Bullet Journal: September Plan With Me

Hello, Fall.

september bullet journal

September is one of those months that everyone has an opinion about. Either people love the start of a new academic year, or they miss the days of summer where things were a little bit slower and more carefree. I fall into both camps; it is a time to reminisce and a time to jump back into routine. September is about re-finding your rhythm. I love the inspiration from this month’s books, and also the idea of of holding onto the ideas of empathy, perspective, and adventure as I get ready to start year 10 teaching middle school.

My Current Favorite Supplies

Many of my favorites are the same from August! I just got done moving over from my old yellow Leuchtturm 1917 Medium A5 dotted journal to a new red one in the same size. I got it at our local independent bookstore, Bookbug and This is a Bookstore during their educator days event. I LOVE the red color. Color in and of itself has always been something I use as a source of inspiration. The red means business…like me this fall. Something just feels right about starting a new journal with a new school year.

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My Inspiration This Month

I just finished reading The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise by Dan Gemeinhart during the last few days of July. It was one of those books that you sort of just sit with when you are done-a book you don’t want to loan out right away because the ideas are still soaking in to your mind. If you have read this book, you know it fits perfectly with the others in terms of content and design (In fact, Coyote’s kitten is named after Ivan the Gorilla). I have three words as mantras this month, and each of them go with one of the books.

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The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

Word: Empathy

Amazon Summary: “This unforgettable novel from renowned author Katherine Applegate celebrates the transformative power of unexpected friendship. Inspired by the true story of a captive gorilla known as Ivan, this illustrated book is told from the point of view of Ivan himself. 

Having spent twenty-seven years behind the glass walls of his enclosure in a shopping mall, Ivan has grown accustomed to humans watching him. He hardly ever thinks about his life in the jungle. Instead, Ivan occupies himself with television, his friends Stella and Bob, and painting. But when he meets Ruby, a baby elephant taken from the wild, he is forced to see their home, and his art, through new eyes.

In the tradition of timeless stories like Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little, Katherine Applegate blends humor and poignancy to create an unforgettable story of friendship, art, and hope.”

“I like colorful tales with black beginnings and stormy middles and cloudless blue-sky endings. But any story will do” -Katherine Applegate

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No Fixed Address by Susin Nielsen

Word: Perspective

Amazon Summary: For fans of Wendelin van Draanen and Cynthia Lord, a touching and funny middle-grade story about family, friendship, and growing up when you're one step away from homelessness.

Twelve-and-three-quarter-year-old Felix Knutsson has a knack for trivia. His favorite game show is Who What Where When; he even named his gerbil after the host. Felix's mom, Astrid, is loving but can't seem to hold on to a job. So when they get evicted from their latest shabby apartment, they have to move into a van. Astrid swears him to secrecy; he can't tell anyone about their living arrangement, not even Dylan and Winnie, his best friends at his new school. If he does, she warns him, he'll be taken away from her and put in foster care.

As their circumstances go from bad to worse, Felix gets a chance to audition for a junior edition of Who What Where When, and he's determined to earn a spot on the show. Winning the cash prize could make everything okay again. But things don't turn out the way he expects. . . .

Susin Nielsen deftly combines humor, heartbreak, and hope in this moving story about people who slip through the cracks in society, and about the power of friendship and community to make all the difference.”

“So Astrid and I came up with two important questions: Is this something I use everyday?…Is this something I can’t live without?” -Susin Nielsen

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The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise by Dan Gemeinhart

Word: Adventure

Amazon Summary: “Five years.

That's how long Coyote and her dad, Rodeo, have lived on the road in an old school bus, criss-crossing the nation.

It's also how long ago Coyote lost her mom and two sisters in a car crash.

Coyote hasn’t been home in all that time, but when she learns that the park in her old neighborhood is being demolished―the very same park where she, her mom, and her sisters buried a treasured memory box―she devises an elaborate plan to get her dad to drive 3,600 miles back to Washington state in four days...without him realizing it.

Along the way, they'll pick up a strange crew of misfit travelers. Lester has a lady love to meet. Salvador and his mom are looking to start over. Val needs a safe place to be herself. And then there's Gladys...

Over the course of thousands of miles, Coyote will learn that going home can sometimes be the hardest journey of all...but that with friends by her side, she just might be able to turn her “once upon a time” into a “happily ever after.”

“Guess so. But heck, if kittens and slushies aren’t worth getting in trouble for, what in the world is?” -Dan Gemeinhart

september bullet journal

I tried to have two months of planning last month, and it just didn’t work. I went back to my one monthly spread where I can take a peek at what the month offers. I wanted to also put my goals at the bottom of the page: Establish routine. Practice self-care.

september bullet journal

My first weekly spread is for the first week of school! I love reading about Ivan being an artist because teachers are really creators and designers, too. I am really liking a weekly spread that includes the weekend following.

september bullet journal

I wanted to include my yoga challenge spread in this post because it is so necessary to take care of your body while teaching. My goal is to do at least 20 minutes a day and combine it with some strength training. My goal would be to wake up in the morning around 5am to do yoga, but I want to make a plan for the evening just in case. I LOVE Yoga with Adriene on Youtube.

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The other important part of the month is budgeting. I map out all of my expenses, my income, and I like to keep track of any debt. This way I can make as many smart financial moves as possible each month, and it is nearby to all of the rest of my planning.

september bullet journal

The last part of planning for the month is reflection! I had a great month with our anniversary, trainings and back-to-school professional development, and hitting some milestones with the blog. It has been a rollercoaster of a month. Some moments have left me tired and some have really sparked some excitement around goals.

september bullet journal

Whenever I start a new journal, I go back and review some of my most important spreads. I always transfer these ones over:

Writing Mindset Reflection: How are you getting ready for September? If you bullet journal, what spreads did you include for the fall?