Calendar Girl

About some things, I am not particularly organized.  If you were to look in my desk drawer, my closet or my silverware drawer, you would be met with great disarray.  But my calendar–that is sacred ground, folks.  I love, adore, need and am addicted to my meticulously-kept calendar.  I write down everything–not just events, but reminders to call so-and-so or a note to send snacks to school or a nudge to mail my brother’s birthday card in time to make it there.  When I couldn’t find one in a store that was precisely what I wanted, I used Microsoft Word to make one of my own, and I had it bound at Kinko’s (I’m a calendar nerd, and I’m not ashamed).  Below is a picture of My Lovely on an average week:


Every Sunday night, I happily sit down at my kitchen table to plan my week, my calendar spread open before me, and I breathe in its orderliness.  And I am happy. 

Well, I was happy.  My wonderfully generous and unselfish husband bought me a PDA for Christmas.  It’s a nice one–colorful and lightweight and oh-so-much-smarter than I will ever be.  It’s compatible with Microsoft Outlook, so I am able to use Outlook for my "at home" calendar, and I keep the PDA with me in my bag.  This should be an organized woman’s dream, right? 

*semi-pretend sobbingI MISS MY PAPER CALENDAR!  I need it, I need it, I need it, and I feel like I can’t go another day without it.  I have tried so hard to be excited about having my daily events computerized.  I gave it the benefit of the doubt, I tried to convince myself that I was excited about it, but it is NOT working for me.  And I’m fairly tech-savvy–I have a blog, for Pete’s sake, and I communicate more by e-mail than by phone.  But it seems my brain cannot wrap itself around the notion of my precious, organized calendar on a computer.  I know–it should be the same.  But it’s not.  Not for me.

And if it sounds like I’m over-reacting, that would be because, well, I am.  I have no idea why this has affected me so strongly.  I think being able to–literally–put my hands on my calendar was an important part of feeling "on my game" at this juggling act called life.  Which is why I’m baring my soul to you now.  Please, my blog-reading, tech-savvy friends–what is wrong with me?  Am I the only one left in 21st century America who cannot let go of her paper calendar?  Or is there someone out there that feels the same way? 

19 thoughts on “Calendar Girl

  1. momrn2 says:

    Count me in on needing my calendar. I am the same way!! Were I to lose, misplace, or have my day planner destoryed… my life as I know it would be gone. I would be completely unaware of what needed to happen when, who to call, what was coming the next day, where the kids needed to be, where I needed to be, and perhaps even where I was at that moment.
    At work, everyone uses their Microsoft Outlook as their calendar. I’ve even had classes on how to do it. If a conference call or meeting is sent via e-mail it automatically posts to your “computer” calendar. And to beat all, it will pop up a window 15 minutes before that meeting to “remind” you.
    BUUUTTT… can I use it?? NO!! I’ve tried, no use. I feel completely overwhelmed, lost, and helpless. I still take all of those items and very nicely transcribe them into my day planner. Most at work think I am crazy… maybe I am. I just need my paper and pen!! Comforting to know I’m not the only “crazy” one out there. 🙂

  2. Liz says:

    I feel your pain. I could not find a calendar that I liked, so I bought a planner refill, 2 page per week, and a 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ binder, and tons of lined pages to fit in behind it. My binder is now falling apart, after only 8 months of use, so I’m going to look for another planner, but I really like how this calendar refill works for me.
    I try to write in only pencil so I can change things as needed, but I think I like the journal-type feel of “no, that event got changed” when I see something crossed out.
    And I keep my old calendars, too.

  3. Kathryn, The Daring One says:

    Oh my word. We need to talk. We’ll form a support group and you will get through this. I was a Franklin addict for 7 years. When I got my palm, it took me a while to get used to it but now I am IN LOVE. I’ll tell you a couple of cool things. I keep lists of EVERYTHING on there from what I’ve given or plan to give my family members for gifts the past 4 years to all of my recipes typed out in a Word file. When I’m grocery shopping and I decide last minute to cook something, I pull up the recipe and know all the ingredients I need.
    I do all shopping lists on there.
    If I have to move or change something, there’s no rewriting, crossing out or erasing, you just move or change it. If you have a recurring event, you don’t have to write it over and over each time.
    Seriously, it’s the best thing that ever happened to my organizational life and I am OBSESSED with organization. You will warm up to it. Promise.

  4. Missy says:

    I love my PDA, but I’m not quite the calendar-addict you are. My favorite application on my PDA is HandyShopper. I use it for all my shopping lists. Each store is organized by aisle #. It rocks. Let me know and I’ll beam it to you!

  5. Joe Goodwin says:

    I was the original PDA junkie. I’ve owned one ever since the original Pilot 1000 came out in 1986.
    Then last year came, and with it a promotion to project supervisor. Suddenly, I had to keep track of project schedules for five people.
    Sadly, the PDA wasn’t up to the task. I needed a way to make notes fast, and I needed a way to see several days of activity in a couple of glances. The PDA does neither especially well.
    It might have helped if I could sync to my PC at work, and use the Lotus Notes scheduling software that my employer uses. Unfortunately, my employer has a strict policy against PDA syncing on the network, citing security concerns (and very valid ones, might I add. PDAs are notoriously unsecure when compared to PCs).
    So, my life is now tracked on a Franklin Covey planner, and my PDA is now relegated to a phone book, game player, bible reader, and book reader. I can still hear it crying to itself in the middle of the night.

  6. Kim in IL says:

    I used a Franklin Planner for years and loved it, but last year I got a Palm for Christmas and I have used it (and loved it!) ever since. But there is one thing that I really miss ed about keeping a paper calendar–leafing through the pages and reliving life. I can pull down my 1990 calendar and remember going to my OB appointments , awaiting the birth of our third (and last) child. I can pull down my 2000 calendar and remember all the different houses we looked at before choosing the one we bought in Brunswick. I can relive the drama of offers and counter offers, closing days and moving days. But with the PDA, it isn’t right there for me to read! I have to make multiple clicks to even see if that might be the day that the dog was spayed last year. . . Now I’m keeping two calendars. The palm, (which is my short term memory) and the paper calendar (which is my long term memory).
    I like it that way. It makes me happy.

  7. Randi says:

    I completely understand! I have tried using the computer as my calendar and I can’t stand it! I use a day-planner and leave it opened on my counter all the time–I check it regularly. I also save them each year–for some reason I can’t throw them away–I keep thinking I will use them for something!

  8. Heth says:

    Semi-pretend sobbing is the best kind of sobbing. You don’t get blotchy swollen eyes and a rudolph red nose.
    My husband and I just had this discussion this morning. He is thinking of upgrading his PDA to one with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, guess who he is giving his hand-me downs to? That would be me. But I’m with you, I love my paper calendar (although I have never made my own and had it printed at Kinkos) and I don’t think I will be able to make the switch. Plus, I might lose it or something……

  9. the SmockLady says:

    Well, I’m a calendar addict too. I even have us all color coded on my calendar – all seven of us. I don’t know what I would do without it, but I do know I would be lost. I prefer to have a calendar with seven columns-a-day (one for each of us, two parents and five children). So each day is a two page spread. I want to be able to lok at each day and get a grip on the plans at a glance, that’s why I have us color coded. I guess that’s a bit obsessive.
    I also have my PDA, which I love. I don’t use Outlook or any MS product for that matter. I really odn’t MS, but I do love my PDA. I keep my menus, my grocery lists, my children’s-sizes-and-clothing-needs-as-the -seasons-change list, my gift lists, my this list, my that list on it. I even keep a record of our books in our library on it. I do keep my calendar on it too, but that’s because when I leave the house I don’t take my big paper version with me. I have both: my calendar and my mini-calendar.
    I guess that’s a little ocd. But that’s ok. It works for me.

  10. Queen Beth says:

    Don’t feel bad. I have shiney, wonderful Quickbooks Pro 2006 to do our books for the company…and I still like to use old-fashioned ledger books…go figure!

  11. Heather says:

    Oh, the tender love for the paper calendar. I miss mine, too. Made in word, and printed at the local copy store. Bound myself. Containing all needed features. Now, I’ve moved on to a palm, but there is fondness in thinking about lugging my baby around. 🙂

  12. chilihead says:

    I was a calendar junkie for a while too. Then I realized I was on my computer more than not and I put everything into Outlook. That was fantastic for me. Now that I, too, have a PDA, I can’t decide if I like it or not. I keep forgetting to synch it up! And I’m not using it to it’s fully potential. And I like all my Word lists and being to print those out and hold them. And, and, and…And I don’t know if I like my PDA either (but I keep telling myself I do).

  13. emlouisa says:

    I totally hear ya! My dh has been bugging me for months to do my calendaring/address booking electronically but I just can’t do it! Something about the smooth flow of my Pilot Pen just makes it too appealing. Oh, well!

  14. Carol says:

    Okay. Three years ago, I went from my dearly beloved paper calendar to a PDA/phone/mp3player/kitchen sink. I can’t even tell you everything it had in it- amazing! It was tough as the dickens to make myself sit down and learn how to use that contraption. I hated it. I swore I’d never be able to get used to it.
    Well, it gave out and hubby replaced it this past Christmas with a phone. I want my contraption back! It takes up no space at all. And I only have one item to fool with. I was able to carry smaller, lighter purses. And it did everything. Everything! I could even surf the ‘net with it.
    Now I have a phone. No calendar. At all. Not even paper. I have no idea what I’m supposed to do tomorrow.
    You’re heistant now, but you’re going to fall in love with that thing. Watch and see.

  15. another mom says:

    I’m a fan of real, hang-on-the-wall calendars, real phonebooks, real personal address books, and a rolodex at my desk. Let’s hear it for the paper trail……..

  16. jennybee says:

    I am so with you. I still keep a paper trail for my checkbook. Quicken Microsoft Money, Oh, no. Paper trail. There is something to writing it down and seeing it laid out that makes the world go round. I am so with you.

  17. ~m2~ says:

    without reading one comment, i have to say i am right there with you. there is something very comforting about pen-to-paper and i think we both do enough typing to recognize that 🙂
    (love your new place – sorry it took me so long to get here!)

  18. Emily says:

    Ok, so I’m a little late commenting on this (I just found your blog) but I just have to say: you’re not crazy. Or at least, if you’re crazy, so am I. 🙂 My uncle gave me a palm for a wedding gift. What a super gift for his uber-organized niece, right? My husband and I finally sold it because I just couldn’t make the switch. Three years later, I’m still happily using my lovely paper calendar. There is just something about paper, isn’t there?

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