Plan With Me, Coming Up With The Theme

Hi all, as you know I’ve canceled my subscription to Scarlet Lime. I am signed up to try Mommylhey Designs Little Bits box and that ships mid July. So basically I’m set until September. I don’t know if I’ll stick with Mommylhey, or not. I saw on Instagram they might be going to a subscription service. Well, I’m not just agreeing to hand over my money for months on end, not anymore. We’ll have to see how it goes. I’m happy to do Mommylhey for July though as it gives me a bit more time to work on coming up with my own custom items. I’ve made a list of all the things I’d want for a complete kit, but that was the easy part. Obviously I’m going to want things like dashboards, dividers, sticky notes, maybe a notepad, and a matching pen.The hard part is coming up with the color scheme and overall theme.

So far I have a list of color combinations I like. It’s easy to find new combinations. One of my favorite places to look is Design Seeds.

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This may just be what I was looking for, for September.

Aside from color, I want a proper theme. Is is girls, shopping, flowers, animals? I’m still undecided on that. But I’m working on it. I actually considered calling my BIL and asking him what his wedding colors are. He’s getting married the end of that month and I thought it might be fun to design my month around their theme. Sort of as a tribute. I really like my soon-to-be SIL so it seems like a natural option.

I think this is the thing that excites me the most. The not knowing what’s coming next, but at the same time having complete control over it. When someone else comes up with your kit, you get what they decided was nice. This however is going to be completely tailored to me. I won’t get “workout” or “weigh in” stickers, but I can make ballet ones. Other people may not need lots of plane or suitcase stickers, but I can be sure I have them on hand, and even make extras (cause some months I totally need a lot of them!). If anything feels overwhelming it’s that I have so many ideas, but there are only so many months in a year! I know that sounds crazy, but as I think of all this I find myself feeling sad that there are so few Autumn months, and winter is only going to last so long, then it’ll be spring, but blink and you’ve missed it. Obviously I’ll need to be making kits for everyone I know so I can use all of my ideas!

Here’s what I plan to make for each month:

Stickers

Double Sided Paper (I like thick cardstock)

Sticky Notes

Tabs For My Dividers

Some things I may or may not make:

Custom Pen

Die Cuts

Notepads (yes, I know how to make notepads with tear off sheets)

I find that I use stickers a lot, same with sticky notes. I’m less of a die cut enthusiast, same with the note paper. I pulled off maybe five sheets of the notepad that came in the May Planner Society box and I still have most of them in the back of my planner. I’ve had them for a bit over two weeks. I figure in the beginning I may just make them to see if I really use them, but I don’t know if it’s something I’ll keep doing. One of the things I did do with them is back some of my dividers with the pages. I cut a notepad sheet down to personal size then used a bit of double sided tape to hold it down, then I ran it through my laminator. Now I can write on it with a Sharpie and it wipes clean again with an alcohol prep pad. So it’s basically a dry erase board that won’t smudge or wipe off until I want the writing gone. Naturally I’ll want to make at least a couple sheets a month just to be able to do that, even if I don’t make a whole pad.

I’m not too sure about things like die cuts. I’m not a paper crafter. I’ve always wanted to be, but it’s something I struggle with. Sure I can bead, sew, paint, etc. But this paper thing, it’s tricky! I may just make some here and there so I have them on hand to play around with. I think I need to watch more YouTube tutorials. If anyone out there paper crafts and has suggestions, please, let me know how you opt to use them. I saw one woman on a Facebook group laminate some mason jar shaped ones and she wrapped washi around them. I usually use an empty gift card but that seemed way cuter. It was such a novel way to tie into a theme while still being practical. I know at the very least I need to try that.

When it comes to pens, I don’t need a new one every month. I’m a big fan of the Pilot Hi-Tech C Coleto. It’s probably my favorite pen ever. Second place goes to Frixion. This dyslexic can’t get enough of their truly erasable ink! Honestly, you erase something and the only remnant of your mangled spelling are the indents on the page (assuming you’re like me and press too hard when you write). I like Sarasa as well, definitely in my top five. They have some really cute barrels and customizing them would be very, very easy. I’ve already tried it with some that I have on hand. The ink is the exact right size so you can wrap it with washi and there’s no overlap. At least with the ones I have. There’s also enough space in the barrel to wrap clear tape over that washi incase you’re worried it’ll lift up or if you just like the shine the clear tape adds. I’ve also been brainstorming ways to add things like sequins and beads to the barrel. I think I’ve got something really cool figured out but I want to test drive it for a while, before I share here. I’ve also discovered that M&G is the company behind those crown pens people love so much. Thank you helpful eBay sellers! I’m working out ways to recover them that look professional. I hate things that look slapdash. It needs to be polished or I won’t use it, even at home.

I do want to share these things with all of you. Planning and decorating your planner should be a fun, relaxing activity. As you all know customer service is huge with me. If you’ve read my blog on the regular you know I love buying from small companies with great customer service. So if I come across any good stores I’ll be sure to share here so everyone can benefit. No one should have to deal with the nonsense I did with Scarlet Lime. And if you’re making your own stuff, you won’t have to. Plus you’ll get exactly what you want/need, and in the right quantity. You won’t be stuck with a one size fits all subscription box. You’ll get something that’s truly tailored to your wants and needs.

I really need to take my leotard photos. Elevé has actually changed their tags and such so I want to share all of that. I also really love what I came up with this time around. So maybe next week? I think I’m just a bit sore I’m still out of ballet and that’s playing into this. It’s a bit depressing climbing into a leotard I know I’m not going to be wearing. But I promise, that post is coming. Along with some other planner related posts. So keep an eye out. Until then have a great week!

 

 

Scarlet Lime, The Planner Society Box

Hi all, long time no see. I’ve been traveling a bunch this year and just haven’t had time for much of anything. This was actually supposed to be a very different post. I had planned to blog about this kit and tell you all how much I love it. Seriously, I was enamored with my last kit. But over the past few days things have seriously soured. It’s all down to my interactions with the company owner. Really, her behavior was over the top ridiculous. The whole this was so bad that I literally reported her to the Better Business Bureau.

If you’re in the planner community you probably know about subscription kits. They send you paper, stickers, sometimes there are inserts, as well as sticky notes, pens, basically everything you need to decorate your planner in a new theme each month. It should be fun. But Christy Tomlinson herself has gone out of her way to essentially ruin this for me. This is the offending Instagram post that started it all.

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Reading the caption that accompanies this photo I think most people can figure out why I was concerned. I have Celiac disease, those cookies contain wheat. Actually they contain five of the top eight major allergens. And shop.evalicious is handling them while cutting and preparing orders…. Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s not legal. I mean there’s a reason businesses have to have signs that say things like “employees must wash hands before returning to work”. These signs are in bathrooms, break rooms, and warehouses for a reason. You can’t just eat while you handle consumer goods. I commented on the photo basically saying that for the Celiacs in the group this was kind of unfair, and does this mean that I can’t eat while stickering and planning (like everyone else) because I’m going to have wheat on my hands. My comment was not addressed, it was deleted. That’s when I started to become concerned. I was prepared to let it go until the next day. That’s when  saw this.

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That bottom picture, yeah, it was another “seek peek” at this months kit. Page toppers made by the same company as the stickers. 😦 That’s when I decided to comment on the Facebook page. My comment is the one with the yellow over it. I actually blocked out personal information as opposed to cropping the image or altering it in any way. I don’t want anyone trying to claim that I edited this exchange- or the ones that follow.

This was Christy’s response.

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Basically Eve is her friend, so it’s okay if she mishandles items? Okay… Then she attempted to tell me how my disease works. She has no clue what she’s talking about, but again, okay. This is where it got bad.

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I’m not sure why the photos aren’t showing up, but it’s just the screenshot of the instagram post I shared above. What bothers me most about the exchange this far was that Christy was dismissive of my very real fears and clearly wasn’t reading my comments. She was simply responding in a blind rage. I had emailed her at this point, so yeah, it gets worse.

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Now I do want to apologize for the length of this and the other emails I’m going to post. But I want people to see, I wasn’t hysterical, I went out of my way to be polite, and I tried my level best to share exactly why I was concerned. I never once said Eve was a bad person or that I thought she was deliberately trying to harm me. Truth is, most people without allergies or severe food restrictions just have no clue that simple things can harm another. Did you know if you cook gluten containing food in a nonstick pan, then cook gluten free food in that same pan you can’t call it gluten free? The minuscule amounts of gluten that could be absorbed and then released into future dishes , no matter how many times you wash that pan, can harm a celiac. This is something that even some Celiac’s don’t understand. Even tiny amounts can hurt me and if I don’t know I need to wash my hands because there’s wheat on my stickers, I’m going to get hurt.

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So basically I tell her I find deleting comments childish and that’s exactly what she elects to do. This is going downhill fast.

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Nope, her “pinned post” said nothing about “drama”. This is what it says, or at least what it said. She’s probably changed it. When she finished her tantrum she removed me from the group. Apparently I should be broken hearted over this?

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She can scream via email all she wants, but I broke no rule. I did however ask questions about the safety of her product for allergy/celiac suffers. She didn’t answer, so maybe she broke the rules?

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Apparently she thinks it’s acceptable to ignore her customers. At this point she still hadn’t answered my question. And she’d threatened me with expulsion from her Facebook group because I had real concerns and she was, I don’t know, angry I was expecting an answer? And no, I wasn’t happy with how she handled things because she didn’t handle anything. She screamed, called me rude, threatened me, and then told me she was going to ignore me. But that I could cancel my subscription. Ummm, I’m no rocket scientist but if she’s not willing to read my emails how am I supposed to cancel my subscription?

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I still sent this follow up email after her little outburst. What can I say, I’m big on second chances. I will not offer thirds, but I thought I was being more than fair. She thought I was attacking her friend so she flew off the handle. I can understand that. But she refused to respond. The next day, or the day after, still having no response from Christy, I got an email from her husband. He was alleging my mailing address was inaccurate (it wasn’t) and could I please send him my actual address. As he runs this business with his wife I decided to speak to him.

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It’s true, I’ve literally prayed for this man, his children, and their employees. I can’t imagine what their daily lives are like but it must be miserable.

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I want to take this opportunity to point out that they did not cancel all of my subscriptions. I had to go into Paypal myself and cancel the washi tape subscription.

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I made good on my promise. I’ve filed with the BBB, and I still have to contact the FTC. Something just seems so off about their entire organization. Since I stared to look into this I noticed that Scarlet Lime is the only planner subscription box that requires a three month commitment otherwise you are forced to pay penalty fees. You also have to contact them at the right time, otherwise you’ll still be billed. Every other company manages to operate without locking their customers in like this. That’s why I think the FTC needs to look into them. Then there’s the IRS. shop.evalicious is Canadian based, but they’re operating in USD. Why? They’re already behaving in an unsafe manner, what other rules are they breaking? Kickbacks are illegal. Christy has said many times Eve has done special things for her, they’re buddies, and Eve has “hooked her up”. What do those things include? I’m going to let the relevant agencies figure it out.

Bottom line all she had to do was say “I’m going to talk to my friend and find out if she was really eating while packing orders. You’re right, this isn’t safe and I’m not going to play roulette with my customers health. I’m sorry I called you rude, mean, and unkind, that was out of line. We’ll try to do better going forward. We can refund you for this month if you like, or give you a shop credit. Either way we’re sorry for any unnecessary stress this has caused you.” This was too much for Christy. I don’t know what her problem is, but it’s substantial. So please, be cognizant of the fact that she behaves in this way. When you sign up for her kit you’re basically agreeing to hand her $100 right off the bat. If you buy more than one of her kits, then that total could be closer to $150. This is no way to treat a customer. I don’t care if I’m a total peach, or a raging @$$#*%&. What’s more, if she did this to me, she will probably do it to you. There are a lot of companies out there offering the same service. I highly recommend you check those companies out before you sign away your checking account to Scarlet Lime.

Or you may prefer to make many of these things yourself. I’ve already discovered the company that manufactures her coveted crown pen. And I’ve figured out how to make some very impressive, professional looking sticky notes, notepads, double sided cardstock and more. I’m currently experimenting with printing on washi tape (it works!) I’m just looking for the best tape to print on. So check out my YouTube channel as I’m doing video tutorials there. I already have one for sticky notes up. I’ll also try to do some of that here as well. The software I use makes it easier for me to film the steps so you can follow along on your own computer while watching on a phone or tablet. But some of the other steps can be shown a bit more easily in photos. I’ll post links both here and on YouTube leading you to all the pieces of the tutorials. Don’t spend $30 or more every month on this stuff when you can make it yourself for free. If you’re into the planner community you probably already own a Silhouette or have been debating the purchase. I’m going to show you how to use that machine to do even more than you thought you could.

See my video here.

So stay tuned. I’m desperately trying to get back on track here. I was going to do a Scarlet Lime Planner Society post, I just didn’t think it would be so negative. I also got my leotards from Elevé in so I’m hoping to have my review up in time for next week. I had some personal problems so I’m out of ballet for a while longer, I’ve only been once since February and I’m desperate to get back in the studio. My doctor (who’s the best) actually called me himself while I was working on this post and he wants to try to get me back in for more steroid injections next Monday. I’m nervous, but hopeful. So there’s a lot going on, lots to write about and share. I’ll be posting videos on my YouTube so be sure to check there as well. I’m not that great at the videos but I’m working on getting better. I mostly do unboxing’s (my son loves watching them) but I’m hoping to brach out into some plan with me type posts and videos.

 

***UPDATE***

Unfortunately since this whole event happened Christy has decided it would be acceptable to lie about me online. She has deliberately spread a rumor about me saying I harassed her husband via Instagram. I insisted she post screen shots to prove her claims, at that point she said she wasn’t going to talk to me anymore but she wished me well and told me I should buy a planner from Foxy Fix. Yeah… What’s to say, the woman has a screw loose. You don’t make a serious allegation about someone then tell them “Hey, you should totally buy from (insert random company) good luck!” It’s bizarre.

Ultimately she can’t post screen shots because this didn’t happen. So I guess I can understand her random statement and sudden desire to cease communication. It’s tragic that this is the way an adult has elected to behave. I may not always be a peach, but as you can see, I won’t lie. I’m willing to expose even my own sometimes questionable behavior. We all do things, though I regret nothing, I’m glad I contacted the BBB given the current situation. What this woman has done really crosses a line. I prayed for her back then, I’m not willing to this time. She’s sick and has elected not to get help. This can no longer be my problem.

We shouldn’t have even needed to converse really. But she and I are in the same planner Facebook group and when someone asked why I don’t buy from her, I was very frank. At that point the people who like getting gift bags from her at planner events decided to harass me. I think it’s a shame that grown adults think this is acceptable. Even worse, they’re motivated by greed and little else. I thought only kids behaved this way…