Notebooks and Journal Haul (?)

I love notebooks. If there was a hobby called ‘collecting notebooks’ then I would put it in my CV because oh boy. Just put me in a stationary store and watch me try to budget as many nice looking notebooks as possible into the limited amount of money I have in my pocket. Honestly, I should get an award for handling notebook obsessions and budgeting at the same time.

Anyway! Since I had these weeks free, I’ve been going out to stores a lot more (compare my current once-a-week schedule to once-every-three-months schedule) and looking at nice pretty things and buying stuff. More often than not though, I have not been able to find things I want (like water paints or fairy lights or sketch paper) which is mildly aggravating, but oh well. At least I got to buy a couple of nice notebooks which I’m going to share with you today!

I present to you two specimens. I bought one from a local store. It’s apparently a Chinese notebook and it cost me Rs 270 which can be roughly estimated to be 2.70 USD. The others I bought from a Japanese store in Safa Gold Mall called Miniso. A friend of mine had featured the store and its notebook section in her Instagram story and I knew I had to get there somehow.

This is a set of 2 notebooks, each is 48 sheets. This cost me Rs 250 which can be roughly estimated to be worth 2.50 USD.

Miniso itself is a pretty big store by the mall standards. When I walked in, I didn’t even know where to start looking because there were so many shelves and aisles crammed in and there were so many people and it was very hot. So of course I did the logical thing- made a beeline towards the corner of the store and started zipping through as many aisles as possible until the shelf I wanted was located. The pros of this: I got to the aisle I wanted asap and didn’t drench my shirt with sweat in the process. The cons: I skipped through half the store. So yeah, I would definitely like to go back there some day when there isn’t a mad rush and poor air conditioning.

The page style of the 48p blue notebooks.

If I could list out the characteristics of the perfect notebook, it would a list of requirements like

(1) size. I really like small notebooks that can be easily fitted into the bag pockets on the outside or in my white coat pocket. I feel like I should have a nice cute notebooks for my wards- one for writing patient histories and one for writing learning points or random things to search up and add to the pages for references. 

(2) would be number of pages. I need a lot of pages to be able to write or take notes without worrying about how much I need to conserve. If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m pretty obsessed with reduce, reuse, recycle and cutting down reckless spending where I don’t need it. So if I know I’m already low on page space, I’m going to start squeezing in as much into as little pages as possible and that’s not a lot of fun. So either the notebook needs to have a sizable amount of pages or I need to have two or three such notebooks in my bag to use when one runs out. 

(3) would be the quality of the paper. I’m using a journal not too different from the Chinese journal I recently purchased for my bullet journal (and man, I’m proud of my bullet journal. I perfected the style over 5 years to give me exactly the pattern I needed to log in important events, school classes and other random stuff) but the paper is…. not stellar. I can’t use over half of my writing arsenal because it all goes over to the other side, causing me to stick to using boring ball pens.  

(4) would be the cover. No, I’m not talking about fancy designs or anything (that’s just an added bonus, because let’s be real. If the cover is awful but everything else is great, you can easily craft a new cover and make it really pretty and personal), I’m talking about thickness or hardness. Soft cover notebooks are not my favorites because it’s so hard to write on them unless you have a stable hard surface to put the notebook on. So yeah, having a hardcover, whether cardboard or actual thick hardcover, is a major plus for me. 

(5) last but not least is the spine. The notebooks I’m sharing today all have the classic ‘book’ spine, but some notebooks also have spiral spines. I personally like spiral spines more since you can turn the notebook in and out and it’s just overall easier to work with. Book spines are fine too, but you can’t bend it too much and it’s also quite difficult to write on the side that has fewer pages if the notebook is too thick, but oh well! That’s just me being super picky.

Come to think of it, my first bullet journals fill all of these points. It was one of those yearly journals that you get complementary with services etc. I got mine from my dad who got them from some sort of bank I guess. It was a super neat-o notebook, especially when it was relevant to the year we were in. But okay! Enough of me rambling about my opinions and thoughts about notebooks, let’s finish off the review gallery.

2 notebooks in one set, total value of Rs 250, roughly estimated as 2.50 USD.
80 sheet notebook with pen, total value of Rs 250 or roughly estimated as 2.50 USD.
Inside of the 80 sheet notebook is an envelope folder, pen and the notebook itself.
Inside the notebook: half the volume (ie 40 sheets) are blank.
Inside the notebook: the second half of the volume (40 sheets) are lined.

I don’t know what to use the notebooks for just yet! I feel like the pink one will make a very good journal for traveling etc. I’m note sure how to use the 48 page notebooks because I feel like that it is a very small amount of pages. Or I could use them as travel journals as well.

I will probably use the Chinese notebook as my next bullet journal (since it’s all lined and has a sizable amount of pages). Even though it is more expensive than the others, it doesn’t feel expensive and I think I would be able to write and use it without worrying. Again, this is all speculation and I will take my time to decide what to do with them. I wasn’t able to check the page quality, but I will definitely make a new post about it if I think people would be interested in knowing!

What do you think I should use these notebooks for? I really need one to carry around for my clinical rotation but after unwrapping all of these, I feel like none of them can be used xD sad. Oh well, at least it’s an excuse to go back out notebook shopping!

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3 thoughts on “Notebooks and Journal Haul (?)

  1. K!
    It's great to be back on your blog. It has definitely been a lot longer than it should have been.

    I need to buy more notebooks You've inspired me. I love your love for notebooks. The size of the notebook and the lines inside definitely go into consideration when I buy new notebooks.

    Lovely post!

    Social Spying

  2. I think I know where my money is gonna go when I come to visit you in Pakistan… I usually buy notebooks with a soft cover. They're cheaper and when I was growing up they had the best cover designs (I'm a suckers for a pretty print). Now hard cover notebooks have become amazing, but those others ones are my first love.

    x Envy
    Lost in Translation

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