07 November 2008

Free for All Friday No. 19

Sorry I'm late posting this.

I've had a crazy week. What's new with y'all?



  1. Well I've put my 2009 diaries in to my two Filofax's a pocket and A5 sizes. 2009 is only a few weeks away and my schedule is working towards then so 'be prepared!'


  2. I ordered a red Portobello A5 gently used Filo off EBay. ($20) Now I'll have every size except the Mini, which I doubt I'll want, but who knows?

    I'll use it for my personal notes like diet and health and my happiness journal (recording all the things I'm happy about as a counter to depression).

    Will use it for my daily things but am assuming it's too heavy to take with me. I've stripped down my octopus filo (well, it's a 3-ring not a Filofax) for that purpose. It's lean and mean now and will try to keep it like that.

  3. After thinking that I would switch to a week on two pages, I am thinking it would be difficult to give up the day on a page format. It's just too useful to have extra space, both to let me map out the day and to have a longer to-do list when needed. Can't believe how much time I have spent going back and forth; I am usually a decisive person. Guess it shows how important my planner is to my sanity. I still have not ordered my 2009 diary.

  4. The week to a page (or two pages)view is so efficient for quickly leafing through and finding something and for getting an overview of the week at a glance. But I do see your point about the space. It bedevils me, like the choice between personal/classic/letter size. All have their pros and cons.

    I feel more at peace since I decided to plop for the weekly view and to ignore the siren calls of the day to a page view. It helps that I can limit myself to a couple of appointments per day, and my daughter is grown and on her own, so I really have only my own schedule to deal with. I have enough space on the two pages for notes about the day and telephone numbers and a few to-dos and have decided to keep my business task list on a separate page.

  5. I'm having issues with deciding what format would be best for me. I use the monthly view for a quick overview of appointments. Then I use the weekly for most everything else, but I also like the daily pages and use those sometimes. Usually for the daily, I rewrite what's in a specific day on the weekly format when I get to that day, allowing for more note-taking as the day goes on. But is this the best option - sometimes it's more trouble than it's worth. Maybe something more simple would do, like just using the dailies but I plan a week at a time...so many choices.

  6. I have been busy making pages for my Filo and sorting it out by rewriting info and updating other stuff. I don't know if anyones else ever has the problem of needing to 'align' all your pages when you close your Filo. I find it happens more with my personal than with my A5, but I need to hold all the pages and kind of pull them all into line or the ones at the tend to get bent around the rings. I tried putting a piece of card that I covered and hole punched at the very back, but this only seemed to make it worse and added to the thickness of my Filo. So I have put a spare transparent flyleaf behind my last page - and it works really well. I still need to align the pages somewhat, but this makes it a lot easier. Does anyone else make their own pages?

  7. Hi, Kanalt--Can you separate your uses? Like putting the tasks on another page that could move forward each week?

    Maybe cut an A5 page in half so you could move it from top to bottom rings? Maybe in a different color? I've snipped the paper from the ring holes to the edge of the page so I could easily move the pages around, like a circa. It worked well. The paper is thinner than Circa paper so I have to be extra careful when I move the paper. And I found that if worked better if I didn't cut the paper straight to the left (parallel to the top edge of the paper) but at an angle of 45 degrees or more.

    That would give you an extra page you could insert into the weekly pages to hold notes about a particular day.

    Or just have some plain lined paper in the binder and when you need extra room make a notation on the weekly page "See Notes" or a symbol and then date the note pages.

    Let us know how you work it out.

    Best wishes,

  8. Silver--
    I made my own pages for the past three or four years, but had them spiral bound. For this year I have them in a 3-ring binder (the Filos are so heavy and I have a slim 3-ring 1-inch).

    I don't bother with printing for any size other than A5/Classic--just don't want to go to the trouble of cutting down the paper and getting more hole punches. And can get a ream of letter paper cut in half at the office supply store so easily.

    I do need to have something at the back and front of my binder to keep the last and first few pages neat. Usually a business card holder or a photo holder--something plastic that will stay a little stiff, and is slippery enough for the pages to slide over. If you look at the letter-size 3-ring binders they often come with a page lifter that accomplishes the same thing. The purchased pages seem to do ok without it, but printer paper doesn't seem to. Maybe there's a finish on the pre-printed pages that makes them slippery. But even they seem to need something there to keep the holes from tearing.

  9. GG - I have thought about using a separate page for tasks or notes. I did try using the week + notes style, but I wasn't fond of it - not enough room then for the weekly appointments. I'm going to NYC next month (no place here on Long Island to buy Filo supplies) and am (hopefully) going to buy some jot pads, so that may help, using the paper for extra notes that I can move from week to week, top or bottom of the planner.

    I have thought about doing my own pages, but it just seems so time consuming, time I don't often find myself with. But maybe one day I could actually get that into motion. Also, I did ask for a Filo hole punch for Christmas - it's not something that I would ever buy myself but if I had it, I'd definitely use it. So, if I get that too, then I can really start to make my own pages.

    Thanks for the tip!

  10. I went shopping yesterday and bought the 2009 calendar for my little Lizell wallet/agenda. My dear friend Marcia was visiting from out of state and she also bought her calendar for her Pocket Filofax. We had a nice long discussion of our various organizational systems and how they work.

  11. My 2009 week per page diary is all ready. You can see it here.

    I do make certain pages. Actually the transparent flyleaf is one of the easiest to make yourself, if you have some thin plastic, like a sheet of viewfoil material, a guillotine and a hole punch. I always put one at the front and rear the binder (or perhaps have a card holder or transparent envelope at the back). It certainly helps with the page alignment and closing.

  12. My gently used A5 Portobello from Ebay arrived. I decided to give it to my daughter, who's starting her career next month. I printed off some weekly view pages for the balance of 2008, gave her the monthly tabs from a DayRunner set of pages for 2009, printed off some yearly planning pages for 2009, 2010, and 2011, and some notes pages. And some personal size pages for notes to supplement the weekly view pages. Will stop by the Container Store and see if they have A5 weekly view pages for 2009. Am hoping they will still have them and the shortages people have mentioned are local. Will cut down some plastic file folders for flyleaves. Reconfigured an Acco hole punch so she can punch papers if she prints any out or buys papers from other makers. Am hoping she will find it useful. I know she will need to track multiple projects and contacts and am warning her to make notes about what she accomplishes to be ready for her next job search. (It's a non-profit so I don't know how permanent it is).

    So she'll be off to a good start with her Filofax-based life!


  13. Shoe repair for Filofax???

    I just noticed that the gently used Filo's closure strap seems a bit loose, as if it would come off the back of the book. Has anyone had a Filofax repaired at a shoe repair shop?

    The next time I bid on an Ebay Filo I will take the warnings more seriously, though I do like the binder--it lies flat when open and doesn't have the padding inside the cover that so many of them do now, which makes them so bulky.


  14. GMAX--I must say that the picture of your purple Filo is the most beautiful, luscious, purple goodness I've ever seen. The purple pen and the purple background--the purpleness is so inspirational. I must get a purple Filo. That is my favorite Filofax photo. I keep going back to it and it always soothes my nerves.

    The pink Filofax is also nice.

    Must post anonymously because I feel a bit silly, but at the same time I believe it's important to enjoy the things we use daily and to include in our lives as much beauty and happiness as possible. In the little things as well as the big.

  15. So I'm a week late on this post, but I need some advice. For about 3 months now I have been going back and forth between my A5 Filo (which is in that fabulous purple color, and I love it, but have issues with the weekly calendar formats), and my full-size Uncalendar (which you can check out at www.uncalendar.com for those of you who are unfamiliar). I upgraded to the A5 earlier this year for more space on the weekly calendar, but after trying 3 different formats I still am having issues. The Uncalendar pages are 8 1/2 by 11, so there is tons of room to write my schedule, lists etc. Problem is, I have to have all of my contacts, addresses, and reference info in my Filo. This results in me using 2 books, one for my weekly and monthly calendars and the other for everything else. It seems like I should just make it work with my Filo to have everything in one place. So then I go back to my Filo, but after a week or two of feeling constrained I go back to my Un again. I have so much more room to stretch out my thoughts and plans in my Un. Does anyone else have their calendar separate from their contacts and reference? Does anyone have any advice for me?

  16. Hi, Laurie--

    My experience has been that I was mentally tortured and spent too much money going back and forth between formats. The only thing that helped was to firmly decide that I would use a particular one for my business things and other ones for other purposes. And they're all either Classic/A5 or personal size, and I firmly intend not to change my basic plan.

    If you can maintain your life and it works for you like it is, then go ahead and keep using it as is. In a few months you may decide it doesn't really work for you. Maybe you could have a separate section in the A5 for lists? But if that doesn't work for you and you want to have everything on one page, then your thought process may just need that overview.

    Could you take the Un pages and fold them in half and put them in the A5? Maybe in a slash pocket (I cut down some of the plastic full-size report folders from Office Depot so they'd be a little bit wider than classic size, and I fold letter size papers to fit in them and they work great.) And if they were loose, just put in a pocket, you'd still be able to get them out quickly. And you'd be able to spread several out on a table and see more than one week at once.

    Or you might punch them on the short side and fold them in the middle so they would fit into your planner. Then you could just turn your planner 90 degrees to refer to them. And you could still take them out for planning.

    Another possibility is to design your own pages incorporating the uncalendar features you like most. You could design them so that one view would incorporate two landscape letter-size pages that could both be unfolded out to present two letter size pages at once. The Time System pages are a bit like this--they have monthly pages that are designed like that, and they fold around weekly pages so as to make little packages of the month. I don't describe it too well, but if you explore timesystem.us and look at their A5 Business forms, you'll find several examples.

  17. Anonymous of 14th Nov...
    So glad you enjoyed the photo.
    In fact I think the purpleness in that shot must be more of an optical illusion, but I agree it is quite a soothing image.
    I'm sure you're right that finding beauty in everyday things is something we should embrace.

  18. Hi GG, thanks for the advice. I am realizing that no matter how enticing a separate calendar system is, I need to keep my calendar in my Filofax with everything else. I do a lot of long-term planning, which I just can't do with a bound book. I like to have a perpetual calendar, where I keep a couple of months past for reference and at least 6 months future for planning. Also the monthly calendar for the entire upcoming year, and pull-out calendars for the upcoming two years. No bound system has the flexibility yet permanence of my Filofax. When my pages are done, I take them out and put them into my archival binder at home, so my Filo binder always has my current, relevant calendar. I always get annoyed toward the end of the year in a bound book when I have to spill over into next year's book for planning.

    Also, the writing and re-writing was getting to be too much. Every time I changed my book over, I had to scan through the upcoming pages of my book and write all my entries into my other book. Doing this every couple of weeks was getting very tedious, and I kept feeling like something was slipping through the cracks! If I can commit to using only the calendar in my Filo, I’ll write it in once and it’s done.

    A few months ago a Philofaxy poster had a very good point: Filofax might not be the very most efficient system, but the aesthetics of the leather, nice paper, and customization win out. I really do love the purple leather of my binder, and using it is very pleasing. And to be perfectly honest, my life is not so busy that I have to have such a complicated weekly page. Bottom line for me is, I need to make it work with my Filo, for my sanity’s sake, to have everything together in one place so I don’t feel scattered.

    Thank you for your words of encouragement, I will absolutely incorporate aspects of my Uncalendar that I like so much into my Filo pages. And I will use my tabs system more efficiently, and refer to them more often. I think if I can make it a habit to refer to my tab sections while I am planning my week, I won’t need to have everything in front of me on my weekly page. This will also keep me from re-writing my lists from week to week, which I was doing much of the time!

  19. Laurie, that problem with bound pages has bedeviled me,too. I've been through the same thing--I used to get my calendar pages spiral bound and then at the end of the year had the same annoyance. But at least we experimented and tried variations--otherwise we'd still wonder from time to time if that other solution wouldn't be better.

    On the other hand, someone somewhere is sure to come out with something new that will tempt us! I guess that's good, even tho it may torment us!

    And on another note, must say it's so annoying that the A5 calendar choices are so much more limited than the Personal ones are.

  20. That's very true, GG, now at least I know that I gave the other system a try and my Filofax works better for me. At least that aspect of my curiosity has been satisfied!

    And I have to agree, I wish the A5 diary layouts came in more varieties. With the larger page sizes than the Personal, it seems they could get even more creative with the layout options. Filofax, are you listening??

  21. I know what you mean, Laurie and GG. I keep being tempted by Moleskines and Plannerpad! https://plannerpads.com/index.asp

    I've purchased an undated Plannerpad, but never made it beyond the first page spread.

    I've explored the uncalendar Web site, too. It seems like a cool company.

    You can read about my recent adventures in my new post

  22. Today my 2009 A5 horizontal week on 2 pages arrived, and it was perfect timing since it coincided so well with my new commitment to my Filofax. I gleefully wrote in all the holidays and birthdays this afternoon. I am suffering from over-tweakage, and am fatigued of writing and re-writing things from book to book. I am hoping that I will be able to stay with this format for all of 2009! A big task, since every year for the past several years I have gone back and forth between several different formats. Here's hoping I can find Filofax Nirvana in 2009!