Sunday, August 25, 2013

The 2 Things Helping Me To Really Use My Filofax

In my last blog I wrote about how I am using the tons of extra calendar sheets for lists that lend themselves to blocks of info. My favorite being my grocery list and daily/weekly todo list. Believe it or not, I am still doing this and lovin’ it!

But now, a new (for me) fabulous idea!

I have really spent a lot of time in the past few weeks thinking what about my FF isn’t working. Why do I still have post-its and notes scribbled elsewhere? Like when I have to jot down just a quick note...“did they make the Osterley in mini?” (apparently not) or “what was that Tree Hut Body Wash flavor that I loved?” (Almond Honey).  You know, those random things that come to you, that you want to remember to do, but they don’t really belong in with your other lists or notes…aka Capture Pages.

Now, I had my capture pages all set up at the front of my FF, all pristine, just waiting for me to dirty them up with scribbles and cross-outs. But the paper was just too nice. Seemed wasteful to use it for these kinds of things that I would just toss. Then I tried the old calendar pages and those worked ok, but the blocks that work so well for my shopping list...not so much here. “So genius, what did you use before FF?”

Used paper from the copier. That’s right, people. Something that I have been doing for years and was still doing but it wasn’t part of my FF system. I have tons of this stuff at home and work. One side is blank so my preferred way of using this is just to fold it in half...so the 2 outsides are blank and whatever was printed on it is on the inside. In the US the “standard” is letter size 8 ½” x 11”, so folded in half it is (ugh, math) 8 ½’ x 5 ½”. I used this as my go-to for years. Fits nicely in my handbag. And I like the texture for writing. I have a stack on my desk at work and in various drawers around my house. Whenever I need to scribble a quick note, this is what I grab.



I am sure you see where this is going. It only took me 7 months to make the leap. Instead of folding the used paper in half, cut it to size and use it as Capture Pages! I can’t tell you how excited I was about this.


It’s right at the front of my FF. I can scribble and cross out and write on an angle and write sloppy and mix all kinds of thoughts together. It doesn’t matter. Because it’s trash paper anyway. And once I either act on or move the notes to their appropriate section later, in the trash it goes. And it doesn’t cost me a penny.

These 2 things have completely changed the way I use my FF. I am actually using it now, all the time. Sure I was using the diary before and some of the other sections, but my grocery and daily todo and my “notes to self” were still on random sheets outside of my Filofax.

Can you hear the angels singing?






Monday, August 12, 2013

What Do You Do With All Those Extra Filofax Inserts?

“If you’re like me” (can’t say that without thinking of Kent From Oz), you have a pile of inserts and calendars that:

a.)    came with the many Filofaxes that you’ve purchased in search of the perfect one

 and/or

b.)    you bought thinking THIS was the diary that was going to change your life.

Now, you have a new problem. Diaries and inserts you don’t need or want. You can’t sell them ‘cause you used them for a day or two (maybe even a whole week!) before moving on to the next great set-up.

The various inserts are easy to repurpose. But what about those pesky calendars? I considered using them next year and changing the day or date. No, no way would that fly. I have a touch of OCD, so I’d be bothered every time I looked at it.

Scratch paper? (Or scrap paper or scribbling paper, depending on where you are from, apparently.) Ok, that should work.  So I put some 2012 sheets in my Filofax du jour to use as Capture pages.

Then I had a genius idea! The diaries, no matter which format you have, are usually blocks of space. I have a ton of Week on Two Pages. PERFECT for shopping lists! (It pays to take a shower…this is where my best ideas happen...of course it’s the only place I don’t have access to my FF…by the time I’m out, the ideas are gone…waterproof FF needed ASAP.)

When I make my shopping list I like to group “like” things. So for groceries…frozen foods all together, produce together, dairy, etc. The blocks of space can be used for each area of the store.




And ToDo lists. Not my master ToDo list…that lengthy work of art is a whole other animal. But, my weekly ToDo List. The blocks can be used for calls, errands, emails, next steps on a current project, etc. The things I would like to get done this week.

If you have kids, maybe each one has a block noting their activities or chores or notes.

How ‘bout decorating? Each block could be a room in your abode with the measurements, colors, wishlist of things to buy to complete that room.

Moving? Again, designate a block for each room and list what needs to be done or packed or purged in that room.

Books by author…new car shopping by model… rewards list by credit card…pros and cons of just about anything.  I could keep going, but you get the idea. While there are some lists that don’t really lend themselves to blocking, many do.


Sooo, since I have not seen anyone else mention this, I am going to wear the title of genius proudly! Those of you who have been doing this for years, just humor me. And let me know what lists you’ve been blocking. 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A5 vs. Personal Filofax…Decision made???

(NOTE to all the picture people...pretend...)

As most of my posts (and many of my comments on your blogs/videos) have shown, I have been struggling with the “A5 or Personal?” question. I am not alone in this. Someone ought to do a study of the percentage of blogs that touch on this all-consuming dilemma. (Really, this is not my fault. I blame you. Every time I watch your videos/read your blogs, I want what you have.)

In my last FF-related post, I had the brilliant idea to take the diary out of my Personal since it wouldn’t be needed when at work or out ‘n about. I was committed to sticking with this for the month of July. Well, I should BE committed for even thinking that was possible. You foolish girl! In the first 4 days I needed the calendar three (!) times.

So while I was adding the diary pages back into the Personal, I had another brilliant thought. (because I’m full of ‘em.)

It occurred to me that for all of my whining about how much I love the A5, “but it’s just too big, it’s just too heavy”…I had never actually carried my A5 out of the house. What? How can you make assumptions then? That’s right, into my handbag went the A5. I was very good. I actually did carry it everywhere for the whole week.

A funny thing happened, tho. I didn’t like carrying it with me. But not because it’s big. I carry big bags, so that’s not a problem. And, believe it or not, not because it’s heavy (2 lbs. vs. 1 lb. for my Personal). I mean, really. If you’re carrying a 6 lb. bag, what’s another lb.? (Why can’t I say that when I step on the scale?!)

I wish I could describe this in a way that won’t piss off all the A5 lovers. The A5 just felt cumbersome and…uncool. It was like pulling a textbook out of my bag. It was like it didn’t belong there. It was like…pulling out a flip phone instead of a smartphone. (If you’re keeping track, that’s 2 groups I have now pissed off.)

Now the Personal…a completely different feeling. When it is stuffed, it’s like the Pillsbury Doughboy of Filofaxes…it’s small and happy and it’s got that cute little belly.

So I will keep my A5 at home as a home management binder. Sitting on my desk is where it should live…it looks right at home there. I do love it and plan on using it every day. (More on that next time.)

I have made the decision!! I am committed to the Personal FF being the everyday FF that I carry with me. “Uh huh. Sure, Allee.”

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Tick Tock…Movers…Tick Tock



I am sitting here waiting for the movers to show up. Rather than pacing and wondering where the hell they are, I thought I would start blogging. Figuring that as soon as I get on a writing roll, they’ll pull up, right?

No, I am not moving. But that’s a pretty good assumption because a) why would I be waiting on movers if I am not moving? and b) I move often…in just the last 10 years I have moved 9 times. Fun times.

I am rearranging my house. I like to rearrange my furniture within a room. I don’t necessarily plan these changes. So when the mood strikes, things start moving. And with the help of THESE, I can move even the big pieces all by myself. Cause here’s the thing. When I want to do something, I want to do it NOW. I have no patience. And I certainly can’t wait on someone to help me.

So why am I sitting here WAITING?

When I rented this house, I decided to downsize. For the most part, I am happy with that decision. But, I did have to combine my office and my home gym into one room. (Yes, I realize that there are far worse problems in life.) The result is an 11' x11' room that is just way too crowded and claustrophobic. So I don’t want to be in there. And that just makes another excuse why I can’t workout today. Before you know it, it’s a storage room.

I got lucky with the master bedroom here. At 15' x 15', it is a pretty good size. Even with all of my furniture, there is space.

Light bulb! Switch the rooms. I don’t really need all that space. I know many people spend a lot of time in their bedrooms doing all sorts of things. I am not talking kinky here. Things like watch TV in bed, read, play with the kids, just hangout. Not me. I do those things elsewhere. So I’ve got this big room that I don’t really utilize.

So I went to work moving furniture. I hit a wall (literally) when I tried to move the treadmill out of the smaller room. No matter what I tried, it was not going through the door. Then I sorta remembered that the movers had picked it up and turned it on the side to get it into the room. I’m pretty strong, but no way could I do that. About that time I also realized that they had to do the same thing with a couple of the bedroom pieces. So I wouldn’t be able to get them out of the master. Hence, the movers.


Well my plan didn’t work. I have finished this blog and no movers yet. So here I sit.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Pretty in Pink

I LOVE nail polish! I have been doing my own mani/pedi for years.  It’s a ritual with me. Every Sunday night, out come the tools of the trade and I get down to business. The hardest part is choosing the color. I don’t do designs…only because I don’t have the patience nor the natural artistic flair. I could come up with designs in my head, but executing them on that teeny little canvas…no way.  So the most creative I get is alternating colors. I have been known to wear a different color on every nail. Gotta mix it up sometimes! (And yes, I am sure the nail police would say anyone over 19 is too old for that look. I have two words for them…anyone who knows me, knows what those two words are.)

I love this combo:

 



On the left is Maybelline Express Finish in #250 Berry Boucle. On the right is Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in #11 Strobe Light.







I have been rockin’ the short nails since…I don’t know, a long time. At first, after years of long nails (but not dragon daggers), I wasn’t so sure I could make the switch. Now, no going back.


OK, this pic doesn’t really show short nails. But they are usually shorter than this. Trust me. (Here’s a piece of advice. When someone says “Trust me”…don’t trust them…except me, of course.)





Wednesday, July 3, 2013

From Chicabooda to Aimless Allee

A quick post to clear up some confusion.

I started a YouTube channel around 2010 called Chicabooda, along with a blog. The videos were removed last year and the blog was the victim of indecision and procrastination.

However, I continued to comment on blogs and videos under the Chicabooda name through the end of this past May. That is when I started this Aimless Allee blog and a coordinating YouTube channel (don’t rush over there…no vids up yet).


So, how does this affect you? Well, hopefully, it won’t. But when you see Aimless Allee pop up in a friend request or in a comment you will know that it is just the reincarnated Chicabooda.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Follow me on Bloglovin

I added the Bloglovin' widget-gadget-gidget over there on the right... so if you enjoy my mindless babbling, please follow me.



<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/9687017/?claim=gpwsjmt5b43">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Is a Planner a Planner with no Calendar?


If you have been reading my recent blog posts (and who hasn’t?!) you know that I have been struggling (for months) with the A5 vs. Personal issue. Instead of constantly changing back and forth, I decided it was time to “have a think”. (No, I am not from the UK, never even been there. But being obsessed with all things Filofax for the last 6 months, including Philofaxy, I have all of these lovely English expressions in my brain. So far, I haven’t pulled a Madonna, with the fake accent.)

In my last post I mentioned how I love the Filofax A5 WO2P vertical calendar, which I now call a diary (UK speak again?). The size is perfect for my large handwriting.


I even like the feel of the paper. I don’t know what the paper weight is, but I like that it is not as thick as cotton cream. I know, I know, everybody loves the cotton cream. Not me…don’t like the feel, don’t like the color, don’t like anything about it. And ironically, every FF I order seems to come with cc inserts!

Since A5 is too big and heavy to carry everywhere, I carry a Personal. In my futile attempts to use both, regardless of the diary format du jour, I have to “sync” them everyday. I use a monthly and a weekly (or daily) diary. That means I have 4 calendars to sync! Who has time for that?!

So here’s my latest plan. No calendar in the Personal! Blasphemy! Isn’t a calendar part of the definition of a “Planner”? It is. Until it becomes more trouble than it’s worth.

I have a typical office job…Monday-Friday, 9-5. My work calendar/notes/to do is kept, at work, on my work computer. So my Personal FF is just that, for personal stuff. While I am at work, do I really need to know what my weight was last Wednesday? Or what day I vacuumed the lampshades? Or even what days my migraines decide to mess with me? No, no and no. Many of the things on my calendar are things I need to know…when I am at home. And the other things? Well, I would know beforehand that I have a doctor’s appointment and can bring the A5 on that day.

What I need, when away from home, is lists and notes. I need a To Do list of things to do while at work (not that I would ever do personal things on company time J), of things to do & errands to run after work. I need information while I am shopping online or locally…that’s a nice rug, but will it fit in my kitchen…is that really a good deal on printer ink, how much did I pay last time…I think I already have this cookbook.

I need a place to corral all of the genius ideas that pop in (and oh so quickly out of) my head, instead of having sticky notes stuck to other sticky notes.


What I don’t think I need is a calendar. When I am sitting at my desk at work, I am surrounded by calendars…one on my computer that is always open, one on my physical desk top and one hanging on the wall. And if I get up and walk 8 ft. there is another one hanging in the hallway. When I am out ‘n about, my iPhone has a calendar (useless as it may be).

So I have pulled both calendars from my Personal. This may not be a traditional way to use a Planner, but this is my plan and I’m sticking with it…at least for this week…