Nov 19, 2014

Recommended Resource: Evernote

I love lists.  Without them I'd get far less done, feel less organized, and stress out much easier at the idea that I have or am going to forget something vital.

While I understand that some people find lists to be less-than helpful or restrictive, I'm the type of person who would end up making lists inside my head anyway, but then get stressed at the idea of trying to remember everything.  When I write it out I can relax and visualize things much, much better.

Perhaps it's partly because I can understand things better when I can see them in front of me.  It's far easier for me to plan when all the needed elements are listed right in front of me.

So I use lists daily.  Often hourly.  I list menu plans, items to buy, crafts to make, gifts to give, things to do... and on, and on.

I used to use paper for almost everything I listed.  Sometimes I'd use a planner, sometimes a calender.... but more often than not, I 'd grab a sheet of paper and create a new list there.  While I love the satisfaction I get from using a pen and paper, there were drawbacks to this.  Unfortunately, having random sheets of paper all over can create tons of clutter, besides the fact that it is far too easy to lose one or more lists.

I've also tried to use text documents on the computer, but that meant that I had to remember which computer or device each specific list was on, as well as keep track of where I stored the lists on each device.  It worked, but was inconvenient during those times when I couldn't access the computer I needed.

Then a few weeks ago I remembered my Evernote account.  It's an online service which can be downloaded as an app, and it can be used to create documents and take notes and such.  As long as you're signed into your account, you don't have to worry about what computer or device you're using.  I'd originally used Evernote several years ago when I briefly tried to do NaNoWriMo (a venture which failed miserably) because I wanted to be able to work on whichever computer I wanted.

Mobile Screenshot - Viewing a Notebook

Because Evernote offers "notebooks" to categorize each individual "note", as well as tags which can be added to each note, I don't have to worry about my notes being disorganized or hard to access.  Furthermore, if I'm ever having trouble finding a specific note I can use the handy search function.

Mobile Screenshot - Viewing a Note

One little detail I love about Evernote is the ability to add and use check marks.  Something about clicking that little button makes me happy, and seems to much more satisfying than deleting the item entirely or otherwise denoting it "done" in some other fashion.

Computer Screenshot

While Evernote offers a premium version which you have to pay for, I've been more than pleased with what I can do on their free version.  The only benefit of a premium membership I'd really love to have would be the ability to use Evernote while offline, which would be handy at times.

Another Computer Sceenshot
Evernote also handles photos very well, another feature I love.  For instance, it's very handy to be able to include my recipe photos with the recipe - both so that I can remember which recipe is which, and simply because I'm more likely to want to bake something if I can see the photo.

Is Evernote perfect?  No.  The fact that the free version is chained to the Internet isn't always convenient, and once in a while the program has some hiccups.  However, these complaints are small and rarely affect me.

I rate Evernote:
9 out of 10 stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

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