Erin Condren 2015 Life Planner Review


Hello friends!  How has your week been so far?  Mine seems to move along nicely…until it doesn’t.  😉  You know that kind of week, don’t you?  The one that involves a day of picking up a meat order….across town…by 8:00 am, then sprinting to the dentist, and then charging off to buy clothing for the 14 year old eating machine growing boy that has apparently outgrown pants again…those new ones that I just bought 2 months ago (you know…the ones that now fit like capris…yeah….all five of those pants).  And then getting home and schlepping in all the stuff that my van burps up…while finding the toddler playing happily in a basket full of her big sister’s DIRTY laundry (ew!!!) the children play happily in some safe corner of my home…and then finally getting everyone settled for lunch only to discover a pin-hole leak in the bottom of the last clean sippy cup.  So…yeah.  That kind of week.  The kind that has you contemplating your wine options at 11:00 am!  🙂

Determined to be sure to stick with a little more routine today, I sat down to consult my planner this morning, and I remembered that I hadn’t shared it with you yet!  (Although, you just got a pretty realistic glimpse of my day Monday!)  You do remember last year’s post where I reviewed my first Erin Condren life planner, right?  When I gushed and gushed about discovering this planner?  Well, I used every little corner of that planner last year, so I was eager to start another this year.  I’ve been using my new planner since October of 2014, and I love it and find this particular planner to be so intuitive and useable…and pretty!  So, I thought I’d share a few thoughts on my 2015 planner…


Some of the features of the planner are exactly the same because they just work – the page layout, the laminated tabs – but there are a few new features that I just love so I thought I’d tell you a little about those in my review today.  And there are a few features that have always been available that I’m really just figuring out how to make the most out of…so I’m going to share a bit about those, too.

Removable planner covers

 I admit it – when I heard about this new feature I was VERY skeptical.  After all, one of the things I loved so much about the Erin Condren planner to begin with was how durable the laminated covers were.  How in the world could the covers remain rigid and durable, while also being able to “unzip” a cover from the coil?  And…really…would the cover stay in place…in my bag, on my desk, sliding around in my piles of stuff as I plan?  Or would it be flimsy and constantly unzip itself?

And after several months of use – day in and day out – the covers are still durable and the same thickness as the old planner covers, and they are indeed completely removable, and I don’t know how they did it – but they stay put!  Until you’re ready to pull them off and change them out!


Because sometimes….we might want a little change, am I right?  A different look with the different seasons!

The interchangeable cover sets are sold as a front and back cover that match, and as always, you can customize to your heart’s content!  Make sure you watch the video that details just how to exchange your covers!

My sunny yellow cover is:

  • mod morocco, primary color: butter, accent color: gray.  I didn’t want my name to be front and center, so I chose “ora et labora” – my focus for the year (pray and work).  I love how this cover set looks!  It’s cheery, but a nice reminder that my days should be anchored in prayer and all about the work of being a wife and mommy!  I can’t think of a better planner motto!




My navy cover is:

  • taffy stripes, custom colorway: all navy stripes.  Top line font: I requested the script font used in this planner.  I’ve long believed that there is great splendor and beauty within the ordinary parts of my day.  Sometimes it helps to have that reminder…because…you know those days…the ones you’ve gotta fake it til you make it??  Yeah.  Those.  I need to be reminded that there’s beauty in there.  And, what can I say – I’m loving navy this year.  Navy and coral.  Navy and mint.  Navy and gray.  Navy.  Navy.  Navy.  I’ll stop now.


The interchangeable covers are probably my favorite new feature for this year’s planner!  I love the options for customizing, and as the year goes on…I might even grab myself a new cover or two!

Forget me not perpetual calendar


In last year’s planner, at the very beginning, was a nice section for recording birthdays, anniversaries, and repeating annual events that you might need to reference throughout the year.  I really enjoyed this section because I could keep everyone’s Baptismal day, birthday, etc…all in the same place for me to refer to easily.  This year, instead of a section of the planner reserved for this information, there’s now this very handy little booklet that can slide in and out of the pocket in the back of the planner.  It contains the same format for recording events, but now in a handy pull-out booklet so you can have it open as you plan your month…and at the end of the year…you can just pull it out of your current planner, and pop it right into your new planner!   Very handy!


The customizable event stickers aren’t new this year, but I did decide to try them for the first time, and I love having stickers that are customized for me!


I had one sheet of stickers customized just for the purpose of adding more liturgical year reminders to my calendar.  Each personalized sheet is just $5.00, and I really like adding these liturgical year stickers throughout my calendar.  Not only can you customize the text, but the color, which is wonderful for the liturgical year!  I’m already thinking of more customized stickers I could add.



With each planner you receive a set of pre-printed stickers along with some blank stickers.  I used a lot of my blank stickers to help me stay organized while we were under construction.  I kept up with chores that were construction related, or noted upcoming construction events.  These were really a huge help for me for the 8 weeks we were under construction.


And my planner was our lifeline while we were under construction!  I honestly cannot imagine that we could have kept our collective heads above water without some system for staying organized – what they were doing…what we weren’t going to be able to do….and for how long!


Page layout and using the calendar

I thought I’d share a few snapshots of pages…just to give you an idea of how I use my planner.  Some people really enjoy journaling in their planner and theirs is so lovely and filled.  I use my planner almost exclusively for organizing and keeping up with the stuff we’ve got going on.  I keep goals and lists here, along with my menu plans.


Here is a full 2-page spread from December.  We were “moving back in” at that time….AND….also keeping up with homeschool lessons for a 1st grader, 4th grader, and 8th grader.  I accomplished this by stacking my mornings.  I called them “bionic mornings” because I’d get up early and jump on my list and stay focused until lunch.  Then, after lunch, we’d have our lessons. I set up my lesson plans to accommodate our full days so that the kids weren’t overwhelmed, and it worked great!  (If you see a line through an item on my list that means I actually got it done – yay me!)


Coil Clips

I’m in love with the coil clips!  They’re so inexpensive so do consider them if you’re ordering your planner!  Simple premise: each coil clip has an adhesive backing that will stick on anything — doctor’s appointment card, coupon that will work on a certain date and you don’t want to forget.

This is just one of the ways I use the coil clips: I work on a seasonal menu each season, and I like to move it around in my planner so that I can find it easily when I’m planning menus.


I apply two coil clips to my menu list and pop it right into the monthly layout each month.  I know exactly where it is when I’m planning, and I can pull it out to view it more easily as I plan menus each week.


Clear snap-in ruler

The snap-in ruler is clear with this year’s planner!  Very cheery and doesn’t obstruct your vision of the opposite side of your planner.


The carry-all clutch

I was really excited to try the new carry-all clutch because I’m always dropping my planner in my bag for the day and I loved the idea of a little protection for my planner – to contain it (and a few pens/planning supplies) while I’m out and about.


The carry all clutch is made of a really soft, but extremely malleable neoprene.  It’s protective, but not bulky, and it’s soft as your planner slides in and out of your bag.


I love how the clutch fits the planner and will also hold pens, your iPad, another small book or some papers (like recipe cards if you’re planning a menu).  My clutch is sequins with a 3 gradients of the color: butter.

A coupon code for you!

 So, there you have it!  This planner is just a workhorse for me!  It keeps all my loose ends tied together!  If you’re considering an Erin Condren planner and you’ve never ordered one before, and you’re just not sure if this is a good investment of your family dollar, read my first review to help look through more of the details of this planner.  Then, if you decide this is a good investment for you – you should definitely….



Happy planning everyone!  I’d love to know how you use your Erin Condren planner!!!  Really!  I love finding other ideas to make this planner useful!  And, I’d love to offer an Erin Condren gift card giveaway – would you be interested?  Leave me a note and if there’s some interest I’ll see what I can do to set it up!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Similar Posts


  1. I, for one, would be super interested in a gift card give away. I keep eyeing the Erin Condren planners but have not yet taken the plunge. They are beautiful, and I love both of your reviews.

  2. I love your reviews of the planners! I ended up purchasing one last spring when they had them discounted since it was so far into the year. I ended up not being able to use it though. For some reason I just couldn’t bring myself to switch planners mid-year and it was so much smaller that I couldn’t adjust. I really enjoy my Catholic planner too, but the Erin planners have more features that would be useful. I see myself purchasing one in the future (for 2016). I purchased a different one for this year and it’s ok and it has a similiar set-up on the weekly planner as the Erin planners.

  3. Yes, the gift card give away would be a great blessing. I’m looking for something to keep me more organized and allow me to keep my priorities where they should be rather than slipping behind what I deem the most urgent at the moment. Thanks for your post.

    1. Ooh! Another giveaway fan! Great!!! I do like ordering my priorities in my planner exactly as you’ve described, Sally! It’s helpful for me to get it on paper! Somehow that bit of cognitive thought that goes from thinking it’s a priority to writing it down…it really helps me evaluate!

  4. You know, last year I decided I ought to finally become a grown-up and learn how to use a planner, so I ordered one based on your blog post. This year I decided I wouldn’t order one because (in true me fashion) I kept forgetting to use the calendar. But I found that even though I didn’t use the calendar as much as I should have, I was still pulling it out almost every day to access contact information, the handy adhesive scratch pad on the cover, the stuff I stuck in the zip pouch, and to keep track of all my grocery expenses in the notes section (along with the updated as the year went along USDA grocery budget numbers). I’ve been trying (half-heartedly) to use to plan my meals, but sometimes it’s just nice to have it written down somewhere. So it looks like I will be ordering another Erin Condren planner this year… just a little late!

    1. I think that’s one of the things I really do like about this planner, Angela – it really can be used to help organize and track in so many ways…ways which may be pretty unique to the user. It worked great as a construction diary/planner for us…and I’ve always used it to plan menus and track my priority lists…but I also use mine to keep track of my grocery/household expenses too. I use my notepad and those little coil clips to drop my monthly budget notes in and out of the current week. It’s really helpful for me. Anyway…glad you found it useful! Have fun picking out your next one!

  5. I bought an Erin Condran planner last year after reading your review and I have loved it and bought another one for this year. I LOVE your liturgical year stickers, I will definitely do that next year! I have enjoyed using the planner very much and it has made me realise how much I still enjoy good old fashioned paper and pen. Plus, it’s so much prettier than iPhone lists/calendar:)
    I would love you to explain a little about your seasonal menu plan, how does that work, sounds like another great idea.


    1. I’m a big fan of technology and use it for so many things…and I do have some ical planners, too! But nothing replaces a pen/paper planner for me either, Becky! I actually need to be able to see that big picture…right in front of me…and flip back and forth…and be able to visualize and move around in my planner. So, I completely “get” what you’re saying!

      I’d love to chat about my menu planning a bit! The way I plan my menus has changed and evolved over the years, but one thing remains the same – if I don’t plan menus, we don’t spend wisely…or eat wisely! So, it’s an area I do invest a chunk of my time! Maybe that would make a good post? I’ll try to get something together! 🙂 Thanks for sharing the interest!

      1. Hi Jen,

        Thanks for the lovely blog! I would love to read some of your menu planning ideas, I am also absolutely dependant on menu planning, my life falls apart when I don’t menu plan. Trying to keep five children and DH well nourished is a huge part of my week! Good job I enjoy cooking;) I am always on the lookout for ideas and a fresh look, so please share!

  6. Wow this is so lovely! Thank you SO much for sharing with us. I would love to get organized this year. Each year I try and then life happens and another year just zips by! A giveaway would be wonderful too 🙂

  7. This review was really helpful!! I’ve been eyeing the planner for years without being able to afford it but love reading up on it and seeing how people use it in different ways. Also enjoyed seeing the coil clip! And I would be very interested in a giveaway!

    1. Waving back, Angie!!!! It’s great to see you! 🙂 You’re an awesome delegator of ideas…so I bet you make those tech planning tools work hard for you!!! Thumbs up! It’s all about what works and is most intuitive…to you!

  8. Hi again, Jen 🙂
    I was just comparing your planner to the video that is on the website and had a few questions maybe you could answer 🙂
    I love the cover you chose actually. The butter is very happy. I was thinking of actually swapping out the gray for purple. I also loved that you chose a phrase too and am guessing that you just put that info in the “other” section and went down to the customize section to change the color? Is that correct? I also noticed that on the video the pages are different colors than the ones you have. Did you choose the colors (greens, blues, orange) of the calendar pages? I was wondering if there were any choices of these or did it default according to the color of the planner you choose?
    Thanks SO much again for sharing. I really need to get organized and this may be the way to do it. I have always been anti-planner, more of a paper and pen {many papers, lol} kind of person, but, that is not getting much done!
    Thanks again. I am so happy to have found your site! Just read a few of your posts on CM and love them too! We are new to CM and loving it so far. Take care!

    1. Great questions, Ann-Marie! I had to go to the Erin Condren website to watch the video first so I could be sure to compare my planner to the one in the video…

      1) To customize your planner, first you have to be on the “ready to personalize” page. The first thing you should see is “choose your own colorway.” For the color preferences you shared in your comment, you’d choose: PRIMARY: BUTTER; ACCENT COLOR: PURPLE.

      2) Then, to have a phrase printed rather than your name, just scroll down to the next option on the “ready to personalize” page…where it says “personalization.” Click the button that says “other”. You have two lines and you can list anything you want. On another of my covers I actually chose to print the phrase, “We’re burnin’ daylight,” which is a John Wayne quote. It’s fun to see that on a planner – gives that extra John-Wayne-esque motivation! 😉 Anyway, that’s how you print a phrase rather than a name. Just be sure to check out how your planner cover capitalization style looks…most of them have lowercase letters in place of capitals. Once I really started paying attention, I have to say, I prefer it when my proper nouns are capitalized…but that’s just a pref thing. Anyway, under “capitalization” click your preference.

      3) Ok…on the video of the new planner, Erin is holding a 2014 planner inside the new covers. So, yes…the 2015 planner pages (that you see in my blog review) are actually just a little different from the 2014 pages. The monthly colors of the planner are all the same, no matter what cover you choose, and you can’t customize the inside planner guts colors.

      I’m thrilled you clicked around a bit, Ann-Marie, and I hope to “see you around” again! 🙂

      1. Thank you, thank you, thank you 🙂 Your explanation was very helpful.
        You will definitely see me around here again!

  9. Jen, I have been visiting your blog for a long time now. I also love what you write! I love your posts on the CM forum too.. You are so wise and I always learn something or am inspired to improve. I do not have the Erin planner (would love to have one!) but use a less expensive planner. I would be interested in learning how you order your day. I’d love to know how you decide which things should get done when. Do you have routines that are not put on your planner and just use the planner for the list of things that need to get accomplished that day? Do you attach a time to each thing? I get so overwhelmed with time and how to use it well. I thought a planner would help and it does sort of, but I put things on the planner that don’t get done. I would also love to know how you do your menu planning. Thanks for always sharing.

  10. Thank you!! I saw your blog post and jumped right onto the site to purchase one of these fabulous ‘life planners’. My 10yo son saw me purchasing and insisted that he ‘needed’ one too! So I had to buy 2. We are in Australia and with the exchange rate, postage costs etc 2 of these nifty planners cost me $354 (no I’m not kidding)! but this was after all the little add ons and extra doova whacky’s we just had to have! Its ok because they really do look fabulous! thanks for posting about them. Now to stalk the postie until they arrive!

    1. Hi Amber, seriously it doesn’t have to cost what I paid. The planners are $50 each and for 2, the postage was $40, then with the exchange rate it was about $180 all up. But then I placed a second order with the extra note pads, the cases, exchangeable covers (who can have one of these and not buy the extra covers right?) and some other other added extras, so it all added up.

  11. Such a great review! Hann, i can’t believe you paid $354 to get these to Australia! No way i can afford that. I’ll have to make do with something i can find locally i think.

  12. Hi! I am new to your blog and so happy to find you! I love your kitchen remodel and enjoyed browsing some of your homeschool posts! As a homeschool mom myself, I enjoyed your review of the Erin Condren planner. I have been “eyeing” them for a while now, but haven’t been able to financially take the plunge yet! 🙂 God Bless!

  13. I love your review, especially the images. 🙂 I’m living vicariously through blogs, youtube and a couple EC Facebook groups. The stickers, washi tape… I get excited thinking about all of the things I want write down and plan. 😉

    I feel like I’m a frustrated writer/planner. Or that discovering the EC Planner has unleashed something in me that’s been dying to get out. Lol! There is so much I want to plan and write down.

    It would be amazing if you would have a giveaway. Take care.


  14. Hi! I’m new to the Erin Condren Life Planner. I was wondering what month the planners start with? I am interested in purchasing the 2015-2016 one coming out but not sure if I’ll be waiting till January 2016 to use it! Thank you!

    1. Hi Shasta! Your best bet is to look directly on Erin Condren’s website. They are about to release their new 2015/16 planners (tomorrow). Usually, she offers an option for when your planner starts. If you order a planner now, it will start with current months. You wouldn’t have to wait until January to use it. In the past, I’ve even been able to specifically say which exact month I want my planner to start with – that’s really helpful sometimes. But again, just go to the EC website tomorrow after they launch their new planners and after you pick out a style and cover, you’ll have options and start date will be one of them. Happy planning!

  15. I been watching EC planner for over a year but haven’t been able to buy one unfortunately, really wishing to get first one soon, give away would be big opportunity!

  16. I’ve been thinking about getting an ECLP for ageees and finally took the plunge last week, on the 30th of June. As I live in England i thought it would take weeks to get to mine as I only paid for the normal shipping method rather than the fast-track one. Anyway I got a knock on the door this morning (8th of July) and the guy hands me this big pink box with Erin Condren written all over it! My lifeplanner is personalized with my name on the front and I brought a few pages of stickers as well. It literally took EIGHT DAYS to make, ship and be delivered from Califonia to London, England. I’m so impressed I could cry everywhere. And the planner itself is so perfect! I received a bunch of free stuff too. I got one of those rulers that you can attach to the coil, a coil clip, some really cute postcards, a gorgeous little notebook that you can put important dates, loads of stickers, and some gift stickers!! I am so impressed with this life planner, it is worth every penny! Thank you for doing the review as well, gave me that final push in actually buying the planner.

  17. Hi Jen, just discovered your blog! Such a breath of fresh air to the soul! Was wondering where you put your lesson plans with regard to the planner. I have a planner I’ve used for several years. What I like is having a place to write down all the subjects the kids cover but what is frustrating is the lack of space for the myriad of other daily things, like Erin’s planner offers. So, do you keep a record of the kids school work/readings/your lesson plans there or some other place? Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Renee,
      Thanks so much for your kind note!!

      That is such an awesome question about my lesson plans! The short answer is: I print each of my kids’ plans with their grade-specific schedule of work (reading, math lessons, copywork, etc.) – you can click around here and see samples that I’ve shared (if you go up to the top tab they’re in printables) but we do some common work (our Morning basket time) and the kids take nature walks, are inspired to engineer structures, complete projects, etc. All of these additional activities I record in my paper planner.

      I use an Erin Condren teacher planner (which are on sale right now!). I used one last year, for the first time, when we were remodeling and I had to resort to using a paper planner for recording everything while we were in the midst of remodeling and I had no printer and the house was upside down. I really loved the EC teacher planner and after I had my house and printer back, I definitely went back to my printed lesson plans, but I kept using the EC teacher planner to record our Morning Basket work, any educational DVD’s, field trips, other activities and projects. It was a great place for this to land. And I like using the EC teacher planner to keep the administrivia (attendance, drivers permit forms, book planning) in one (cheery!) place. You might check it out!

      Another alternative is just to get one of the Deluxe Notebooks – these would work so well as a planner for homeschoolers! They include monthly calendars and have lots of pages for recording other notes and lessons!

      I guess I should just write a post on this and show some pics of how I modify the EC teacher planner for our homeschool! 🙂

  18. I’m having such a hard time with my interchangeable covers. It’s really dipping in my bucket and making me lose my excitement over this amazing calendar. Any suggestions?

    1. I’d go to the Erin Condren website, go to your account and find the exact item you’re having trouble with and click the button that says report a problem. The company has been pretty good about replacing defective/improperly working items.

  19. Your wonderful review has convinced me to buy a planner. I saw your 10 coupon offer but when I click it doesn’t come up. Any chance you are still offering this $10 off code for my first order? Thanks 🙂

    1. Hi Megan – I’m so sorry the coupon offer didn’t work on my post. My code is definitely still valid – just click through here and you should get $10 off your first order. However, if you’ve already placed an order with Erin Condren, the code won’t work.

      Hope this helps and happy planning!

  20. I would love one of these, but I will have to really save to get one. Life is tough right now. I love reading your page. It told me this is the organizer I need.

  21. I ordered one and delivery took 3 weeks. I exchanged six emails with customer service and they would not refund my $9.95 paid for 3-5 business day shipping. Horrible experience for an overpriced product!!

I'd love to visit with you in the comment box! I do my best to respond as life allows!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.