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Monday, July 19, 2010

Where Oh Where?

There are certain perils associated with using multiple planners, Filofaxes and notebooks at once, especially if you switch around as often as I do.  I reach a point where, instead of keeping me organized, my multiple books just add to the chaos.

Here's an example of my current situation: The Big Move I've been planning for months happens in less than a month now (YAAAYYYY!!!!).  In preparation for this Big Move, I've been writing lists and notes for nearly a year about what I need to do before, during and after the move.  Packing lists.  Information about our new location.  And, what I'm doing right now: changing our address.

We have loads of things to change our address with:  insurance of all kinds, banks, the list is very long.  And one section of that list is Magazine Subscriptions.

We get a lot of magazine subscriptions because we live in a non-English speaking country, so if we want to read anything that's not online we have to order it.  Plus it helps morale when living overseas to get fun things in the mail.

But, it's been hard for me to keep track of when each magazine is due to expire, which ones I've renewed and which ones I haven't, and the website or phone number to renew or cancel each subscription.

I write lists like these in my Filofax. But, over the past two years that I've lived here and needed to keep track of things like magazine subscriptions, I've used several different Filofaxes.  Not only that, but I go back and forth between Filofax sizes, write some lists in this one and other lists in that one, and have partially (but not completely) up to date lists in several Filofaxes at once.

Now this is coming back around to bite me.  I don't know what's the most recent record of expiration and renewal of my subscriptions.  So, I'm going to have to call each individual magazine's subscriptions department to ask when my subscription is due to expire, and if I need to change my address with them at all or if the subscription is due to expire soon.

Next time, I think I'll just keep my magazine subscriptions information in a file folder!!

What do you do with lists like these?  Do you write them in your Filofax, do you have a notebook designated for information like this, or do you keep files at home?


  1. Each time you open a 'planner' does a little pop up emerge with the words 'It's not in here... I'm the travel planner' or similar !!!

    Magazine subscriptions... put them on your calendar... or on your electronic calendar with a reminder set to go off a month before it is due to expire...

    Some magazines have an on-line service for finding out when your subscription is due to expire..

    I've been through this trauma recently myself with the move to France so I know what you are going through.....

  2. It's a little bit of a work around really, but seeing as I have an iPhone and also like to use notebooks, I've invested in Evernote.com and set up an account there. I find the ability to take a picture of my current notebook page, then upload it to the Evernote account, gives me an instant backup of my lists, notebooks, should I ever misplace them . The added bonus is that I can flag up and tag pics for easy searching online. And if I write in caps that program is able to read my writing, so I can search for specific notes. It works well, I have access to all my notes even when I forget to take my books with me (happens a lot) although it takes a little while to get into the habit of "backing up" at the end of the day.

  3. LOL Steve I had a feeling you would be able to relate!

    Great idea re: putting the expiration in my calendar! Now, if only I could settle on a calendar and keep it for that length of time!

  4. We have a complete filing cabinet in our home office. One of them is titled "subscriptions" and holds all the info on magazine, phone and other subscription.
    However: the customer service of magazines is usually very helpful.

    When we moved 3 years ago, I had the postal service forwarding all mail addressed to my previous address. As soon as the mail arrived, I'd make a note on what addresses I still needed to change. That way, none escaped.

    I learned the hard lesson. In another move, I forgot to forward the new address to our motorcycle insurance. They weren't able to track me down, the bills didn't get paid and in the end I had driven my bike for 2 full years WITHOUT insurance. I'm soooo thankful that nothing bad happened in all that time ....

  5. If you rrent issue have a current issue with a mailing label, there is a number on that you can see has a date in it - that's the date the subscription expires.

  6. Unfortunately for me, most of my magazines come wrapped in plastic. This is nice for keeping the magazine intact on its long journey to me, but I wind up throwing away the address label, which is affixed to the plastic, before I realize I should save it.

    The next month, when the new issue arrives, I eagerly rip off the plastic, and yet again throw it away!

  7. Mmmm can't help you much there, since I'm not subscribed to anything! (and hope to stay that way)
    I think what I would do, though, is keep that sort of info in a bound planner. For instance, I have been using the QuoVadis planner to sort of keep track of expenses, but mostly to write down and keep track of all utility bills, taxes, end of agreements, etc. (But I keep the important bills itself in a shelf).
    At least that way, when I need to check when the next payment for our water is due, I know exactly where to find it. And I think I remember you had a mole weekly (small size)? you could use that as of now :D
    In order to access info from previous years I simply have to refer to my Filo storage binders, where I have everything organised in sections and chronologically.

  8. Hi Oni, thanks for your ideas! I do keep my previous years' Filofax pages in their own archive binders with the year written on the label. My problem is my inconsistent planner use: I use several different planners throughout the year so my year's information is scattered in various bound books and Filofax pages, making it difficult to look up any past events!

    I like your idea of using a bound book to record bills. I just might put my Mole 18 month weekly notebook to that purpose now! Great idea, thanks!


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