If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you would already have seen my Midori Traveler’s Notebook (MTN) craze, and my new addiction to travel journaling. I recently revealed the full journal entry for my Osaka trip – see the complete journal entry here – and I’m working on recording some of my other travels as well.
As much as that satisfies me, I found that I do not have an outlet to record my daily musing and thoughts. I felt like I really needed one because I tend to keep bits & pieces of my daily life in various places, and they usually end up going missing or getting thrown out – simply because there’s just no place for them to reside in!
The Midori Traveler’s Notebook in passport size was my answer.
Much smaller than the regular-sized journal, I found that it is totally practical to be carried everywhere I go – and I am able to bundle in three important notebooks for my daily use.
Since I went with the camel-colored regular size MTN for my travel journal, I decided to go with the dark brown for my daily journal. The logic here was that I didn’t want it to get too dirty from everyday use, yet I still want it to get a little scuffed and dirtied from use – does that make any sense? I didn’t choose the black because it was too dark for any ‘used leather’ marks to show, and I REALLY like the scuffs and marks caused by use.
“Something is always more beautiful when it has the marks to show for its loving use.”
Like luggage bags for example. I like how my luggage bags are worn and scuffed everywhere from all my traveling – rather than a pristine looking one (like how most people in my country tend to keep theirs by wrapping their bags in layers of protective film).
Anyways, look at the size difference between my regular-size and this one. It’s so tiny!
That’s what I really love about it – it’s small enough to be popped comfortably into my bag for everyday use. The regular is just too large and heavy to be lugged around.
Now, these are the books I have, wrapped in my MTN passport.
Book #1 Daily Thoughts & Inspiration
For the inside, I used the blank MD paper notebook that came with the journal for my daily keepsakes & memories or anything that inspires me. I didn’t want too many rules for it, so I decided that I would only use it for times when I read/see something inspiring. I found it very useful for when I see quotes I like, or when I happen to collect some really cool items to stick into it. I would probably do a monthly highlights post for this section on the blog every month.
Book #2 Work Stuff
I have been using the Mossery pocket notebooks for my work, lists & business (previously for travel too), and they just manage to fit into my passport Midori with a slight 2mm protrusion in height – if you’re not fussy, this would work for you. In this book are all my work-related scribbles, notes and to-do lists. Being a freelancer, my to-do lists are much fewer than most, so I just make do with hand drawn boxes for checklists.
Book #3 Monthly Calendar
I got the Midori Free Monthly Diary insert for this. ‘Free’ means that it isn’t dated and I am free to start my year/month anytime by filling up the dates myself. The diary comes with blanks pages and a world map, and it is incredibly tiny! I only plan to use it to remind me of my scheduled meetings and events (I’m very forgetful) so the tiny space should be more than enough. (No pics of this book yet, as it isn’t set up)
These three books are nicely sandwiched with a passport-size kraft folder to hold all my receipts and cards. Kept some post-it notes inside there too for emergency list-making or reminders. I just recently made a trip to the local MUJI store where they have pocket notebooks which fit perfectly into the passport Midori – and they are SO MUCH cheaper too!
QUICK SETUP VIDEO (watch my MTN in action)
I’ve created a short video on how I set them up into a 3-book system. Although there are a lot of setup videos out there, my version caters more towards people who might have a larger notebook to add into their MTN passport-sized journals, like my Mossery work notebook. It’s my first tutorial video ever, so please don’t laugh, and gimme some lovely thumbs up ok? 😀
CHARMS & PERSONALIZATION
The awesome thing about MTNs are the vast number of charms you can use to personalize your journal – be it store-bought or something of your own. For my travel journal, I used a brass lock & airplane charm, which complements the camel-color nicely.
For my everyday MTN passport, I perused some of my personal items. The main elastic strap to hold the book shut features a necklace pendant. This pendant is a lotus, with a hollow inside, and it came with a mollusk shell when I bought it. What you’re supposed to do is to open the mollusk and dig out the pearl that’s inside it (I got a blue pearl). The pearl then goes into the hollow lotus cage, to be worn on a necklace. However, I don’t often wear necklaces, so I strung it onto my MTN strap instead.
For the bookmark string, I took the charm off a friendship bracelet which I had stopped wearing due to the brass discoloration. I found that it pairs nicely with my brown MTN.
What’s your MTN like?