Ideas on Using Your 2016 Hobonichi Techo (or Page-a-Day Type Planner)

If you read my previous post, you’ll know that I have spent some time contemplating how exactly I was going to organize myself next year.

With 2016’s Hobonichi Techo starting out with some half-page days on this Wednesday, December 16th, I figure now might be a good time to share a few ideas on how you might consider using your page-a-day planner, aside from using it to legitimately plan out your appointments and daily life.

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I decided to use my Hobonichi, in a very broad way, as a gratitude journal. This is perfect because I can take my time to use my inkiest or flex pens, and just focus on a few positives.

The idea is to take the time to reflect and think about things you’re grateful for, allowing you to become more mindful about all the things and people and opportunities of your life. Supposedly this makes you a happier person (I’ll let you know how this goes next December…). I liked this idea the most because I wanted to use this notebook for something a bit more meaningful and enjoyable, especially because I can also have some with my fountain pens – the Hobonichi has that great Tomoe River paper.

You might like how I also opened it up to making quick note of interesting or meaningful quotations or things to remember from the day. Basically, I am planning to use my Techo as a record of the positive and true things of 2016. Small and large and surprising and beautiful, but rather than a hash-out of all the details and things I did in a day, which I am planning on doing in my regular journal, I want to use my Hobonichi to record a few bright moments or ideas.

Here are some other ways you can use your Hobonichi:

  • Daily to-do lists. Especially if you have a routine, like first thing in the morning when you wake up, or first thing when you get to the office or your workspace.
  • Recording what inks are in what pens.
    • I am vaguely planning on using the monthly calendar to write in when I ink up a pen with what ink, so I will be able to look back and see how long that ink has been in there for.

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  • Recording anything something that’s on-going, specific to you: if you’re keeping track of your diets or health, your work-outs, your run training. You can also record your progress as you set and meet goals or milestones.
  • New recipes to try (this was a runner-up idea for me, which lost out mainly because I can’t really guarantee that I’m going to try more than one or two new recipes a week, much less everyday).
  • If you’ve got kids, a record of their day, interactions you have, observations, something funny they said.
  • Budgeting.
  • Learning a new word a day; using that word in a few interesting sentences.
    • Learning a new word in a new language every day.
  • If you’re a serious letter-writing, making notes on the letters you’ve received and sent out.
  • Keeping track of books you’re reading.
  • Gardening: temperatures, when seeds have gone in, when things are sprouting, harvests (I’m re-reading Barbara Kingsolver’s “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” right now, and continuing to imaginary-plan my future farm).
  • Practising or experienced calligraphers could select interesting quotations and practise new hands.

Or, you could just use it for regular journaling. I also seriously considered this option, especially because I’d like to but don’t always manage to write in my journal everyday. Having a page for each day might give me enough structure to write each day. However, I ended up not going for this option because some days I might like to write more than one page, and also because I feel like there might just be one or two or more pages that will end up guilting me with their white emptiness.

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These ideas are mostly “non-essential” type of uses, which may be because it’s the mindset I had when brainstorming ideas.

Of course, you could also use this for your business or workplace, organizing short and long term projects, planning daily social media posts, recording shipments and inventory, cash details, etc. Jon and I considered one for daily tasks around the shop, but we already use a larger board so it’s easy to see from across the room.


It’s the holidays, and things have been crazy here. For some reason I decided to book Caleb’s 15 month doctor’s appointment during this holiday rush, and so today I had to lug him across to the west end of the city to the paediatrician to get a few shots, and have the doctor make sure all his body parts are jiggling the way they’re supposed to jiggle. I should say that I actuallyΒ really like Caleb’s doctor, which is why I’m willing to trek all the way west what seems like every other month. I was going to pick up a few tasty treats on the way home, but I think Caleb officially weighs a million pounds, so it was bringing home Caleb or doughnuts.

In other news, the TWSBI Vac Mini is coming in! Soon! I am hoping by the end of the week. I think I might get a medium. Or a fine. Why not one of each? Who knows!!


19 thoughts on “Ideas on Using Your 2016 Hobonichi Techo (or Page-a-Day Type Planner)

    1. Liz Post author

      I thought I was going to keep them all and have a different shade of ink in each one, but I guess I will have to exert some self-control and leave one for you πŸ˜‰

  1. Elaine

    Vac mini! Vac mini! Vac mini! You know how long I’ve been waiting for this one. Looks like I may be visiting your store one more time before Christmas. πŸ™‚

    1. Liz Post author

      I do know!! I think you have been waiting for it longer than me! Can’t wait to see you (and maybe your babe??) soon πŸ™‚

      1. Elaine

        Wow. You expect to have them in by tomorrow? The boy will be dragged along to the pen store. Unless I come by on Friday when his aunt has claimed that day to have him all to herself!

      2. Liz Post author

        Yes!! We are expecting them today!! It’s sometime before 5 pm, unless there are unexpected delays, and usually our Fedex shipment comes mid-day, so I am keeping my fingers crossed I’ll have a new pen to play with while the prince is napping!! πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to see you soon! πŸ™‚

  2. Sola

    I was clueless as to how to make use of that monthly section – and yet leaving it blank seemed such a waste. Recording inked-up dates for pens is a great idea! Thanks for the tip πŸ™‚

    1. Liz Post author

      I completely agree that it seems like such a waste to have blank pages! I’m glad you found a helpful tip in the post πŸ™‚

  3. Bethany Montgomery

    I was going to ask about whether you will be getting the Vac Mini’s in, but it looks like I have my answer! When do you expect to be getting them?

    1. Liz Post author

      I know!! The vacuum-filling mechanism is pretty cool, but it’s really the entire pen that looks so cute! It’s supposed to come in tomorrow πŸ™‚

  4. Barbara

    Save me one, too. I’m stalking your site daily. I just received my first mini yesterday. Love it. Thanks so much for your super service.

    1. Liz Post author

      I’m so glad to hear your Mini arrived safely! I also have one, and use it regularly. We will have lots of the Vac-Minis (I think…)! We’ll be getting them online I think by tonight, but I’m hoping earlier since they are due to come during the day. I can’t wait!! πŸ™‚

  5. Pingback: Link Love: Star Wars Holiday Frenzy | The Well-Appointed Desk

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