It's Coming on Non-Denominational Winter Holiday, They're Cuttin' Down Trees
It's December 10, which means that I'm now allowing myself to admit that it's the holiday season (I try to wait until we're double-digits into December before diving in with both feet. Otherwise I get burned out on Phil Spector Christmas tunes). Rather than get into the gift giving spirit (others have done that better than I), I thought I'd get into the gift receiving spirit. because whoever said "t'is better to give than to receive" never got a gift from my mother-in-law. Seriously, she throws down for the holidays.
Every couple of days I'll highlight a gift that I would like to receive. Some of these gifts will be things you could get at your local independent bookstore (especially an incredible independent bookstore that recently redesigned its website and carries all kinds of cool products and not just books), and some will be things that you would have to go elsewhere to find. I suppose if you're shopping for someone like me then you could use these posts as a gift giving guide.
Today's gift is actually a gift I've already received (and given). It's the 5-Year Diary, designed by Tamara Shopsin and published by The Icehouse. My wife got me one of these recently, and I love it! Not only is it total design porn - with its cloth cover and its smoothe, creamy pages - but it's one of the most useful gifts I've received in recent years.
The concept is simple: on each page of the diary is a date - December 10, for example - and then five spaces to write something. Each space has 20__ written next to it. Enter the year, then write down what you did that day. You can be as creative as you like, but you've got to be brief, as the space on the page is limited. This is a good thing. Brevity is making a big comeback thanks to Twitter, and the 5-Year Diary fits perfectly into that meme. At the end of the five years, you can look back at what you did each day. The diary also includes a book log so you can track what you read over that time, as well as a map to mark the places you've been.
But it doesn't have to stop there. You could get a second diary and write down what you ate at each meal that day. Imagine an exact record of what you ate for five years. That has to be worth something, right? The possibilities are limitless. This gift has forced me to keep a journal (of sorts) something I've never had the discipline to do with any regularity. Who knows, maybe I'll even make a blog out of mine when it's finished, although that's already been done quite well here.
(Christmas tree photo from this site.)