The first thing I do is get out my pretty pictures file and dig through all the, um, pretty pictures, until I find some that look good to me right now. Obviously this will be different for everyone - this is also what makes this so fun. For some reason bright pink was just calling my name this month... Lots of these pictures won't get used, but I like to have plenty to choose from.
Now I start picking and choosing pictures and tearing them to fit. Feel free to use scissors if you want your notebook to be boring and dull with no cool-edgy-torn effect. Sometimes I use a piece of colored scrapbooking paper for a background, or sometimes I choose a really large picture for the background. Either way, it's easiest to have one piece that covers all the brown-ness and then build on top of that.
I like to have some words somewhere on the front because that's just the kind of person I am. Sometimes a Bible verse, sometimes a quote...one day I might do one with just words all over it. I love words. Let's move on.
Now I slap some modge podge on the cover and start placing things where I think they should go. A couple of notes - always lay it out first and smooth it out really well (see my wrinkles? the ones on the notebook, I mean!). Rubber cement works much better than modge podge, but sometimes I have to make do. I will not go to Walmart just for rubber cement. I just won't do it!
Sigh. Now it seems like I can start all over with a fresh clean slate. All those messy to do lists and menu plans and memos are gone and blank pages wait for me to craft my life in them...that's pretty deep for a 33 cent notebook, don't ya think?