Category Archives: Personal

Bullet Journal setup for 2019: Simple is the best

For as long as I can remember, I always bring a notebook with me. I use it to jot down thoughts and ideas, sketch, or note something I have to do. It’s usually messy, unorganized, and very random (even if I’m using a dated journal or planner).

A few years ago, I heard of Bullet Journal and was intrigued by the simple system. No frills, no fancy layouts and such. I decided to try it out with a small notebook but instead of using the system as it is, I adapted it. I divided the notebook into sections and added some calendars I printed from Moleskine. It ended up being like any of my previous notebooks: a somewhat disorganized catch-all for everything.

I tried bujo again a year later and while it was slightly more organized, it still ended up being a messy catch-all. I went back to using dated planners after that. For memory keeping, I was still writing long form on notebooks that acted as my journals, but rather than writing daily as I used to, I wrote only when I felt like it.

I decided to give bujo another serious try this year. It fared better than my previous attempts. I was able to log most of the weeks each month, but more or less stopped around August. I used to browse Pinterest and Instagram for bullet journal ideas that I tried. I made a layout that had separate sections for goals and tasks and other things. I made trackers for credit card bills and subscription dues. I made a tracker for my Instagram and my expenses. Honestly? They were tiring.

While I still enjoyed looking at pretty layouts, they made me feel discouraged about bullet journaling. I’m a fairly creative person, and while I know these layouts weren’t necessary to have a successful bujo, I felt a sort of pressure.

When I saw Ryder Caroll’s post about going Back to the Basics, I felt so relieved. It also was timely, as I decided to try bujo again, but this time sticking to how it was originally set. Of course, me being me, I still wanted some sort of design (or non-design, however you see it). I settled on boxes and using my Zebra Mildliners to add some color.

So, here’s my current setup:

  • Goalsetting: I took a quick session with Alessandra Lanot of Life After Breakfast about goal setting. I thought I’d transfer what I’ve written in her workshop to this journal, so I can easily refer to it.
  • Future log: I divided the year into quarters, so that’s three months per page, with a calendar showing the month’s dates. I also separated birthdays from other events and tasks.
  • Period tracker: Something to work alongside the app on my phone.
  • Savings tracker: I feel like I don’t get to save enough because I don’t keep better track of where my money goes or how much I have. I also placed an amount goal.
  • Project tracker: I’m looking to creating more in 2019, but I am a huge procrastinator. My aim with this project tracker is to give myself a visual timeframe to do things before it is due.
  • Month calendar: I drew a calendar grid, but I realized the spaces are too small so for February, I’m sticking to the original suggested setup.
  • Monthly task list: Nothing much for January yet, but we’ll see as we go.
  • Month expense tracker: Nothing fancy—just somewhere I can put in money that comes in (salary and other income) and goes out (expenses/payments made)
  • Medicine tracker: I’m taking medicine to help keep my sugar levels down, and I’m supposed to take it thrice daily. This will help me keep track of whether I took it or not, since I’m not used to drinking medicine on a regular basis.

If you’re trying out bullet journaling for the first time, or have tried before and didn’t feel like continuing, I recommend reading the article about going back to basics. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the beautiful layouts and many tips available online, but don’t be.

Ryder made the bujo as a basic system you can build on, but if it’s getting too complicated for you, stop and think about why you’re doing bujo in the first place. One of my reasons is to be more organized, make sure I’m not wasting time and money by being all over the place.

And to quote the article:

Strip away everything that doesn’t support your purpose. Start simple. Build slowly. Your practice doesn’t need to be profound, or beautiful. It needs to be real, relevant, and effective. Most of all, it needs to be yours. It’s not about how your Bullet Journal looks, it’s about how it makes you feel. Add only what feels valuable, and give yourself permission to walk away from approaches that don’t.

Ryder Caroll, Back to the Basics

I’m excited to start over, for the experience and the lessons along the way. Wishing you the best!

Semana Santa: Memories of my grandmother

I’m not into the usual Holy Week stuff now, but it feels comforting to see traditions being passed on. Reminds me of the time when my grandmother would pull us kids to join it. Sunday now, the time when Jesus rises from the dead. The Salubong is now happening, and the procession just passed by the house.

There are two processions: One with the men and the statue of Jesus, the other with the women and the statue of Mary (which was, IMO, creepy covered up with dark cloth). They go in different directions and meet up at the town plaza.

There, a little girl dressed up as an angel is lowered from a high platform. The statue of Mary is placed directly below her, and as she descends, she’ll take the cloth off Mary. Her mourning is now over as she sees her son alive.

When I was a kid, my grandma would wake us up to see it pass by our house, then we’d go back to bed. Only once did I recall actually joining it with her. She woke us up early, then we waited for the women’s procession to pass by. My brothers, young as they were, joined us.

I realise that the length of time my grandma is gone is almost as long as I’ve had her. Her influence is still strong though. Miss her terribly at times like these.

November 2014 Summary

I’ve got a horrific backlog of posts for this November. Work and school kept me busy, and they have their own backlog too. Quick summary of what’s happened so far, starting with the latest.

NaNoWriMo Winner!
50,312 words in 30 days. Validated my words on November 3o, 2014 10:30 PM (GMT +8). About 20k of those words were written in 14 hours of Nov. 30. I do not recommend it. Story’s not done, but I’m putting it aside until after my finals on the 13th.

Winner-2014-Web-Banner

Canva Creatives Conference
I feel lucky that I was able to attend and I got to meet the people behind this online tool. I love the site, and it has been an invaluable tool for me at work. A proper post with photos to follow.

#CanvaConference kit. Had an awesome time.

A photo posted by Kat Sales (@saberkite) on

Filipino Reader Con
My second year to volunteer! Got great books, met awesome people and had a really amazing time. Post and photos to follow as well.

#FilReaderCon volunteers. Had a wonderful time. Next year ulit! Photo from @fantaghiro23

A photo posted by Kat Sales (@saberkite) on

There’s still a lot in between, but that’s it for now.

Oh my, it’s December already!

All the Doctors at Cosmania 2014

Well, we finally did it. All the Doctors and the FemmeDoctors in one event.

All Thirteen - Homme & Femme Doctors
Photos by Cali Ynoviel & Bex P., background edited by BJ David. Yes, we are aware we made a mistake with the ordering.

I tried to recall how this all came about. My research brought me to a post in the Whovian PH group where a few ladies talked about making a group for the femme Doctors. It grew from there until we had a complete line-up. The girls were able to debut an incomplete roster last May during NexCon.

In the months that followed, everyone (and by that I mean the guys and the girls) worked together to complete all twenty six. We found people who were willing to play the Doctors, and helped them get their props and costume together. There were many sleepless nights where people stayed up to finish things, fueled by coffee and a lively Facebook chat group.

Somehow, we pulled it off.

And it wasn’t just the cosplayers. It was also friends who worked with us in shopping for materials, making accessories and the like. We had a trip to Divisoria to buy cloth and other stuff. Some braved torrential downpours just to help sew coats. Others actually learned how to sew, and even got their families onboard to finish things. And then there were the photographers.

Our companions were awesome too. We had Amy Ponds, Clara Oswalds and a Rose Tyler. We also had a Dorium Maldovar (hi Moses!). We were in the minority during the event as the crowd was mostly into anime, but we got recognized by a few people, and that was enough for us.

More photos from Day 1 can be found here. I’ll discuss the costumes and how everyone made theirs maybe in the comments. 🙂

10 Reasons Why NexCon Rocked: Part 2

Continued from 10 Reasons Why NexCon Rocked: Part 1

5. The awesome panels
Most cons here are about the merchandise, cosplay and stage events. It’s only in book or comic related cons do I get to see any panels. NexCon had three of them, and each one was something worth attending. I managed to go to the Komiks Reborn and Cinema Fantastica. I know a lot of people were hoping to see foreign guests (actors particularly), but the NexCon panels were jampacked with Filipino greats in the field of comics, movies, and literature.


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4. Geekfight
Geek trivia game amped to the higher level! Fellow Whovians made a group of six and named it “Gallifrey Stands” (represent, Torchwood Manila as well). We didn’t win, but it was a respectable finish all the same. It was also their 5th anniversary, so the game was pretty intense. Lots of laughter and shenanigans, and thankfully I don’t have to turn in my geek card.


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Hello, Goodbye.

Each year, I post a quote from Neil Gaiman as my New Year’s greeting. Wasn’t able to do something creative with it this year, but I’ll post it anyway.

“I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.

Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something.

So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.”

– Neil Gaiman

I wish you the best for the coming year. More books to read, more creative endeavors, good health and happiness for you and your kin, more opportunities to travel and discover this wonderful world of ours. More music to sing and dance to, more sunrises to wake up for and more sunsets to cherish. More laughter, more appreciation, more time with your loved ones. More hugs and kisses, more cheers and adventures of the good kind.

A blessed, fruitful, creative, happy, healthy, prosperous and all that is beautiful and good for your 2014!

Last Sunset of 2013... hidden behind trees.