Best Laid Plans

BLP Ep #115: Planner News & Listener Q&A

October 10, 2022

Planner News

1- Erin Condren News – Brand founder Erin Condren has given up ownership, and EC will move onto its next chapter. The CEO will remain the same and I am guessing the brand will retain its essence as well. Now: when will they ever get their whiteboards in stock? That is my most pressing question.

2- Cultivate What Matters (makers of Powersheets) was purchased by The Daily Grace Co. While Cultivate was always a Christian company, the brand felt inclusive to me. Some users (including me) do not feel quite as aligned with The Daily Grace, and all of this has caused a bit of a stir in the planner world. This video explains one (former) user’s concerns. ALLLLL that said, I believe people should continue to use what makes them feel comfortable! For myself, I am planning on moving on in 2023. I have some fun DIY ideas to try instead.

I learned much of this from this recent Planners & Wine ep – Cultivate a Rebrand. Always enjoy hearing their takes on planner happenings.


1- R’s LOOOONG Planner Peace Segment. So much gold here! R is an operations manager who decided to bring her organizing techniques from work to the home front.

shot of her functional Personal Planner she shares with her husband

Her FLOM (Family Logistics + Operational Meeting) agenda!

Love the idea of having different FLOM agendas for mid-month and end of month to cover less frequent topics!

2- Listener Q: some of my fave blog/podcasts recently?

BLOGS: I use feedly to collect everything! Here is a sampling of blogs I haven’t mentioned recently:

PODCASTS: I use the Podcruncher app and do a mass delete weekly.

  • Up First (almost every morning in the shower!)
  • Organize 365
  • Planners & Wine
  • All Songs Considered
  • Parenting: The Mom Hour, Good Inside, Simple Families
  • Productivity: The Productive Woman, Edit Your Life, Happier, Deep Questions, Getting Things Done
  • Politics: Pantsuit Politics, Throughline
  • Fun: The Lazy Genius, Forever 35
  • Running: Ali on the Run, Another Mother Runner, Run to the Top, Marathon Training Academy

3- Hemlock & Oak – are you still into them? YES! I am back in my Hobonichi for now but if I was not in Hobonichi mood, I would be in Hemlock & Oak. LOVE that they launched an A5 option and I am tempted to try to shove it in my glitter leather cover. I am also still an affiliate – if you would like, use this link and code BLP for 10% off. I am planning to do a full review of the A5 as soon as I get to see it in person!

4- An Apple Notes Shout Out! Okay, this wasn’t a question, but listener Anne Marie had a great experience being able to pull up screenshots organized in Apple Notes on her recent international trip! Totally agree this stratetgy beats trying to search gmail in spotty wifi zones any day!!! I have a note for every upcoming trip and any time I book anything (flight, rental car, hotel, restaurant res, ticket) I dump a screenshot (or even a longer pdf if needed) into the corresponding note. Quick and convenient!


  • Reply Chelsea October 10, 2022 at 5:43 am

    Not related to this episode, but I had a guest topic suggestion: planning for people with ADHD and/or other issues with executive functioning. That’s not something that effects me, and I don’t have a specific person in mind, but Lisa Woodruff has been talking about organizing with ADHD this month, and it seemed like something that hadn’t come up on BLP yet.

    • Reply Jessica October 10, 2022 at 8:45 am

      How To ADHD is a great YouTube creator who would be a great guest for this

      • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger October 10, 2022 at 2:19 pm

        Thank you!

    • Reply Vanessa October 17, 2022 at 2:06 pm

      That would be wonderful! I definitely struggle, even with the help of a therapist. I’m farther away from planner peace than I’d like to be, with my brain going in a million directions at all times!

  • Reply Susan October 10, 2022 at 8:23 am

    Oh my goodness, screenshots in an Apple Note is brilliant! Thank you for the tip!

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns October 10, 2022 at 10:02 am

    Thank you for the shout-out! That was so kind of you! I am glad I found you through BOBWs. It’s nice to know people with one kid similar in age to my older and older kids. It gives me a sneak peak of what is to come. And you have definitely had an impact on how I plan! I use W222 and really love that system. I never would have heard of it if not for you!

    The apple note screen shot idea is brilliant. I need to start doing that. I also recommend having a packing list in apple notes. I have one for myself for work trips and one for family trips. It is nice to not have to remember what all I need to pack – especially for the kids! I guess it is a “decide once” approach to packing!

  • Reply Alison Rodriguez October 10, 2022 at 10:09 am

    Going to show R’s system to my husband stat! That seems so very helpful.

  • Reply Ashley October 10, 2022 at 10:38 am

    I’m so confused. I thought Erin Condren had already moved on? I guess I didn’t realize that she had retained ownership while she wasn’t working for the company.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger October 10, 2022 at 12:11 pm

      Yep! She was no longer CEO but she still retained at least partial ownership.

  • Reply Elisabeth October 10, 2022 at 2:40 pm

    I would never have classified myself as a “planner” – I always made do with a $3-4 planner from the DollarStore which worked, admittedly, but without much style or substance. Last year you sent me your copy of the Sprouted Planner and I am now borderline obsessed! I talk about/use my planner ALL THE TIME. You’ve definitely converted me to a more upscale planning experience.
    And thanks for the blog shout-out <3

  • Reply Emily October 10, 2022 at 6:54 pm

    I loved this episode – so much info! I didn’t know about the Cultivate change. I was already thinking about not using Powersheets for next year because I didn’t find that the yearly/monthly planning really incorporated well with my weekly/daily planning. But the news makes it clear to me that it’s time to move on. I have been looking at Unbound as a weekly/goal planner to pair with the Hemlock and Oak daily that I have already ordered. We will see if that’s my magic combo!

  • Reply Kels October 11, 2022 at 2:51 am

    Great episode – I love when you mention anything Jewish and would welcome more. The holiday schedule this year with all the Jewish preschool closures have been so tough to two working parents already under huge stress

  • Reply Grateful Kae October 11, 2022 at 8:43 am

    Had an insane day yesterday and didn’t have a chance to listen, so I’m a day late- but awwww!! Thank you so much for the mention! Your blog and podcasts are such a little bright spot in my week. I truly always look forward to both reading and listening! So, it is such an honor to be mentioned by you 🙂

  • Reply Susan October 12, 2022 at 8:45 am

    Who knew there was so much drama in planners?! Wow – so interesting. I really enjoyed this episode, Sarah. Perfect mix of planners and planning – I could really picture it all coming together. I think I need to FLOM. 🙂

  • Reply Rachel October 12, 2022 at 4:21 pm

    Super glad you could use my planner peace segment – thanks Sarah! My husband and I do call it “flom” rather than using the acronym :-). It’s better than “family planning meeting” which is what I jokingly called it until my husband realized that had another meaning already! Hope it helps someone, I love hearing about other people’s organizational systems.

  • Reply OrganisingQueen October 13, 2022 at 1:41 am

    I think all the planner controversy is … crazy. I use or don’t use products because of how they work for me not because of who owns the brand. I went to read Lara Casey’s story though and the news makes sense for her. She’s following her own advice.

    I guess I’m at planner peace these days. I have a few non negotiables – weekly layout on two pages, with goals paper before each month or at the back of the diary, and I’m good. I’m using a MOLESKINE weekly diary planner this year and next year going back to another type I’ve used several years (I don’t get it if the covers are not “me” (too boring) but the format is perfect).

  • Reply Christina October 18, 2022 at 11:11 am

    I loved this episode and your discussion on goal-based planners! I spent a long time looking for a goal-oriented planner that didn’t have a religious/spiritual framework but still had a lot of structure for planning goals, priorities, to dos, and reflections. I started using the unbound planner halfway through the year and I’m obsessed! It’s beautifully designed, classy, and so functional. Highly recommend it!

  • Leave a Reply

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