Planning Through the Years

By: Jennifer Lonergan


As I sat down to address my holiday cards this year, I did as I always do and got out my address book.

I opened up to the A’s and began. When I got to a name that, last year addressed to, “Mr. and Mrs.,” but now only goes to, “Mrs.,” I paused. I decided to go back to the A’s and thus began my walk down memory lane.

My address book is a time capsule. Old phone numbers, crossed out. Multiple addresses attached to one name. What had first started with meticulous handwriting of family and friends names and addresses has now ended up with lines drawn across old information and phone numbers. I’m so happy I can still read the old addresses.

I have many address books from different stages of my life. When I do get around to a spring and fall cleaning, I come across them and then all organizing comes to a halt. I sit, read and reflect. I look back at names that are still in my life and those that are not. Wonderful memories with old friends come back and I am grateful I’ve kept them.

My calendars are the same. Past birthdays, anniversaries and other celebrations marked and noted. Snow days, yearly physicals for the kids, vacations. School concerts, baseball and basketball games…it goes on and on. When I became a parent, my calendar became my new journal by default. My written life started with a diary, then a journal, now as a parent my daily calendar. Now it’s a notebook. A notebook of daily tasks, thoughts and goals. For me, the simple act of writing out my day makes me feel more organized, efficient, and calm.

With a household of two full-time, working parents and four activity-driven children, I finally had to break down and do an online calendar that my husband and I can both see while at work. It is a sign of the times. Immediate response to anything is now an expectation. The freedom to edit any event and to have the information in real time, I have to admit, has made planning exponentially better. But I still have my paper calendar! I can’t break that habit. It’s a good thing too, since google calendar deletes your events after so many days. (I was shocked when I went back to see when certain appointments last were and they were gone.)

Paper calendar vs online calendar. Kindle vs book. It all comes down to personal preference and what works best for you. Luckily, we have a choice.

One thought on “Planning Through the Years

  1. I love looking through my old address books. I still have little ones from High School and college and it’s so interesting to look back in the people that were there for a season.

    Now I couldn’t live without my google calendar. I have it with me always and don’t need to find a pen to add activities or appointments.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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