My Laurel Denise 2012 diary has arrived – huzzah – and I am already thrilled with its functionality. I love seeing my (shorthand) month ahead displayed next to my (longhand) current week of activities. Not to mention, I feel more mentally at ease knowing that my (whole) life is written down in one, organised and logical format. And now, if you’ll indulge me:
The Grand Tour
The doubled, thick card stock covers of the Laurel hide an inside pocket at each end of the diary. Thick, ‘industrial’ styled spiral binding counters the overall femineity of the book. Aside: I do plan on adding a second cover to the diary, as I fear its durability through a whole year.
Top view (so you can get an idea of the overall thickness)
On the first page, a simple monthly goals template is provided (as well as a place for brief personal details, in case the diary is –gasp!- lost, and to which I have added the word ‘reward’*). I plan to use this goal template to write down dates I wish to complete chapters of my thesis.
This first page is also, economically, the first tab: JAN (incidentally, these tabbed pages are a perfectly weighted card-stock). Flipping the page we find a typical layout for the diary: the month overview is displayed next to two columns for the current week, with a monthly ‘to do’ (and some untitled lines) to the far right on the spread. And this opening is exactly the reason I ordered the Laurel, despite its more expensive price point than many other diary options. It is also the reason I (again) did not purchase a Filofax this year – I could never have set up a Filofax in the same way the Laurel is pre-planned for me.
On the monthly calendar I use shorthand to track upcoming work, holidays, birthdays, due dates, events, and so on. This allows me to quickly gain an overall view of the month and quickly judge how busy I will be on any given day. On the dated side of the weekly calendar I list fixed appointments in longhand (job locations, appointment times and places, travel arrangements, and so on).
In the ‘To Do Today’ column more ‘flexible’ items for the day are listed as they arise. ‘This week’ to dos are delegated to the next column, allowing me to complete them as time allows me to do so (as well as giving me a general location to forward plan some tasks). ‘To do this month’ is for larger monthly tasks (things that would take longer than one sitting to complete), whilst the lined area (which runs beneath the flipped weekly pages) is where I can jot quick notes I may need while I am out (currently waiting on a call from the pet store to see about ordering Charlie a new lead).
Yes, I differentiate between pen and pencil in my diary. I am an organising nerd who does not always want to commit to pen for certain events. In February, I am unsure of the date I wish to leave Canberra and come home, so I have left the end of the week in pencil. February also sees the introduction of my next fashionable challenge – I am unsure of the daily challenges, so the dates have been marked in pencil.
After the DEC tab there a double-page spread with list titles supplied: books I’d like to read, places to eat, quotes that keep me going, gift idea, songs to download, websites to visit, and goals for 2012. The following double-spread page provides a 2013 overview, whilst the remaining pages are lined for general use. I can definitely see myself planning some writing goals for 2013 (especially if my life means I have to remain a part-time student) and those blank pages are just begging for some thesis journaling on the go!
What planners are other people using this year? Are you a ‘one life, one diary’ type of person, or do you have a diary for every aspect of your life?
*I always have at least my uni email address on the inside cover of my diaries and folders in case I leave them somewhere. In order to encourage people to return my
possessions life, I add the word ‘reward’. I have no idea what the ‘reward’ will be in the end…