2015 / 8:25 AM

    Love your planner! Mine is a bit more boring but it does help me a lot! I tend to forget things (who doesn't) so I can't live without it!

  3. September 17, 2015 / 1:34 PM

    Such a pretty planner. I absolutely adore planners as I am obsessed with staying organizers. I have a planner for college and a separate life planner and even another one for my wedding planning that has just started.


  4. September 17, 2015 / 2:32 PM

    Such a cute planner!! Thanks for the coupon code, I looked everywhere for this in stores near me, and I didn't want to pay full price online! 🙂

  5. September 17, 2015 / 7:19 PM

    It's the best! I'm so happy you were in the market for one and came across the coupon codes (they're the best aren't they?!)!

    Have fun decorating!
    Xo, R

  6. September 17, 2015 / 7:21 PM

    Yeah! I think now that I'm getting used to it, it's pretty normal, but if I was in the working world or out of school, I'm not sure if it would work for me!

    Xo, R

  7. September 17, 2015 / 7:22 PM

    Thanks girl! This is the first time I've ever decorated a planner and it takes a lot to get used to, but I'm diggin' it so far!

    Xo, R

  8. September 17, 2015 / 7:22 PM

    Thanks girl!!!!

    Xo, R

  9. September 17, 2015 / 7:23 PM

    I always come across planners that are super cute and I'm like "I ALREADY HAVE ONE BUT I JUST DONT WANT TO PASS THIS ONE UP!"

    Xo, R

  10. September 17, 2015 / 7:23 PM


    Xo, R

  11. September 17, 2015 / 9:32 PM

    OMG I LOVE THIS! I saw these planners at Michaels the other day, but I didn't think too much about it. I'm terrible at staying consistent with planners, but this is one that I might be able to keep up! It looks like so much fun! Great post, and your pictures are awesome! xoxox, Kayla

  12. September 18, 2015 / 1:10 AM

    Such pretty planners, they are all my fav!! Thanks for sharing!

  13. September 18, 2015 / 12:16 PM

    I could never pick up the idea of planners before, but now that I need to get myself organized I wish I had. Planners are great, and these look lovely. I am not that creative once it comes to decorating, but I like my stuff to look pretty. So I really like the stickers and extra accessories that they have

  14. September 20, 2015 / 10:52 AM

    I hope it works for you! Don't forget if you order one online, you can get 20% off your entire purchase (go sticker crazy!) with coupon code HCRACHEL!

    Xo, R

  15. September 20, 2015 / 10:52 AM

    It's so hard to pick just one!

    Xo, R

  16. September 20, 2015 / 10:53 AM

    I hear ya sister, I'm not very creative either so I took to the me & my BIG ideas and The Happy Planner Instagram accounts to get a little inspiration! It makes organizing fun!

    Xo, R

  17. September 22, 2015 / 3:41 PM

    This post is giving me the planner itch again lol! Sooooo pretty! And what girl doesn't love to organize her life?

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