Mixing it up

Last week I posted a photo on Instagram showing my bullet journal among my traveler’s notebooks. I’ve never denied my affection for traveler’s notebooks, and when I tried bullet journaling in an LT1917 notebook for the first time in December 2016, I eventually returned to bullet journaling in my traveler’s notebooks.

Ahhh, happiness. 🙂 Clockwise: B6 Classic, Nano (this holds my stencils), Lihit Lab case, the LT1917, and the A6 Deluxe.

By May 2017, I was in a B6 Slim traveler’s notebook by Chic Sparrow. Incidentally, all of my traveler’s notebooks are by Chic Sparrow. I’ve tried other makers, but their brand is my personal favorite. I’ve found my peace in their Creme leather line, after having tried every other type of leather they offer—but that’s a whole other blog post.

The B6 Slim that one time we visited Hawkins Lab from Stranger Things! This size was great, but a pain to get inserts for. That’s why I sold it.

What I love about the traveler’s notebook system is that the sizes I typically use (A6 and B6) are more easily portable compared to my LT1917, especially A6. That size is wider and taller than a pocket size traveler’s notebook (which I tried several times and didn’t like), so for me A6 is perfect to tuck into any purse. The model I have is Deluxe (meaning it’s got pockets). I often tuck my license, insurance card, and either cash or debit card in the pockets and carry it with me on errands without having to take my wallet.

This last week of March, my TN’s came out from hibernation to play because my motto is: if something is not being used (or will be used in the next six-ish months) it’s gotta go.

My B6 notebook has a basic dot grid insert I got off Amazon. I write any ideas for headlines or stories in here (I’m a copywriting student).  My A6 notebook contains a monthly calendar, a lined notebook, and a Stalogy notebook. Someone on Instagram asked me about my brain dumps recently and after I answered that the brain dump page in my LT1917 was one sheet for an entire month, I went back and analyzed a few things.

First, my monthly brain dump page was never full. I’d get to about 1/3 or 1/2 of the page and then stop. Second, I don’t always remember to check the brain dump often. I’m the kind of planner that if it’s not written down and staring me in the face, it won’t get done. This is annoying. I’ll explain more about that in another blog post. Third, because of the second reason, I was having to migrate things to the next month. Repeatedly. So this month, I made it a point to check the brain dump page every 3-4 days to make sure I wasn’t missing anything.

Enter the A6 Stalogy. This size is perfect for that purpose. At the end of the day, I sit down and literally empty the contents of my brain onto a new page, in a bulleted list. If I’m out running an errand and something pops into my mind, I keep the notebook near and jot whatever it is down when I get to a light or when I park. The more important stuff goes into the LT1917. The mundane stuff (like remember to refill the toilet paper, and yes it’s embarrassing that I will forget to do that but I have) stays in the A6 and gets checked off.

Quick and dirty, no frills. This is as plain as it gets. But look at all those X’s crossing stuff off. Productivity wins.

I could make daily spreads in the LT1917, but I love having a weekly view and that size is perfect for weekly. I know I can’t do a weekly in a smaller size like A6, which is why a daily running list of mundane, stuff-as-it-pops-into-my-mind is awesome for me.

A day in my weekly spread. Not much room but it does look pretty. 🙂 This spread is great but on really busy days, it’s not the best choice. A problem if you make weekly spreads in advance like I do. (This season of life requires me to make weekly spreads in advance.)

The bonus? These things are now being used, and I feel more productive. As much as I love having a commonplace book for everything, I have yet to figure out how to accommodate that on a more permanent basis.

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