Getting Organized with Mama’s Notebooks (Review and GIVEAWAY!)

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It’s a weird confession for a blogger to make but here it is: I’m not very good at technology. I love pen and paper. I’ll probably never fall in love with an eReader. I like the feel of a book in hand. I don’t know if it’s because I’m a visual learner or if I’m just terrible at keeping digital files organized, but tools like Pinterest never really work for me to keep track of ideas (which is why I love Kelly’s idea about keeping a liturgical binder as opposed to always forgetting about my Christian Year Pinterest board). Out of sight, out of mind, my friends. And if an email isn’t at the top of my inbox, it has very little chance of ever seeing the light of day again.

I’m not a naturally organized person. My mom is a list-making, labeling fiend, but somehow the gene skipped me. Big time. Which is why I was so excited when Heather Wood (fellow Catholic homeschooling mama to three!) of Mama’s Notebooks offered to let me review a couple of her planners and organizers! Yes, please! Benjamin at age 4 is in desperate need of a more structured daily routine and I need all the help I can get.

So, I asked for a copy of the Budget Notebook and the original Mama’s Notebook weekly planner. Love!


Daniel and I sat down and filled out the monthly income and budget sections. And now I’m writing down our expenditures for the month so we can see exactly where the money is going and if we need to alter our budget (something I’ve NEVER been in the habit of doing before. Yikes!) Usually I just try not to spend anything ever, and when I do, I keep an eye on the bank account. So here’s to being a grown-up and keeping a budget!


And I  love the Mama’s Notebook: Weekly Planner and Organizer even more. I’ve just been keeping the weekly Calendar open and it’s so helpful (because whenever I try to use a Calendar on my phone, I forget to check it and important things like Drs appointments get missed.)


(Note that the above is Heather’s mature grown-up handwriting. Compare to my scrawling below.)

There’s spots for meal planning, daily events, and plenty of room to write down what homeschooling goals I want to accomplish for the week. You can start up Mama’s Notebook on any week of the year, and you can skip weeks as needed. Mine already has coffee stains because it’s lived in my house for more than 5 minutes and that’s just what happens around here.


(See what I mean about my chicken scratch penmanship? Occasionally I get encouraging remarks like, “Why do you have 8-year-old boy handwriting?” I’m as flummoxed as you are.)

The back section of the planner has reference sheets for shopping lists, meal ideas, daily and weekly routines/commitments, social life, chore charts, spiritual life, and long term projects. Yay!

In addition to the Budget Notebook and Mama’s Notebook, a Knit and Crochet Notebook and a New Baby Notebook are also available!

Mama’s Notebooks is generously offering one of their lovely planners to a lucky reader as a giveaway! The winner will get to choose one of the four products as their prize. Enter in the Rafflecopter widget below! Giveaway ends next Tuesday evening at 12 midnight EST. Residents of the US only. (Sorry, Canadian and overseas friends! I love you!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And while you’re moseying over to their website, you should know that Mama’s Notebooks is having a 20% off grand opening sale until the end of October and you can get an additional 5% off with the code FAST5!

Disclosure: Mama’s Notebooks is a Carrots ad sponsor and the review planners I received were complimentary. As always, all opinions are my own.

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  1. says

    Ooh, I think I’d love to try one of these! I am with you on the pen and paper. I don’t think I could ever see me organizing everything digitally like so many do now. Right now I use a raggedy old notebook for all the things and it’d be interesting to try something else! Thanks, Haley!

  2. Heather M says

    I like the look of all of them! I think the weekly planner and organizer would be the most useful to me currently.

  3. Nicole says

    I think the Budget or Mama Notebook would be most helpful for me! I use a ratty notebook to keep track of all my lists and appts! 🙂

  4. Erin says

    Totally relate to this blog… if the email isn’t on top… may never see it again. Trying to organize (and not being great at it) especially since my husband agreed to me staying home with the baby. I’ve gotta get better at this! Would love one of these notebooks 🙂

  5. Rachel S says

    Well, I’d love to win a Mama’s Notebook. The budgeting one is tempting, but I’ve been using EEBA on my phone and it seems to be working out ok. I’m probably just as disorganized as you say you are!

  6. Jami says

    I love a pen and paper calender. Sad mine is almost done for the year. These look awesome, since my husband and I are really watching our budget since he lost his job. It is the first time he has been really interested in helping and knowing where it all goes. Something like this might help us even more.

  7. says

    I love the mama’s notebook – it looks like something I would really be able to use. Like you, Haley, I am much more inclined to write. Thanks for shairing this with us!

  8. Sarah says

    The budget calendar is awesome! We’re pretty good about remembering appointments in our phone calendars, but we are absolutely AWFUL at tracking our money…

  9. Renee G says

    Since I don’t knit and my baby days are done, it’s the Mom’s Notebook. Thankfully we have budgeting under control

  10. sarah says

    These look awesome! I think the budget notebook would be most useful to my family right now, but I am in the market for a weekly/monthly planner for 2014, too.

  11. Martha says

    I’ve been trying to get my schedule and financial life put together for years(!), so I’d be thrilled to find a successful solution that can keep me (and my spacey husband) in line. 😛

  12. Jennifer says

    Hooray for Luddite mamas! I have given in to my husband’s pleas to use google calendar, but I still need my pen and paper. The weekly planner is awesome.

  13. Leah says

    Wish I had known about the new baby notebook a few months ago!! But I am in desperate need of both Mama’s notebook and the budget notebook! Great find 🙂

  14. Ilka W. J. says

    Still working on finding my “perfect” organization tools, and the weekly planner looks pretty good… 🙂

  15. Anne says

    Call me old fashion, I love to put pen to paper, for everything. I still write letters and use snail mail! These planners would rock my world! Thanks!

  16. Erin says

    This may just be what I need. So, I didn’t see the widget??? Am I entered by just leaving a comment? Here’s to getting myself organized 🙂

  17. says

    I’m with you on the technology thing. I’m slowly embracing my smart phone, but would still rather have the mama’s planner to sort out all of the week’s details.

  18. Tina Chen says

    As a busy mom who waring many hats, I really need a good organizer to help me smooth my life. This planner seemed wonderful!! I’d really love to have this Mama Notebook.
    Thanks so much for the giveaway.

  19. Susan says

    I’d love to have a Mama’s notebook! I do so much better writing things down than keeping track on the computer or my phone.

  20. says

    Oh wow, that sounds like a planner I need! I have bought so many different kinds, plus different kinds of calendars and journal/notebooks and there’s no way to do it all in ONE book! Sounds like she was a Mom with my kind of life and my kind of problems, haha. 🙂 Thank you for hosting the giveaway–and letting us peek at your chicken-scratch, coffee stained life. It’s nice to meet another home that is just as chicken-scratched and coffee stained as ours (And cheeto-stained, and crayon scribbled!). Thank you for keeping it real, and keeping a sweet attitude about it! 🙂

  21. Mary says

    The weekly planner would be awesome! I get distracted when I try to access the calendar on my phone, and an hour has gone by before remember that I was supposed to be looking at my calendar, not perusing an awesome blog. Then I attempt to open the calendar app, but get distracted by a Facebook notification. Yes. I have the attention span of a 6 year old boy.

  22. Rebecca Newport says

    I really like the weekly/monthly planner but I need to grow up too so would probably opt for the budget one.

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