Misc.

Christmas Card List

A template to help record Christmas cards sent and received.

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Usage advice: 

This is an A5 template for recording cards you wish to send and that you've sent, and those you've received, and perhaps responded to! The pdf file includes pages with margins set for double sided printing. The zipped Open Office source file is also attached (based on Widget Kit 0.6).

Paper size: 
A5
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
PDF Reader
Language: 
English

Envelope-style Hipster Cases

Two envelope-style cardstock cases for hipster PDAs (index card stacks). One fits about 30 cards, the other about double that. No gluing required.

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Usage advice: 

Print out both pages on heavy cardstock (I used 110lb Card Stock, not the lighter-weight Cover Stock). I say print both just because you might decide you want a bigger or smaller box after you see how it folds up, so you might as well do them both. But the template is only one letter-size sheet. I would expect that A4 would work, just don't resize the image before printing. Trimming the image would be fine.

Cut around the edges of the image with a scissors. This will make a plus-shaped piece of cardstock.

Decide how you want your box to be closed. You have several options:
* Tab-and-slot. This is the default. It won't close very tightly, but it won't pop open spontaneously I don't think. If you want this, cut the diagonal lines on the top flap to make the flap come to a broad point. Then slice the slot on the bottom flap with an X-acto knife (or other sharp blade).
* Velcro dot. You can cut along the diagonals or not as you wish, but don't cut the slot. Stick the dot to the top flap first, then use that to place the dot on the bottom flap. The self-adhesive dots are pretty easy to work with.
* Ribbon-tie. You can cut small slots for the ribbon to pass through or not as you please. Cut the point in the top flap or not as you please.
* Rubber band. Don't cut the slot. Cut the point if you want. Just wrap a rubber band around it all to keep it closed.
* Binder clip. The larger box requires a 1.25" clip. The smaller one will take a 3/4" clip. I recommend NOT cutting the top flap to a point, simply because the rectangular flap will give you more places to put the clip.

Finish your cutting based on your decision (above).

Use the blunt rounded side of a butter knife (not the side with the teeth) to score along the remaining lines. Just press down so you can see that the fibers have been squished by the knife. This will help you fold more easily. You can skip this if you want, but your folds will be much cleaner if you score the lines. Use a ruler with a metal edge to guide the knife in a straight line.

Fold all of the horizontal and vertical lines. Fold them all in the same way, so all the flaps stand up when you're finished. I folded mine so the printing would be inside the finished box, but you could do the opposite if you want the lines to show on the outside of the box.

Put your stack of cards inside the box. Fold the short flaps in, then the long flaps. Close the box using your preferred method.

Paper size: 
Letter
License: 
Public Domain
Applications required: 
PDF Reader (Adobe Reader, Mac OS X Preview) or OpenOffice.org
Language: 
English

Review: Levenger Bomber Jacket International Pocket Briefcase

Levenger Bomber International Pocket BriefcaseIt's fair to say that I've tried a few dozen alternatives over the past year for carrying index cards, from the expensive and slickly-produced to the cheap and home-grown, and everything in between. To tell the truth, I haven't had much luck with many of them. Either it takes too much time to find my "primary" cards (e.g., Combined Actions, monthly calendar), or the writing service is not conducive to note-taking, or the form proves ill-fitting to my carrying options, or the feel of the case is not to my taste (the latter being quite subjective). Of course, anyone familiar with paper-based planning products is quite familiar with Levenger, a company with beautiful and thoughtfully constructed products for even the most discerning among us. It was therefore with some cautious optimism that I embarked on a week-long test-drive of their new Bomber Jacket International Pocket Briefcase.

Flylady Planner Pages PDF

This is a PDF conversion of the Flylady Pages found at http://www.diyplanner.com/node/572

Usage advice: 

This is a PDF conversion of the Flylady Pages created by ScrapBunny and found at http://www.diyplanner.com/node/572 - you should be able to just print it out in Acrobat.

Paper size: 
Classic (5.5 x 8.5)
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
PDF Reader (Adobe Reader, Mac OS X Preview)
Language: 
English

Special Moleskine Deal for DIYPlanner Visitors

An idea I've been mulling these past few weeks is to invite certain businesses to offer specials for DIYPlanner visitors. Today, we have our first.

I've been looking around for a good price on Moleskines lately, and --after bemoaning the cost of shipping to Canada with most businesses (one eBayer, just over the border, wanted $42 to ship a pocket-sized Moleskine here!)-- I landed on Phoe_Line. She has some of the best prices I've seen, and she charges postage at cost. To make the matter sweeter, I've asked her if she would consider giving discounts to our visitors, and she's agreed to $5 off the first order of $10 or more, and what I consider to be an excellent deal on shipping, especially if you live in the US. (Remember to give her the code "DIY".) She's an eBay Power Seller with a 99.9% positive rating.

You can find here offer in the Bazaar forum.

If any other businesses would like to offer special deals to our members, please email me at diyplanner [at] gmail dot com. I don't want to crass-commercialise this whole undertaking, but I like the idea of passing along pertinent bargains to our community. (And no, we don't get a cut of this deal. ;-) )

Vestiges

You'll have to forgive me if this is a rambling, convoluted post, but it refects my current state of mind while I continue to pack up and prepare for our new life up north.

There's nothing like moving to help you realise just how much junk and baggage you're likely to gather over the years. Today alone, I've found a book on programming a Commodore PET (circa 1981), some early-70's Avengers comics imbued with the piquant aroma of basement mold, four high-grade replicas of 13th century swords, some notebooks with my Breton language exercises, a series of embarrassing journals written in eighth grade (1983), a Duran Duran cassette, a crossbow and several quarrels of bolts, my high school graduation ceremony (in Sony Betamax format), and a strange black plastic thingy of uncertain usage that's been following us around for the past four moves.

Although we're travelling across the continent with an eye to starting fresh, we're also collecting various bits of our histories lurking deep within our mothers' basements, and there's a certain trepidation at leaving something behind that's a forgotten relic of our youths -- perhaps pictures of us with elementary school friends, or a paperweight/ashtray specially constructed for a dearly departed father. These are links to our past, little glorious momentoes we didn't know still existed, lying undiscovered. And the thought of these disappearing into the trash someday, their true value unrealised, is a cause of some anxiety for me.

Visual Notetaking for Added Value

Visual NotesWhen you try and remember something, like a favorite summer day, does the memory come back as text? If you're telling someone how you want a new house to be built, would you open a word processor up and start typing instructions? Our brains are wired for a mix of systematic thinking on the left side, and visual thinking on the right. So why, then, do we take notes primarily in textual form?

Professional Networking Center

This is a form for recording, and prioritizing Professional Networks. This comes in both Classic, and Hipster

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Usage advice: 

Use this form to track all of your networking contacts. Keep track of who you know!

Paper size: 
Multiple Sizes
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
PDF Reader (Adobe Reader, Mac OS X Preview), unzip, Blue Highway Fonts,
Language: 
English

Up In Smoke - Disaster Recovery for Paper-Based Planners

One of the temptations of the paper-based planning fraternity is the almost irresistible desire to be smug when faced with the technical difficulties of others' electronic organisation systems.

After all, paper planners don't crash. They don't have PC connectivity problems. Appointment entries and notes don't just vanish inexplicably, just when you need to access them. Paper doesn't take an age to boot up, and never seems to run out of batteries. We proudly extol the virtues of paper to our collegues fuming faces, and brandish our little loose-leaf planners at them, parading them as evidence of the future of productivity.

However, things go very, very, wrong, when the next day, we leave our planner in the coffee shop and it's gone when we rush back....