No 2011 Diary?

2011 is already a few days over and I’ve yet to 100% decide what I’m going to do for a diary. I say “diary” and not “planner,” since I tend to use a paper diary only to record past info on diet, exercise, health, and other little notes, as opposed to noting future events. In 2010, I used the Moleskine Color-a-Month set, which was handy in terms of having small, lightweight booklets to carry each month, but I didn’t like all the wasted pages at the beginning of each booklet, and I sometimes found myself away from home for a few days at the beginning of a new month while still only having the previous month’s booklet with me.

Since I’d also bought a softcover page-a-day Moleskine 2010 planner and never really used it beyond a few pages, I’d thought I might repurpose it for 2011– the days of the week would be off, but that didn’t seem like a big deal. But what to do when I got to days I’d already written on last year? Ultimately I decided I didn’t want to carry such a chunky thing around with me anyway. And I’m away from home enough that I didn’t want to count on leaving the diary there and and trying to record things while they were still fresh in my memory.

So here’s what I think I’m going to try to do– I’ll just use whatever notebook I’m using for everything else! Each week, I’ll take a page spread and turn it into 7 days of space to record stuff. I’ll flag the current week with a colored tag so I can easily flip to it. I’ll use my handy-dandy date stamp– not because I am too lazy to write out the dates, but because it looks cooler that way. I’m also thinking this will be a good way to use up my current notebook faster– it’s an unlined Moleskine that seems to have more show-through-y paper than others I’ve used in the past, so I’m not totally happy with it and already want to move on to something else.

As you can see from the above, I hadn’t quite worked out how I wanted to space out the page– I think I’ll end up doing 3 or 4 days on each page to get one week on a spread.

We’ll see how I end up liking this method– I’m a little reluctant not to have a separate notebook for this information, but I actually don’t refer back to it enough for that to be an issue. It’s the act of recording it that gives me a sense of discipline about what I eat and how often I exercise, and though it might be nice to go back and count things up at the end of the year for some sort of scorecard, I know I’m just not anal enough to do that!

How about you? What’s your 2011 diary/planner plan?

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15 Responses to “No 2011 Diary?”

  1. Sounds like a solution!

    For me, I’ll be continuing on in a medium blank Ciak I started in early 2009…. it should have been filled by the end of2010, but 2010 was a bad year for journaling for me, so I still have abouhalf of it to go.

    I do want to get a regular planner for this year, since i will have a new, more time intensive job, and be going back to school, maybe full time… Will need all the help I can get with time management. But am having a hard time finding a layout hat I think would work for me.


  2. I like this idea! I may implement this into my current “system”. I just write down things that I need to remember, such as upcoming events, homework assignments, etc. in my Field Notes notebook. Sometimes I will transfer these either onto Google Calendar or into my Moleskine planner. Usually I just write something else in my Field Notes notebook and see my note and remember that I had something to do.

    It usually works out!

  3. Since I switched notebooks in December (from a medium blank Chiak to a small dotted Leuchtturm) I moved all my calender / diary stuff to my main personal notebook.

    That includes some planning options – I use a spread per month, glue in a mini month (output of cal), plan my dates on the right hand side, and underneath the mini month I have my list of important things to remember besides dates.

    Then I flag the month. As soon as some date is arranged for the next month I make my next spread.

    So far I am quite pleased.

  4. I am currently finishing [the last 40 pages] of a lined medium moleskine which I was hoping to finish by 2011 but it’s fine that it’s not finished yet.
    I also have a medium lined Picadilly that I converted into a planner/agenda. I use one page for the week days and the other is empty for notes and making lists for homework assignments. It works out well. I use large index cards to make a monthly calendar to place in the beginning of each month, where I can outline the whole month’s worth of school assignments.
    I’ve started to get small notebooks from Target to devote to writing projects, but so far I’m not working too hard on them.

    Good luck with your plan!! If it doesn’t work you can always try something else or whatever.

  5. well, I´ve got softcover pocket daily Moleskine 2011 and I saw already some notices about Moleskine Diaries with Peanuts for 2012, so I am excited… did you already saw those Petit Prince Moleskine notebooks? as I understood it should be limited edition just as Peanuts and Pacman were last year…

  6. This sounds like a great plan. I like the idea of using something you already have. The date stamps look great too.

  7. I have a 3-book system. One is a daily journal, a thick gridded faux leather Mead, where I record daily life and what I found interesting to ponder that day. That gets 4-6 pages per day. Yes, I’m verbose.

    The other two are month-per-spread academic year planners, identical freebies from a local bank. Free is good. One is a life planner and diary of sorts. It has birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, appointments etc. for the whole year. Each day I jot down one-word reminders of what I did. If I need more info I can refer back to my journal.

    The monthly format is handy when searching for the last time I put flea goop on the cat, or when I last ate at the cool Indian restaurant. (My sister actually called me to ask about the Indian restaurant. She knew it was on my planner.)

    The other is a diary of All Things Creative, be it artwork, crafts, or writing. It also records posted or scheduled blog posts. That way I can see at a glance if I’m slacking on blogging. (I am.)

    I don’t carry any of these with me. They only come out late at night when the house is quiet. I carry a mini notebook in my purse. Anything written in it (rare) gets transferred to the big journal at the end of the day and the pages ripped out.

  8. I’ve always liked the idea of having one notebook for everything, but have never been able to pull it off. My current “system” is a large journal that I write detailed accounts of the day in; an Exacompta Space 17 planner for keeping up with my appointments and weekly to-do list (I like pre-dated planners because I can easily record future appointments and action items all the way through to the end of the year); and a pocket notebook for jotting down whatever I need to remember or keep track of.

    This year I added the tiny, day per page Moleskine diary to my kit. The pages are dated, unlined, and have just enough room to note what has happened on a given day. I record just the events, no analysis, reactions or extraneous details (those are for my journal). I think I’m going to like this approach because at the end of the year I’ll have a nice, tidy reference for what happened on any given day.

  9. May I suggest a Moly hack for you? Instead of having your weekly spread interspersed with the daily stuff, start the weekly spreads at the back of the book and work forward. At some point you will met weekly and daily in the middle. The weekly spreads would be in reverse chronological order, but so what? They would all be in the same place for handy reference. Clip the top corner of each page when you create each spread. That will give you a handy thumb tab to quickly flip to the current spread.

    On page layout, do four equal blocks per page, or eight equal blocks per spread. Seven would be the days of the week and the eighth would be a TOTAL block for the week: Miles run, calories consumed, sit-ups crunched, hours slept, words written, whatever it is you’re keeping track of.

  10. There seems to be one common element in similar blog entries where the author is attempting to create or hack the perfect solution or, at least, a personally ideal system.

    The common element is failure. Not to say that will be the result here! I hope you find what you need and want.

    For me, a two page per day format in a looseleaf binder has proven, year after year, to be my ideal system for a long list of personal and practical reasons. My reasons make little sense to anyone else.

    david boise ID

  11. I see this is a popular topic! I too dream of one notebook that holds everything, from journal entries to appointment calendars to shopping lists to sketches. Instead, what I have this year is my “stack”–a 300 page large gridded Miqulrius for journaling (love the date stamp in this), drawing, and ideas, a Korean 365DiaryM for appointments, a small gridded Zequenz for shopping lists and quick random notes, and a mini-Mole daily for diet and exercise. They make a nice pyramid! The Miquelrius and the Mole stay home, the other two go with me, and if I want to travel light I can take just the Zequenz and then transfer any jottings later. Still, it’s only January 5 and I already wish I had a better system, the elusive, perfect all-in-one…

  12. I made my own similarly–
    I used one of the “Noted” notebooks from Target, the 5×7 ones that is the larger size in their line, it has a nice thick alligatory cover, and I just went through with a ruler and a pen to mark down a Weekly planner, that’s all I need to keep track of schoolwork. Other than that I will simply mark something in my phone if it’s really far ahead and not classwork or an exam.

  13. Brilliant! I only wish you’d thought of this BEFORE I spent $33 on a fancy-schmancy tiny leather diary/planner!!! 😀

  14. P.S. Please ask Speck where we can see some pictures of her verbose daily journal and other two books? The comment about the flea goop on the cat made me laugh so I have to see what else she’s written. I hope there’s a blog…

  15. For the last two years, I’ve been using the one-notebook method for my college classes. I just label the top of the page with whatever class I’m in and the date and write away. I’m also a habitual listmaker, so the notebooks end up being a “diary” of sorts in that I have a weekly list of things to get done on each day. Last semester I drew a monthly calendar in the back where I could cross off days and have a better look at the semester as a whole (good for paying attention to deadlines).

    I like the idea of having classwork in the front and random crap in the back (recipes, lists, phone #s, etc).

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