Monday, November 30, 2015

#MicroblogMondays: It's a date :)

A couple of weeks ago, after our semi-annual dental cleanings & checkups in the city (no cavities, yay!!), dh & I made a side trip to an exclusive little stationery shop in a ritzy shopping neighbourhood. Not a place where I habitually go to shop, but then, there aren't a whole lot of places around anymore where I can find a calendar insert for my Filofax for the upcoming new year. There used to be several such shops in the financial district where we both used to work, but most of these have gradually closed over the past few years, no doubt a casualty of the growing shift from paper to digital recordkeeping.

Yes, I still use a paper calendar. I've used Filofax (Week on Two Pages) for something like 25 years now. Originally, I used a cheap vinyl DayRunner organizer with a Filofax calendar insert -- but a couple of years ago, after wearing out two of those, I splurged and, for my birthday, bought myself a lovely black leather Filofax Personal organizer (bonus: it was on sale!). Besides the calendar/datebook, it also includes my address book, business cards for our various doctors and other service people, to-do lists, a vinyl envelope containing postage stamps and address labels, a solar-powered calculator the size of a credit card, train schedule, etc. -- and, in case of an emergency, a $5 bill tucked away, lol. (It's been awhile since I put it there -- maybe I should make it $10 or $20 -- inflation!)  Some people go nuts if they lose their cellphones;  for me, if I lost my Filofax, I would be up the proverbial creek without a paddle.

I love filling in a blank calendar for a new year with fixed stuff like birthdays, appointments I've already made, paydays (& then wait for the inevitable bills to arrive & fill those in too, lol).  Birthdays & anniversaries go in red, important stuff like bills to be paid go in black (& when they're paid, they're ticked off in green with the amount paid written beside). Regular appointments are written in blue (and sometimes highlighted with yellow highlighter). The datebook also serves as a bit of a diary:  I make notes about the day's weather in purple, mail sent and received in turquoise, notable phone calls made & received in brown... I use lots of post-it notes too, for little to-do reminders, etc. 

At the end of the year, the old insert gets binder-clipped together and stored in a desk drawer along with the others from years past. I have all my datebooks and wall calendars going back to the early 1970s;  it's great to have them at my fingertips and be able to check what happened when and what I was doing xx years ago on this very day. For example, thanks to an old datebook I found & brought home from my mother's house this past summer, I was able to pinpoint the exact date of the dorm party where I first remember meeting and talking to dh, 34 years ago. :)

I suppose I could have just ordered my calendar insert online (& I may eventually have to, if fine stationery shops keep going the way of the dodo bird...), but it was fun to make the trip and be around all that lovely paper and fine fountain pens. It was just after Remembrance Day, and Christmas decorations were starting to go up;  it was a great way to kick off the holiday season. :)

What kind of a calendar/datebook system do you use?

You can find more of this week's #MicroblogMondays posts here.   


  1. I love stationery shops. I was in one this morning, buying my mother a calendar diary for next year. She has recorded daily events for years, and it has been enormously helpful for her to keep track of her life. And now, as dementia has stolen her memory, her diary has helped her keep it. Even now, as she's in hospital, I write in her diary this morning that I will be back this afternoon, and she can see that and look forward to it. So for what it's worth, your habit of diary keeping is one that will hold you in good stead when yu are older, dementia or no dementia!!

    I have been trying to be better at recording events in my Google Calendar, across all my devices, but I'm not great at it. Several years ago I stopped carryng a paper diary, notebook and book, replacing these with my iPad. The only thing I miss is my paper calendar diary.

  2. Gosh I admire people who are organized! I love fancy calendars/datebooks but I can't use them. It's not the way that my brain thinks. Right now I use iCal which is synced across my devices (iPad, iPhone, MBP). I don't love this system, but I do love that it is synced across my devices. Then I usually have a daily to do list on a post it note that I can carry around in my pocket. Not the most efficient system, but it it works for me.

    I've never been one for a diary. Or, more accurately, I used to be, but when I was in middle school my sister stole it and told the boy that I had a crush on. I vowed to never have a diary/journal again.

    You and Mali have made me think of my grandma. She kept her date books and diaries for years. It was so fun (but bittersweet) to get to know her even better several years after her death.

  3. I use a free pocket calendar to track stuff that is relevant to me, and we have a family calendar in the drawer (also free- I'm cheap!) at home for events relevant to all of us. I'm a big fan of paper. I have a fancy iPhone that would allow hubby and I to sync our schedules, etc, but I just can't seem to get used to the idea of a digital date book.

  4. I used to keep a Filofax like that, but I switched to a bullet journal a few years ago. I love it. Everything gets written in the bullet journal, and then when filled, it goes in a drawer. I always know where to go back and pull out information. So much more gets done because of that book.

  5. My family jokes that the only reason I homeschooled our three is because I have an addiction to office supplies. I can't say that they're wrong. ;)

    1. Haha, Traci, I can relate. There was a Staples near my office & I used to love to go there to browse during my lunch hours. ;)