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Welcome to Best Laid Plans -- a podcast all about planning and the planning tools we love. From planning techniques and organizing philosophies to planners and notebooks, we cover it all. Host Sarah Hart-Unger is a mother of 3, physician, podcasting pro, and a lover of lists and all things paper! Listen in weekly for conversations about planning and productivity as well as product reviews and interviews with planning experts!
 
Love your career? Love your family? Best of Both Worlds is the show for you! Hosts Laura Vanderkam, author of I Know How She Does It and a mom of four, and Sarah Hart-Unger, a practicing physician and mom of two (soon to be three!) discuss work/life balance, career development, parenting, time management, productivity, and making time for fun. Tune in each week for strategies to help you thrive in all spheres of life.
 
Co-hosts Meagan Francis and Sarah Powers have eight kids between them, preschool to teen. Weekly conversations offer practical tips and real-life encouragement for moms who want to enjoy motherhood more, and cut back on comparison, worry, and stress. We’re not experts, we’re moms who’ve been there. We’re not perfect, we’re real. Welcome to The Mom Hour.
 
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Sarah & Laura open with a brief discussion of makeup and Sarah's experience with accessories styling, and then they are joined by Jenny Eversole and Rebecca Kirkwood. Jenny is the creator of Style Space (and longterm BOBW listener!) and Rebecca is a makeup artist and clean beauty expert who worked with Laura for a beauty styling session! They chat …
 
Not feeling like an expert in the housework realm? Turns out, very few of feel like we know what we are doing. Last week Meagan and Sarah talked about WHAT we do to keep our households in a state of “good enough,” and this week’s Part Two is all about the feelings that came up as we tracked a week of real-life housework. We dive into some of our in…
 
Today's episode is an Ask Me Anything in honor of the #100 milestone! Sarah received questions from listeners and answers more than 15 of them in this fun episode -- from pencil cases to the ways planning has changed her life. Thank you all for listening and helping bring BLP to this fun milestone! In celebration, if you are able to leave a review …
 
What we remember from childhood helps build our narrative of who we were – even if those memories are fuzzy or slightly flawed. Today Meagan and Sarah get in the way-WAY-back machine and reflect on what we were like as kids and teens. As a child, Meagan was dreamy, imaginative, chatty, and obsessed with balloons (!!), while Sarah was studious, quie…
 
In this episode, Laura and Sarah discuss their earlier life concepts of working motherhood - did they think about being 'working moms' when they were young? Then, Laura is joined by Lisa Segner, who has a great career in finance as well as two young sons. Lisa shares her story, including her entry into working parenthood which did not go as well as…
 
Most of us enjoy having a clean and tidy home, but have you ever kept track of how much you do throughout the week to keep it that way? In today’s episode, Meagan and Sarah share what seven days of real-life housework looks like in our homes. We reflect on the tasks we knew went into running a home, and some surprising ones we never thought of as h…
 
Today's episode opens with a Planner Peace segment from Emelia, who created custom nursing school planners for herself AND shared her beautiful system with her classmates! Then, Sarah answers a question from Lori and suggests 3 options for larger family wall calandars. Finally, Sarah gives a list of suggestions for ways to cope in more stressful or…
 
If you travel with kids, it’s just a matter of time before a trip goes off the rails in spectacular fashion. Maybe it’s a flat tire in the middle of nowhere, or an expensive vacation spent sick in a pricey hotel room. Today Sarah is joined by Catie, Stacy, Emily and Lisa – regular contributors to the show and seasoned travelers with a combined 13 k…
 
In the intro, Laura and Sarah open with some thoughts on anxiety and their own experiences. Then, Sarah interviews Maggie Sarachek, one of the two original self-named Anxiety Sisters, and author of the Anxiety Sisters' Survival Guide. She is a clinical social worker, mother, and has spent many years learning about and growing through anxiety, and n…
 
As moms, we can be hard on ourselves…and sometimes we just need to hear the simplest, oft-repeated pieces of advice and encouragement to remind us that it is all going to be OK. Join Meagan and Sarah for a reflection on eight pieces of wisdom that have carried us through motherhood struggles at every age and stage. We are offering them to you, to o…
 
In this episode, Sarah opens up with a Planner Peace submission from another Sarah -but that one lives in Australia! Then she quickly discusses a few product finds (Washi Tape Shop, Pilot Frixion Gel Pens). Finally, she gets into a discussion of email -- some observations she has noted over the years and things she'd like to change about her own ha…
 
Have you ever fantasized about attending a camp-like environment for grown-ups? Much about the classic summer camp experience is appealing to us (though not EVERYTHING–we could certainly do without the bugs), and the idea of simply showing up for a perfectly curated experience without any responsibility, or planning, sounds AMAZING. Listen to this …
 
Among parents, technology and screen time can be a loaded topic. How much is too much? Is that movie too mature? And what’s the best age for a first phone? In today’s episode, Meagan and Sarah share the role technology played in our families when kids were little, and reflect on how things changed as they grew. We discuss the tech parenting choices…
 
In this episode, Sarah opens with an all-digital Planner Peace submission from Catherine, who organizes everything in various Outlook/Microsoft Products (calendar, tasks, to-dos, and email). Then, Sarah answers a listener asking for work notebooks. Sarah then delves into a discussion of vacation planning, with some notes about packing. If you've ne…
 
In this episode, Sarah and Laura open with a discussion of mid-life awakenings (as opposed to the traditional mid-life crisis), and certain things Sarah feels she has gotten clarity on over the past few months upon reaching the (possibly?) wise age of 42. Then, they delve into some listener contributions and questions. A very helpful listener wrote…
 
There are big benefits to getting kids outside as much as possible. But as a mom to young kids, it can feel intimidating to curate the perfect outside experience for them (and you)! In this Voices episode, Meagan chats with regular contributors Jayme Sherrod and Jennifer Carroll about ways to weave nature into your family’s routine. Both Jennifer a…
 
Laura and Sarah open this episode discussing some of rules from Laura's upcoming nonfiction release, Tranquility by Tuesday (out in October). Then, the episode is dedicated to the experiences (and sometimes challenges of) parenting 6-10 year olds. Sarah and Laura discuss their favorite aspects of this age group as well was some difficulties - some …
 
It’s the last day of May, which means that for many families it’s time to stow away backpacks, say ‘see ya later’ to early morning alarms, and settle in for a more laid-back (or at least DIFFERENT) routine. In this episode, Meagan and Sarah tap into the wisdom of our community and share your simple summer rituals and traditions for filling summer c…
 
In this episode, Sarah shares a long but incredibly impressive planner peace submission from Heather, who has built an amazing custom system primarily using Agendio. Then, Sarah dives into her review of the Erin Condren A5 Daily Duo! This is her first time trying out this system which launched ~2 years ago to great enthusiasm in the planner communi…
 
Looking back at old photos is a quick way to feel ALL the feels: everything from “I can’t believe they were ever that little” to “What was I thinking with that haircut?” to “Oh riiiiiiiight, that was one exhausting season of life.” Looking back is also a great reminder of the value in documenting everyday life – whether we share it publicly or keep…
 
Today's episode is a treat - Rebecca Fike (of LagLiv blog fame) who was a fantastic guest in 2018 returns to give an update on how life looks different now - exciting new job, bigger kids, a move, and more pets! Sarah loved catching up with her as she captures how things have changed and evolved over time within her law career and in her family. Sa…
 
In this episode, Sarah opens with a Planner Peace voice memo sent in by Tara! Then she moves to listener Q&A (plus a tip!). Question topics include: 1) Current planner lineup 2) Tip from a listener - idea and resource for planning and long-term vision-building with a partner 3) Fixing mistakes/rescheduled events in your planner 4) Question about ri…
 
Products. Just because. Yay! Meagan and Sarah pop into your Sunday feed with a light and fluffy chat about the products we are loving lately. From linen pants to fizzy beverage makers, pens for lefties and Very Many Opinions About Mugs, we cover our latest can’t-live-without products in this fun More Than Mom episode. The post More Than Mom: Produc…
 
Between the raging hormones, sleep deprivation, and overstimulation that occurs on the daily, it's no wonder most moms feel a little "off" for a few weeks after delivery. But how do we know when the baby blues develop into something more? In this episode, Sarah chats with contributors Emily Roark and Kia Hammond, who share their personal postpartum…
 
In they intro, Sarah and Laura discuss the mildly 'parasocial' relationship they enjoy with podcasters, Youtubers and bloggers. Then, Laura interviews author, teacher, and mother Jess Lahey on the topic of addiction, including how to best prevent the development of this issue, and ways to talk about it with kids. In the Q&A, a listener writes in ab…
 
Performances. Plays. Graduations. The lusty month of May is upon us as we ditch our well-oiled, calendar-planning systems and enter our end-of-school-year survival mode. In this episode, Meagan and Sarah share strategies for tackling the extra-ness of this season (like death by a thousand emails), setting intentions for the next few weeks and the m…
 
In this episode, Sarah opens with a Planner Peace segment from Cindy, who uses MakseLife and Passion Planner currently, and also explains why she prefers her weekly planner separate from her daily. Then, she gets into all things summer planning! Topics include: - choosing a time to plan - summer reading & media - summer wardrobe - bathing suits, sa…
 
Even when you do embrace outsourcing - there's still plenty to do in most households! Sarah and Laura discuss (and sometimes debate :) ) their favorite household management hacks, routines, and tips. Areas discussed include laundry, dishes, picking up, errands, meals/cooking, breakfast, lunches, and more! In the Q&A, a listener writes in asking for…
 
As moms, we are our kids' biggest fans. But when it comes to deciding when, how and what to share about them with others, the struggle is real. In today’s episode, Meagan and Sarah discuss how talking about our own kids in a public forum gets tricky as they get older (think bigger kids, bigger problems) - and not just for the reasons you might thin…
 
In this episode, Sarah delves into a listener email sent about planning as stress relief. Then, she shares Peggy's Planner Peace submission, which combines use of the Monk Manual, google calendar, todoist, and Organize 365! Then, she goes into an in-depth review of the Hemlock & Oak Weekly Undated Planner. If Planner Peace is eluding you this year …
 
Moms are savvy consumers, conscientious home managers, and discerning decision-makers. So why are we so often the target of hyper-generalized and cringey marketing efforts? In today’s More Than Mom episode - airing on Mother's Day! - Meagan and Sarah keep it light (and a bit snarky ?) as we vent about the sloppy intent, terrible puns and ridiculous…
 
Has your reading life come to a screeching halt due to the responsibilities of motherhood? In this month’s Voices interview, Meagan welcomes back blogger, podcaster, and book club leader Amy Clark, to discuss how a busy mom can take small steps to create a readerly life. We discuss all the hacks for finding the time to dive back in (think TikTok’s …
 
In the intro, Sarah discussed with Laura the timing of her kids (none during med school). Then, Lisa joins Sarah for a fascinating (and at times very emotional) discussion of her experiences having her first child during medical school. She shares what she learned, what she experienced (including an atypical presentation of postpartum depression) a…
 
Crouching. Bending. Stooping. The magical, ninja-like way you lay a baby down in the crib without waking her up; the feeling of wet, sloppy gums on your knuckles as he teethes. In Episode 363, Sarah and Meagan reflect on the muscle memories associated with the repetitive motions of early motherhood. Some bring back all the warm fuzzies and others m…
 
Today's episode is a veer away from our usual planning topics - stylist Lani Inlander joins Sarah to answer some great listener questions received regarding planning your wardrobe + style! Lani discussed ways one might consider planning outfits for the week, a different way to think about identifying your style, ways to budget for a wardrobe upgrad…
 
Between our kids’ school schedules, extracurricular activities, and social plans, we spend a lot of time driving them around. And when they get older and start driving themselves, a whole new world of independence (and issues) presents itself. In this special episode of The Mom Hour, Meagan and Sarah talk about how we use car time to connect with o…
 
In this episode, Laura and Sarah delve into weekends. They discuss how they plan their weekends, what elements feel 'essential' in each weekend, and balancing fun for each and every family member. In the Q&A, a listener writes in about potentially going part time to write. Episode Sponsors: Better Help: Better Help offers convenient online counseli…
 
Sports and extracurriculars are picking up this spring, and two different listeners have questions about what age to start kids in activities and how to budget for this part of family life. We take a question about “gentle parenting” that leads into an in-depth discussion about discipline philosophies and finding the approach that works for your fa…
 
In this episode, Sarah opens up with a new Planner Peace segment, and then shares several listener questions (and answers!). Q1 - Tips for planning to help share the mental load with one's partner Q2 - Recommendations for a hobby planner, such as for gardening Q3 - Ways to capture ideas from books you have read Q4 - Planning out reading with kids (…
 
English cottages, sunny greenhouses, cozy cabins, and professors’ offices. What do these spaces have in common? They all evoke an essence we wish we could recreate in our own spaces. Join Meagan and Sarah as we reveal our twinkle-lit, midlife-lady dream spaces . . . even if we may never have them. We talk about our actual homes, too, and our romant…
 
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