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Am I too late for a 2022 notebook setup? I intended to write this way back in January but that month turned out to be a total surprise – not in the way I wanted it to be. Just when I thought my boat was on a steady stream, I realize I am on the verge of a waterfall about to crash into the harsh waters.

No amount of rowing and cursing would make me go back to a peaceful life. I only have to accept my fate, dive headfirst, and brace myself for the impact. Fast forward to April 2022 and the situation is gentler, pandemic-wise. I went back to my old routine – going alternately into the hell of a workday, the bliss of me-time, and the in-betweens of a downtime. My thoughts are also more collected now and I could focus on other endeavors.

I’d gone off course and started making a fuss over my timeline when no one else does. Let’s try it again and go back. Shall we?

See also: The Analog System for the New Normal: How My Notebooks Keep me Sane During the Pandemic

In the past years, my style revolves around utilizing the A5 planners and journals. I would write my articles, make a calendar spread, or put together a scrapbook. The big pages offer a lot of possibilities for me. That’s why I stuck with it for many years. The only disadvantage of an A5 is it is burdensome to carry around since it wouldn’t fit in small bags. There are a lot of instances when I would come up with million-dollar ideas and I do not have my journal with me. I would jot them in my phone’s notes section but they get buried without a chance of being browsed again. That is the reason I made the shift to a standard size so I can bring it anywhere I wanted to be.

Notebook Set-up, Affordable Traveler's Notebook

Shopee is brimming with affordable options for fauxdori covers and inserts. They make their way to my heart and shopping cart. All these heart eye elation for the beautiful options I have. In the end, I chose this luscious brown faux leather cover from Omeng and Bee (with a free insert, thank you!), monthly inserts from PapertierShop_ph, and pristine white standard-sized journals from Studio de Louna.

See also: The Notebook System That Gets My Life Together

To give you a gist of what I keep inside my fauxdori, here is the shortlist of it:

  • 1 monthly insert – personal life
  • 1 dotted insert – personal bullet journal
  • 1 monthly insert – work
  • 1 dotted insert – work bullet journal
  • 1 dotted insert – brain dump
  • 1 pocket insert – container for stencils, index cards, scratch pads, and sticky notes

If my fauxdori could talk, it would shout in protest, “Why do you have to put so many in here” with its hands on its waist reprimanding me as a mother would.

Notebook Set-up, Affordable Traveler's Notebook

But I have to make certain portions of my life separate from each other. There are a lot of notes to remember and schedules to make at work. At the same time, I have a lot going on with my creative activities, family affairs, and my brain. If I let all these aspects of my life mingle with each other on a single insert, it would be war and chaos. The purpose of keeping a planner would be defeated.

Not included in the fauxdori set-up is this carnation A6 notebook from Owl Notebook. Nothing extravagant. Only snippets of the thoughts, ideas, and experiences I went through the day.

Purchasing the fauxdori is an ode to chasing dreams no matter how grandiose or trivial they may seem. I am in my late 20’s now. I went on adventures I never thought I would take. I have decisions I never imagined I would make. I go on paths I never hoped to cross. I fell in and out of life more than ever like a rollercoaster ride it is often alluded to.

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