Tag Archives: stationery

Musings on task list symbolism

I saw a link to the Dash/Plus method of marking to-do item lists.  I think it’s a nice, simple idea, and I plan to use it. I do want to add one thing to it, though: drawing a box around the dash to indicate that the thing is a priority item.  Otherwise I’d have to put a star or something next to the dash to indicate priority, and that would just take up an extra grid space.

I’ve been writing down to do lists in my Field Notes notebook, and I find myself grouping things by GTD context out of habit.  Errands and phone calls at the top, just under the list of appointments for the day, and stuff to do at home on the bottom of the page.  So that seems pretty simple too.  I’ve been adding my little context symbols, but I don’t think I need to since I’ve been grouping stuff.

I’ve got the Field Notes Ambition Edition, as I wanted the weekly planner.  Not for appointments, but to keep track of tasks that have to be done on a certain date.  I’m thinking about using the ledger book for my to-do lists, after I finish filling up my current FN Pitch Black book.

So my system keeps evolving, and it’s rather fun to play with.  Yay for pens and paper!

More faffing about with notebooks

I have ordered another fauxdori from the same seller, one that fits standard notebooks like Moleskine Cahiers and Field Notes without having to cut them down.  If I have to cut down every notebook I use in the passport-sized fauxdori, I’ll wind up not using it anyway.  Of course, I was an idiot and got my name on it so I can’t return it…  No name on the pocket-sized one I just ordered, though.  It’s the same purple, though, and the same leather.  Also, I bought the first one on sale for $10 off, and got the second one for 30% off because I asked if I could get a discount as a repeat customer.  (I was expecting maybe 10%, not 30%, but I’m certainly not going to argue with a better deal.)

What I’m going to do with the new one: put a Field Notes book in the front, for my daily lists and notes, and a Volant in the back for a journal because it’s got more pages.  I have enough beads and elastic to make more bookmarks, and my pen clip is easily moved to the new notebook.  So it will be identical except for being an inch taller.  Perfect.

With the discount I was able to get one for the Naiad, too, since she has become a Field Notes fan.  I blame myself, for playing her episodes of the Pen Addict podcast.  They mention Field Notes a lot, and she bought herself a set to try out.  She’s never been into fancy notebooks before, and seems to be hooked now.  I’m turning her into a total stationery junkie.  It’s awesome.  I’m afflicting the Valkyrie with a similar disease.  She spent a couple of hours personalizing her Midori passport with cute stickers and washi tape, making the refill books super cute so they’re more fun to use, and she is using Pilot Juice gel pens in them.  I am an evil enabler and proud of it!

More color-coding experiments, and a crap day

When I was getting tomorrow’s daily NABJ (not a bullet journal) page ready I realized that instead of taking up space with @context labels, I could color-code by context and then put symbols in for priority.  So I’m trying that.  Pink for phone, light blue for errands, purple for computer, and blue-black for home (since those are the colors in my Coleto for my calendar already).  Oh, and the blue-black is now being used for appointments and not just labels, starting today, because my MIL has a few doctor’s appointments coming up that she needs me to go with her for.

No picture today, because a) I feel lazy, and b) I’m embarrassed to show that some of tomorrow’s tasks look suspiciously like today’s tasks.  Which leads to a great segue, which is:

I was not in the best shape today.  I was up until 4am.  I just couldn’t get to sleep.  And then I set my alarm for nine this morning so I could get ready for a 10:30 visit to the GP’s office.  I vaguely remember getting up at 8:30 when the Naiad woke up, and then I remember waking up on the couch (sitting upright, under a blanket) at one in the afternoon.  I really crashed, apparently.  During the time I was asleep I rescheduled the GP appointment.  I know this because I changed my calendar, and I’ve been told I made the phone call with V&N in the room.  I have no memory of it.  At all.

I’ll put the rest of the day under a cut, because it’s about feeling morose and is pretty dull reading.  (Posting it for me, so I have a record of it.)  But I’ll share positive things now that I’ve written out the whiny parts: I got a ton of kitty snuggles, my fauxdori shipped today, and I had a nice time talking to my MIL at dinner.  So today hasn’t totally sucked.  And I feel better for thinking of positive things.  So I’m going to go pet a kitty and get some weaving done.  And smile more!

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Hybrid GTD/Bullet Journal thing

I’ve not had anything pressing to do this evening, so I’ve been looking around for the best way to keep track of my tasks and appointments.  I think I’ve figured out something worth trying.

I like the Bullet Journal idea of keeping everything together on one page.  But I love the GTD way of dividing Next Actions by context.  So I decided to try this with a Moleskine Cahier:

Not quite a bullet journal

I’m planning to put this Cahier into my fauxdori when it shows up.  Date at the top, then appointments (normally not more than 2-3 a day), then to-do items by context, then notes at the bottom and continuing onto the following page(s) as needed.  I will continue to use a weekly printed calendar to give an at-a-glance for appointments and events, but I want to start doing this daily page every night before bed.

As I’ve mentioned before, I use a Pilot Coleto multi-pen for my planner.  It’s become an integral part of my system, regardless of how I format my days or weeks.  I have a 3-color one and a 4-color one.  The 4-color is the one kept in the pen loop.

Purple: On the calendar, it’s my appointments.  On the to-do lists, that’s “if I have time” actions.
Pink: Calendar is the Valkyrie’s appointments.  To-do list is “urgent” actions.
Light blue: Calendar is the Naiad’s appointments.  To-do list is the “not urgent but do it today” actions.
Blue-black: for labels and notes.

The 3-color Coleto lives in my pen case, and is used just for marking the weekly calendar.  It doesn’t get used daily like the 4-color does.

Green: finance related (like the date a bill is due).
Brown: school dates (no reason, I just like brown).
Red: really important dates.  (I think; I haven’t actually used it for that yet. I may swap it for a pencil insert.)

If I had to pick up a different pen for every color, I’d never color-code anything.  But the Coletos makes it easy.  I love them.

So my fauxdori will have the Not-a-Bullet cahier, a Midori weekly calendar, and something to journal in.  Haven’t decided what yet…

Fauxdori ideas

You’ve probably heard (if you’re a stationery nerd) about the Midori Traveler notebook.  Lots of people make “fauxdori” books, in the Midori style that fit Midori refills.  There’s a “passport” size that’ll fit notebooks around 3×5″.

My Moleskine planner is not working out so well.  The calendar pages are okay, but there’s no room to spread out and take notes, or make lists. Currently I have a Cahier strapped into the front of the planner with an elastic hair tie, but it’s hurting the binding.

You see where this is going, don’t you?

There are people on Etsy selling inexpensive fauxdoris.  Who have sales.  On purple covers.  I’m putting in a weekly planner refill and a Cahier, which I already own.  Down the road I may try a Rhodia staplebound or an Apica cd5 or something, but there’s no point in spending the money until I see what I think.  When it comes in I’ll share my thoughts and see how well it works out.

Let’s talk pens.

People who’ve known me for a long time know that I am a serious pen geek.  The level of my geekery waxes and wanes, although I always have a few good pens handy because I journal and for just note-taking and stuff. I prefer fountain pens, although they’re not good for every situation. Like, the pen I keep in my front pocket when I go out is the Fisher Space Pen I got from the Valkyrie for Giftmas. Fountain pens generally don’t write well on slick receipt paper, so the Fisher is a better choice for that.

But fountain pens make me happy. I was a collector for a while, albeit on a very modest scale. I have way too many Lamy Al-Stars, because around 2007 I wanted to own one in every color available at the time. And then I got a really good deal on a used Pilot Vanishing Point, and I loved that pen the most. For my readers not into pens, the VP is a retractable FPN and is a classy but durable pen that feels wonderful to use.

I started to get back into pens about the time the Naiad and I met, and having someone to share my pen addiction with has been great. It’s also made it worse. I’ve dusted off some of my older pens, and I’ve been enjoying the Pilot Metropolis I got for Giftmas from my mom.

Yesterday I got an early birthday present in the mail: a used Pilot Decimo. These normally go for $250 new. Closely watching eBay can net one for about $100. Mine is violet with rhodium trim. It has an EF nib. I like pens with very fine nibs/points, and the Decimo EF is extremely fine but still writes smoothly. The Decimo and the Vanishing Point are essentially the same pen, but the Decimo body is slightly smaller. Same design, though, and same innards. I need to get an EF nib for my VP now. I love it, really love it.

I’ve been keeping paper journals for a couple of decades now, and last night I was debating whether to keep my new journal, the one I started on New Year’s Day, in one color or multiple shades. I’d started it with purple, and I put purple in the Decimo, but I also inked a Lamy Al-Star with green and kinda wanted to use other colors in the journal. More chaotic, but I think I like that better for now. I think the Decimo will stay purple, the VP will get green once I get an EF nib, and the other pens will be on rotation for other colors. I do love purple and green together, and those pens are my two best writers.

I’m still using the Pilot Coleto gel multi-pen for my planner, and a blue-black Pilot Frixion (erasable gel ink pen) for my math practice. My preferred pencil, on the rare occasions I use on, is a Uni Kuru Toga. All from JetPens. They’re my favorite source for non-fountain pens.

Since I’m rotating journal pen colors, I’ve put a few pens in my Teffa pencil case along with the journal itself (a pocket Leuchtturm 1917). I don’t know if I’ll maintain my little kit, but it works for now.

Writing this has made me want to play with my Decimo more. Let’s see how easy it is to journal with Eris on my lap!

Happy birthday, Isaac Newton!

Bad blogger, no cookie — ten days since my last entry.  Shame on me.  I’ve been journaling a lot, but it’s been on paper instead of online.

My family has always done Christmas stuff on Xmas Eve, and then Xmas day is for laying around in pajamas and nomming leftovers. So yesterday we ate too much and opened presents. I picked out most of the presents people gave each other as well as the ones I gave, so I really enjoyed seeing everyone open the gifts I’d chosen for them.  I was pretty much on target with all of them, assuming my family members are better at faking emotions than I think they are.  I received some cool shit.  A Pilot Metropolitan fountain pen, a sweet Golding mini spindle, some fascinating-looking books, and some little stuff, all of which I liked a lot.

I won’t list everything I chose for other people, but I had to mention that I got the Naiad a Pilot Kukuno from JetPens and I think she’s now hooked for life on fountain pens.  While I was napping earlier today she ordered herself a Metropolitan like my new one, because she likes mine so much.  (I am so happy with mine, btw.  Writes wonderfully and has instantly become a favorite.)  This weekend I’m going to ink up some of my pen collections so she can see what different styles and nibs feel like.  She’s very excited.  Makes me happy.

Random stuff:

  • Got a B+ in my class.  Must have done better on my mock therapy session than I thought!
  • The Naiad will be here permanently Jan. 6th.  Which is good, because driving to get her twice a week sucks.
  • Awesome Niece was here from Sunday to yesterday.  Goddamn I love that kid.  She’s turning into an amazing young woman.
  • I started a new medication today.  Risperdal is replacing my Invega.  Doing the titration now.  Wish me luck.
  • The pocket Moleskine I started journaling in on Nov. 11th is nearly full.  I’ll be starting a new one in a few days.  Looking forward to it.  I also treated myself to a Moleskine 2015 weekly planner, because things disappear from my iCloud calendar on a regular basis.  That’s a problem.  So the Moleskine will be a backup calendar. I need one.

I’ve been sleepy all day because of the new medication.  Bedtime soon, I think…