As you saw in my last post, I recently bought the MAMBI Happy Planner at Michaels (reg. $34.99 minus 30% off coupon = $24.49). It’s the 8.5 x 11 version, not the more popular smaller one that you’ve probably been seeing everywhere.
Not only are the binder discs my favorite color but they also have my favorite shape: HEARTS!
The front and back covers are soft but laminated and very sturdy. The inner pages are about the weight of your average scrapbook paper, not thin like cheap paper but not thick like Bazzill or Carta Bella. This planner goes for 18 months, from July 2016 to December 2017. Guess I have about a month to decide if I’m going to keep her ;)
The first 2 pages are 2016 and 2017 year at a glance, then starts the 18 monthly sections. Here are a few of those intro pages, where you see a variety of designs on the right, from quotes to very designed pages to very open ones like the first one, where you can have a ball decorating or journaling. I really like the “Currently” section for each month, since that’s something I always mean to scrapbook or track but then never do. Here, it’s right in the day planner – can’t forget it.
After each monthly intro page, there’s a month-at-a-glance page with room for notes; in my current day planner, I used the monthly pages for bill tracking and budgeting and would keep doing that in the Happy Planner.
Then there are 4 or 5 of these week-at-a-glance pages, depending on how long the month is. I like that each day is sectioned into 3 boxes. You could use that for morning, afternoon, and evening. I’m thinking of using it for personal, work, and blogging/e-learning.
My hold-up is that I have large handwriting and this might be too cramped for me. Dang :( I’m not a “planner girl” who does this for fun and creativity. I use my day planner FOR REALS. Like, it gets down and dirty, people. Family events, business deadlines, client launches, sports schedules, and more.
So anyway, that goes on for 18 months in the same format. There’s nothing extra in this planner except for a blank page at the very back for more notes.
It is quite hefty so I understand why there’s not more included, yet I want to add more pages to make it useful for me. I didn’t see any extra pages at Michaels that I could buy separately. When I got home, I checked online and nada. Lots of extra pages on the MAMBI site HERE but they’re all for the smaller sized Happy Planner.
So I did what any Scrapbook Obsessed girl would do. I Tweeted MAMBI:
@ScrapbookObsess: I just got the 8.5×11 Happy Planner. What can I use with it? Everything seems made for the smaller size. Punch, extra pages?
@mambitweets: All the CLASSIC sized accessories work inside the BIG planner, and NOTE: a bigger punch is coming. :)
@ScrapbookObsess: ETA on the bigger punch? I’d like full size pages so I’ll make my own or look for free printables. Thanks!
@mambitweets: No exact date as of now, but once we know, we’ll be sure to share! <3
So that’s another strike against keeping this planner, at least for now. My plan was to insert pages for notes, keeping track of blog and work goals, exercise and diet, and projects. Yes, it’s already bulky but because of the snazzy binder disc system, I can take out pages I am not currently using or am done with to thin it out.
Overall, I think the 8.5 x 11 Happy Planner by MAMBI is well-made, cute, and functional for the basics of life. It would be my dream planner if:
- The week-at-a-glance pages had the days laid out horizontally instead of vertically so there was more room for my big handwriting
- There were extra pages available to supplement what comes with the planner and/or …
- A punch were available so I could make my own extra pages or utilize free printables
So I’m undecided for now if this is the planner for me. I may end up returning this one, then trying again in January when hopefully the larger punch is available. Thanks for reading!