My only true regret in life, in regards to the loss of a physical object, has been the discarding of my fuchsia pink spiral bound notebook.
I started to record all the books I read during my 6 – 7th grade years in the pink notebook. My middle school librarian may have encouraged this, but I am not quite certain of the reason. Any way, I dutifully recorded all the “personal” books I read in one calendar year – all ninety-nine of them in the pink notebook. I recall, sometimes I used pencil, sometimes marker, sometimes pen. I tossed the pink notebook out when I moved from Connecticut to Missouri because I did not reach my own crucially desired number of 100 books read in one year.
Soon after, I began a green notebook in which I recorded my spending, movies seen, and plays attended from 8th – 12th grade. I still have that green notebook. It is a walk down memory lane to review what I spent my money on, plays attended and places visited. One of the biggest money purchases at the time was buying the board game Risk for my brother’s birthday.
Getting back to the pink notebook; what I would give to have it back. I would love to see the titles of the books that had taken so much of my attention, given me inspiration and educated me in countless ways. Now I know we should not live on regrets, especially when it comes to physical objects. I believe if we can recall and summarize, some of the positive things we experienced with that lost physical object, we may then have something even more valuable. For me, the pink notebook showed my ability, interest and tenacity of being a record keeper of my own life’s history. The notebook showed my passions for books, reading and life long learning.
Regardless of your age, make space in your life for a paper notebook. It can be the record you look back on. Should you lose it, or when you physically let it go, it may be something you can recall fondly as serving you well.
Here are some resources for notebooks:
Facts about Composition Books
Museum of Notebooks. This blog (which currently appears to be on hiatus) has an interesting collection – mostly “blue book style”, and little in the spiral bound collection. But interesting anyway.
Science Notebooks – Science Notebooks – Writing About Inquiry by Brian Campbell and Lori Fulton. Science notebooks are a very specialized type of notebook. This book gives interesting and technical advice, primarily for science educators.