Welcome, fellow stationery geeks!

I shall be using this blog to witter on about my stationery finds in general and diaries/planners and Filofaxes in particular. Please feel free to witter along with me!

Monday 8 June 2020

I'm back...with a new Filofax!

Well.  Hello everyone!

My last post was 27 March 2014...WOW!  It's been a while!  I must admit, it took me quite a bit of time to log in to my blog but I managed it in the end.  Not without a little bit of a battle though!

So...what prompted me to come back?  Well... a couple of things really.

  1. My new Filofax set-up
  2. My impulsive decision to hop on to the Philofaxy meet-up Skype call yesterday!

So while I have been using a Filofax of some sort since my last post (including a small dabble with a Bullet Journal...), I have recently fallen in love with it all over again.  At the end of April 2020, I was put on furlough leave from work due to the COVID-19/Coronavirus situation.  All of a sudden, I didn't have ANY appointments, commitments, deadlines...it was very strange.  I found myself floundering and wondering what the heck to do with my time.  So, outside of homeschooling my kiddo, I decided to start putting my time into working on myself, my goals, confidence, organisation etc.

I decided to move into my A5 pink Chameleon with a page-a-day diary.  I thought I'd move into this size so that I'd have the ability to easily make my own inserts, but also I'd have room to make more notes about the things that I've DONE, not just my plans.

Very quickly, my binder became really full, to the point that I was finding it difficult to fasten.  So I bought a new one... an A5 Domino Luxe in Teal, bought for the princely sum of £25.  AND I LOVE IT!  The colour is just gorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgeous.  It's very pliable and can be stuffed to the gills with all sorts of things.

I've been making my own inserts and laminates, and using it to propel my personal development through this tough time.  More posts of the contents to follow in due course

As for the Philofaxy call...well...I just saw that one was happening on the Facebook page and thought I'd hop on, but I was doing other things at the time and knew I'd need to stop and start making the tea during the middle so I decided to mute myself and hide my video.  I was listening in to the discussion and wasn't intending to interrupt, but Steve mentioned a couple of times that there was someone logged in but not revealing themselves.  One of the things I've been working on just recently is 'perfectionism', so, as it wasn't the perfect time for me to join the call, I did it anyway and embraced the opportunity!

We had a nice catch-up and I reckon I'll join the call again!

I shall leave you with a picture of my new Filofax and a promise that I'll post again sometime soon regarding my set-up.  I'm looking forward to getting back into the world of Filofax and Philofaxy!

Bye for now!

Thursday 27 March 2014

Filofax and technology combined!

Well hello everyone!  Wow...it's been a VERY long time since I've blogged!  I bet most of you have forgotten me, or don't even know who the heck I am!!!  I've had lots going on in my life and am extremely busy at work so I just haven't had the time.  But to be honest, I've been fairly settled with my Filofax setup and binder so there hasn't really been all that much to talk about.


I have recently had a big change in the planner area.  I've been using my Adelphi slimlines (with the odd change to a compact for a while here and there) and everything has been well with the world.  But I got sick of writing all my 'to-dos' out over and over again and with not all that many scheduling appointments, I just found that something had to change.  So I now use an EXCELLENT task manager app on my smartphone in conjunction with a mini Filofax.  The app I use is called 'Tasks: Astrid To-Do List' and it's realllllly good.  I split my tasks up into categories (remember, shopping, to do etc) and have a widget for a couple of the important categories on a page of my smartphone homescreen.  The tasks repeat and having a school-age daughter means I have lots of repetitive tasks so it works a treat.  My 'today' list is on a full screen on my phone and I just tap the box when I've completed the task, then it regenerates it for the next day/week/month etc.  Easy peasy.  You can also set the task manager to remind you at specific times of a task that needs completing.  I find this really useful because if I'm honest, I often forget to look at my Filofax for tasks!!!

Then comes the Filofax.  I use my mini raspberry Chameleon just for scheduling my life: appointments, meetings, work days, on call days, activities, school holidays etc.  I don't like the idea of having to fiddle about with my phone when I'm on a call and need to look at my diary.  I will never move away from a paper-based diary system for this reason; smartphone diaries just don't work for me.  I've tried. And I like that the mini Filofax is so small it doesn't take up too much room in my bag.

Do any of you use technology in conjunction with a smartphone???

Sunday 18 November 2012

Filofax spotted in the wild!

Hello all!

I've been recording the new series called 'Elementary' with Lucy Liu and Jonny Lee Miller.  They've been stacking up in my Sky+ planner for a while now and I managed to watch the first episode the other week.  I love it!  It's really clever and Jonny Lee Miller's character is very quirky.  If you get the chance, give it a watch.  It's on in the UK on a Tuesday night on Sky Living at 9pm.

Anyway, I digress.  In the first episode aired in the UK on Tuesday 23 October, what did I spot???  Yes you've guessed it, A FILOFAX!  Lucy Liu (Watson) had just met Jonny Lee Miller (Holmes) and she dropped her bag.  Out tumbled a Filofax!  Now I'm not sure what type it was, but I thought it looked a bit like a brown Finsbury (is there such a thing?), although I'm not sure it was because I think the clasp looks a bit... wrong.

Lucy Liu (Watson) dropping her bag to reveal a Filofax in Sky Living's 'Elementary'.

And here's a link to the Youtube clip I took the screen shot from at 1.54 minutes in.

What do you think???  Answers on a postcard please!

Lucy x

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Wednesday 14 November 2012

Perfect punching for A5s

Well hello there gang!

On Saturday night, my hubby went on a VERY rare night out with some friends.  The next thing I knew, he was falling down the stairs at 2am.  After that, I couldn't get to sleep until after 4am so naturally, on Sunday, I was like a zombie and really didn't fancy doing anything too taxing.  So I decided to have a go at setting up my A5 raspberry Chameleon Filofax.  Well, punching some paper for it anyway.  The 'setting-up' part will come later when I've woken up again...

My A5 raspberry Chameleon

I've had my A5 since about July this year but the school holidays involved lots of entertaining my six year old daughter and once she was back at school, I increased my working days by an extra day.  So all in all, I just haven't had the time (or the inclination really) to get it sorted.  I obviously didn't need an A5 Filofax very much did I!!!  Oh well.  It would be rude not to complete my collection - I have at least one of each size available now!  Which is extremely important as I know with absolute certainty that all you Filofax fans will understand completely.

Anyway, some of you may remember Ray's post here about lined paper that was a good alternative to Filofax paper because it's so much cheaper.  I've been after some for a while now but every time I went to get some, the shelf was empty (another reason I've only just got round to giving my A5 some attention!).  So last week, I popped in to Staples and they actually had some!  I bought two packs of two Eco-Friendly Writing pads (with perforated pages) from Staples at £2 per pack (I would put a link here but it doesn't seem to be available on their website for some strange reason).  So that's 160 pages for £2.  Compare that to Filofax lined A5 paper which is £2.75 for just 25 sheets!!!  Wow - what a saving these Staples pads are!

£2 for 160 sheets from Staples - bargain!

Anyway, I've had a bit of experience with punching these pads before.  My hubby uses an A5 Filofax for work and he made his own very fancy day-per-page time management diary pages (that's another post for me to do...) and he used my punch to punch them, as well as these pads which I bought him on Ray's recommendation.

I use a Rapesco Adjustable Diary Punch 66-P which you can currently buy from Amazon for £10.48.  You can use this punch for mini, pocket and personal sized paper, but as many of you will know, with a bit of 'jiggery-pokery', you can also use it for A5 pages too.

Here comes the jiggery-pokery!

Basically, you pull the punch holes apart as if you were going to use it to punch personal pages.  You hold the paper in your left hand with the margin down the right.  Put the punch at the top and punch the first three holes with the bottom of the punch.  Then move the punch down to the bottom and punch the other three holes using the top of the punch.  Easy right?  Yeah...

It's not difficult to do, but you do need to make sure you're punching the holes in the right place, otherwise they won't fit on your rings properly and that will make you swear very loudly.  Not that I would do that because I'm a lady.  Yes that's right, a lady.

Now I may be preaching to the converted here, but in case you're new to punching A5 Filofax paper, this is what I did...

I took a piece of dark Filofax paper (green in this case) and put it on top of 7 pages of my Staples lined paper (the Rapesco punch can punch no more than 8 pages at a time).  Then I took the plastic bottom off the punch and put the cellophane I took from the pads on the floor to catch all the holes.  When I punched the holes (as described above), I used the hole punch upside down so I could see exactly where I needed to punch the holes.

Green sheet on the top, 7 white ones underneath.

A clearer shot for your inspection!

Here you can see exactly how it works.  You know where to punch because all you should be able to see through the holes of the hole punch is white, instead of green.

So because I used the dark paper as a guide over the top of the white paper, all my holes were punched in exactly the correct place, quickly and easily.

I really need to do a video but hell will freeze over before I do something as horrifying as that!!!  Maybe I could do a demonstration at the Philofaxy North-West meet-up on 1st December???  Let me know if this idea appeals and if so, I'll bring what I need along with me.  It's not rocket science but sometimes a little demonstration can make all the difference!

While at Staples, I also bought a pack of A5 Multiuse 80gm paper (£4 for 500 sheets) for my printer.

A5 printer paper from Staples, £4 for 500 sheets.  Bargain!

My intention is that I'm going to make some of my own templates for my A5 at some point in the near future (I've got plenty of pocket and personal sized templates that I've done myself but nothing for A5).  But that's another post!  I wonder if it'll be 2014 before I get round to making them... ;-)

Lucy x

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Saturday 10 November 2012

A spot of Filofaxing ready for 2013...

Hi guys!

Today I've been FILOFAXING.  I've been wanting to get my 2013 diary sorted out for quite a while now because I had almost a page of diary dates written down at the end of my 2012 diary, ready to transfer into it. But unfortunately, I seem to suffer from a condition called "Mountainoutofmolehillitis" whereby I always envisage a job taking about 14 times' the amount of time that it actually takes to complete, so I often end up putting it off for as long as possible because I can't be bothered won't have time to do it all in one go.

Anyway, today I bit the bullet and got cracking, and it took me about two-and-a-half hours to finish.  Phew!  So now my 2013 'week on one page with notes' diary and year planner are both complete and ready to go!

This is what I did...

Firstly, I gathered all my lists of dates together and wrote the following information on my year planner:

  • My daughter's school holidays (dark green, right side);
  • Dates I'm on call (red, left side);
  • Dates I'll be out at shows/gigs/band concerts/parties etc (purple);
  • Birthdays (light blue);
  • Important deadlines (red);
  • General perpetual reminders and reminders for my Secretarial duties (pink).

Then I transferred all this information into the diary itself (for the full year).  After that, I went through the diary week by week and wrote my reminders in. For example, when I have a birthday coming up, a week or two before I'll put a reminder on the 'notes' page to remind me that I need to buy a card and present if required. Or if I need to renew some insurance, I'll put a note in to remind me to start hunting around for quotes.

I like to have the year planner nice and full because as I use a slimline, I can't fit a full year's worth of diary pages into it in one go, so at least I'll have the year planner available so I can check for any clashes if I'm organising something well in advance.

I also use a few weeks' worth of 'day per page' diary pages as well, but I fill these out only when I actually put them in my Filofax.

So people - have you filled your 2013 diary yet? Which one are you using? And how do you use your year planner, if you use one at all?

Lucy x

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Monday 5 November 2012

I've been bargain spotting!

Hello all!

Just a quick post to let you know of some bargains I found today!

I got a text from my sister-in-law yesterday saying she'd bought herself a Filofax from TK Maxx for less than half price - a personal raspberry Finsbury.  Naturally, I directed her to Philofaxy and my blog so she could bamboozle herself with All Things Philofax!  (Did you see what I did there?  Eh?)

Anyway, finding out that such a Filofax was available at TK Max, this got me thinking.  Approaching Christmas time, they do tend to begin stocking Filofaxes (especially of the discontinued variety) so I thought I'd have a wander round and check out the situation, for research purposes only of course!!!

Well, what did I find???  A LOT!  Here's what they had:

  • Pocket Chameleons (black, brown, raspberry, aqua and SPRING GREEN!);
  • Compact (!!!) Chameleons (red and raspberry);
  • Personal Chameleons (black, brown and raspberry)
  • A5 Chameleons (brown, black, raspberry, red and SPRING GREEN!)
  • A5 Finchleys (red and mustard)
  • Pocket Adelphis (raspberry)
  • Slimline Adelphis (black and raspberry)
  • Personal Adelphis (raspberry)
  • A5 slimline Adelphis (black and red)
  • Pocket Butterfly (pewter)
  • Pocket Amazonas (black)
  • Pocket Cuban (black)
  • Mini Chameleons (raspberry, red, black, brown and SPRING GREEN!)
  • Mini Amazonas (almond, black and brown)

I would have bought a compact raspberry Chameleon and a slimline raspberry Adelphi, but I've already got these so I didn't actually buy anything.  I was gutted that the slimline Adelphi was only £25.  I paid an awful lot more than that for mine!!!  :-(

They were all no more than half price but many were less than half price, so pop along to TK Maxx and grab yourself a bargain!

Lucy x

Friday 26 October 2012

My new Filofax DIY birthday ruler hack thingy wotsit...

Good morning/evening all!

Today I thought I'd tell you about a brainwave that I had last night. Instead of doing the ironing, I "FILOFAXED"!!! (Is that a naughty word? Am I in trouble? *sulks off slowly to the naughty step*)

A small wave of panic washed over me last night as I remembered that I have an awful lot of birthdays from September to December that I need to buy cards and presents for (29 to be exact!). Thus far, I've dealt with this by putting them all on my year planner. This helps me to keep my 'week on one page with notes' (planning ahead) diary up-to-date and serves as a perpetual calendar. I also use my year planner for important deadlines (ie: car tax, MOT, insurance fa la la), when I'm on call and for noting down when the school holidays are.

The problem is, I only use my year planner to help me fill in my 'week plus notes' diary and I forget to look at it at any other time! I write the birthdays in my main diary, but I only come across the reminder that I need to deal with a birthday about a week or two beforehand, which is fine really. But when I have so many birthdays to deal with, I also want to see a list of them at a glance (and that I'd look at regularly), so I can keep an eye out for a present or card well in advance and keep my eye on the bigger picture.

So the birthday ruler was born! And here it is:

Double-page spread showing my new birthday ruler

I use a black ruler/page marker for my 'day per page' diary.

Front of ruler with months January to July.

Reverse of ruler with months August to December, including a marker arrow to draw my attention to the next birthday on my list!

It's nothing fancy - I just typed up a list of all the birthdays/anniversaries I have on my year planner, split them roughly in half, decreased the font size, printed them off, cut them out and stuck them on my ruler with sellotape  It didn't take long at all!  I'm actually considering making another one for the clear ruler I use for my 'week plus notes' diary. This would have all my important deadlines on it.

I like to be able to see the big picture when it comes to everything I have to do. The months from September to December are soooo busy with deadlines, birthdays and Christmas that whilst I don't want to frighten myself, I need to remind myself that I must remain organised and get everything sorted that needs to be sorted. This birthday ruler helps me plan ahead a little more, rather than just fire-fighting as and when birthdays arise.

How do you deal with important (perpetual) reminders and birthdays? Do you use a year planner like me, or have you got another method that works really well for you? Do tell!

Thanks for reading!
Lucy x

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