Monday, May 3, 2010

Quo Vadis Septanote Then And Now

I found my Quo Vadis Septanote from 1998-1999 while cleaning out my garage this weekend! What a blast from the past!

This planner is from a particularly interesting time of my life, which is actually very similar in some ways to my life right now. Then I was, and now I am, going through a major transition: finishing up things where I am and getting ready to move to a foreign country.

During the school year 1998-1999 I was working as a lab tech in a chemistry lab at the university where my husband was getting his undergrad degree (as an "older student" in his 20's). As my husband was finishing up his degree, I was applying to grad schools and we were applying to join the Peace Corps. (As things turned out, we went into the Peace Corps in the summer of 1999 and both went to grad school after that).

This week in my Septanote, November 30-December 6 1998, is fairly typical of what I was doing at the time. (You can click the photos to enlarge.)You can see chemistry lab tasks (like "make 6% acrylamide" on Wednesday), things I was doing for my grad school applications (like sending my transcripts and GRE scores to schools I applied to), things I had to do for the class I was taking on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and other general life stuff (like yoga class, the only time in my life I've ever done a yoga class). It was a pretty busy time for me.

Here is a photo of the Anno-Planner, which is one of my favorite features of Quo Vadis planners--it shows the entire year across a two-page spread with the months as columns. In this planner I used the Anno-Planner to keep track of my paychecks and bills due. I got paid twice a month, and each check was enough to cover either my rent or my bills. So I noted on paydays which one that check was primarily going toward (which you can see as "bills" or "rent" on the pages). For each bill, as soon as I received it I wrote its amount on the date it was due.

You can see that my rent was due on the 10th of each month, and was $435 per month. I got paid every two weeks, which meant I always got paid on different dates. My phone bills were always due around the middle of the month, utilities at the beginning of the month, and my credit card bill was due around the end of the month. Since my pay dates changed all the time, I had to be strategic about saving enough from one paycheck to another to cover all my bills all month. This anno-planner was perfect for allowing me to budget every month.

You have no idea how excited I am about this: I have a 2009-2010 Septanote, generously sent to me by Karen at Exaclair, that I will be reviewing soon here on Plannerisms. I stopped using my 1998-1999 Septanote May 1 of that year, the last day of my job. As a result, I have blank pages in that planner. So I can compare this year's Septanote to my old Septanote!

Side-by-side, you can see the format updates Quo Vadis has made since then. (Click to enlarge.)

Here is something really interesting: the days in 1999 are the same as they are this year. So for example, in the photo below you can see the week of June 28-July 4 has the same days of the week this year as they did in 1999:
The fonts are different, the old ink color was brown and now it's gray. The months in the top right corner have a different layout, because in the old planner there is a box for Week's Dominant that is not in this year's planner.

Most notably, the layout of the list boxes is different. Back in 1999, emailing was not nearly as common as it is today, so there was no box labeled Email. Also, See and Do each had their own box, which are now combined into the See-Do box in this year's version. Now the Write box has been done away with completely. This space, along with Cash Due and To Pay have all been combined into the Pay-Receive box.

What an amazing opportunity to see not only how my own life has changed in 11 years, but also to see how the Septanote has changed and evolved over that time!


  1. Did I see "Oliver Winery"? Could it be Bloomington? I went to grad school there!

  2. Yes indeed, IUB! I really enjoyed Bloomington.