good finds, link love, making

Print your Instagram photos with Chatbooks (and a code for you!)

Don’t miss a code at the bottom of the post to get your first Chatbooks photo book free.

If you’ve been following along on my Instagram feed at all, you may have noticed I was having a really horrible week last week–you know, in the Caribbean.

Last week, my scenery was the blue waters, sand and sun of the Caribbean as part of the ClickRetreat which took place on Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas. ClickRetreat is part blogging and social media conference, part photography workshop and part bonding and fun with the other talented folks who attended.

Chatbooks Instagram photos in print

I’ve returned home with a head swirling with ideas and inspiration and new learning–just what I was needing.

So while I process and figure out how I’m going to share some of that excitement with all of you, I wanted to share one of my favorite finds of the past few months.

I like to think of myself as an early adopter of Chatbooks, but at ClickRetreat this past week, I had the chance to meet the lovely couple behind the company.

If you’re anything like me, you’re guilty of never, ever printing your photos. For me, it’s on my “someday, I really need to get on this” list. The list that I never get to. So Chatbooks is a serious solution to my problem.

Handwritten captions in Chatbooks for Instagram photos MommyCoddle

Handwritten journal captions in Chatbooks Instagram books MommyCoddle

HOW DOES IT WORK?

If you sign up for their Instagram series, they will send you a 60-page photo book of your Instagram feed automatically. And guess how much it will cost you….$6. Six dollars, people. For a beautifully printed, soft cover book of your Instagram photos.

If you sign up for the service, they’ll send you an email once you’ve filled your 60-photo volume, and they’re ready to send out your next book. At that point you have a few days to make any changes, edits or remove photos. A few days later your book will arrive in the mail. Easy!

One of the options you have when making your book is whether or not to have your captions printed below the photos…but I’ve been opting to have them arrive blank. This allows me to add the personal touch of writing in my own captions, even sharing some things I may not have wanted to share on Instagram.

Handwritten captions in Chatbooks

I have a huge stack of Chatbooks on the bookshelf of my office and it’s rare to find them all together–more than likely someone has one in bed with them, or they’re out on the kitchen island, or strewn across the coffee table. It’s so nice to see my kids enjoying the books and our family’s photographs.

Chatbooks is simple, convenient, and they print beautiful quality books at a price that is hard to resist.

Want to try the service for yourself? Use the code Molly1 when you sign up for the Instagram series and you’ll get your first book free! Trust me. You want to get in on this. You’ll be so glad you did.

good finds, motherhood

Getting organized: my new favorite planner

To know me, is to know that I have a serious soft spot for oversized bags, washi tape and planners. It takes all kinds of self-control for me to pass up an aisle of calendars and monthly agendas without at least taking a peek. Because one never knows when The Planner She’s Always Been Looking For might have finally been created. 

When it comes to keeping track of my days, appointments, kids, meetings, I’m equal parts technology and pen and paper. The only way I can get a sense of my day and the things I need to accomplish, is to write it down with pen and paper. 

Generally, the new year is my favorite excuse to go planner/calendar shopping, but my new favorite planner is actually open-ended, with blank calendar and daily pages. This means that when my planner itch struck early this fall, I was all over it. And despite my love of the planner, I’ve stuck with this one for several months and have yet to find something that meets all my needs like this one does.

My world changed pretty drastically this year. I sent my first kid off into the big wide world of traditional school, and I picked up more hours of social media work with BabyCenter. And while I originally thought sending one kid off to school, and having one less brain to homeschool each day would be easier, it turns out it’s just one more thing to juggle, with a LOT of things that I need to remember to do. 

When I look for a planner, I need room for three things: a month-view calendar, a place for daily to-do lists, and a place for random notes, lists, and brain dumping sessions. 

And hallelujah, I found all those things in the cutest planner ever from MochiThings.com. It’s called the Moment planner, it’s about the size of my moleskine journal (perfect for tucking them both in my bag) and it has everything I need in a clean, modern, no-frills design. 

The front of the planner is month-view calendars, followed by a place for short daily lists (which fits perfectly with my list of three, which is more like a list of 8 these days), and there’s room in the back when I need to take longer notes. 

I added these tabs to it so that I can find my place quickly and jump from one section to the next, and I take it with me everywhere. 

The only big change was that I had to switch from my usual favorite bold pen, to a mechanical pencil or fine point sharpie, but I’ve actually liked the change to a more precise marker in this case. (Pens are something else I’m a little too particular about as well.) 

And now that I’ve written a whole post about my planner, I realize that I do indeed have a problem. I even held back some of my enthusiasm so as not to see like a total nerd. But I guess it can’t be avoided.

**I follow Mochi Things on Facebook and just noticed they are running a sale. 25% off everything. Consider yourself warned. It’s a very dangerous place to shop for us planner-addicts.**