Monday, June 23, 2014

My Favorite Authors

I just wanted to show a little love to some of my favorite authors. If you follow me on Goodreads, you will see these names often. Follow the links and take a look of some of their titles. You will not be disappointed.

Joshilyn Jackson

Dan Brown

Neil Gaiman

Dr. Henry Cloud

Thursday, June 19, 2014

How Much Is Too Much???

Honestly, I don't believe in buying it if you are not going to use it. This is a Gillio, for which I paid A LOT. This is quality that can stand up to much abuse.

If I'm crying about the rings in 6 months, you can chastise me then.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Favorite Books of 2014 (So Far...)

If you have been following me for a while or you pay attention to those little badges on the side of the blog, you will know that I have set a 100 book challenge for the calendar year. I've set the same goal for the past three years and have yet to make it, but this is my year!!! I promise you it is.

Currently, I am sitting at 55 books read for the year and I thought this would be a good time to check in and share my favorites so far. This year, I have not been posting regular reviews here on the blog but you can always find them over on my Goodreads. This has been a fantastic year so far and I am looking forward to the next 45 (or more) selections.

So these, in no particular order, are my favorite 5 books for the year so far. I rated all of these 5 out of 5 stars so they come highly recommended from me to you. As always, I must say that I consume books in traditional print, electronic and audio format. The links below are just what is convenient to pull and not indicative of how I read the book.

Animal Farm by George Orwell

This was such a timely read for me. The crazy antics on the farm reflected all too well some of the nonsense I was seeing at work. This book really makes you think about the politics and popularity of life.

How to Stay Motivated-Developing the Qualities of Success by Zig Ziglar

This was another timely read for me. I have hit a rough patch in life and career this year and I was in need of some counseling. Well, you don't get any better than Zig. This was the kind of boost that I needed because it forced me to stop looking at the problems so much and start focusing on myself and what I could get out of this. I needed a refocus so I could reflect more on God and less of the "man" principles I was seeing before me daily.

This journey is not just about being at the top of my game, but about being over the top. I, April Corbett, will be over the top when I stand in front of the Creator of the universe and He says to me, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant." I hope to see you all over the top.

Inferno by Dan Brown

It's art and intrigue and mystery and all the things that make Dan Brown's world magical. He knocked it out of the park again and I can guarantee you this one will also be a knock out movie.

Let's Just Say It Wasn't Pretty by Diane Keaton

It's hard to imagine anyone telling Diane Keaton she was not good enough. This was a nice, down to earth, reality check for those that think some of the big names had things magically fall into their laps.

Necessary Endings by Dr. Henry Cloud

I have to say this is the most impactful read for me this year. As I said before, this has been a tough year and I finally had to take a step back and evaluate some things and determine what it was time to let go of. Divorce was one of the biggest necessary endings that I had to face and now I am walking away from a job position and city so I can get back to a place of health. I knew what had to be done, but I needed an extra push to get me to make the final decision. This book was that push.

I hope you enjoy these reads. If these have hit your shelf already, I would love to know what you think.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

50 Words - Misconceptions

I thought my husband would be my friend.  It never occured to me to ask him if he wanted to be my friend. Like a school girl at recess, I slip him that note that aks him to declare his friendship forever.

I'm afraid of his response.

__ YES
__ NO

I wrote this in this midst of the divorce activities. My thoughts were all over the place and I truly felt like a school girl that was getting rejected. I'm so grateful I am passed it all.  It was painful, but I am better for going through it. I'm praying for all of you going through relationship trouble. It's not fun, but life can be good afterwards.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Promotional to Useful

I often get these small promotional calendars in the mail at the start of the year. Sometimes they get stuck on the fridge and ignored. 

When watching a YouTube video, I noticed a vlogger using a project life calendar card to track her no spend March. It occurred to me that these small calendars could similarly be used to track a daily action over a month.

I tore off April and cut it down and clipped it into my planner and used it to track my blogging over the month.  Now that I am using DIYFish planner pages, I have a monthly sheet that is used to track a host of activities, but I still love this solution.

This is a good way to track those resolutions I'm sure many have forgotten. I don't set resolutions but I do choose a focus area or intention. This is my year of discovery and I am determined to discover myself through more consistent writing. I'm finding that the only way I will get to the more consistent writing is to implement some more consistent planning.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Free Planner Pages

I hear a lot of Filofax users complain about how expensive planner paper can get. There are endless comparisons between the different types of paper and what pens work best. Honestly, I love good paper but most of the paper that cycles through my planner will just end up in the trash so I don't bother with quality so much.  And because I change my pens so often, I will drive myself crazy trying to match up the perfect paper with the perfect pen.

All that said, I still need paper.

This is a snapshot of the "next steps" portion of my planner.  This is where I'm tracking all the project steps for myself and for my work group. With all of the projects we have going, the pages in this section will get filled up, marked up and tossed out quite often. As you can tell, this first page is yellow, reminiscent of the yellow legal pads. And that's exactly what it is.

I admit I have a problem...a big problem. I have piles of notepads, notebooks and tablets that I have collected overt the years. And this is just a small portion. What I can say is that these are probably the oldest. Some are even of college vintage. As I caught up on the latest shows on Hulu, many of these have become perfectly sized planner pages.

This is such an easy solution for both my growing collection of paper and having a steady supply of paper for the planner.

So, to all of you struggling with your paper supply, give this a try.  Use it, mark it up and then toss it away. No reason to stress about the cost.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Planner Revamp

One of these days, I will find a planner system that truly works for me.  I try different systems, different page layouts, various sizes and I'm still not settled on the perfect system for me.  This is one of the reasons I really want to delve into doing my own designs. But that is a long term dream that is still in development. While I don't have the perfect pages for me, I do think I'm getting my settled in the general layout of my planner.

This is my very chunky Gillio Medium Compagna.

I found these lovely metals tags by Tim Holtz. I think they give the perfect look to my Gillio beauty. I'm currently using DIYFish for my calendar but this layout I'm using can have any calendar inserted into it which is really important to me since I tend to change calendars several times a year. I've already tried out 3 this year alone.

These two arrow tags mark this week and today. They are on half sheet dividers  that I move each week/day as needed.

My main sections are divided by the wide folder tags. My sections are everyday (for routines, regular occurrences), life (calendar), wishes, notes, and stuff.

The bottom arrow is my "next steps" list. I use it to track what is next on my list and that of my employees.  I'm trying to teach the new engineers in my group to always be thinking of what they have to do next when a project phase is complete.  This seems to be working well so far. I know GTD uses this. Side note: I really need to read that book.  It's been on my shelf a long time.

Within my notes tab, I have six numbered dividers that I use for long term focus area or short term projects. 1 is my home. So many projects coming up. 2 is for my blog and writing. I am thinking about rebranding everything so I have a lot of notes here right now. 3 is for my crafting life. 4 is for work. I'm currently keeping a list of things that I PE stamp and job searching (never stop looking for a better opportunity). 5 is being used right now to manage my move. Once I'm settled, I'll reassign this tab to something else. 6 is all things financial. 

Because I have so much in my planner, I no longer use it as a wallet. It's just too much going on and I could never fit all the pages I need if I also tried to do double duty. 

Friday, June 6, 2014

50 Words - Opportunity vs Life

In my business, opportunity is an eleven letter word for "the shit no one wants to do but you are the sap that cannot opt out of it." Opportunity has brought me a higher paycheck, but at what cost? I'm ready to abandon this opportunity. I'm ready for life!