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GrammyV

Gram needs tips for record keeping: $, journal, stuff

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I feel totally out of the loop when it comes to using technology to keep me on top of my personal life.  In the last 6 months, I have the tools (MAC, iPad, iPhone - learning as we speak) and I understand that Evernote ties it not only the tools, but what is in my head.  I'm in my 60's caring for my 90 yr old parents and my grandkids and I need an outside source other than my overwhelmed brain to refer to.

I'd love recommendations on

1 - using notebooks to manage my tax/household expenses, my folks' medical docs, eliminate hard copy filing (is a scanner the answer?).

2 - capturing written notes (get Moleskine for Evernote?)

3 - will upgrading to Evernote premium make a difference?

4 - books / tutorials / classes - how to figure which are the best ones for reference.

I've always considered myself ageless but after scanning the forums, I feel a generation behind.  Any tips to catch up are greatly appreciated! 

 

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Evernote can certainly help you get things under control! When you first start out, all of the different options, features, etc., might be overwhelming in and of themselves. My suggestion is to first just start takomg mptes. Treat it similarly to how you might treat a paper notebook. Jot down everything you want to remember. Have a document that you want to file away? Take a photo of it using the phone camera and give it a short, memorable title in the Note Title (this is the equivalent to making a copy and clipping it to a paper page).

Make a notebook for your household, another for your medical docs, keep a third for your journal notes. There are plenty of more sophisticated filing / tagging systems out there, but I would suggest just keeping things simple to begin with. Remember that with electronic notes, you can use the search function! That in itself is a huge benefit over paper, and for some people, makes sophisticated filing systems unnecessary. 

My experience with Premium has been that it really frees you up to do whatever you want with the app. If you're using the app on more than two devices, you'll need to upgrade (note: the Web version does not count as a device). If you're uploading more than 20MB of data per month, you'll need to upgrade. If you're uploading a lot of scanned documents, or clipping more than a few web pages per month, it's possible you'll hit that 20MB limit very quickly. Another benefit of Premiem is that you get full customer support. Personally, I'm happy to pay a few dollars per month for the service. For the price of a few cups of coffee per month, you get a tool that can really help you get more out of life. Seems like a good deal to me. 

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16 hours ago, GrammyV said:

I'd love recommendations on

Welcome to Evernote. It's my favourite tool for organizing my data
Don't worry about getting everything in place at first.  
Good luck and feel free to keep posting as you have questions

>>1 - using notebooks to manage my tax/household expenses, my folks' medical docs, eliminate hard copy filing

I have minimal Notebooks, and use Tags instead

  • In some ways, they are the same function, but Tags have an added benefit of multiple tags per notes
  • Some user's prefer Notebooks because the concept seems more like folders, something they're used to
  • Others use neither Notebooks/Tags and rely on Evernote's extensive search features

imho  "Filing" is not the important function.  
It's important that you can retrieve your documents when you need them

  • I've set up a tag structure to enable this document retrieval. 
    Its too confusing if you're trying to deal with a random list of notebooks/tags
  • I make use of the tag hierarchy feature on my Mac
  • I have a standard structure I use in my note titles
    <subject> <yyyymmdd> <description>

2 - capturing written notes (get Moleskine for Evernote?)

I just use plain paper, and the camera on my iPad/iPhone

imho  Moleskine is expensive, and no great benefit.  
I use fake Moleskine books I buy at the stationery store. They have an elastic, but no stickers

>>(is a scanner the answer?)

I have a scanner which I never use.  
Instead, I use the camera on my iPad/iPhone.  
Evernote has a companion app called Scannable which does the job for me

>>3 - will upgrading to Evernote premium make a difference

Premium gives you expanded limits and some feathers like searching PDFs, handwriting etc.  There's more details here https://evernote.com/pricing/

You can subscribe for a month and try out the account levels

Just starting out, I would stick with Basic or Plus.  

4 - books / tutorials / classes - how to figure which are the best ones for reference.

I could point you to some references, but I think the best idea is to jump in and develop a system that works best for you

My workflow is to capture all my documents into my default Notebook (@Inbox)

I process the notes later, using my Mac
- assign tags, clean up titles, reminders ...
- move the note to my filing Notebook (@Filing)

I have shortcuts to searches which instantly retrieve notes I need quick access to

On the advanced level, I use scripting on my Mac to make my workflow easier

 

 

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Great tips!  Your feedback is extremely helpful.  Going to dive into tags and the Scannable app.  Thanks for giving me a great start!

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16 hours ago, jyc23 said:

Evernote can certainly help you get things under control! When you first start out, all of the different options, features, etc., might be overwhelming in and of themselves. My suggestion is to first just start takomg mptes. Treat it similarly to how you might treat a paper notebook. Jot down everything you want to remember. Have a document that you want to file away? Take a photo of it using the phone camera and give it a short, memorable title in the Note Title (this is the equivalent to making a copy and clipping it to a paper page).

Make a notebook for your household, another for your medical docs, keep a third for your journal notes. There are plenty of more sophisticated filing / tagging systems out there, but I would suggest just keeping things simple to begin with. Remember that with electronic notes, you can use the search function! That in itself is a huge benefit over paper, and for some people, makes sophisticated filing systems unnecessary. 

My experience with Premium has been that it really frees you up to do whatever you want with the app. If you're using the app on more than two devices, you'll need to upgrade (note: the Web version does not count as a device). If you're uploading more than 20MB of data per month, you'll need to upgrade. If you're uploading a lot of scanned documents, or clipping more than a few web pages per month, it's possible you'll hit that 20MB limit very quickly. Another benefit of Premiem is that you get full customer support. Personally, I'm happy to pay a few dollars per month for the service. For the price of a few cups of coffee per month, you get a tool that can really help you get more out of life. Seems like a good deal to me. 

Thanks for sharing your views on the Premium upgrade and now I understand how it will fit better for my needs.  My whole focus is to have Evernote capture most, if not all, of my hard copy documents and web info.  I like the fact that you also are making use of your phone camera to capture everything as was also suggested by DTLow vs jumping in and getting a scanner right away.  Thanks!

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10 hours ago, GrammyV said:

I like the fact that you also are making use of your phone camera to capture everything as was also suggested by DTLow vs jumping in and getting a scanner right away.

You are right, if not a lot of paper, then the camera works just fine.  Phone vs Scanner is dependent upon how much paper you want to convert to digital.

I decided to go fully paperless back when.  The sheer volume of emptying multiple file cabinets, the need for two sided scans, and the ability to have a sheet feeder won the day.  I bought a ScanSnap  S1300i. and have been happy since.

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1 hour ago, csihilling said:

I bought a ScanSnap  S1300i. and have been happy since.

I bought the S300 (earlier version of the S1300i?) about 7+ years ago and it is still going strong and works as well as the day I bought it.  Great investment.  I use scannable for the occasional piece of paper but for clearing out file cabinets, nothing beats a sheet fed scanner.

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Nothing much I can add here,  except that some of us are of a similar vintage - being good at this stuff ain't age,  it's just practice...  ;)

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