Update on my Address Book

claire_de_lunaOctober 16, 2008

Well, after thinking I'd found the perfect software, it crashed with my new Vista program and I lost 750+ names, addresses, phone numbers, birthdays, anniversaries and business hours...all of which took me weeks to recover from and redo. Just thinking about typing that many numbers AGAIN was enough to make go blind with frustration.

I'm happy to announce that forced me to ditch the software and make up my own list in Microsoft Word, which is the one reliable program that has never messed with me. I listed friends and family in one color, birthdays and anniversaries in another, business hours another, and so on. I got stick-on file tabs, and after 3 hole punching 54 pages of two columns of information on each page, I have a working file that is better than I imagined. I didn't want to go there (as in making my own file starting from scratch), but I finally did and Now It's DONE. I also went to Google as my calendar, which syncs with Outlook which is nice. It took me weeks, but I finally have a color-coded finished Address Book and it is A Thing of Beauty.

All I have to do now is print an extra copy for each vehicle, as this is something we've used more than you can imagine, especially now that I've included business hours with every business listing. I also keep stamps in a three ring folder with the Address Book, so if I want to send a card, I can fill it out and drop it in a mailbox on the way home.

A friend of ours was surprised when I mentioned they had an anniversary coming up. Of course! It's listed now in three different places, so it's easy to keep track.

I just thought I'd share my success, as it was very hard won! I only hope never to do That again...and you can bet it's completely backed up!

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Wow, thats some work. I started one in Word but haven't finished. I never though of different colors. Think I will do that. Thanks for the tip.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2008 at 9:24PM
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Yes, backups are your friends. ;-) Sorry for your loss. The good news is that one typically only lose that much data once...because it makes you pretty regular about backups. FWIW, I'd also suggest offsite copies of your backup, too.

Regarding business hours - I do that too & often include the date. That way, if it's been a while, I can call & confirm the hours are still the same.

I often add a date, when entering a new address, phone number or email address & keep the old one & identify it as the old one. That has helped me more than a couple times when comparing contact info with someone else. IE, if a co-worker has one phone number for someone & I have a different one, it helps if I have it labeled as the old one. Or sometimes they know they got that contact info from the person last week & mine is dated six months ago, then I know I need to update it on mine.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2008 at 1:50PM
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roxiel, sadly, I didn't lose the information because of not backing it up. I lost it because Hallmark's software was faulty. I spent HOURS on the phone with their technical support to find out what happened, and they were never able to help me. I really liked the program for the short time I was able to use it, but after being forced to make the change, I am now appreciating the instant visibility color coding and using italics brings to the information. Also, I can add as much content as I need to since I'm not limited in any way.

Since I decided to call individually each business listed, I was also able to see if the listing was entered correctly and make the necessary changes due to numerical mistakes. I don't know about most of you, but typing numbers is a challenge unto itself!

My Word program tells me the last time I updated the information, and I always make changes as soon as I see the need. By using my own format, I can list any personal or pertinent information, such as account numbers for Auto Service, web links, or even the names of my friends kids or pets.

I didn't like the Google Calendar in the beginning, I suppose because I was grieving the loss of my software. I've learned to appreciate it, although it was difficult to get over myself! I've had to learn the best way to enter the information to make it work ''at a glance'', but now that I've managed the learning curve, it's easier than I first thought.

I'm curious as to whether anyone else ever needs to look back at the information on their calendar?

My Address Book has my entire life in it. I'm so grateful it's finally in good working order...

    Bookmark   October 19, 2008 at 2:15PM
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