Decor Inspiration: Mood Boards

I’ve been thinking more and more about how to add some extra inspiration to my office and I’ve fallen in love with the idea of creating a mood board or inspiration board since seeing them on the Kikki K website. I would love to get a big board and buy all of their inspirational notecards and cute little accessories. For inspiration, especially decor inspiration, I always head to Pinterest and they have some great vision board ideas. I think I’ll definitely have to get myself a board for my office and fill it with photos and motivational quotes.

In the meantime, here are some of my favourite photos from pinterest:
Follow Ruby Wren Designs’s board Inspiration Boards on Pinterest.

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Habits: tracking them and keeping them

They say it takes 30 days to create a habit, and good habits are as hard to break as bad ones once they’re formed. I’m trying to get some of my good intentions to stick through 2016 and tracking them each day seems to be a good way of getting things done. I’m a sucker for a good streak – if my streak is getting longer, I’m more likely to not make excuses and go that extra mile to get whatever it is done. My Kikki K wellness planner came with a habits tracking notepad – I dare say it won’t last the year, but I’ll find some other way of tracking my daily habits after that! ūüôā

My ‘habits’ for 2016:

  • Drinking at least 2 litres of real water – not tea, not coffee, but actual water. I’m finding filling a litre water bottle with mostly cold water, juice of a fresh lemon, and a splash of hot water makes for a comforting drink that I can consume quite easily…I’m half way to my target with my warm lemon drink each day. The warm water is so good¬†with lemon as it’s a great health tonic, plus ice cold water in the middle of winter is sometimes hard to bare. I use the Nalgene Wide Mouth Everyday Tritan Bottle¬†– the big 1 litre water bottle means I can sip water for ages before needing to refill, and two fills gets my target met. This bottle is great quality, BPA free, guaranteed for life, and goes everywhere with me!
  • Daily Green juice – to get my daily dose of nutrients and antioxidants, I try to eat a varied diet with lots of vegetables, leaves and fruits. A great boost to this is a greens powder and I love the Amazing Grass Green SuperFood Powder. One serving gives you the antioxidant benefits of 7 portions of fruit and veg, so making my green drink is one of my top priorities each day.
  • Supplements is another thing I always forget. One of the most important to me is iron – I’m constantly finding myself diagnosed as anaemic and given a majorly high temporary prescription of iron to boost my stores, only to go through the whole thing again next time I get a blood test. Also top of my supplements list is probiotics as I consider them so important to gut health, immune system and overall wellbeing.
  • Exercise – goes without saying really doesn’t it? Along with weightlifting at the gym and yoga, I’m also aiming to get 365 miles in by the end of 2016. It’s not going quite according to plan, but I’m hoping to not get too far behind so I can catch up as my fitness improves…bring on those 6-7 mile runs I used to do!
  • 6am start – probably one of the most difficult but majorly impactful habit I’m trying to form. Sleep and me have an odd relationship, probably being diagnosed with glandular fever and then chronic fatigue syndrome doesn’t help, but I’m determined to get stuff done and not sleep my days away. Getting up early and filling my day with everything I want to do is my plan.

What are the habits you’re trying to form? How are you tracking them?

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Kikki K Wellness Planner Update, New Printables

At the start of the month, I reviewed my new Kikki K Wellness Planner based on my first impressions. Now I’ve been using it almost a month, I thought I’d pop a little update on the blog about how I’ve been using it and how I’m finding it on a daily basis.

Firstly, when I first received the planner, it was obvious that there wasn’t a years worth of insert pages in it – about a month of daily pages, maybe a few months of the other¬†sections (food, exercise etc). Sure, you can buy packs of refills, but again, they’re not a years worth and I’d have to have them shipped internationally to me here. I love Kikki K stationary and will no doubt be buying sticker books and pretty paper products again in the future, but I begrudge buying several packs of refills at ¬£12 (not including delivery) to use my planner for a year.

However, what I always loved about getting a planner was how customisable it is – how you can punch holes into anything and put them into your diary, make your own sections and fill in with what you’d really need and use. I do love the reflection¬†section with it’s mindfulness and gratitude¬†prompts, and the exercise and nutrition section is a great addition, but the real value is in what you can do with the planner in the long term. There’s a whole load of amazing designers online who make their own printables for any ring binder style planner – as an Etsy seller¬†myself and big fan of the site, Etsy was my first stop for printables. I came across so many shops with all different types of planner insert styles – daily, to-do lists, weekly, student, cleaning schedules, budgeting pages, meal plans, nutrition, exercise, etsy-seller planners, small business diaries…the list goes on!

I wanted something completely functional, which would suit how I use my planner, and also something stylish but that also wouldn’t use up too much ink printing daily sheets off. I found lots of shops with amazing products, but the one that I fell in love with was the Etsy shop Easy Peasy Paper (a fellow UK based Etsy shop too!). I loved the weekly planner as I can plan the whole week in bullet points and see at a glance what I need to do on each day, but then I also wanted to be able to look at my day in more detail and be able to schedule my whole day. I found the daily planner¬†to match the¬†weekly version I’d chosen, and it was perfect – it has an entire section for your schedule and to-dos (I mark up each line for an hour in my day and can plan what I need to get done and when). It also has daily exercise, food plans, gratitude section, must-dos, water level, appointments, daily treat and more. It’s perfect for planning my day, plus taking into account more lifestyle related activities – great for inside the ‘Wellness Planner’.

As someone who also likes to know the phases of the moon, I went looking for a moon calendar. I found AstroCharts on Etsy and purchased their Moon Phase printable calendar. What I loved about this was that you can get a bespoke printable by choosing your hemisphere and time zone, so your New Moon and Full Moons will be listed in your own time zones. I printed the calendar on A5 sheets and trimmed to create a mini-monthly calendar for inside each of my existing month pages.

I imagine as time goes on and I use my planner more and more, I’ll find even more ways of making it perfect for me. I’m so glad I purchased the Wellness Planner for that very reason – I have my hole-punch raring to customise anything! ūüôā

View my original review here


  

Planner Inspiration and Dream Set Ups

Since getting my Kikki K Wellness Planner at the start of the New Year (yay for resolutions, and keeping them…I hope!), I’ve been addicted to planner decoration – who knew, there’s a whole heap of talented people online who share their planners and customisation. I had no idea than planner customisation was a thing, but now I know, I am having the best time getting inspiration from those creative photos.

My Pinterest board is full of amazing photos of planners, setups and great printables. I’m just getting used to the default planner pages that came with the Wellness Planner, but I’m looking forward to finding some great printables and inserts once I know what I really need and what I will actually use.

My Pinterest board is here, click through for more and photo credits

Unique loved-up cards for Valentine’s Day 2016

Valentine’s Day is one of my favourite times of year, because of all the Valentine’s cards we make for customers. There’s nothing better than spreading the love and helping people celebrate their feelings all year around, but it’s like an explosion of romance during February.

This year, we’ve put a new typographic twist on our ‘Days I’ve Loved You‘ cards, featuring gorgeous swooshy writing in inky watercolour goodness. We’ve also added a ‘Ticket To My Heart‘ card which is inspired by those cute admission tickets, along with old favourites and best sellers such as our ‘First Valentine’s Day As Mr and Mrs‘ and our ‘Valentine’s Dictionary‘.

All are completely personalised and will be a super special keepsake for your loved one this year. Send something that will show just how much you care: www.rubywren.com

Review: The Mint and Grey Kikki K Wellness Planner 2016

(Read my update here)

My intentions for 2016 include much better organisation along with mental and physical health and wellbeing. I had a few planners on my wishlist and I wasn’t sure I’d find exactly what I was looking for. I wanted a planner that was about wellness as well as your usual day to day calendar and appointments. There were a few planners and journals that I looked at which were about reflection and gratitude, which I loved, but very few ticked every box for me. I really love the Happiness Planner, but wanted something that I could use year after year, and the Daily Greatness Journals were on my wishlist too, but didn’t incorporate much in the way of daily scheduling. Both would be great planners to use in conjunction with a more practical day to day planner, and both are still on the top of my wishlist for reflection and mindfulness.

I decided to buy the Kikki K Wellness Planner. Kikki K are a Swedish-inspired Australian company and their products are gorgeous! They’ve just opened a shop in Covent Garden in London, but I wish they had shops all over the UK. Having said that, buying from their website was a breeze and it arrived from Australia in 4 days. All their planners feature a ring-binder inside, so you can replace and add to the inserts if you like. This was a big tick in the plus box for me, as I want to get good value out of my purchase. I’ve already searched on Etsy and Pinterest for printable inserts so I can customise the planner further. That’s exactly what I love about these planners – you are given the bare bones of a beautiful planner, and the rest is down to you. I was in awe at some of the youtube videos and blogs showcasing how creatively people have decorated their planners.

The Wellness Planner is quite different to the other planners from Kikki K – it focuses on mental health, nutrition and exercise, in addition to the usual calendar, to-do lists etc. It also has an awesome little habits notepad in the inside cover so you can keep track of your daily habits and tick them off as you do them – I’m using this for water consumption, green juice, supplements and exercise. I’m sure I’ll add more to the list, but to see them written down and feel accomplished as I tick them off each day, it’s a great motivator!

The first section is a monthly calendar view. You can start this any time of year as you pop your own dates in the calendar, although January is a great place to start! The daily section features a list of ‘to-dos’, priorities, water tracker, daily gratitude and improvements for tomorrow. I love how it combines a practical diary with a more mindful journal…exactly what I was looking for!

Further on in the planner, there’s mind, nutrition and exercise sections, for tracking your daily lifestyle. I have used food and exercise trackers in the past (and still do when I’m training properly!) but having somewhere to write it down offline might be much more motivating than having it stored in an app. The mind section is all about gratitude, meditation and intentions, a really lovely section which makes the planner much more mindful than your usual diary.

Overall, I am so thrilled with this planner. I love that it combines everything I need to keep organised and productive, with health and wellbeing. The fact it’s so customisable, gorgeous and a joy to decorate, is the icing on the cake (mmm, cake!). I know that part of the enjoyment and mindfulness I’ll get out of the planner is the time spent each day decorating, customising and being creative with it.

The planner can be purchased directly from Kikki K online (shipping to the UK is only ¬£6 and amazingly fast via DHL) and I also purchased an accessory pack, inspirational sticker book, motivational quote notecard (that quote “the difference between who you are and who you want to be is what you do” reminded me of my favourite Matchbox Twenty song lyric “The Difference between what you need¬†and what you want to be” so I had to add it to my order), and the most gorgeous glitter tape.

Wellness Planner

Sticker Book: Inspiration

Accessory Pack

The Difference Quote Card

Gold Glitter Tape

   
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
   

Colouring for relaxation and creativity

I am a bit late to the adult colouring book party but now I’m here, I’m wondering what took me so long! One of my intentions for 2016 is to disconnect from technology more and spend more time indulging in more creative and more relaxing pursuits.

I had a pattern colouring book when I was little that I loved, full of geometric patterns so that was something I wanted when looking for a book. I purchased the Indian Summer colouring book from Amazon, for it’s intricate bold patterns and mandalas…I knew I would enjoy this! As the patterns feature some very tiny details, I opted for some fine liner pens to add colour to my new book.

I’m so glad I purchased this – the patterns are stunning and my mind wanders as I decide what colour to choose next for the patterns. It’s a great relaxation tool and I find hours pass as I colour in. I’m looking forward to adding to my colouring book collection so I can enjoy different themes…the Liberty books look amazing and I’m still dreaming of geometric patterns too!

The colouring book I’m using below is Really RELAXING Colouring Book 6: Indian Summer: A Jewelled Journey through Indian Pattern and Colour: Volume 6 (Really RELAXING Colouring Books)¬†and I’m filling it in with Staedtler Triplus Fineliner 334 SB20 Tips Desktop Box – Assorted Colours (Pack of 20)


Reflecting on 2015, and my 2016 Happiness Plan

In my search for tools to start my 2016 off right, and reflect on 2015, I came across these printable from the Happiness Planner. They have a planner for 2016, but as I’ve just purchased a new organiser, I might end up buying one of their 100 Days planners – 100 days of thought provoking pages and journalling. I’m thinking different about my organisation for next year – I want something that will make me think, be grateful and reflect, not just something to write down my day to day plans.

The printable at the Happiness Planner website feature some thought provoking stuff – 1,3, 5 year plans for the future, highs and lows¬†of 2015, 2016 vision board, a bucket list, etc. So as 2015 draws to a close, I’ll be printing these off and probably surprising myself as I fill them in. I’ll keep them safe and check in on them throughout the year, so I can see how I’m doing and remind myself of where I’m going.

You can find the printables here: http://thehappinessplanner.com/pages/printables-for-2015-reflection-2016-planning