Trialling “The Little Black Book”

Good Morning Everyone!

So, I succumbed to the charms of the Moleskine Notebook.

Traveler’s Notebook and Filofax users, please don’t be disheartened – I haven’t left you! I’m just trying new ways to streamline things.  See, this is the problem.  I want EVERYTHING together – my calendar, my bills information, my cash envelope system, a place to keep receipts, my passwords, my cards, my notes, my spending tracker… it’s proving to be rather difficult!

The Midori Regular was perhaps the closest I could get to what I wanted. But it was NOT streamlining at all, it was heavier, bulkier, and I couldn’t even fit my notes notebook into the elastics as it was so full!

Next was the Midori Passport – which was actually perfect… for my cash envelope system, and as a basic purse/wallet function.  But I couldn ‘t carry my notebooks with me.  I got a lot of compliments on the Passport whenever I went to stores – nobody had ever seen a purse/wallet like it.  I’d hold up the queues explaining the brand and that it was primarily used as a notebook but you could switch up the inserts and completely customise to meet your requirements.

I was browsing Pinterest for more information on the Traveler’s Notebooks and how others utilized their Traveler’s Notebooks – call me curious, but I get so many ideas from others, and I customize them to suit my needs. One thing that had been grabbing my attention for a while was this thing called a Moleskine.  Sure, I’d seen these overpriced notebooks in the likes of Paperchase, WHSmith and Waterstones, but I just couldn’t justify spending over £10 on a notebook.  Sure, they have diaries, but they also have blank, sketch, lined, dot and grid paper too.  The things some of the more creative people had done with their Moleskines had me lost for words.  There are many, many talented people out there.  I wanted in!

I thought long and hard, and came across a web page documenting how to create credit card inserts to place on a page in a Moleskine (or any other notebook). I wondered if I could do a similar thing but over 2 pages of a pocket size, to create the cash envelope system.  But I’m a very curious cat… so instead of thinking very long, I bit the bullet, jumped in my car and shot over to my local shopping centre.

I purchased my pocket blank notebook for £9.99 in Waterstones. I decided on the blank because it meant that I could use the book for anything I wanted – I could create a calendar, I could doodle, write notes, create templates, glue things in… basically I could freestyle whatever I needed to.

I had also read that the “unofficial” pen of the Moleskine was the Pilot G2, which I found in Paperchase also. In fact, I found the mini/pocket size.  I purchased a black and blue.

Getting back home, I sat at my table and looked a bit daunted at the prospect of having to completely begin from scratch.

The first thing I wanted was to put the cash envelope system to use. I cut the back of my required amount of envelopes off and left a little lip to glue onto the pages, staggering each one slightly lower until they filled the pages.

Next, I needed a pen loop. I ripped an elasticated pen loop from and old La-De-Dah scrapbook that I’d never used and pretty much just taped it into the back of the book.

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I placed a 2016 year overview calendar, a pocket size printable taken from Wendaful Designs printed out and glued into the book.

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Then I started working on the calendar. I decided I only wanted one for the next few months, as who knows, by the new year I might be using something else, or I may have stuck to the Moleskine, loved it so much and need a new one!

In the calendar, I wrote my monthly bills in the dates they were due to come out of my account, I wrote any social events, holiday days, days my manager was not in the office, appointments and general things to remember. I colour code highlighting these events.

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After the calendar, I glued my monthly bills excel tracker in. Then I added tabs using labels that I’d got left over.  Got a sharpie marker and coloured the labels in black, then used a white gel pen to draw tiny little symbols to notify me what section is where.

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After all of that, I felt that the book was a little too “serious” still, and needed to inject a bit of colour, a bit of “me” into the whole thing.

So, this is where my Pinterest and Google searches came in handy. I’m a lover of anything vintage inspired, or anything whimsical, dreamy, bohemian.  They are my favorite type of photographs I love searching for, looking at and wishing I could take a photograph just as fantastic.

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I printed out a lot of photographs found mostly on google, creating photo collages and printing on normal printer paper to keep the book thin, and then cutting out and affixing to the pages using corner adhesives I’d purchased from Paperchase. I also used a photograph on the front of the notebook to give it a more personal touch.

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I’m not finished with the set up yet – I need to create an template and an area for writing out my spending and tabbing out dedicated sections for that and my notes etc…

All in all, I’m really happy with the notebook so far – it’s small, it’s thin, it’s portable, it’s sleek, it looks pretty cool, it holds almost everything I need (I just need to find somewhere to hold my cards still as I’m unsure that the Moleskine will still be as neat with 10+ cards in…)

The paper feels sublime, very smooth and easy to write on – I love the cream colour of the pages, and the cover feels soft and slightly grained, very tactile! I chose the non-hard cover as I wanted the cover to be able to mould to the shape of the book and get that thumbed through, weathered appearance rather than it being rigid.

I’ve been using this system for almost a week, and while it’s early days, I get really excited when I have to pen an appointment in or take it out for “something”. The only thing I am a little more “shy” about is taking it out for my money at the cash registers.  There is every possibility that I may need to remove my envelope system back into my Mulberry purse/wallet…

The planner peace continues!

Have you ever used a Moleskine to plan/track/place notes/journal/as a purse (wallet) before?

Kel

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Weight Loss Printable!

Hi Everyone!

As you can probably see by my latest posts, being off sick gives me loads to think about…  so I’ve been creating little printables left right and centre!  Check out my Free Inserts Page to find my version of the Mason Jar Weight Loss Sticker printout 🙂  Here it is in my planner (as previously mentioned on an earlier blog post, I have ran out of my cotton cream so I’m testing these on inserts I have been building up for some time 🙂 – in this case, the Quadrille Paper!)

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I’ve put stickers in the “to go” – and each heart represents 1lb.  As I lose the lb’s, I will transfer the hearts over to the “gone” jar – and have a smug smile as I go 🙂

This is now up for downloading and printing direct to Personal Size Paper – enjoy!

Kel

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Filofax Week on 2 Pages Inserts

Hi everyone

Last night I tweaked my Month on 2 Pages and made it available on my Free Inserts page (see above). The more I looked at it, the more I wanted to have a go at a Week on 2 Pages also.

You may have seen the way I like to organise my diary (fill in monthly pages and then move the detail across to the inner section of my weekly pages, with the outer half free to put in to do lists). It’s just something that works for me, but if you feel like trying something like it, the Week on 2 Pages are now available on my Free Inserts page also. Please see below for photo’s:

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That is the blank page as it comes off the printer.

Here is how it can look when decorated:

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Course, my decorating is a little boring etc, but I’m just trying to get the point across that the pages can be jazzed up to your own taste etc.

Anyhow, they’re there for the taking if you feel the need to have a go 🙂

Let me know how you get on!

Kel

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Filofax Month On 2 Pages

Hi everyone!

It’s my birthday today! Although, technically not until I wake up ;). I’ve spent my last evening as a 27 year old working on a set of MO2P (Month On 2 Pages) using Microsoft Word.

I currently use Ray & Steve’s (My Life All In One Place & Philofaxy web pages: I’m doing this on my mobile and it’s playing up so I’ll have to link later) printable inserts, but me being me, forever churning with ideas and “I wish I could have a go at that” mentality… Well, it just had to be attempted.

Originally for 2014 I was going to print off another set of Ray & Steve’s inserts, and I even did this… But I kept having issues with the document (February just wasn’t printing for me). I even looked into the Filofax’s own but could only seem to find this in the stores in white, no cotton cream. So I began my search online for a template.

As the search began, I wanted to find a full set of Monthly inserts detailing the months and dates etc. but there were some really cute dateless and month-less inserts around, I kind of got converted!

The ones I did see however, were already decorated. I like to decorate my own pages (gives me sense of achievement therefore I am more likely to look at it and utilise it, it’s just the way I am). So a little voice in my head began to get louder “why don’t you have a go, just use the templates for inspiration etc”.

So I had a go. It’s not great and even a little plain, but it’s my first attempt. The hearts to put your dates in need to be a little more transparent so you can see the dates… But for me, it is laid out exactly as I need it so that I can washi tape it up and decorate it to my taste etc.

Here is the blank MO2P:

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And here is is dated and decorated, and in my Filofax:

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Here is another one, February 2014:

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If anyone is interested in this insert I can make it available to download 🙂 maybe I can change the shapes to suit more: a car shape, a star shape, an apple shape, a house shape, anything!

Let me know and ill sort something out 🙂

Kel

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Filofax Setup

 

 

 

 

 

After chatting with my Best Friend Carrie tonight who was interested in how I set my planner up (the way it works for ME), I figured as I’m incredibly happy with my system I would put more information on the way I go about setting up my Month and Weekly view diary pages.

For my setup I always begin with my Month To View pages.  Then I transfer across to my Week To View, but I’ll get to that shortly!

As you may know already from a previous post briefly mentioning what is in my Filofax, I use the Philofaxy/My Life All In One Place Month To View printouts which I decorate with Washi Tape and then draw around the entire month’s boxes in a coloured pen.

Here is an example of how my page looks like before my scrawls and colour coding system takes hold of it!

 

 

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When I’ve completed my decoration, I then use my coloured Pilot Frixion Erasable Pens to mark out my colour coding system in the Notes Section on the far right hand side of the page as you can see below.

I also then fill in what I already know is happening that month, like:

Direct Debits that will leave my account that month (light green)

Holiday days I take from work or work from home or National Holiday days (light blue)

Appointments for either work or personal, e.g. customer visits, nails, hair, doctors, dentist etc (orange)

“Don’t Forget!” items such as MOT or Insurance being up, deadlines for reports or just something I need to do for a specific day that requires me to sort something out “by that date”.  I also use it for “Recognised Days”, e.g. Father’s Day, St Georges Day, Pancake Day, Halloween, Remembrance Day – but these days are not recognised as a National Holiday (pink)

Social Events or parties, nights out, date nights, meals etc, anything where I am interacting with my circle of friends or family or person of interest 😉  (purple)

Birthdays – self explanatory (dark green)

They are all plotted out on my month to view using my colour coding system as you can see below.

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At this point I would begin transferring my data over into my Week To View, but more on this shortly.

Below is an example of this month for me at a glance.  You can see that it’s been padded out with social events and appointments.  Usually, I try to put my events in the order that they will be done.  This means during the week my social events (purple) are generally at the bottom of the box because of work I can only really socialise on the evenings.  It allows for room in case anything crops up that I need to add in (a work appointment for example).  With the week to view, I do not put much detail – like times and addresses or in depth arrangements.  It’s just what’s happening, which date.

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Now then.  Once I’ve got all of my month set up to the point where I’ve inputted all of my bills, birthdays, national holidays/work holidays, social events that have been planned in advance etc… I transfer them over into my Week To View diary pages.

My week is the Standard Filofax Week To View.  Honestly, I tried using others, noteably a day per page with appointment times, but once I stopped Repping every day I found it took up too much space in my Filofax and therefore decided to try other methods.  This method works for me best.

I’ve split my pages into 2 parts, added lines and checkboxes to one part, and the part closest to the rings are left blank.

Once I’ve had fun decorating with washi tape, my colour pens doodling around the dates and highlighting the month and the days, I use the “inner section” – the part closest to the rings – to import my Month To View calendar events (sometimes using the Event Stickers I make), and also in this area, expanding on the information, such as times.  The colour coding system is still in force in this area.

I only use this area for whatever you see on the Month To View (except if there are films on TV I want to watch).

For example, you can see in light green on Monday I had a Direct Debit scheduled for my Mobile Phone Bill.  I also had dinner with my parents and then a skype chat planned (including a time) – both in purple.

You can see on Tuesday evening I had a date night with Luke at mine planned at 7pm – in purple as it was classed as a “social event”.

All of those examples are on my Month To View.

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The last section, or the “outer section” – the section with the checkboxes, are not colour coded, and they are merely daily to-do-lists for me to fill out the night before or even during the day etc.  They also aid in my working life when I need to chase an order up a week in a week or so’s time.

The Daily To-Do-List is a real close up view of things I need to accomplish that day, whether it is to change my bedding, to ensure I pop time in to pamper myself with a face mask, to remind me to water my orchids, to make sure I post something out or collect something…

One last thing…

I also use my first section of the week – the part that says “this week” usually above the Monday on the Standard UK Filofax Week To View – to record things that are going to happen over the course of the week; eg, if I’m off work on Holiday all week, it’s on there.  If my parents are abroad that week, it’s on there.  Anything that is happening that week – all week – is in that section.

I hope that’s given you an insight as to how I plan my pages out a little more, I know it sounds like a lot and a lot of time and effort go into it, but I think the most time is the initial set up – figuring out how I wanted things to look or work for me.  After that, it’s all about the maintenance and keeping things up to date as much as possible.  I spend a couple of minutes updating my Filofax every day to ensure I don’t miss anything out.

I’m not saying this is the perfect setup – if I’d have had this setup myself a mere 6 months ago it would not have worked for me in my Repping Role.  What works for one person will not work for someone else.  It all depends on how much time you want (or are able!) to take out to organise your life effectively.

I’m a very orderly person, but also very visual, so things at a glance as well as up close are important to me.  I need to see the whole picture, divided up as much as possible.  I need colour, something that attracts me to want to look at my planner often enough to want/feel inspired to complete the tasks I set myself – or even, to set myself the tasks in the first place!

How does your setup work for you?  Have you tampered with different setups and are currently in the dreaded “planner fail” area right now?

Kel

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Filofax Custom Today Markers

Good Morning!

UK Peeps, not to put a downer on us or anything, but did you know yesterday was the last Bank Holiday until Christmas now? But of course you did: we are an organised bunch of people, you’d probably known that at the start of the year unlike me, who discovered this depressing fact at 6am this morning just as I woke.

I was in such a hurry to post and get to bed last night that I forgot to post my net Today Markers… Which were made from the “Inserts” of the Smash range. To me, the whole range creates nostalgia within me: of schooldays and preparing for my first day back in September. I would spend ages in the likes of WHSmith wanting products I didn’t have the pocket money for (notably, that Sheep folder everyone seemed to have… You know the one: the badly drawn sheep that covered the entire 2 ring A4 binder on a bright yellow background? And it didn’t stop there: they had pencils, erasers, notebooks etc all in that design. I’m pretty sure they did a cow too…!) with my friends.

I think the Smash range would look amazing in one of those cute School Exercise Book type Filofaxes!

Anyway: here you go 🙂

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The above is my Month to View page marker. You’ll notice that my month is colour coded (I finally succumbed!) and the key is in the notes section on the far right hand side.

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I’ve added washi tape on my week to view page marker. The washi tape is full of “fab, want it, need it, love it” etc phrases with arrows… So much fun!

I’m trying to incorporate the same kind of colour coding system into my weekly pages (only in the blank areas closest to my page marker, not in the to do list in the line and check box areas. I’ve attached the code on the marker.

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There we have it! I have finally found the perfect set up for me 🙂 and about time, too!

Hope you have a great day!

Kel

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Filofax & Smash Products

Hi everyone!

Quick update today: I popped to my local hobbycraft today as I had seen a line of really really funky stationery called “Smash”… And I had to have a go at using a couple of bits and bobs of theirs in my Filofax.

Since my dividers have been a little bland and boring lately and a few of them were “redundant” due to my work role changing from external to internal, I had been meaning to change some of the dividers when I got around to it.

I decided I should have a new change around as well as new dividers etc. Well, you know what I’m like, constantly changing stuff!

Here are my new dividers!

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I apologise for my rushed camerawork: it’s late at night and I’d been working 7 hours on these dividers (crazy, huh??)

I also apologise for my awful handwriting, but I wanted it to look more of a scrappy feel and extremely personal.

So there we are… I’m ready to step into Autumn with my new updated and revised dividers… Have you updated yours recently?

Catch you later!

Kel
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