Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In and Eat in Month Potluck

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

We entered the last half of the Eat in Month 2015 Challenge with Week 3. I’m ready for a little eating out, but I feel like I’m doing pretty well with the challenge so far. Our meals have been pretty simple. I thought I’d have more time for meal planning. But a meal plan is better than no meal, even if I don’t have new or fancy recipes to test out. Maybe next month I will experiment more?

You can check out my meal plan for Eat in Month Week 3 by clicking here to see what I planned. Here’s how I did:

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

Sunday, January 18, 2015: My Epic Eater friends came over on Sunday for an Eat in Month themed potluck. Many of the ladies are doing the challenge, too, so it was fun to eat in together. And you guys have seen many of them on my blog before. As you know, they can coooooook! We had so many delicious eats to enjoy, including leek cornbread muffins, Russian dumplings with an assortment of toppings, mini frittatas, hash brown casserole, Katie’s vegan broccoli casserole, braised lentils, my Orange Marmalade Meatballs, cookie dough dip, cookies, my mom’s Filipino sweet rice (I owe you this recipe!), and Katie’s vegan triple layer almond butter brownies.

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

{Kseniya, me, Erin, Katy, Monica, and not pictured – Jen and Katie} It’s always a fun and delicious time with these guys!

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

Monday, January 19, 2015: I had Monday off from work, so we tried a slow cooker recipe for pulled beef tacos. While that cooked away, I also enjoyed some Honey Lemon Ginger Tea (from scratch – recipe coming soon!) and slow cooker chili leftovers (with one of Monica’s delicious corn muffins).

Side note: Have you seen all the cute stationery at Home Goods, TJ Maxx, and Marshalls? I’m finding the cutest stuff and having a hard time not wanting to get one of each.

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

Tuesday, January 20, 2015: Tuesday’s eats were simple. I had a KIND bar for breakfast, leftover pulled beef as a taco bowl, and mom’s pork chops.

Other side note: I’ve been straightening my hair and doing loose curls while the weather is cooler and dryer. Does anyone else tend do one style during one season? I feel like my natural waves are harder to style at this time of year and the straighten/loose-curl look would be harder when it gets warmer. I guess I’m going with the flow.

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

Wednesday, January 21, 2015: On Wednesday, I cracked into my Back to Nature Chia Almond Granola and had that with some So Delicious coconut milk yogurt. This is just one of the easiest breakfasts I do, and I love the mix together. I especially like that it can be grab-and-go so I can eat it at the office. And as new tradition, it was spaghetti night.

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

Thursday, January 22, 2015: On Thursday, hubby was really excited to make grilled cheese sandwiches. They were really paninis, but close enough. We had them with some boxed tomato soup. I don’t know why we don’t do more simple meals like this more often. This one took so little time to throw together, and we really enjoyed it. From-scratch soup would have been better, but this worked okay for a quick week night meal.

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

Friday, January 23, 2015: Does anyone else like to compare how frozen meals look to the picture on the box? Whenever I post a photo of a frozen meal, I like to put the meal side by side with the box photo so you can see the difference. Regardless, these Amy meals are really good, especially since I don’t love the way meat tastes cooked in the microwave. I worked late on Friday and then came home to pack and hit the road to visit my parents. We had more paninis before we left, but I made a quick noodle soup at my parents’ house since I was a little hungry when we arrived. I posted the “recipe” on my Instagram along with the photo.

Eat in Month 2015 Week 3 Check-In

Saturday, January 24, 2015: On Saturday, we celebrated my mom and hubby’s birthdays. Sissy’s SO made the most delicious fried shrimp I think I’ve ever had. Impressive! They came with not one but three dipping sauces! Surprisingly to me, the Thai chili was my fave. I didn’t think I’d like it since it sounds so spicy, but it wasn’t too hot at all. We also had miso soup, honey ginger chicken, steamed veggies, brown rice, and streusel cheesecake (a Pampered Chef recipe).

All in all, another great week! Though some days were a little challenge for eating in, I generally felt like the challenge has been pretty easy this year for us. As I’m typing, it doesn’t even seem like we’ve been eating in for almost an entire month already. We’ve had a couple times where we wanted to use our cheat pass, but nothing too pressing. We may make it the whole challenge without using it! What about you?

Thanks for stopping by!

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Whether you’re new to decorating your planner or you’re just browsing for new ideas, here are some simple tips on How To Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

{I’m decorating my Erin Condren Life Planner (my fourth one!) in this post, but you could apply these ideas to other great options: Kikki K, Filofax, Kate Space, Passion Planner, and others.}


Especially if you’re new to decorating your planner, things can be a little overwhelming. There are so many great supplies you can use to add some zest to your planner: washi tape, stickers, scrapbook paper, stamps, post-its, etc. The options are endless, but the budget is (at least for me) not. I remember when I first started scrapbooking many years ago. I wanted one of everything. But, especially if you don’t already have a lot of scrapbooking supplies, things can add up quickly. I decided to experiment with a spread of my planner to see if I could decorate a week of my planner with just washi tape. And since washi tape is so versatile, I was able to get a lot out of just two rolls.

I was able to decorate my planner for less than $5 by using a two-pack of washi tape I found at Michael’s. With coupons/discounts, I paid $3.14 for the pair, but you could pay even less if you used one of those 50% coupons I see frequently. The full price at the time of this post was $4.99, so you could get it for only $2.50 plus tax. If you’re like me, you’ll probably want more color options and to eventually add other materials (stickers, etc.), but it’s good to know you can do a lot by starting/going small and simple.

And speaking of simple, I generally like clean layouts, but you could really add as much personality to your planner as you want. Go crazy. Experiment. See what you like. Layer the tape on, use several different colors if you want. It’s your planner, so you should do whatever makes you happy because that will make you use your planner and motivate yourself to stay organized.

What is Washi Tape?

Washi tape is a decorative tape that is very thin and lightweight and comes is a wide array of colors and patterns making it great for coordinating colors in your planner decorations. One of the best features of washi tape is that it’s repositionable. I don’t recommend ripping the tape up too quickly, though, since it can actually rip your paper. Yes, I learned the hard way, so just trust me on that one.

Washi tape comes in many sizes, too. The most common sizes I’ve seen are 10mm and 15mm. The size you want to buy will depend on where you want to place the washi tape in your planner. I’ll list sizes below for the areas I decorated. I generally like seeing the original labels, numbers, and other words in my planner, so I usually stick with the more narrow tape sizes to cover up less.

I’m planning to do a separate post/page of my favorite places to buy planner supplies, but I get most of my washi tape from craft stores and Etsy. It’s pretty easy to find.

What You’ll Need

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

You’ll want to at least have:

  • washi tape (I recommend 2 coordinating colors at least, but even just 1 would work)
  • scissors (the smaller size than pictured may give you a more precise cut, but I only have this size – the smaller version is on my shopping list)
  • ruler (optional for my fellow Type A-ers out there)
  • color-coordinating pen

I’m using a two pack off washi tape with one 10mm and one 15mm in size. I recommend using sizes 6mm, 10mm, or 15mm for the ideas in this post, but you may find a different size works better for you.

Before You Start Decorating

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Here’s what the planner looks like sans decorations so you can see where I started.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Before I start dropping tape onto my planner, I like to measure around the planner to determine the best size washi tape to use in the areas I want to decorate.

For example, one of the most common places to add washi tape is around the morning/day/night boxes, which is the main section of the weekly view. The washi tape is usually placed vertically on the left side to cover the polka dots and horizontally underneath to cover the “meal plans | exercise | daily dos…” line.

The vertical area is about 10mm between the top left calendar and the main box, but the polka dots reach wider than this, at about 15mm. I like to put 10mm or 15mm tape here. The 10mm won’t quite cover all the polka dots, but the 15mm will cover either some of your calendar or some of the main box, depending on where you place it.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

The horizontal area is about 10mm between the lines and the bottom of the main area, but you could use a really slim tape (6mm) to cover just the words. You could also use a much wider tape to cover the words plus a couple lines or even the whole lower section. I really like the lines at the bottom of the planner, so I try to cover up just the space between them and the main area with the 10mm tape.

It’s not really necessary to measure. You could eyeball it. But, I like to do this step to try to determine the best sized tape to use.

Adding the Washi Tape to Your Planner

Here are six examples of how to decorate your planner with washi tape.

As I mentioned earlier, you can really decorate your planner to your heart’s desire. There are no rules to where you can or cannot put the washi tape. I’ve seen people cover all of the printed numbers and words with tape or just run the tape around the page borders. Remember to experiment and have fun with it. The following are just some ideas to get you started.

#1 Borders


Working with washi tape is pretty easy, especially since it’s repositionable. For long lines, like these borders, I usually like to attach the tape at one end. Then, I slowly lower the tape down from the starting end to the other end, pressing lightly as I go. I also try to ensure it stays aligned throughout. Once it’s down and lined up okay, I press the tape into the paper again to ensure it’s really attached.

For this layout, I put the horizontal (turquoise) tape down first because if there was any overlap, I wanted the vertical tape on top. Then, I added the vertical (floral) tape vertically down the left side, covering the polka dots. If you use the 15mm washi tape as I did, you’ll have to decide whether you want some of that top left calendar or the Monday column covered. I went with the latter.

If you like a more minimal look, you could stop here (or skip the borders altogether), but I wanted to spread the color throughout the page more.

#2 DIY Page Flags

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Have you seen all the amazing handmade planner stickers there are on Etsy? I have some and will blog about my faves another time. Page flags are one of the most common sticker shapes I see (besides the obvious circles, squares, etc.) for planner materials. Many great Etsy shops offer them with words and cute graphics like this one or even blank so you can write on them. While I am planning to use some of those stickers, it’s good to know you can also make your own page flags with washi tape.

To make them, simply cut a rectangle out of the washi tape and then cut a triangle* out of the short end of one side. You can place them any direction you’d like. Most page flag stickers seem to have the pointy ends pointing down, but place them as you like. I used a really patterned tape that isn’t ideal for writing words on. I’d probably need to use bold lettering to make the words really readable. In this example, I used the tape more to bring some of the color from the left side of the planner to the right side. I put two page flags on the right and one on the left to try to balance the floral tape across both pages.

*NOTE: Save those leftover triangles! We’re going to use them in the next example. I don’t like wasting materials, so I’m always trying to think of ways to use up scraps instead of throwing them away.

#3 DIY Weekend Banner

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Another popular planner sticker is the weekend banner, like this one (I really want to order this one soon). There are non-weekend banners and single day banners, but the weekend one seems most common.

I got the idea to make a banner with washi tape from Belinda (check out her site and YouTube for some other cute planner ideas). But, instead of using page flag shapes, I decided to use the leftover triangles from the DIY page flags I added to the boxes.

To make the DIY weekend banner, use a color-coordinating pen to draw a line from the top left corner of the Saturday column to the top right corner of the Sunday column. You may wish to make your curve less swoopy and more flat so the tops of the triangles line up better.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Add the triangles so the edges line up with the line you drew, evenly spreading them.

#4 DIY Labels – Left Column

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

You can add a little color to the left side of the planner without covering up too much by making some simple labels. I used a ruler to measure how wide I wanted them since I didn’t want to cover the paper from the edge of the paper to the vertical tape border. This helped me make sure each label was the same size.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Add the tape to the left column, spacing them vertically as you like (in case one list/section needs more space than the other). You can use these to simply divide the space. Write some words on the tape (“To-Do”, “To Buy”, etc.) to create a label instead of using them as space dividers.

#5 DIY Labels – Banners

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

To pull some more of the color of the turquoise tape throughout, I created a couple simple banner labels. To make these, simply cut a rectangle out of the tape and cut a small triangle out of each side. You can also reserve these triangles to add to your DIY weekend banner, if you’d like.

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

You can also add words to these. I used one for “Weekend!” and one for “Party!” (forgot to write the last one in before I snapped the next photo).

#6 Shapes

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

I guess this one is pretty obvious, but you can cut all kinds of shapes out of washi tape to just add pops of color here and there. I cut a couple short rectangles and then cut them in half on the diagonal to make some triangle shapes. You could use these as labels or just for decoration. I used mine to distribute the color a little more. You could also use punch cutters, etc. to make even more shapes. I recommend putting the washi tape on something else before using a punch cutter, though. Since the washi is repositionable, you could probably use any paper. I’ve seen others recommend using something the tape will come off of more easily, like vellum or wax paper. I haven’t tested either of these out yet, but they make sense.

All Decorated

How to Decorate Your Planner with Washi Tape

Anywho, here’s the finished product! I used color-coordinating pens to add in my notes for the week, and I’m really loving the color scheme. It not only makes me smile, but it keeps me on top of things, too.

Erin Condren Discount Code

I’ve been using the Erin Condren Life Planners for the last four years, and I absolutely love them. I haven’t seen Erin Condren discount their Life Planner in a long time. But, they do have a great referral program (open to anyone, not just for bloggers). If you’re interested in getting the planner photographed in this post, check out the Erin Condren Life Planner. You can save $10 by using my referral link and signing up for an account. If you use my referral link, I’ll also get a little credit, so we both win. ;)

More Planner Tips

Click here to learn how to make a DIY Weekend Banner with Stickers

Click here for my tips for Planning While Traveling

More Planner Inspiration

If you want to see what others are doing with their planners, check out some of these hashtags on Instagram:

  • #erincondren
  • #ecplanner
  • #plannernerd
  • #planneraddict

There are many more, but these will get you started, and then you can find others to also check out. There are so many creative planner lovers out there. I just love seeing what everyone is doing with theirs.

Erin Condren has a really active Pinterest account, and they’re always posting photos from their customers. A couple of mine have made the boards even! Click here to check out the Erin Condren Pinterest page.

I’ll be posting photos of my planner decorations and planner supply hauls on my Instagram account @thechiclife, but I also usually repost these to my Twitter and Facebook accounts if you use those instead.


What’s your favorite way to use washi tape? Do you have any tips I should try with my washi tape? Let me know in a comment!

Thanks for stopping by!

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