A New Year’s Memory: Story behind Planners

A new year, a new post. The first post for the year.

There are so many things a person does at the start of the year, and one of the things I look forward to doing at the end of the year to the beginning of a new one, is getting and updating my planner. I guess, that’s where my OC-ness is most evident, in my planner. The first planner that I ever had the chance of owning before was a table/office planner with the monthly pages that one could just remove at the end of the month. My mom and dad would take me and my sister to National Bookstore, or that religion store in what used to be SM Centerpoint which sold a bunch of these office planners on the side, and me and my sister would get to pick the color of the backboard. Naturally, I’d always pick green, and when the year was over we’d use the backboard as a sort of table top when writing or drawing in a place that had no desk.

If I remember correctly though, there was a year that we tried re-using those backboard and created our own planners. My mom decided to print a monthly planner to put into the backboard, and each of us siblings got to decorate our own planners with this program my mom had wherein a specific template was put in and we could just decide what designs we wanted. So, for about a year to 2 years, I had a planner with Disney designs or anime designs, or whatever thing I fancied for the month.

I do not recall what year, but there was a specific year that I gave up on those table top office planners and bought a really girly planner for myself. Not quite sure if it was a Candy planner or was it a Bench planner (if such things did exist) but I vaguely recall it being a really pink planner. That year, I loved my planner to bits and it was full of birthdays of my friend’s, meetings or gimmicks I had to go to, and it even included birthdays of foreign artists already printed on some dates. That year, I stopped using a table top planner and have never gone back to using them ever. A year (or two) after that girly planner, I couldn’t find a planner I wanted which is why when my dad offered me one of his many (as I refer to it) bank planners, I took a black serious-looking planner. I still have that planner somewhere, or maybe I threw it away, probably the former since I hate throwing away planners. Still, the year after, when dad offered me another bank planner, I didn’t refuse because I couldn’t find the kind of planner that best suited me.

It started in 2006. The rise in the Starbucks hype. 2006 was the year I got my first Starbucks planner, and I didn’t even really earn it. Mom had a friend who drank a lot of coffee and she asked this friend to help her fill the card for Starbucks, but I didn’t expect much. That year dad offered me one of many of his bank planners again, and I took it; and as yearly rituals go for me, I spent one night moving birthdays and such to my new planner. About 2 weeks after New Years’, after arriving home from the debut of a good friend of mine, mom came up to me and told me of a surprise. Guess what? She handed me my very first Starbucks planner, knowing full well that I was frustrated because I didn’t get to have my own copy. That’s where it all started.

For 2007, with my mom’s help, I earned enough for my planner sometime between Christmas and New Year’s. For 2008, me and my mom (yet again) were much quicker because I earned enough for my Starbucks planner by the first week of December.  Honestly though, the 2008 Starbucks planner wasn’t really my thing, which is why when I went to China for 6 weeks to study, I brought it along and used it as more of a place wherein semi-detailed accounts of things done during the day were put. Upon returning, my planner shifted to a Lee planner which Celadon received during one of its events, and that continued until the end of the year. The Lee planner was nicely designed with many fashion tidbits added on to various pages, the 2 things I disliked in the planner was its heavy cover and the “time” inputted in every day-column of the planner, which overwhelmed my OC-ness for planning and timing.

My Starbucks planner story:

2006, was one of the best because the design was simply love. 2007 the planner was a bit too heavy and the pages sometimes tore off on its own due to the metal thing which allowed for the pages to be moved around or removed. 2008, the planner was completely opposite of 2007 because this time it was really light. The thing a lot of people (including me) didn’t like was the rubber thing which was suppose to keep the planner closed. It was too much of a hassle for people who needed to open and close the planner quickly. This year, 2009, I love the design.

I don’t know why, but I love collecting Starbucks planners. Which is why, even if the designs aren’t something I’d figuratively “die-for”, I still earned for the planners. 2009’s planner reminds me of the 2006 planner. It looks very much like a book, does not weigh that much AND has a lot of space for day to day activities. It is neat, and not filled to the brim with random note spaces that I don’t really need (like a Menstrual Cycle Tracker). It’s easily accessible because it has no lock or garter around it. It’s basically an open-close kind of planner. I also love the month by month designs they have. Very creative and very simple. And of course, I love the box in which the planner came in. That was unexpected, didn’t know it included a box.

Starbucks Box
Starbucks planner

Things I dislike about the new Starbucks Planner:

1. Design on the cover. Upon closer inspection, a person can see the “depressed” design on the lower right side of the cover is actually a girl holding a coffee mug. Suggestion, make the design of the girl clearer because her holding a coffee mug, is not that obvious to other people. That and/or change the color to the design.

2. The book mark. I love how simple they want to make it, but let’s face it, it is not that durable. Experience tells me so. Today is the first day I have my planner, and what happens? It falls off, due to some knotting mistake of some kind. I had to re-knot it (in an odd way) with tweazers to keep the Starbucks tag on. Suggestion, if they want to add a tag to the planner, do it somewhere nearer the top, or in the middle portion of the planner (as long as it isn’t bulky like it makes the planner seem bulky/dent-y) and not on the bottom. Why? If not properly secured, it can just fall off and that would be a complete waste. I would love to see a Starbucks “ribbon” book mark, with Starbucks sewn or embellished on it, instead of an over-sized bookmark or bulky/heavy tag.

3. The colors. Let’s face it, the colors were too limited. I don’t blame Starbucks for this, this is the first time they released a planner of varying colors, so they probably wanted to try it out this year. I would hate it though if they had too many colors for their planners, which would make Starbucks lose their unique edge. Probably up to 5 colors would be good.

4. Lack of information. Not personal information. But Starbucks information. 2006 planners (if I recall correctly) had phone numbers to Starbucks branches. I miss those, because I actually had use for the numbers when a friend of mine left something at the Starbucks Katipunan branch. Starbucks should include numbers to some (not all) big-time branches, so that if ever a customer has need for the number of another branch, they could call and ask for the number of the branch they want.

Starbucks planner

To end this entry, I guess I’d repeat that I’m OC. Obsessive-Compulsive. Oh and that I’m bipolar. I hate too routined a life-style, but at the same time, I love things fixed and planned. I love surprises, but I hate messy things. Over-all, a planner is still one of the things I prepare for, and look forward to at tne ending of a year. Getting a new planner, always makes me feel better. It’s as if, you are beginning a new slate. A new planner, a new year. An empty planner with nothing but wonderful things waiting to fill its spaces. 🙂

P.S. The thoughts and opinions on this blog entry are all mine and are first and fore-most personal opinions and do not generally reflect the characteristics/personalities of any institution or people I’m associated with.

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7 comments on “A New Year’s Memory: Story behind Planners

  1. How simple is it?

    Spaces to write your stuff and the calendars? Nothing else? Like goals, most memorable memory of the week — nothing like that?

  2. @Tiffy: I use my cellphone for it, and it’s more discrete than a literal page on a planner that says “Menstrual Cycle Tracker” and includes heavy, light, spotting. Haha you get the picture. XD I guess it depends on the person too. I for one find it unimportant.. 🙂

    The thing about the Starbucks planner, for me, is that it’s really simple and allows a person to be creative. I think it really depends on the person. Like if I have goals for the week, I can plaster it above the page (since a week is 2 pages) in bold bright letters, or I can put my most “memorable” memory in some of the other empty pages (for notes) on the planner.

    Also, I think I don’t really need those things on a planner since I have a tendency to blog about my most memorable events. XD

    Haha. It really depends on the person. OvO

  3. Pingback: The Gift of Starbucks, 2012 edition « China Doll in the Philippines

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