It Ain’t Heavy…It’s My Planner

Okay, substitute the word “pretty” for the word “heavy” and that’ll be more like it. But hey, looks aren’t everything! And I happened upon this binder the one day it was on wicked sale, so I almost don’t care what it looks like.

As seems to be typical of Franklin Covey, it is back to regular price now, so I will spare you the particulars of the insane deal I got on it.

Anyway…here it is:

friday closed

This new planner is definitely NOT heavy! It is the Franklin Covey “Friday” binder in Compact size. It is constructed of lightweight black ballistic nylon and it is “designed for users who combine paper and electronic planning”.

Sound like anyone you know? **wink**

The exterior front features a gusseted pocket for your cell phone. It comfortably fits my iPhone 5 with room to spare.

(this is an iPod Touch...I was using the iPhone to take the picture...but you get the idea)

(This is an iPod Touch…I was using the iPhone to take the picture…but you get the idea)

And since my objective is to use this as both a planner and wallet, I am very psyched that the rear has large zipped pocket (which I intend to use for coins).

ext zip

Having***one thing*** to grab out of my humongous handbag when I run into a store that will hold my phone, wallet and has the added benefit of my lists and planner stuff, all while remaining light, durable and weather-proof, is just about enough to make me do the Snoopy Dance.

The outside may be Meh in the looks department, but functionality (inside and out) is really great.

On the inside of the front, there is an elastic pen loop, a full length slip pocket (from which you can see my checkbook peeking out – and also obscuring the pen loop, but trust me, it’s there) and four card pockets. Since this is going to be my wallet, I have some of my most-grabbed cards here, as well as a pad of sticky notes for quick access.

left inside

You can see that I also have a FC plastic card holder in the front with the rest of my cards/ID’s. This insert is also a plastic sleeve, so I have cash and coupons behind the cards. Coins are in the aforementioned exterior zipped pocket.


Those are the wallet bits. Behind this I have my planner. More on that in  minute.

The back has a full length slip pocket, a note pad pocket and a 2nd elastic pen loop. I have no idea what I’m going to use these pockets for at this point, but I like that they are there. I’m thinking the note pad pocket would make a great stash for receipts.

back pockets
Yes, that is a Pilot Coleto in the pen loop. The color is “soft green” and you can get your very own at JetPens.

I’m not using the note pad pocket for it’s obvious purpose because this binder’s 1″ rings gives me room for a Swing Pad.

open back

(I’ve got a plastic envelope on the left with my stickers & Hot Sheets, and the Swing Pad on the right, which currently holds a grocery list in progress)

Swing Pad’s are awesome, but I don’t always have room for them.  Being able to easily use the pad to make note of items I need on the fly and have the list handy like this when I’m in a store means the Friday gets an A+ as a wallet.

Traditionally, I have not much cared for zipped binders, but using the Giada as a planner/wallet for the last week made me long for the added security a zip-around would provide.

So, even though the wallet part is covered  extremely well, how will it do as a planner? Right out of the gate it gets points for laying flat!

lays flat

(The iPod Touch was still in the front pocket when this was taken, which is why the front tilts up a bit)

As you know, I am trying to simplify my planner, so I am currently using FC Her Point of View Two Page Monthly Calendar Tabs, with Her Point of View Ringbound Weekly refills and THAT’S IT. Happily, as a result, I can fit the entire year in this binder.


I am solely using my planner for personal items now – all work stuff stays at work. Appointments go on my 2013 desk blotter/calendar, and all work tasks go on a Steno pad that also gets left at work. If I think of a work task I need to do while I’m at home, I just write it on a sticky note and then add it to my work Task List the following day, but it does not stay in my planner.

Basically, my new minimal set up goes a little something like this:

Appointments only in the daily blocks. Maybe a critical reminder or two that I would need to refer back to, but not as a rule. Tasks will go on a DayTimer Hot List placed inside my Page Marker. The Hot Lists are sticky pads, but rather than gunk up my ruler with day after day of sticky residue, I just adhere two back to back and slip them inside it, thus giving me one for each half of the week’s view. Works great so far.

What about tabs you ask? Believe it or not I only have one these days…

ww tab
The ol’ dub-ya, dub-ya (that’s “WW” for those of you not up on Southern US vernacular). Weight Watchers. This has a few note pages behind it on which I’ve created cheat sheets for Points Plus values of meals I can have at my favorite restaurants, so I don’t have to look them up every time, or be totally rude and search for them in the iPhone app at the table.

Other than that, it’s just Monthlies.

month tabs
I love these Her Point of View tabs…they are both easy to read and colorful.

Quotes, notes, capture items, whatever can be jotted down on the Swing Pad and then removed/transferred to where they need to go once I get home. Easy peasy, bacon cheesy!


Four points per slice in case you were wondering.

But I digress.

I love the function of this planner, and the inside is sufficiently cute thanks to the Her Point of View inserts, but the outside is rather blah. Black nylon. Yawn.

Because I’m an uber-dork and I am still in my “fuchsia phase”, I ordered a cool, hot pink Lotus patch from Amazon to jazz it up.

lotus patch

The item description didn’t mention dimensions, so placement will be dependent on its size. What do you think…fun idea? Lame idea? “Oh my god cancel the order now it’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard you crazy broad you”?

Stay tuned for an update as to whether or not this potential planner solution is still going strong after a week, or if it joins the Fail pile. And you know you wanna see what happens with the patch ; )

Party at the Disc…oh

As you are aware if you read me regularly, I have been here, there and everywhere as to which planner I want to use now that the new year is upon us.

Spoiler: I still am.

However, I do have a couple tricks up my sleeve that I want to try out but alas, some of the components haven’t arrived yet.

(**cough** Franklin Covey inserts)

I swear, they ship via tortoise.

Anyway, it’s a radical experiment I’m going to try that basically involves using ONLY monthlies and some note sheets, and…are you sitting down…not archiving tasks.


That’s right, tasks are jotted down on some disposable medium, such as sticky notes or Hot Lists or such, and then tossed when filled.

Radical.  Yet somehow compelling. At the end of the day, the planner is neater rather than more cluttered.

In the interim, I have thrown together a nifty little experiment in it’s own right…it is a Levenger Circa plastic cover in “Compact” size with Levenger 3/4″ teal aluminum discs.


Here it is closed. The plastic shell I picked up on eBay as a plain old notebook for practically nothing. I actually made that polka dot cover out of a spare 3-ring binder tab I had. Since I own the Arc punch, I just cut it to the right size, punched it and voila, cute colorful cover.

My first issue with the Levenger clear plastic covers is that they are just that…plastic covers. No functionality whatsoever. Not even a pen loop.

My solution:

sticky pen loop
I picked up a Leuchtturm pen loop and stuck that baby right on the inside of the back cover. Levenger sells the black ones, but the Leuchtturm website sells all kinds of neat colors.

Admittedly, it was frustratingly tight at first, but happily it seems to be breaking in, and these days I don’t feel like I’m wrestling a crocodile trying to slip my pen in.

My second issue is that, although very budget friendly, these covers lack any kind of closure.

My solution:

elastic band
I snagged a large purple rubber band from my file drawer and inserted it in between the cover and the disc in a “mushroom” approximately half way up the height of the cover. It may not be glamorous, but it stays in place and it works.

Looking at the back, you can see the stick-on pen loop and the rubber band wrapped around. I suppose I could make a cover for the back too, however since it is merely a temporary solution, I remain unmotivated.

And now for my next trick:

filo zip
Since the plastic covers are also sans pockets, I Arc punched a Filofax Personal size zip envelope. Perfect fit!

Filofax Personal size inserts/refills are the exact same size as Levenger Circa Compact inserts/refills; the only difference is that Filofax is a 6-hole, ring bound system and Levenger Compact is a 7-hole (or smurf, or mushroom…I don’t actually know what they are officially called), disc bound system.

filo vs mushrooms
The mushrooms and the holes don’t quite meet up, but honestly it’s not that bad looking, even to my rampant OCD. The envelope is still held securely and now I can carry my stickers around ; )

What I am really liking is Levenger’s daily planner page layout:

The left page is entirely comprised of appointment slots, from 7am to 7pm. At the bottom there are a few lines for Notes. The right page, on the other hand, is entirely delegated to Tasks. Even having a nice check column. At the bottom you get the same small Note section.

My next favorite layout is Franklin Covey, however even on their 2PPD inserts, the right page is split in two, squeezing in both the Task List and Appointments, and the entire right page is left for notes. All fine and good, however my handwriting is big, loopy and juvenile; Levenger’s layout means I don’t have to write small or abbreviate.

To complete my hack, I threw this together with some Franklin Covey Her Point of View “Compact” monthly tabs (at the time I didn’t know Levenger made monthly tabs for this size) that Staples kindly trimmed for me, and I Arc punched at home.

I think the colorful tabs go nicely with the polka dot cover!

teal discs
The teal 3/4″ discs (which come standard on most Levenger Circa notebooks…these originally came with a Teal Leather cover I had previously ordered but have since decided I don’t like the color of) will hold one quarter of annual inserts in 2 Pages per Day.

In my book, I just have January and February because I wanted room for a Capture tab.

Another kluge, it is just a sticky tab with a custom label on it, attached to the top of a blank sheet of paper. Again, not pretty, but functional.  Behind it I just have some note paper.

“This thing is so bitchin’, why is it only temporary solution”, you ask?

It started because there was such a lack of any sort of accessories for Levenger’s Compact and because I didn’t (and frankly still don’t) want to spring for the single Compact binder available…which is black leather and $69…in order to get pockets and a pen loop.  I seem to be overcoming that obstacle, albeit not terribly attractively.

I feel like a Tween carrying this thing into meetings and, as much fun as I’ve had hacking this thing together, I really do want whatever planner I decide upon to be something nicer and a lot more professional.

The other factor that holds me back from just giving in and using this is the fact that I can only fit 2 months of dailies. Yes, I could put bigger discs on it, but I tried that. With 1″ discs it looked somewhat clunky and would only accommodate one more month anyway. With discs any bigger than that, it just plain looked silly. Like a planner version of a monster truck.

And since I’m trying to put together an organizer that works and not trying to compensate for a micro-penis, the oversized discs didn’t cut it.

When my Monthly Only Experiment materials come in (which I will carry out in my Franklin Covey Compact Giada) this is going to become my Weight Watchers notebook, so it will still be used and well loved…just not as my planner.

But in the mean time, I just wanted to show you this planner hack…and I needed an excuse to write a blog post while I wait for stupid FC’s shipping department to get me my damn refills!

the Sweetest Thing

Disclaimer: This post isn’t about planners.

I just lost most of you didn’t I? ***wink***

For those of you who stayed…

I’m sitting here listening to my magical, psychic iPod that always seems to know just what I need to hear.  I had made a Smart Playlist a while back of the Top 50 songs that I play the most & that have the highest rating.

I’m at work, I’m busy, I’ve had to interrupt my day for an impromptu doctor’s visit and am, as a result, on medication that makes me want to vomit. Like, now.

And “The Sweetest Thing” by JJ Grey and Mofro comes on.

I love JJ Grey and have a few of his albums. Yes, I said albums. Even though they are digital downloads, they will always be albums to me.

I think technically the music is classified as Blues, and as you know I’m in more of a Fuschia phase right now, but I would say it’s more R&B/funk/bluesy/soul with maybe a touch of southern rock thrown in for good measure (but not in a tacky, redneck kinda way). Far from traditional Blues that always sorta make me feel like going off a bridge, JJ Grey & Mofro make me wanna dance. And dance sexy at that.

They’ve got some kickass songs. My faves are the aforementioned “the Sweetest Thing”, “Brighter Days”, “Orange Blossoms”  and “Slow, Hot and Sweaty”. If you can listen to that last song and not want to grind against something, you deserve some sort of trophy.

Anyway, why am I telling you this?

Because it struck me as I was jamming in my office chair, instantly put into a better mood by a song I adore, that I was introduced to this band by an asshat douchebag that I dated (not for long, thankfully) earlier this year.

A man I had previously thought of purely in terms of ‘two months of my life I’ll never get back‘.

But the truth of the matter is, I did take away something – other than the usual array of life lessons like, “never become involved with a man who hasn’t been divorced at least a year”, “don’t accept a Facebook friend request from anyone you’re dating”  and “mouth breathers always snore” –  from my time with Mr. Wrong.

At least he had good taste in music, and I am indeed grateful that he saw fit to broaden my horizons, even if only by proximity.

So rememberkids: There’s always a silver lining…no matter how much of a fucktard the cloud is!


Planner Pergatory – What Do I Really NEED In My Planner

Well folks, I’m about to change the name of this blog to “the Zeitgeist of Neurosis”, because I am still all over the place with my planner choice for 2013.

The problem is not my planner…it is my life. It keeps changing.

I know, I know…life is change, adapt or die, blah, blah, blah. I get it.

I’m not complaining about the ebb and flow of my life; in fact I quite enjoy the spontaneous challenging nature of it. Every day is an adventure…I actually love that about my life; it’s never boring!

Trouble is, I need to write more and more stuff down these days because I simply can’t remember all of it anymore, and finding the ideal medium for managing the adventure is what is causing me fits.

I was sick this past weekend. Trapped in my house. Forty-eight hours of jammies and one helluva Nyquil buzz. And so, predictably, I dubbed around with planners. Like, I mean a LOT. As in, I was in and out of three different ones before my right hand became exhausted and gnarled from re-copying and I gave up.

Typically, I have used my paper planner (I use digital planning tools as well, though only as a backup and for the handy dandy audible reminders) as both a tool for planning the future and as a snapshot of the days/weeks/months.  An ongoing archive if you will.

So I write down a shit ton of stuff. I track minutia like the weather, my mood, how I felt physically, whether or not I flossed or remembered to take my multi vitamin.

I write down stuff after it happens even. If I spend the day out and about with a friend, it’s not enough that I allocate the chunk of time I’m going to need, I have to go back that night and detail everything we did. Lunch at 1pm here, shopping from 3-5 here, here and here, movies from 7-9, this movie, that theater.

Smacks of the crazies now that I see it in undeniable type in front of my eyes.

Thing is, do I NEED all this information in what is supposed to be my planner?  In fact, do I need to know that stuff AT ALL? One could argue that no, I don’t. One could argue that whatever says I do need it is actually my OCD talking.

Do I need that stuff in my planner or am I drifting into the realm of the unhealthy and trying (in vain I might add) to exert control over my day/life by writing every last detail about every little thing down?

That’s what I thought.

So what, exactly, must I have in my planner in order to accomplish it’s one true job…PLANNING?

Two things really…where I need to be and what I need to do. Period.

Where I need to be:

1. I need dates & times for appointments/meetings. Both personal & professional.

2. My work schedule is the same every day, but I like jotting my boyfriend’s schedule down because that does change every week.

What I need to do:

1. I need to know when my bills are due.

2. I need other important dates such as birthdays or anniversaries (and ideally I need these ON the day or I won’t remember them) so I can send cards, buy presents, attend parties, etc.

3. I need to know about the day’s tasks.

The majority of my day, both for work and personally, is task-related. I have already taken my work tasks out of the picture and relegated them to their own (messy) Steno pad at work, that stays at work and gets archived at work.

So it is now only my personal tasks that I have to figure out what to do with. And I think I might be doing a bit of overkill in that regard.

In reviewing my daily schedule for today, for example, I see that I have “Shaw’s” (my local grocery store) scheduled at 5:00 pm in my appointments and also “grocery shopping” listed in my task section.  Wasteful. I don’t need it both places…I know very well I have to get this done today or eat crackers for supper tonight. Again.

And that is not a chore I need any sort of record of, so it seems better suited left as a task.

Other than noting what days I pay a given bill, or meet a deadline (which are few and manageable), who really cares whether or not I have an archive of when I took out the recycling, emptied the litter box or cleaned the house?!

Couldn’t those things be kept, not on a daily planner page that is pricey and may or may not be enough (or too little) space for any given day, thus causing me to purchase several incarnations of them each year in the hopes one will work, but rather on a disposable sheet of note paper?  As long as I have the satisfaction of checking stuff off when I complete it (because you know me…I love to check shit off!), I seriously don’t need to keep my task lists for posterity.

This leaves me with NEEDING only monthly tabs that have nice sized blocks to write appointments in (lined please) and some note sheets…or even better…To Do sheets to make up my planner.

Sounds easy enough.

Where I get stuck is that I also like to be able to jot down cool quotes I come across, or work on projects throughout my day.

I will typically have a few personal projects going at any given time; writing stuff, fitness goals, the upcoming move in March, etc. so my tendency is to want a large book that can accommodate these items as subject tabs.

But those things have nothing to do with planning.

I think what has been causing me to chase my tail  lately has been trying to do, essentially, three things in one book; plan, record personal details and manage projects.

Hence the fail.

I have a journal…I don’t need journaly stuff in my planner; personal stuff is best kept to a personal book. In 5 years I won’t care to look back and discover that I took my vitamin & flossed like a good girl on the same day that there was a Board Meeting! So that’s solved. Personal details  will henceforth go in the journal.

Now, what if I separate out my subject tabs into their own book.

Say, oh I dunno…a nice disc bound notebook, with which I find myself well stocked these days?

The paper is stellar, the sheets nice and large, I can still carry it with me and dig into projects on my lunch break or whatever; but it’s not something I would need with me 24/7 like, you know…a planner.

That way I can get away with what I crave – a small, portable system that would fit in any handbag I elected to use, and go with me always and everywhere without being cumbersome.

Yeah? Huh? Ya feelin’ it?

I think I am.

Whaddya think? Just monthly tabs and To Do sheets that get tossed when they are filled up. Planning only. Sleek & portable.

Can she do it? SHOULD she do it?

Chime in below…

Desk of Shame – And Then There Were Two

“January 8, 2012:  Dear Diary, my hand is sore from seemingly endless re-copying over the last eight days, and I fear my boyfriend is slowly becoming fully aware of the true depth of my neurosis. It is now the second week of 2013 and I am still spending an inordinate amount of time and mental energy trying to decide which planner is going to work best this year.  If I don’t figure this out soon, I will no doubt end up dying senile and alone…slowly suffocating under a pile of organizers, rocking back and forth, weeping quietly to myself over what my life could have been.”

Lol, not really.

I’ve got the Desk of Shame narrowed down to two. As you know,  in my last post, I had three options I was dubbing around with and had set out to do some dog calling. You guys helped me out by voting, and the FF Compact w/Trimmed FC Weeklies won in the polls.

But guess what…of the two dogs that have stuck around since I started calling, neither are the winner of the poll. Oh, and I’ve abandoned having two planners (one for work & another for personal) too, so the Brick is now back in the bin.

Yeah,  that is a sad trombone you hear in the background.  Welcome to my new year.

One of the dogs (the little dog) nipping at my heels is close to what you voted for, however. It is a Franklin Covey Giada Compact, in a lovely plum color, with FC weeklies.

Here it is in action

Here it is in action. check out pictures w/notes in Flickr too…

The Giada has 3/4″ rings  so it mimics the slimmer profile of a Filofax Compact. Sort of.  A full year of weekly and monthly inserts will fit, along with a Swing Pad and plenty of room for notes, and the rings don’t get in the way of writing nearly as much as a larger-ringed FC like the Veronica.

I also really, really like the color.

FC Giada in "plum"

FC Giada in “plum”

Veronica is awesome, and even though the Latte color is lovely, at the end of the day, it’s still beige. And I’m just not feeling beige these days.  So smaller rings and a fun color won out over fitting more inserts yet being…beige.

Anyhoo, this binder is one of the two remaining contenders for the following reasons:

* Two pen loops (both are half leather, half elastic so Coleto’s or other fun, fat pens fit with no problem).

* Lots of good pockets. The front has a full length slip pocket, a zip pocket, an ID window with 4 card slots and a secretarial pocket to boot. The back has two full width slip pockets. Franklin Covey really gets it right with all the internal functionality!


Inside front

Inside back

Inside back

* The ability to use FC inserts without all the bothersome trimming and re-punching. I’m nothing if not lazy, after all.

Now, I could also use the HPOV 2ppd inserts in this binder if I wanted, but only three months will fit and that’s it. No Swing Pad, no room for note paper, no nothing. Just three months of dailies with monthly tabs.

Last night I tried putting in the current month (January) of 2 Pages per Day and left the rest weeklies. That could work if I had a busy month and needed more space, but I suspect it could get confusing and/or lead to more copying of data than I want to do on an ongoing basis. So weeklies it is.

As you can see in the first picture, I’ve stuck in a sheet of lined paper between the weekly pages for overflow To Do’s. This actually works pretty well. At the end of the day I can copy (neatly) whatever I will need to refer back to (like the date I paid a bill or mailed something to a friend **wink**) into the tiny day block and when the sheet gets full, I can just toss it and stick in another one.

My only legit beef with the Giada (and all FC really) is that they have tiny subject tabs, and you need 12 of them to form a full set. I only need 3 or 4, and the asymmetry really gets on the last nerve of my OCD. The best I could come up with was this:

Hey, we do what we can...

Hey, we do what we can…

Essentially, this is a pink page marker that I’ve labeled “Capture”, which is my main tab. Anything and everything goes here until I can figure out where it really goes. The thing you sort of see in the middle is just the FC Page Marker ruler that’s in my diary pages, so pay no attention to it for top  tab purposes. Then you’ll see a lime green sticky tab that says “Quotes”. This is just stuck to the first page of a bunch of note paper that I’ve designated for, you guessed it, quotes.

These kluged tabs will do, but I’m not really that excited about them.

On to the second dog (the big dog, if you will). This is the Levenger Circa system but, as you could probably predict, with some tweaks. Because you know I gots ta tweak ; )

I love, love, love the page size in this baby. It is the exact same as a Filofax A5 page, but Levenger does not up-size the cover much at all, so the whole footprint is pretty much the same as the page. Therefore while the page is nice and large to write on, the whole book doesn’t feel like a behemoth to drag around with you.

Check it out…the Giada is smaller, but not that much smaller.

Giada on top of Circa

Giada on top of Circa

Giada in front, Circa behind

Giada in front, Circa behind

Lined up with the spines flush, the exterior of the Giada is 1″ narrower and 1.5″ shorter than the exterior of the Circa. But I can tell you from using both, the FC pages are a lot smaller when you go to write on them.

Biiiiig difference!

Biiiiig difference!

The downside to Circa is that it has the bare minimum of interior pockets/function and if you mess around with your planner as much as I do, the mushroom shaped slits that secure the pages around the discs tend to get sloppy (with truly abused pages, you can simply run scotch tape over the edges and re-punch, so at least there’s that). Also, the Levenger leather covers offer no means of closure.

So…I resurrected the Martha Stewart plastic one I got in my initial Staples splurge. It has that Moleskine-like elastic closure. Turns out I sorta dig that.

Here it is on top of my (also Martha Stewart) aqua Letter sized disc 2013  journal.

Disc books

MS Junior sized disc planner (sadly just plastic) with Levenger Kyoto 1″ discs

You can see the elastic closure doing it’s thing. Here are some pics of it in action:

Inside the front cover

Inside the front cover

Functionality is meh. The inside has a half-secretarial pocket and three card slots. Better than nothing, but just barely. I have a zip pocket inserted in the front to hold more stuff.

Sticky note dashboard of heaven

Sticky note dashboard

Next I have a sticky note holder insert that j’adore. Behind that you can see the colorful (Arc brand, by the way) plastic tabs.



Ah, the glory and wonder of having subject tabs! My tabs of choice are (in order, so pay attention, there may be a quiz later), Capture, Quotes, Info, Goals and Planning. Pretty self-explanatory really.

Capture, I’ve already described countless times in my posts, so if you read me at all, you know what it’s about.


Info holds those Special Days sheets that come with all planner refill packs, future planning sheets, and some graph paper.

Goals is the section that will hold my resolutions and where I will track how I kick their ass as the year progresses.

Planning is just a header tab to my diary inserts. Again…OCD…the set came with 5 tabs; gotta use them all or pay the price in my own head. But hey, at least I can have subject tabs in this option, and fudging one beats the hell out of coming up with nine no doubt extraneous topics to fill a whole row of twelve.

The 2 page spread

The 2 page spread

Speaking of planning, here is the Levenger (what they call) Daily insert. Technically, it’s a 2PPD layout. One inch discs are designed to hold a quarter at a time.

The left side is for appointments

The left side is for Appointments

On the left are appointment slots from 7am to 7pm and a handy little note section at the bottom. I love how even the appointment page has check boxes. This way, if a meeting gets cancelled, all I have to do is place an “x” in the box and I know it didn’t happen. No messy white out or erasing. Which is good, because if you remember, these are the pages that had the major erase fail.

(Side note, in case you were wondering, I got a full refund for the inserts from Levenger and didn’t even have to return them. Yay for customer service!)

Right side is for Tasks

Right side is for Tasks

On the right is a really pretty great To Do section, complete with my beloved check boxes. Again there is a little note section at the bottom.

Monthly tabs : )

Monthly tabs : )

As all savvy planner companies know (she said sarcastically), monthly tabs are a key element to happy Plannerds, so Levenger Daily inserts come with a full complement of nice, large, easy to read monthly tabs.

Inside the back cover is, well, nothing.

Just a single, lonely pen loop

Just a single, lonely pen loop

I have compensated somewhat by adding a pocket insert, but obviously when comparing, the interior of the Giada wins the day.

At least this pocket insert is double sided...

At least this pocket insert is double sided…

I am drawn to the Circa for these reasons:

* Roomy page size without the weight of a FC Classic or weight (and bulk) of a FF A5.

* The fact that it folds back on itself. This isn’t critical for the planner part, but when writing in my subject tabs or taking notes, lemme tell ya…it rocks.

*If needed, I could easily add larger discs (or smaller, but that seems unlikely knowing me) without effing up my entire book, having to buy a whole new book and/or doing any of the dreaded re-copying.

The downside here is a dearth of peppy colored, higher end covers. The leather  Levenger ones stick pretty much to black, red and saddle tan (yawn). The seasonal colors (like that Teal one I picked up) are nice but pricey, and still lack any means of closure.

Martha (the only one with the elastic straps) seems to have a pale aqua blue or black only thing going with her line, and although Arc does have some cool colors, the leather ones are too poofy to lay flat when folded back on themselves, the plastic ones have nary a pocket nor pen loop to be found, and neither of them have closures.

Yes, I know, there are book bands out there on the market I could use…but I want my band attached to my book. Otherwise I’ll just lose it or forget it somewhre, or the dog will eat it resulting in an expensive vet bill.

So there you have it. Right now I am (pathetically) carrying around both and updating each daily, in the hopes that I will gravitate toward one over the other in time.

I’m giving myself to the end of January to get this all figured out and then I’m having myself committed just going to go with which ever one I happen to have in my damn bag on the 31st and try to salvage my life.

Bottom line, the Circa is much better to write in, but lacks interior functionality (and although the discs are neat and all, they do come with a price; its super easy to change out disc sizes, sure, but you do lose that “snapped shut” feeling of ring security) and the Giada has awesome pockets and stuff but sucks in the subject tab department and isn’t that pleasant to do lengthy note taking or any real writing in.

Please don’t make me do another poll…just give me your two cents in the comments this time.

See, I told you I was lazy ; )