How I Use OneNote and Evernote to Stay Organized

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I have learned how to do lots of things over the years, and have hobbies that come and go. It’s possible that I am a bit ADD. I get distracted by some cool new thing to try, then learn all that I can learn till the next thing comes along. I do come back to old skills and hobbies, though, so I like to save instructions and memories. Whenever I learn a new skill, I keep track of how to do things in Evernote and Microsoft’s OneNote. The programs are similar enough that I could use just one for everything, but I love them both. I use them together and separately to schedule my days, write out step-by-step processes, store ideas, and more.

I love OneNote

I use Microsoft OneNote for: planning, ideas, daily journaling, how-to instructions, and info about the websites I run. I use the desktop version most of the time to take screen shots and scan old notes from when I used to use paper. I also use it as a digital scrapbook to directly scan programs from concerts I played in, and keep other memories. When I travel, I use a tablet or my phone and a small keyboard to write in my daily journal. Here’s a link to the program: (May open a pop up window).

I love Evernote

I use Evernote for: my daily schedule (every day is different when you’re a freelancer, but I like to have structure), step-by-step processes for complicated repeating projects, check lists, my goals, and trip planning. It’s easy to check things off with my phone when I’m out and about. Here’s a link to the program:


OneNote notes are easy to format by using familiar Word commands. Words after periods and I are automatically capitalized. Tables look great. You can choose which notebooks to sync to different devices. It has macro capabilities through a plugin called Onetastic. And OneNote has limited but useful integration with your other Microsoft Office products.

Evernote is very simple to use. You can save searches in the sidebar to make things easier to find. Checklists are very easy to set up and use.


Both OneNote and Evernote are available from anywhere. You can install them on your desktop computer, laptop, phone and tablet. Both sync with the cloud, so as long as your device is synced, you can access all your information no matter where you are.

They are actually freeform databases, so the programs run pretty fast and efficiently.

Both programs are great for online research using web clipping.

You can find anything in your notebooks by searching, so there is no need to try to remember where you put something. Both programs are fast and accurate when you search.

Both have multimedia support. You can record or insert audio, insert video, or use a finger or mouse to draw inside a note.

Both programs provide easy ways to make internal links between notebooks and notes.

Both are backed up to the cloud by default; I feel that my information is safe because both programs have been around for a long time. And I use strong passwords for each.


Whether you choose to use Evernote or OneNote, you will be happy. You can set up notebooks like file cabinets, or like binders with tabs, or like random pieces of paper. Both of mine are jam-packed full of information, and I open them both almost every day.

In the coming months I’ll show you how I use each program.

RV Dreaming


I want to live in an RV while traveling around the United States, while publishing more books and photos so that I can support myself. I have been working on this goal for about 7 years, but I keep getting waylaid by obstacles. I used to think it would be great to do it full time and year round. Now I want to live in Arizona from October to June and go north during the hot months. I want to be a snowbird!

Inspiration for this wild idea

I took a long road trip by myself in 2009. I drove to Ohio from Arizona, and took 10 days to get there instead of the usual rushed 3 or 4. (It’s 2000 miles). I spent 2 days at a conference, took state highways most of the way, and went to one or two botanical gardens each day. I took thousands of photographs and put them up on stock photo websites to sell. I made back some of the cost of the trip with stock photo sales. The things I didn’t enjoy about the trip was hauling my stuff in and out of hotels every day, and having to eat at restaurants too often. Though most of the hotels were nice, a few were very dodgy. I’ve made several rushed trips back and forth to Ohio, and I’m still wishing I had an RV to travel, eat and sleep in. The last two trips I left my car out in the sun for a day before unpacking it for fear of bedbugs.

Role models for this dream.

My bass teacher at The Ohio State University, Theron McClure, traveled around the country with his wife in an RV after he retired in the 1980s. Here’s a link to a book by Andy Kohn.

Some time ago I discovered Linda Claire Puig and Natalie Sisson (The Suitcase Entrepreneur), two ladies who make a good living while traveling.

There are several online forums about RVs. Here are two forums with great information about living in an RV: the very active IRV2 Forum, and the somewhat active Forum.

I don’t want to wait until I retire to travel.



I haven’t been posting to this blog at all for over a year. This is why posting doesn’t happen: I am a freelancer with several different things to focus on each day. Lately, I have been playing the bass and teaching private lessons, traveling to Flagstaff and Tucson to play the bass, publishing journals and vintage patterns (at, building websites, and clearing away the extra stuff in my house by selling it on eBay (beads at, and miscellaneous stuff I’m done with at

Some people advocate choosing a word to define your goals for the year, so I chose Consistency as my word for 2018.

To help me stay consistent, I made a detailed schedule for my days in Evernote ( Since I enjoy writing, but don’t have lots of time for it, I inserted writing time into my schedule for first thing in the morning. I write in a personal journal for 7 minutes every morning. I can get 250 to 350 words written in 7 minutes. (It’s easier to get words on the page when you are half asleep and just let things flow.) I keep the journal in OneNote ( I added 15 minutes of writing for this website, which I will do right after writing in my personal journal. By keeping to the schedule, I should have something ready to publish every week or so.

I have been using this blog to share my photographs and hobbies. I’m going to add reviews of courses that I take, I’ll share some of the ways I use software, and write about other things that interest me.

Goals for 2012

One of my goals for the next few months is to write more. Back in January I made an editorial calendar for this blog to help stay on track. It has been a struggle.

On April 1st I started freewriting by hand for 15 minutes each morning. My journal seems to be mostly made up of “yesterday I did this…” and “today I plan to…” but it seems to help me to stay a little focused for the day. It’s all about me, though! Something else might be way more interesting.

Wednesday is supposed to be my day to blog about my goals and my progress towards them. In January it seemed like a good idea to share my private life with the world. Now I’m not so sure.

Well, my word for 2012 is Freedom. It was my word for 2010 and 2011. It might have also been my word for 2007, 2008 and 2009, but I can’t remember that far back.

Things that get in my way are debt, clutter, and cravings. Sometimes it seems like midway between paradise and utopia is dystopia! But progress is the only thing you can really accomplish, and I do have to give myself a pat on the back for making a lot of progress in the last few years.