Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Christmas planning with the Dodo book of Christmas and my Filofax

I started thinking about Christmas a couple of weeks ago.  Well that's to say I started seriously thinking about Christmas, it has been flitting around my mind since September when the Christmas stock started appearing in the shops!  I took my Dodo Book Of Christmas off the bookcase and flicked through the pages, invoking memories of seasons past.  I love that as well as helping me plan the book also records each year from when my children were very young.

My well loved Dodo Book Of Christmas

I brought the planner in 2007 and have used it every Christmas since then.  It had a little wear on the spine so I used some washi tape to cover it and it looks as good as new now.

Inside the planner are eight sections.  These are Holiday Planner - tasks and lists, Cards, Gifts, Festive Fare, Decoration, Children, Parties and Events and Traditions.  

View inside

Each divider also acts as a clever "stuff and store pouch".

Stuff and store pouch divider 

The pouches are great for keeping bits of paper safe like lists, recipes and gift receipts.

Christmas card list

In the Card section there are pages for your Christmas card lists and they let you keep track of who you have sent cards to and received them from.  

Gifts section

The Gifts section is my favourite.  I have all the presents I have brought people in the last six years listed on these pages.  A quick glance in this section means I don't repeat presents and a leisurely read brings back memories of lots of Christmas days and makes me smile.

Festive Fare section

Festive Fare is my most useful section.  I have a detailed list in here of everything I need to know to prepare our Christmas dinner.  This includes dates when I can make things in advance and freeze them and a cooking timetable so everything will be ready at the same time.  I also keep a lot of recipe cards that I have found in the supermarket over the years in the stuff and store pouch. 

I keep an inventory list in the Decoration section so I can keep track of what I have and what I still need (and by need I mean want!).  It is also useful to list anything that gets broken or stops working.  I once spent days looking for a rope light only to realise I had thrown it away the previous December when it had stopped working.  Lessons were learned!

Children is where I write my Elf on the Shelf ideas.  We have an elf called Nipper who visits our home in December and gets up to mischief every night before returning home with Father Christmas on Christmas Eve.  It takes a lot of planning to make sure you have plenty of things for the elf to do so you aren't repeating things.  

In Traditions I have a couple of lists.  One is the things we like to do as a family and the other is a shopping list so I don't forget any goodies that we like to have each year.  It just wouldn't be Christmas without a box of Turkish delight and some marzipan fruits!

Dodo pages in my Filofax

The Dodo Book Of Christmas does not leave my house.  There are too many precious memories contained inside it and things in the stuff and store pouches that could fall out.  This year I have cut down some of the dodo pages and punched them so they will fit in my Filofax.  At the moment I have a Christmas to do list and a list of films I want to watch with the children in my filo.  I also have a page for gift ideas in case I see something when I am out and need to note it down before I get home or if I am suddenly struck by inspiration.

My Christmas to do list

Now I am using a Filofax I could realistically do all my Christmas planning in there but I don't want to.  I like to be able to keep everything together from over the years and when my children get older I can pass it on to them so they can see what I did and how I did it and it will keep our family traditions alive.  I feel that as well as a planning tool my Dodo Book Of Christmas is also a record of our family life spanning the years and it has become part of my Christmas routine to sit down in the evenings and fill it full of lists and memories. It is like a journal I didn't realise I was writing until I looked back through it a couple of years later.

The perfect pair

Thanks for reading and good luck with your planning!

Sunday, 24 November 2013

My week #47

This week's theme is another girly one, I just love the rose washi and the pink and mint colours together. 

My week in my Filofax #47

Monday was my birthday, I spent the day moving into my new Malden and then celebrating with my family on the evening.  We had a nice meal together and a lovely lemon drizzle birthday cake.  You can call it a birthday cake if you add candles right?

My cake

During the week I added a section to my Filofax for my Christmas plans.  I have started writing to do lists and gift ideas down when I get a chance.  I am full of the holiday spirit now everyone's birthdays are out of the way!  I usually put our Christmas tree up this weekend but I still have to rearrange the furniture in my living room before I can do that.  I am hoping to have done it by next weekend.  Yes I'm excited!

Close up

The rest of the week was busy, lots and lots of things to do but writing them down and checking them off kept me straight.  Having two children in school means there is always something I need to remember, even though a lot of the time I write the same reminders each week if I didn't note them down I really think I'd end up in a muddle.

Close up

I have a feeling that my weeks are only going to get busier in the run up to Christmas but that's ok, I will just focus on one thing at a time instead of the overall picture and that should stop me panicking.  Have you started your Christmas planning yet or is it still too early for you?

Thursday, 21 November 2013

I have joined the Malden family..... and it's not aqua!

Here she is.....

My beautiful Malden

Ok, ok I know I have gone on and on about the aqua Malden for months and then I go and buy an ochre one instead.  "What's going on?" I hear you ask, well the truth is I had been leaning toward the ochre for a little while.  When I found the Maldens on sale on the Colemans website  the ochre was already sold out while there was still one aqua left in stock.  I thought that Fate had stepped in and made my decision for me.  When someone brought the last aqua one before my birthday I was again left with having decide which I really wanted.

I had started to want the ochre colour after seeing photos @handmadebycharlottevictoria had posted on Instagram of her Malden.  The colour I had always dismissed as boring now looked classic and sophisticated, more grown up.  I already had a brightly coloured Filofax (my yellow Original) so did I really need another one?  Also the aqua didn't feel right for this time of year, the ochre is such an autumnal colour it just felt right.

With my yellow Original Filofax

Both colours had been out of stock on the Filofax UK website for a while and were now both out of stock with Colemans.  I couldn't find either colour in personal size on eBay either.  It was starting to look like I wouldn't get a Malden for my birthday at all.  I asked in a Facebook group if anyone knew where I could find one and was directed to a swapping and selling group.  I joined straight away and as soon as I was added I scrolled through all the listings to see if anyone was selling a personal Malden in either colour.  They were not.  I kept checking the group daily to see if one would appear and a few days later it did.  A lady was selling her ochre Malden and she was in the UK.  I emailed the seller and she sent me some photos, we agreed on a price and a couple of days later the ochre was mine!  

All moved in

I moved in straight away and am totally in love with her.  I have put my Original away for now.  I will probably move back in in the spring when I'm ready for a splash of colour again but for now I am very happy in the Malden.  I love all of the pockets and the softness of the leather, it feels completely different to my Original which is made with one thick piece of leather.  I am using the zipped compartment for my Coleto pen which is too big for the pen loop and I have put some sticky notes, paperclips, sticky dots, transparent arrows and washi samples in the front pockets.  You can just fit so much inside.  The strap is also a lot longer on the Malden so I wont have to be as strict with myself on how much I can keep in there.  I made sure I regularly emptied the Original because when it got too full I worried the strap would rub against the leather on the front cover and damage it.  It will be nice not to have that concern with this Filofax.    

In the pockets

Am I fickle for changing my mind?  Maybe, now I have the ochre I can't see me ever buying the aqua because I don't think I'm an owning-a-Filofax-in-more-than-one-colour kind of gal.... of course that could change!

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Monday, 18 November 2013

My week #46

Here are my pages for last week, I went with a green and pink theme this time.  I think they look quite pretty.

My week in my Filofax #46

Close up

Close up

Sorry this is such a short post but today is my birthday and I have a lot on.  I will be writing another post this week though so keep an eye out for that please!

Thanks for reading.

Monday, 11 November 2013

My week #45

So I know that owls are so last year but I still love them and when my friend sent me this owl washi tape I just had to use it.    

My week in my Filofax #45

The owl stickers all came from the new planner I brought to store my 2013 diary pages in next year, I wrote briefly about it here during the October photo challenge.

Close up

Last week I found an aqua Malden for sale on the Colemans website, it was 30% off and included free delivery.  I was incredibly excited as with the reduction I knew I would be able to afford it with my birthday money BUT the big problem was they only had one left in stock and it is not my birthday until next week.  I checked the website four or five times a day, every day to see if it was still available.  I decided if it was still there on my birthday it was meant to be and I would order it straight away, however on Tuesday this week someone else brought it.  I was so disappointed, I hope whoever brought it loves it as much as I would have.

Close up

Anyway the rest of my week was quite busy as it was my son's 10th birthday party on Sunday so I had lots of things on my to do list to make sure everything was ready in time.  Being organised certainly makes these things easier, I remember this time last year I was panicking that I wouldn't remember everything and I was still tidying the house minutes before the guests arrived!  This time round all I had to do on Sunday morning was make the party food so I was much more relaxed and enjoyed the party a lot more.

Party food

I can't believe my son is turning ten on Wednesday, it doesn't seem possible.  Where did my cheeky little monkey go?!  I find myself looking at him and thinking "when did you get so tall?" and "where are those chubby cheeks?".  I am planning on getting lots of cuddles for the next couple of days in case he wakes up on his birthday and decides his too old for such things!

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Monday, 4 November 2013

October Filofax photo-a-day challenge, final round-up

Day twenty - appointment

These are my sweet appointment stickers from Cute Organizing (this shop used to be called Japan Corner).

Day 20 - appointment

Day twenty one - somewhere relaxing

Shopping is relaxing for me!

Day 21 - somewhere relaxing

Day twenty two - baby

This is the scan from my youngest, it feels like a very long time ago now.

Day 22 - baby

Day twenty three - happy hump day

Also known as Wednesday, half way through the week and nearly the weekend.

Day 23 - happy hump day

Day twenty four - gotta have it

My current wish list, a teal Finchley Filofax in personal size, a Day of the dead handbag from Jubly Umph and this lovely nail polish from Literary Lacquer.  It is called Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster which is named after a drink in one of my favourite books - The hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy and it is one of my favourite colours so it must be "meant to be"!

Day 24 - gotta have it

Day twenty five - your plans this weekend

Playing with this new organiser!  I will be using the binder to archive my 2013 diary pages and using some of the inserts in my Filofax.

Day 25 - your plans for the weekend

Day twenty six - whatcha doin'?

I've been playing Tetris on my Game Boy, I am still addicted to it.

Day 26 - whatcha doin'

Day twenty seven - nature shot

Pretty autumn leaves and my Original Filofax, I think the colours go really well together. 

Day 27 - nature shot

Day twenty eight - something pretty

These ribbons are incredibly pretty!

Day 28 - something pretty

Day twenty nine - pattern

I started crocheting again this year, I love the pattern on this flower.

Day 29 - pattern

Day thirty - sideways

There's not much I can say about this one is there? 

Day 30 - sideways

Day thirty one - treat

My treat for this day was a toffee apple and a toffee nut caffe caramella from Costa coffee, very yummy!

Day 31 - treat

Well that is the end of the challenge, I can't wait for the next one!

Thanks for reading

My week #44

My theme for this week just had to be spooky! 

My week in my Filofax #44

I have quite a few sticky dots and hearts so I used some to make pumpkins and a witch.  I have also been patiently waiting for months to use my Nightmare before Christmas stickers, I love Jack! 

Close up

I had a really lovely week, we carved pumpkins and painted sugar skulls, had spooky drinks (regular drinks but with a drop of black or green food dye) and snacks.  We took the children out trick or treating on Thursday night.  My youngest is only two but she loved dressing up as a witch and getting sweeties with her big brother (Death) and sister (vampire bride).  The three of them still have lots of sweets left because I'm mean and haven't let them eat all of them in one sitting!

Close up

On Saturday we went to a bonfire and fireworks display, it was very cold but I always enjoy going.  There was plenty of hot chocolate to keep us warm and some delicious food.  Sometimes when you are stood in a cold, wet field on a dark night you just can't beat a cheese burger covered in fried onions and tomato sauce!