28 February 2013

Comparing Compacts

As some of you will know, as well as being a big fan of Filofax and other organisers, I'm also a keen amateur photographer.

I've had a keen interest in photography for well over 40 years now. I've more or less taught myself how to do most things with my camera, mainly by taking lots of photos and learning from my mistakes. With conventional film photography, this was obviously quite expensive, with modern digital photography, it's only time.

When I acquired a Holborn Compact late last year, it gave me a chance to compare a conventional compact with a zipped compact (Malden Compact Zip). I have recently been using the Holborn Compact as my carry around organiser, giving the Malden a little rest! Both have 15mm rings so swapping the contents from one to the other was straight forward.

The other day, I decided to try and photograph these two organisers in a different way, just to test out some new photographic ideas, as well as showing you a comparison between the two organisers.

So without any more words from me, here are the pictures.
















Of course if you have any questions... pop them in the comments and I will answer any of your questions.

27 February 2013

The latest from Chimwemwe

Many of you will know that Philofaxy is a stalwart supporter of Chimwemwe, but some of you might not know who we are or what we do. I did a post on Chimwemwe a while back (which you can read here) and Steve has asked me to give an update on where the project is at the moment.

In essence, Chimwemwe Children's Centre is a charity based in Blantyre, Malawi, which helps street-children to return to education and to lead healthy and fulfilling lives. The children we work with have ended up on the streets for a variety of reasons - ranging from the loss of one or both parents (often from AIDs) leading them into poverty; to abuse by family or community members which has driven them away from home and onto the streets.

Boniface in 2013 –I met this lad first in 2009
and he has blossomed over the years

What do we do to help the children? We have a team of trained staff who talk to the street children to try to find out why they are there. Have they been sent to beg by their family to increase the household income (or, in the case of some of the girls, have they been sent to earn money through prostitution?)? Have they lost their parents? Have they run away from abuse?

If the issue that has driven them onto the streets can be resolved, we will work with the family and/or the community, wherever possible, to support the children so that they can remain with their family or in their community. If poverty is the issue, we can help families to start their own business (for example we purchased a sewing machine for a man so that he could set up his own tailoring business and support his two children, after losing his wife). Sometimes, the barrier to children going to school is simply the cost of the uniform and school books, and Chimwemwe will buy these and also pay school fees (where needed). We also feed some of the children, to reduce the burden on their families.

One of the children having a nutritious meal
of fish stew and nsima in the local market

There are some children whom we cannot support in their family or community. For these, we have 16 spaces at the centre for children aged up to 14 years. For these children, we house, feed and clothe them, ensure they are enrolled in (and attending) school, we ensure that their healthcare needs are met and we provide a number of life-skills classes in the evenings, so that when they leave Chimwemwe, they are able to cope. We also try to ensure that they have a safe and enriching environment in which to be children - to play, to learn, to develop.

Amanda and three of the children playing bao.
Amanda lost. Every game!

Amanda with the kids in October
I am just back from a visit to Malawi where I caught up with the project leader Mac, one of the helpers Sam and the new housekeeper also called (somewhat confusingly!) Chimwemwe. It has been a difficult few months at Chimwemwe (the centre!). Last year we had to dismiss three helpers due to them stealing from the charity and also due to their alleged abuse of some of the children. In addition, the economic situation in Malawi, where there has been a 40% devaluation of the currency (the kwacha) and rising inflation, has made supporting the children extremely difficult. We have also had to close the centre temporarily whilst essential renovations were completed. The centre was still in the process of being renovated when I visited in early February, but we are expecting the children to return at the start of March.

One of the rooms in the centre where the children will receive life-classes
(L-R: Mac, Sam, Chimwemwe)
Last week, I received some terrible news from Mac which underlines how essential the work we do is and the need for the centre to be re-opened as soon as possible. The City Assembly had said that the children could not stay in the centre until the renovations were complete and had said that they would find alternative accommodation for the children whilst it was closed. I am sad to say that in some cases, no alternative was found for the children and that for others, they did not want to stay there and many of the children returned to the streets during the time the centre was closed.

Not only is it the rainy season in Malawi (and believe me, it RAINS!) leaving the children cold and wet, but they are also in danger on the streets. At least two of the children have been sexually abused whilst they have been on the streets while the centre is closed - a six year old boy, Charles (the youngest child we are supporting) was raped by older men, leaving him infected with syphilis; and a young girl, Elida, was raped by at least three men. The police, the hospital and the City Assembly are currently dealing with their cases. We need to wait before we can ascertain their HIV status after these attacks.

I have met these children. The news of their abuse has been devastating to me, as it has been to all of the staff at Chimwemwe. I didn't see Charles on this last visit, but this picture of him was taken in late October (on my previous visit). He's wearing my hat, and has been dancing because he was happy. We are all desperate to get the renovations finished so that the City Assembly will allow the children to return to the safety of the centre. At the moment, the best we can do for the children is to ensure that they get at least one good meal a day, reassure them that the centre will re-open soon and help them to deal with whatever has happened to them.

Charles in happier times

Our long-term goals for the centre are ultimately to have enough money to buy the property (we currently rent it and have a guaranteed three-year lease) and to have set up income-generating projects which will benefit the community and also make the centre self-sustaining. One such project is to build and run a maize-mill in the community and we are also looking to rent or buy some field space to grow maize and other vegetables and to raise chickens.

I realise that this is not the cheery, Filofax/planning/organiser-related post you might have tuned in for, but I am extremely grateful to Philofaxy for giving me a chance to show you what we are doing at Chimwemwe and why the support that the Philofaxy community gives to Chimwemwe means so much, not just to me, but to some of the poorest children in the world. My heartfelt thanks go to everyone who has supported us.

Thank you Amanda for the update.

26 February 2013

Web Finds - 26 February 2013

Here are the latest Filofax blog posts from around the internet:
  1. Movin' On Up - Friday, I'm in Love 
  2. How to hack your to-do list (and quiet the monkeys in your mind) - GTD Times
  3. 365/30: Best reasons... - Filomaniac
  4. Filofaxes for swap!! - The Life of The Perpetual Student
  5. My Day Per Page Refills with Sketches :) - Filofax Love
  6. BACK!? In Personal size...   - My Filo World
  7. Getting My Filofax Freak On... Again! - Typecast
  8. Kanban planning in a filofax - Plan - Create - Succeed
  9. Meeting Friends - 2. Filofax Meet-Up München - Filo Manie
  10. 2. Filomaniac Meet up in München - Filomaniac
  11. My Collection - Jagged Little Thoughts
  12. Simple Explanation of GTD - Planner Chicks
  13. Filofaxiness - Pocket Cuban - Marigolds' Loft 
  14. Please welcome Ruby, my new crimson Malden. - Little Creations
  15. The wants - She's Eclectic
  16. How To: Weekly Planning in My Filofax - The Journal Keeper
  17. Guest post by Maria: Poetry Filofax - Anita Lim
  18. Upcycling Guts - The Crazy Suburban Mom
  19. Neue Umfrage: Welche(s) Kalenderformat(e) verwende... - Filomaniac
  20. my week round-up #8 - Paper Lovestory
  21. Using Day to 2 page Filofax Diary - It's My Life
  22. Franklin Covey inserts in my Filofax - Behind my Purpley Life
  • Your blog post could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will read your posts, but we know there is a higher chance of people reading your posts and returning to read other posts if you make them interesting with pictures and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your posts a title... 
Enjoy

Video Web Finds - 26 February 2013

Here are the latest Video Web Finds from around the internet:


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  • Your video could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will watch your video, but we know there is a higher chance of people watching them and returning to watch other videos if you make them interesting with detailed shots and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your videos the right tags and descriptions and please try to avoid 'vertical video syndrome'... 
  • The Links below each video are there to help email subscribers to the blog to view each video. I hope this addition helps. 
Enjoy

Free For All Tuesday No 108

Tuesdays are your chance to ask any Filofax related questions you might have.

So fire away and we will collectively try to answer your questions or offer opinions.

25 February 2013

Reader Under the Spotlight - Babs


Hi! I’m Babs, and I’m a long-time reader of Philofaxy and a long-time filofaxphile. I recently moved from Kent back to my homeland, and now live just outside Glasgow with my husband, our 3 year old son and our two cats – Thursday and Pickwick. I am a full-time mum and part-time MSc student studying Occupational Psychology. With any luck I should finish my masters in September 2013. My Filofax is invaluable in helping keeping my many deadlines and activities organised.

1. When did you buy your first Filofax and what was it?

I think my very first Filofax was a WH Smith generic one, which was black and non-leather. I bought it sometime around my entry to the world of work, which would be 1998-ish. I soon upgraded to a personal Classic in cherry that I still have.

2. What other brands have you used or considered using?

I have used a lot of brands over the years in my quest to find the “perfect” diary layout. Apart from Filofax I’ve used Franklin Covey binders, Moleskine, Paperchase and Paperblanks bound diaries and dallied in the world of online diaries with my iPhone.

3. Out of the organisers you own which is your current favourite (Style and Size)?

I can’t choose between my personal Finsbury in aqua and my A5 Finchley in Imperial purple. I like both of them and switch between them regularly (I’m currently using the aqua Finsbury).

4. How many Filofax organisers do you own?

I think at the last count it was 9 – personal aqua Finsbury, personal cherry Classic, 2 personal pink Line Bursts, personal brown Kensington, A5 black Finsbury, A5 green Finsbury, A5 pink Finsbury, and an A5 imperial purple Finchley.

(ETA – Oops! I forgot the compact yellow Finsbury, which takes the total to 10!)

5. What is the oldest Filofax in your collection?

My personal Classic in cherry that I probably bought in the late 1990’s. It’s all cracked and peeling now, which is a shame.

6. What do you use your Filofax for?

My day-to-day filo is currently my personal aqua Finsbury which I use as a diary, address book, note book and expense tracker. My back-up day-to-day filo is the A5 imperial purple Finchley, which I often switch to. The A5 black Finsbury is a recipe book and the personal cherry Classic is a paper storage binder. I’m going to set up either the green or pink Finsbury as a book-o-fax sometime soon and keep meaning to set up a Line Burst as a health and fitness filo. The others are, as yet, unused.

7. What was the feature about Filofax you like most?

I like the flexibility of them and the fact you can set them up how you want to use them. I also think the leather binders look pretty!

8. If you could design your own Filofax what would it feature?

I like the binders as they are and don’t feel as strongly about pen loops and the like as some readers do. But like many others I would like better quality paper inserts and the ability to design your own diary insert and get it printed to your own specification.

9. How do you carry your Filofax?

My filo generally stays at home as I study from home and refer to it through the day. If I’m using the personal I will also carry it in my handbag, but the A5 usually doesn’t travel outside the house.

10. Which Filofax in the current range do you like the most? Are you going to buy it?

I adore the plum Osterley – both in personal and A5 sizes. But top of my wishlist is the orange Osterley (personal and A5) both of which I think are stunning! I can’t really justify the purchase though – either in terms of binder usage or pounds!! Maybe one day …

11. What is the most you have ever spent on a Filofax? Which model?

Probably my aqua Finsbury which I had to purchase from FF France as they didn’t sell the colour in the UK. It cost €87 brand new. With the exception of the Classic cherry (which I paid about £40 for back in the day), all the other binders have been bought 2nd hand or in sales at vastly reduced prices.

12. What's your favourite Filofax tip or hack?

I’m not very good at hacks … I think my favourite tip would be to check out Philofaxy and seek out Steve and Ray’s inserts if you’re looking for something you need!

13. Turning to Philofaxy, what do you like the most?

I love the sense of community (and enabling!) that you get from Philofaxy. There’s always something new to learn and I love looking inside other people’s Filofaxes!!!

14. And what do you not like about Philofaxy?

Er … I can’t think of anything! Trick question ☺

15. What was the last music track you downloaded or bought?

iTunes reliably informs me the last track I downloaded was “Drinking from the Bottle” by Calvin Harris feat. Tinie Tempah.

16.  Mark Darcy or Daniel Cleaver?


In my youth I’d have been attracted to the bad boy Daniel Cleaver! But now I’m older and wiser, it’d have to be Mark Darcy every time!

Thank you Babs for appearing under our Spot Light..... and of course if any one else would like to appear in this feature then please contact philofaxy at gmail dot com

24 February 2013

A Date For Your Filofax - Sunday 3rd March 2013

New York

London

Paris

Sydney



We are going to run another conference round-table voice chat using Skype.

I'm sure we are gradually getting to know each other's voices, but I will make a point of going 'around the table' to get everyone to introduce themselves this time.

So...When, Where, What, Who and How?

When? - Sunday 3 March from 9am London time, 10am Paris time and 8pm Sydney time.  Additionally I will be on line at 10am (US East Coast time), 3pm London time, 4 pm Paris time etc.  See the clocks at the top of this post to see roughly what time you should be on line.

Where? - an on-line chat using Skype.

What do I need? - just a micro-phone and some head phones(in ear phones work fine) and a free Skype account. Using headphones reduces 'echo' on the call.

Who - All of you... connect up with Philofaxy and we will attempt to get as many of us linked in to the audio conference as possible. Come and listen if you don't want to chat.  What do we talk about? Filofax stuff... but anything else as well. It's like long lost friends meeting up for coffee and a catch up.. but don't worry if you have never joined in before... you are an old friend too!

How -
  1. Connect to Philofaxy by firstly searching for Philofaxy in Skype, I will then add you as a contact.
  2. Then  'Start Chat',  I will then add you in to the chat room. 
  3. Then if you request it, I can add you to the audio conference as well. But if you just want to chat via keyboard that's fine. That way it's slightly less hectic for me! 
Come and join in the fun, even if you only pop in to say hello...

As with previous round-tables there will also be a parallel text chat room going at the same time as the voice conference, so you can listen to the voice chat and type if you wish.

If you need any assistance setting up Skype, please pop a comment in this post and I will try and help you get one line. Skype is free for computer to computer calls....

Here is my post on how to improve your Skype audio with headphones or a headset.

Hope to be chatting with you on Sunday 3 March 2013

23 February 2013

Web Finds - 23 February 2013

Here are the latest Filofax blog posts from around the internet:
  1. Early birthday present - Susan Sharpe Ceramics
  2. Guest post: How Stephanie uses her Filofax and Plannerisms Planner - Plannerisms
  3. Gute Frage (9) - Filomaniac
  4. Doodle - Cloudberry Musings
  5. New addition to my Filofax family! - Live, Love, Organise
  6. um... Help? - The Crazy Suburban Mom
  7. 365/30: My planner/organizer crushes are... - Filomaniac
  8. Filomaniac fragt... Maria - Filomaniac
  9. Mulberry Fund - Update - Imysworld
  10. blogging tips :) - Paper Lovestory
  11. Bookmarks for my A5 Kensington - The Wonderful Life of Alice
  12. My new A5 and updated Filofax Family!! - Filo Obsessed
  13. A List of Purple Filofax Organizers - Behind my Purpley Life
  14. Making the Most of Your Planner’s A-Z Tabs - Homemakers Daily
  15. Update on Planner-chaos -  Oh Little Wonderland
  16. So here are some pictures of the LOVELY yellow Finsbury  - Oh Little Wonderland
  17. {Filofax Friday} The Tour – Part 2 - This Little Life of Mine
  18. Project Pocket Part III; Final Set Up & Tour Part II; Planning! - My Filo World
  19. Another pocket : Dickie Malden :o) - Chrissie's Universe
  20. All For One! - Circus Life with Disturbed Mamacita 
  21. Personal Chameleon - the unemployed,part 1 ;o) - Chrissie's Universe
  22. Journaling: Therapy for the Cluttered Mind - Day Timer Blog
  23. Reminder! Just 8 days left... 35% off at Filofax - My Filo World
  • Your blog post could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will read your posts, but we know there is a higher chance of people reading your posts and returning to read other posts if you make them interesting with pictures and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your posts a title... 
Enjoy

Video Webfinds - 23 February 2013

Here are the latest Filofax videos from around the internet:


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  • Your video could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will watch your video, but we know there is a higher chance of people watching them and returning to watch other videos if you make them interesting with detailed shots and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your videos the right tags and descriptions and please try to avoid 'vertical video syndrome'...
Enjoy

22 February 2013

Free For All Friday No 223

I was having a little look at my filofax New Year's resolutions and am delighted to say that I've easily stuck to each one! It seems that using both A5 and personal size together is the best of both worlds for me, and I'm feeling pretty content with my filos. Are you using the binder that you'd planned to use so far, or are you still on the hunt for the perfect one?
And as always on Fridays, please feel free to discuss anything Filofax or ring-binder related... 

21 February 2013

Is your set up working as planned?

So we are eight weeks in to the new year already and Spring/Autumn is hopefully just around the corner. You might have already started planning holidays and other events later in the year.

We often find though this far in to the year that people are either getting on swimmingly well with their set up, or they are stumbling around in a power cut looking for the torch to try and find their way outside. Hopefully you fall in to the first camp... but if not help is at hand.

At this time of year I always recall a post that Nan wrote about having a 'Cooling Off Period'. It is well worth another read because there are some essential lessons for all of us in that post.

What I will also add after reading some comments on line this morning and doing something similar myself this morning. If you have another Filofax organiser that you aren't using, then why not change over in to that for a few weeks. As long as it is the same size then you will not have to re-write lots of pages, but a different pocket layout or colour might bring you some unexpected benefits.

And if you are changing out of one in to another, then why not use the opportunity to review the content and the pages you have got in your organiser. Remember to review and give your content a little bit of a diet!  Use the change as a chance to clean and maintain your organisers too.

Quite a few people have found this sort of exercise quite therapeutic. So put some time to one side, grab a drink and make some space on the table or at your desk to lay out the contents of your organiser and work your way through it. 

20 February 2013

Information Pages

When you buy a new Filofax or a Filofax diary insert they come with additional information pages at the front of the insert.

Back in the 1980's these additional pages where sold separately as 'Data Sets' and split between  International Data Set and a UK data set. I still have some 1980's ones in my old Winchester, quite nostalgic in a way, but the information is very much out of date now of course.

If you want to know the Sunrise and Sunset times for London in 1988 without the internet..... then I'm your man!

They included things like:
  • BBC World Service Short Wave Frequencies and Programmes. - Sadly BBS WS is no longer broadcast on Short Wave Radio! 
  • Contagious Diseases and Vaccinations
  • International Clothing Sizes
  • Seasonal Temperatures around the World
  • Some Notable London Eating Places
  • UK Travel Information - lists of phone numbers for wonderful things like 'Motorail'
  • Wine Vintage Chart

In modern versions you get:
  • Personal Information
  • Travel Information
  • UK Road Distances
  • European Union Members - Capital, Currency, Time, Dialling codes National Holidays
  • International Information - Capital, Currency, Time, Dialling codes National Holidays
  • Notable Dates for that year
  • Weights and Measures
  • Clothing Size Equivalents

Having started using the 'Ray and Steve' inserts exclusively this year I've been looking at the additional pages from previous years diary inserts to see which ones I should create not as a direct copy of course, but with similar information and to make them available on Philofaxy.

However, looking at the list above how many people refer to the information contained on these pages and which pages?

19 February 2013

Web Finds - 19th February 2013

Here are the latest Filofax blog posts from around the internet:
  1. Paperchase A5 inserts & Washi Tape! - The Wonderful Life of Alice
  2. I LOVE my new Filofax! - Part one - She's Eclectic
  3. Fashion and functionality - Paper Lovestory
  4. I LOVE my new Filofax! - Part two - She's Eclectic
  5. Personalising Filofax Kendal - Kelsie
  6. Filofaxiness - Adelphi Pocket - Marigolds' Loft
  7. My Filofax Setup - M2P and Goalsetting - Chaotic Perfectionist
  8. Overcoming nerves and being busy - Just an Essex girl
  9. Roman dating essentials - Alison Morton 
  10. The Personal Aston in orchid colour :o) - Chrissie's Universe 
  11. A New Filofax and a Healing Faire - Healing Hands of Light
  12. They've Arrived... - LJ's Blog of Stuff 
  13. Attention Filo-philes: what can I do about Saturday and Sunday?! - Zoe At Home
  14. Thinking in Colour - Cloudberry Musings
  15. How I migrated to my mini (filofax) - Vanilla Folders
  16. All Stars Guest Post by Steve: Zen to Done review - Anita Lim 
  17. In ♥ with my Filo! - Lomalicious
  18. Drive-thru planning...  - The Crazy Suburban Mom 
  19. Lebens(abschnitts)-Gefährten - Filomaniac
  20. my week round-up #7 - Paper Lovestory
  21. Indie and I are back! - Paper Pens Ink 
  22. Filofax Update!! - Filo Obsessed
  23. Stockholm Filofax Meet - This Bugs Life 
  24. Filofax Guest post #1 by Smile; Filofax Winchester in Pink! - My Filo World
  25. My Filofax for 2013 - Carolyn Shares
  26. A-Z Index Customised For Filofax - Kelsie
  27. My tiny black book (my massive mini Filofax) - Vanilla Folders
  28. KAVAJ iPad Case: A Product Review - Well Planned Life
  • Your blog post could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will read your posts, but we know there is a higher chance of people reading your posts and returning to read other posts if you make them interesting with pictures and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your posts a title... 
Enjoy

Video Web Finds - 19 February 2013

Here are the latest videos for you to enjoy including one from 'the hand of Philofaxy'.... my dear wife Alison!





































  • Your video could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will watch your video, but we know there is a higher chance of people watching them and returning to watch other videos if you make them interesting with detailed shots and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your videos the right tags and descriptions and please try to avoid 'vertical video syndrome'...

Enjoy

Free For All Tuesday No. 107

Tuesdays are your chance to ask any Filofax related questions you might have.

So fire away and we will collectively try to answer your questions or offer opinions.

18 February 2013

Reader Under the Spotlight - Kariné

Today I would like to introduce you to Kariné.....

Originally from Bucharest, Romania, Writing + Language Specialist,  Kariné Tovmassian is a product of the Southern California Armenian School system. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Honours English and Foreign Languages & Literatures from California State University, Northridge (USA) and her Master of Arts in Commercial Diplomacy from the Monterey Institute of International Studies (USA).

She serves as a creative consultant to governments, agencies and various private companies, advocating the use of simple language, advising on creative + efficient project management techniques and facilitating workshops on resume writing for the U.S. Department of Labour. She writes stories that showcase lifestyle design, the intricacies of planning  and the quirky, whimsical nature of human beings. For more information on Karine’s writing, to view a selection of her other publications or find out about setting an appointment with her please visit her writing company on-line at www.ThinkerExtraordinaire.com. To participate with her in daily banter, visit her Facebook page or follow her on Twitter.

1. When did you buy your first Filofax and what was it?

November 20, 2012, Apex A5 in Fuchsia; purchased on-line in Fairbanks, Alaska. I paid a whopping $36.00 for it. On sale at the Filofax website.

2. What other brands have you used or considered using?

Previously, I  tried, unsuccessfully, to fit my creative lifestyle into the Franklin Covey planner. I even attended one of their workshops showcasing the "Covey" system. In fact, I still have one of their old leather binders and keep it simply because my mother was good enough to sew the loose bits back into shape. It has sentimental value to me now and I just cannot find quality FC planners any more. The planners and paper inserts they produce now are atrocious. I don't understand why they've dropped their standards and raised their prices. I've also tried the Mulberry planner, similar in size to the Filofax A5 (Congo) but couldn't get enough inserts to appease my need to sort the various portions of my life.

3. Out of the organisers you own which is your current favourite (Style and Size)?

I really favor the Apex A5. I did have a good look-see through all the Filofax models and wanted to have the sort I wouldn't mind throwing in the passenger seat of my car, or plop on a table in a tea house without worrying about scuffs, marks, dents or other mishaps. I was looking for aesthetics and form. The Apex makes full use of the Bauhaus philosophy of form following function. Also, I love the bright and happy fuchsia colour with the accented yellow, elasticated band. I rarely use the band because I am worried about wearing it out. See what I mean about worrying about nicks and scuffs? I wish my Apex had more pockets though and didn't skimp on the inside cover texture.

4. How many Filofax organisers do you own?

Three. The Apex A5, a stunning, red Chameleon A5, which serves as my project management center for my writing projects and a red pocket Chameleon which serves as my wallet. I am contemplating making the switch over into the Slimline series for wallets, but I don't know where I would put my loose change.

5. What is the oldest Filofax in your collection?

The wee Apex A5-it's just a few months old but I feel as though we've been friends forever.

6. What do you use your Filofax for?

I find the Filofax-ability of Filofax planners to be a better medium than FC for documenting, tracking and maintaining the various parts of my life which, in my A5 Apex include: menu planning, grocery shopping, keeping my appointments together, to-dos, a contact list of my clientèle, running lists for Christmas cards, household inventory, eBay items for sale, daily, weekly, monthly and annual cleaning schedule for our house, birthdays, beauty regimen, airline and hotel travel points, rewards cards and travel/work calendars. I also have a zip envelope of pens that travels along to colour-code my calendars.

The pocket Chameleon holds credit cards, folding money, coins, IDs, Square Credit Card Reader, thumb drive, business cards, post-it notes + flags, and a Caran D'ache fountain pen (blue-black ink).

The A5 Chameleon holds all the chapter headings to projects I am currently developing.

7. What was the feature about Filofax you like most?

Its adaptability to the user's needs; Filofax is brilliantly user-friendly.  Before meeting Filofax, I would NEVER have thought of using a planning system as a wallet. The various inserts, colors and design models allow for a modular system that works within my life, as opposed to to other systems where I feel I must chop of and delineate bits of my life in order to have some of it fit, awkwardly at best, into other planning systems. If planning systems could be compared to computing systems, Filofax would be the Apple of planners.

8. If you could design your own Filofax what would it feature?

I would LOVE to be on Filofax's planning and design team. There are hundreds of lost and abused planners out there that need a good home and people don't know what to do with them. I would de-construct the Filofax into a truly modular system (something they are attempting now with the Flex system) and allow customers to send in their old planners, regardless of brand, retrofitting them with Filofax ring systems. I would allow current Filofax users to choose bigger or smaller ring conversions for the models they want to build and customize. The Apex model, as you can tell, is my favourite model because its texture, durability, color, form and function; it also has great flatability in case anyone was wondering (even on aeroplanes). I would redesign the interior to make it more pocket  and texture friendly.

9. How do you carry your Filofax?

When I'm home, by hand. While traveling, I use a vintage Louis Vuitton Randonnee GM (Grand Model).

10. Which Filofax in the current range do you like the most? Are you going to buy it?
I adore the Apex, but the corners are already showing wear.  Leather lends itself to a greater value-added in other models. I cannot, for example, see myself using a pocket Apex. I love the vintage leather models that people unload on eBay. Often they don't know or include the type or model name. I probably won't buy another Filofax for quite some time, not because they are not beautiful and lend themselves to be collected but because I am a firm believer in the "You have one life. Thus, you need only one planner." I know there are people of both sides of this statement, arguing about their work life being separate from their private life, but I am a purist where calendars are concerned. Certainly, one can have multiple calendars in a planning system. So, I hold fast to the one planning system per life. My second Filofax simply serves as a Project Management centre for all my writing projects. It is, at best, an extended notebook. I never plan in the second Filofax.

11. What is the most you have ever spent on a Filofax? Which model?

$50.00 on the Chameleon A5-gotta love eBay.

12. What's your favourite Filofax tip or hack?
As an editor, writer and workshop facilitator I often travel to my clients' locations and need my mobile office to be as compact as possible. Because I accept credit card payments and need to invoice clients on the spot, I use the small zip pocket envelope as a keeper for my Square Credit Card Reader in my pocket Chameleon wallet, along with the USB thumb-drive for my Quickbooks account and safe haven for earrings that need to be swapped out.
 
13. Turning to Philofaxy, what do you like the most?

I love the creative collective value of the community and how passionately they relay their stories with saint-like patience, going over every custom detail, as if their lives depended on it. After ordering my first Filofax and becoming a community member, I can now understand the painstaking process of setting up a Filofax for the first time or refreshing it to best suit one's needs.

There is a huge stigma in our societies for people that lead cluttered lives and to those whom organization is not a sixth sense. The simple awareness of wanting to lead a more pulled-together life is reason enough to celebrate. However, at Philofaxy, life seems to be absolutely cherished through active members who encourage planning, breaking down the processes of setting up a functional planners and not judging those who've no clue what a planner is and how to go about setting one up for the first time.

14. And what do you not like about Philofaxy?

I find the set up confusing. I often ask questions and am referred to page within Philofaxy that I would have seen but is somehow hidden from view. I would appreciate a filofax-like tab reference section! I also would like to see photos of Filofaxes that are for sale in the Adspot portion. The written word only goes so far.

15. What was the last music track you downloaded or bought?

Colin Hay, "Man At Work." Brilliant company to keep whilst planning!

16.  Mark Darcy or Daniel Cleaver?

Sergeant First Class, Robert Tovmassian. He puts Mark Darcy to shame.

Thank you Kariné for agreeing to appear under our spot light. If anyone else would like to be featured then please contact philofaxy at gmail dot com

17 February 2013

Filofax Pocket monthly diaries for free download

Another request today. This time it is month views in Pocket size. You have a choice of one month per page or one month per view (i.e. across two pages.)


You can download this layout as a prepared set or you can download the source files to adapt the design for yourself.

Pre-prepared sets


You can download the 2013 month per page set as a Word file or as a PDF file.

You can download the 2013 month per view (pictured above) set as a Word file or as a PDF file.

Print these double-sided. If you have a duplex printer, set it to flip on the short edge. If you don't then you'll have to print odd-numbered pages and then refeed to print the even-numbered pages on the reverse. You might have to experiment to find out how to refeed the paper.

On one side of each sheet you'll find crop marks. Use a craft knife and a steel ruler to release the Pocket pages and punch them. The templates are set up with mirrored gutters to accommodate the holes.

If using the PDF be sure to set it to print at full size as explained here.

Source files

You can also roll your own using our source files. For month per page, you'll need this Word file and this Excel file. For month per view size, you'll need this Word file and this Excel file.

If you want to know how to go about using the source files, this post will help you. If you look at the 'Free Diary Pages' link in the navigation bar above, you'll find some videos which explain the mail merge process for different generations of the Office application, too.

16 February 2013

Web Finds - 16 February 2013

Here are the latest Filofax blog posts from around the internet
  1. Personal Kendal Filofax Customised! - Kelsie
  2. Personal Domino - Update - Lady Elizabeth's Life
  3. Pocket Breast Cancer Filofax! - The Wonderful Life of Alice
  4. Mulberry Agenda Clear Pockets – for Imy - This Bugs Life
  5. Planners / Binders - Lady Elizabeth's Life
  6. Filofax, Moleskine, Notebooks, Oh My! - Said the Cat
  7. Just a quicky! Weekly Filofax update - My Filo World
  8. Current Setup - Jagged Little Thoughts
  9. Passion or obsession? - Plan . Create . Succeed  
  10. Snow, sleet, kiln, and Filofax - Susan Sharpe Ceramics
  11. My Filofax Family! - The Wonderful Life of Alice
  12. - Jagged Little Thoughts
  13. Notching an obsession back down to a passion - Plan . Create . Succeed 
  14. Do these Filofax inserts make my butt look fat? - The Crazy Suburban Mom
  15. 11 reasons why Filofax is better than a PDA - This Bugs Life
  16. Filomaniac fragt... Sverri - Filomaniac
  17. ❤New Sets of Kokeshi Doll Page Markers❤  - Filofax Love
  18. 4 Food Journals To Help With Weight Loss and/or Healthy Eating - Homoemakers Daily 
  19. Filofax spotted in the wild - This Bugs Life
  20. The Return of the Prodigal Planner - The Taylored Life
  21. A way to a girl's heart is through her organisational system... - Filofaximile
  22. Personal Adelphi 12 EUR :o)) - Chrissie's Universe
  23. The Itch to Switch - Planner Chicks
  24. What’s in my Filofax today - This Bugs Life 
  25. My updated binder collection - Paper Lovestory
  26. {Filofax Friday} The Tour – Part 1 - This Little Life of Mine
  27. Free give away #1; Winner in the picture! - My Filo World
  28. Vintage-Serie - Teil 10: Hamilton - Filo- Manie
  29. ealing with Confidential Information in your Filofax - This Bugs Life 
  30. Free Filofax Book Launch Template - Liberty's Yarn
  31. Cassandra's Franklin Covey Monarch size weekly planner - Plannerisms
  32. Current system - detailed - Planner Chicks
  33. Fickle Friday - Friday, I'm in Love 
  34. A Filofax Mash-Up - This Bugs Life
  • Your blog post could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will read your posts, but we know there is a higher chance of people reading your posts and returning to read other posts if you make them interesting with pictures and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your posts a title... 
 Enjoy

Video Web Finds - 16 February 2013

Here are latest Filofax videos from the internet

















Enjoy

15 February 2013

Free For All Friday - No 222

If you have been around the Philofaxy community long enough you will soon realise that any phrase that features the words 'Never, not going to' when associated with the words 'Purchase or Buy' seem to have some sort of inversion function applied to them.....

If you have ever come across Boolean Algebra, it is made up of various rules and theories, but one thing the Professors and Doctors omitted to include was the Philofaxy Inversion Filofax Purchasing Rule (2013), which when simplified comes out as an 'If Not Why Not' Gate.

This has been proved by lengthy studies of readers comments and buying habits that the inversion condition is true and therefore valid...

So what will be the next thing you are 'not' going to 'purchase' ?


But as it is a Friday you are of course free to discuss anything Filofax related...  You will note that the inversion rule doesn't apply in this case... So discussing nothing Filofax related wouldn't be inverted... I rest my case... 'I will get my coat' !

Joking aside, if you are really going to purchase something... how about 15% off from Filofax UK This offer is valid until 4pm UK time this afternoon using the code Love15


14 February 2013

Guest Post - Ashlene - Tracking my Finances with a Filofax.

Thank you to Ashlene for this Guest Post, we often read/hear people say 'I use my Filofax for Tracking Finances' or other things in our every day life, but quite often a brief description doesn't often help us to try out these ideas, so seeing an actual example is great! Thank you Ashlene for sharing this with us and for the great photos too.  

For a while now I have been trying to make a Filofax work for me as a wallet/purse in order to keep a track of my finances. I've tried pocket and mini sizes and even incorporating my cards and cash into my everyday personal Filofax, but nothing works for me. Then a few weeks ago I began to think that I was maybe trying to make the Filofax work too hard for me. I'm very fussy when it comes to wallets/purses and none of my Filofax experiments lived up to my expectations of what a wallet should do. I wanted a Filofax that would hold cash, cards and coins and most Filofaxes just are not designed to do that. So I came up with a happy medium that has been serving me well for the last few weeks and has also been helping me keep track of my finances. This is one of my goals for this year as I am notoriously bad with money and my boyfriend has recently started talking about buying a house together, so it's time to stop spending and start saving.


Meet my compact Holborn in Wine. I picked this up in Easons (an Irish stationery chain) a few weeks ago. When I first laid eyes on it I knew it was going to work perfectly as my new 'Financial' Filofax. It's thin enough to fit in my handbag but had loads of pockets for receipts, bills, pay slips, etc. Let's take a tour


The credit card pockets on the inside cover hold my credit card and store cards. Most of these are paid off but my aim this year is to clear the credit card and Debenham's card. None of these cards get spent on and I keep them here so I can find them easily when I want to make a payment.


Receipts for recent purchases also get kept in this pocket until I have time to record them on my Finance pages which are kept further on into the Filofax.


At the front of the Filofax, I keep a tabbed month on two pages diary for recording when bills and payments need to be made. I highlight each bill so I can see them easily and I put a little tick beside each once it's been paid. I also record each time I fill my car up with fuel and how many miles I got out of the last fill up.

After the diary, I have a few sheets of Filofax Finance pages. I use some of these to track any daily spending on my debit card (although I'm trying to minimise this) and I also have a sheet for my Debenham's card and credit card so I can see at a glance how much I still owe and track my repayments, interest, etc.


I keep all my reward cards in the Holborn in credit card holders. It's easy to find the card I'm looking for and they are also easily accessible.


Now we come to the back of the Holborn (and my favourite part!). Here, I keep 10 top opening envelopes which are used to budget my money each month. This envelope system is quite popular in America and involves breaking your monthly salary into the the main categories you spend in and putting a certain amount of money into envelopes labeled with each category. Once you have spent all the money in a certain envelope, you cannot spend any more money in that category until you get paid again. I have always liked this budgeting method but this is the first time I have really got it to work for me. My 10 categories are:

- Fuel
- Luxuries (getting my nails and hair done, etc)
- Entertainment (cinema, etc)
- Cosmetics (make up, shampoo, moisturiser, etc)
- Savings (the money which needs to go into my savings account)
- Gifts (used for any month when I have to but birthday gifts, etc)

My monthly food budget is then divided roughly across 4 envelopes. One for each week:

- Week 1
- Week 2
- Week 3
- Week 4


Finally, at the back of the Holborn, I keep my most recent pay slip and my Credit Union book which I need for lodging my savings. The pocket beside the pen loop houses any bills which need to paid which then get filed away once the payment is made.

So that's my set up, but you may be wondering where I keep my loose change. That's kept  in my cute little Kipling wallet along with my debit card, my three most frequently used reward cards (Tescos, Sainsburys and Easons) and my driver's licence. Each week I move my weekly food budget from the Holborn into my Kipling wallet. This means I don't have to carry the Holborn around with me all the time and this stops me impulse buying because all of my cards are in the Holborn. I was never going to be happy carrying loose change in a Filofax and I don't like having a gigantic purse either so this is my happy medium - a tiny wallet of essentials and my compact Holborn for everything else and keeping track of my finances. This set up is working really well for me so far and I hope you have enjoyed this tour around my Financial Filofax .


Thank you Ashlene, and of course if you would like to share anything Filofax or ring bound organiser related with us as a guest post please get in touch philofaxy at gmail dot com

13 February 2013

Filofax minimalist page per day diary - now in Personal and Pocket to download

When Steve and I published the minimalist A5 diary, more than one person asked for Personal or Pocket versions. We are making both available today.


As in the A5 version, there are no time slots and no visual clutter, just a clear date block and light, ruled lines.

It would be ideal as a diary, but might work well alongside - say - a week to view being used as an appointments diary, where this new layout is used to record notes or to log date-specific information.

You can download this layout as a prepared set or you can download the source files to adapt the design for yourself.


Pre-prepared sets

You can download the 2013 Personal set as a Word file or as a PDF file.

You can download the 2013 Pocket set as a Word file or as a PDF file.

Print these double-sided. If you have a duplex printer, set it to flip on the short edge. If you don't then you'll have to print odd-numbered pages and then refeed to print the even-numbered pages on the reverse. You might have to experiment to find out how to refeed the paper.

On one side of each sheet you'll find crop marks. Use a craft knife and a steel ruler to release the Personal or Pocket pages and punch them. The templates are set up with mirrored gutters to accommodate the holes.

If using the PDF be sure to set it to print at full size as explained here.


Source files

You can also roll your own using our source files. For Personal size, you'll need this Word file and this Excel file.  For Pocket size, you'll need this Word file instead (the same Excel file drives both Personal and Pocket versions.)

If you want to know how to go about using the source files, this post will help you. If you look at the 'Diary Inserts' link in the navigation bar above, you'll find some videos which explain the mail merge process for different generations of the Office application, too.

12 February 2013

Web Finds - 12 February 2013

Here are the latest Filofax posts from around the internet:
  1. Free Filofax Templates for Indie Authors - Libertys Yarn
  2. Mulberry Agenda - Pondering - Imysworld
  3. Breaking up with my Filofax…? - Femme Musings
  4. Make a flexible today marker and note holder - My Life All in One Place
  5. Collections - Thoughts and Exploration
  6. Reggie On Location: Blizzard Nemo 2013 - Well Planned Life
  7. Filofax Containment Part Three . . . or lack of it! - The Storage Studio
  8. Project Pocket Part III; Final Set Up & Tour Part I - My Filo World
  9. Guest Post: Akiko from kikosattic talks organisers - This Bugs Life
  10. Life Story project - Jagged Little Thoughts
  11. Filofaxiness - Personal Classic - Marigolds' Loft
  12. Paper Planners Still Rock!!! - LJ's Blog of Stuff
  13. Feeling the blues..... - Modern Musings
  14. NYC Meet Up Input Requested - Well Planned Life
  15. Loslassen - Filomaniac
  16. My Main Filofax - It's My Life
  17. In which I may fall off the straight and narrow - Sky Blue Pinkish
  18. Filofax - Month to View - It's My Life
  19. Filofax Swap - It's My Life
  20. What's in my Compact Chameleon Filofax - Lily, Actually
  21. Soapbox Rant: Availability of Filofax Models - The eBook Reader
  22. Planner Paradox: Filofaxes - The Life of The Perpetual Student
  23. Der Reiz des Alten - Filomaniac
  24. A Piazza my mind... - Filofaximile 
  25. my week round-up #6 - Paper Lovestory
  • Your blog post could appear here next week if we missed you this time around. Email us the details and we will include it if we can. 
  • We can not guarantee people will read your posts, but we know there is a higher chance of people reading your posts and returning to read other posts if you make them interesting with pictures and good hints and tips. Do not forget to give your posts a title... 
 Enjoy
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