I know most people these days probably use their mobile phones, blackberries, PDAs and other handheld gadgets to know when and where they have to be throughout the day but I personally would be totally lost without my diary. For the past few years, I've bought a family organiser diary from Organised Mum which allows me to keep tabs on every member of the family on a day-to-day basis, but when I was offered the chance to review a Dodo Acad Pad, I decided to see how it compared.
Well, the answer is, very well indeed. Whereas the Organised Mum family organisers revolve around "mum stuff" like doctors' appointments, birthdays and insurance renewals, the Acad Pad - as its name suggests - is more designed for students and teachers. Well, I'm a teacher - but I'm also a mum, and a wife, and a blogger/reviewer, so I have loads of things I need to keep track of throughout the week. I was really pleased to see that the Acad Pad offers five columns to fill in throughout the day so I have plenty of space to write everything in without squishing it up so much it's illegible ! If you're a young, free and single student, you will probably use the columns for "before lectures", "morning", "afternoon", "after lectures" and "evening" but for me, it was a toss-up between one column per member of the family (but I thought I'd get downhearted as the year progressed to see that my kids had more of a social life than me !) or "school stuff", "appointments", "to do", "important dates" and "fun stuff".
What I love is all the little humorous phrases, quirky fascinating facts and blank spaces inviting you to doodle, which are perfect for filling in a few moments as you wait for your next class to begin or for the annoying on-hold phone music to finish. It also gives you loads of extra space for jotting down important phone numbers and email addresses when you're on the phone so that you won't be forever losing little scraps of paper. Another simple but really handy feature is the little perforated corners that you can rip off as you go so that you can instantly flick to the right page for the day when you need it.
The size of the Acad Pad is absolutely perfect for me and my lifestyle but it also comes in a variety of other formats, including wall planner, mini and Filofax-compatible versions. They are sturdily put together and the spiral bound spine is perfect for allowing you to slot in a pen so you won't constantly have to rummage around in the bottom of your bag to find one.
I had never heard of Dodo Acad Pads or the whole range of products designed by Lord Dodo so I was amazed to learn that they have been around for 45 years. On their website, they are described as "a combined memo-doodle-engagement-weekly-planner-diary-organizer-message-ment book" and I have to say that, having filled in all the key dates for the coming academic year and glanced at a few of the fun facts, I tend to agree with their statement that it will be "utterly indodispensible" !
star rating : 5/5
RRP : £12.50
for more information : http://www.dodopad.com/index.html
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