How Do You Address Your Addresses?

posted by Andrea | 10/28/2013

Last week, I ordered our 2013 holiday cards — yes, I was pretty proud of myself for being so on-top of it this year :)

We’re actually sending out Thanksgiving cards since that’s my favorite holiday of the year — so I did have an extra incentive to be “on the ball” in order to get the cards sent and delivered before Thanksgiving Day (which just so happens to be one month from today!)

I’ll definitely be sharing our card on the blog in a few weeks, however; the process of ordering our cards got me thinking about all our addresses… and my teeny-tiny, itsy-bitsy address book.

You would think that because I work on the computer all day long, because my iPhone comes with me where ever I go, and because I hate paper clutter that I would have figured out a way to create a digital address book by now… but you would be wrong. I absolutely LOVE my old-fashioned paper address book! I DO anticipate going digital with our addresses at some point, but even then, I think I’ll alway keep my little address book tucked in our office cabinet.

It’s just so convenient for me to flip through the alphabetical index to the person’s last name and quickly find the information I’m looking for — even if my computer isn’t turned on and even if my phone is in my purse on the other side of the house.

There is just something about having the addresses written right there in front of me that I like — and I’m honestly not sure why. But at this point in my life, the address book is working for me — and if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Right!

Since I work from home and am almost always within a few steps of my office cabinets, I always have access to my address book. So in my opinion, the only major downside to having a paper address book with written addresses is if people move or their names change.

For this reason, I write most my addresses in pencil for easy changes and alterations.

I realize there are many MANY ways of organizing addresses — so I’d love to know…

How to you organize your addresses?

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50 comments

  1. Kristoffer

    10/28/2013

    I use the Contacts option in Gmail. Easy to make changes and as long as I have a internet access it’s easy to access. I can search by first name only (I am terrible remembering last names or vice versa depending on how I know the person), a city, partial phone number, DOB or whatever ‘notes’ I have typed in under their name. Also love that I can place people in groups- ie Family, Co-workers, Business contacts, etc. That way if I am sending out cards to only family members I just pull up that particular group and don’t have to search through every person picking and choosing. Even though I have everyone listed in the Gmail contacts I still have my hardcopy address book with lots of crossed out addresses with the current address squeezed in along the margins. As techy as I like to think I am my address book has been one of those things that I just haven’t been able to break completely away from… just as a back up.

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  2. Barbara Debnam

    10/28/2013

    I don’t have the answers, but definitely looking forward to hearing what others are doing. I absolutely do not use paper, but beyond that I don’t have ONE system. Some of it is in my label printer software, some on my phone, some in excel . . . what a mess!

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  3. Vivian

    10/28/2013

    I have all my addresses in an old daytimer and buy new pages when I run out of pages. It very flexible that way. I try to put new addresses in as soon as I get them otherwise it will never get done. If I don’t have the time I put a sticky note in the book. I also try to put them in pencil. As I have had the same address book since 98 there are some pages that just need to be redone.

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  4. Evelyn

    10/28/2013

    I use my iPhone, Gmail Contacts (those two are synced).
    My excel spreadsheet that started with my baby shower I have added columns since for whatever holidays cards, baby pics, baptism etc. sent to them to check off.
    I’m looking forward to seeing everyone’s responses.

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  5. Linda B

    10/28/2013

    G-mail Contacts. Love it.

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  6. Claudia

    10/28/2013

    I decided to finally go digital with all my contact info being put into my iphone. This was a huge step for me, but I thought I should embrace the ear we are living in. Well, good thing I didn’t throw away my old address book (from the 90′s) because as fate would have it MY iphone DIED, and AT&T said there was NO REDEEMING any of the DATA (they claimed water damage). I was very frustrated, but imagine if I had not kept my old fashioned address book? Well, today now that I know I will be keeping a hard copy of our addresses, I am transferring them all to a brand new address book! Of course I will also keep addresses in my iphone, but NEVER exclusively!

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  7. Cori

    10/28/2013

    I use an excel spreadsheet and update yearly around Thanksgiving. It started as our wedding guest list 7 years ago and has become our xmas card list. I update yearly. Works great!

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    Elizabeth Reply:

    Same for me! My wedding guest list is now my address list. I update yearly and note what years I’ve sent Christmas cards, what year the address was last updated, and any family info (babies, anniversaries, etc. ). Hard copy stays in my home binder though so I don’t worry about losing my electronic copy!

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  8. Ronda Bowen

    10/29/2013

    Oh boy LOL. My contacts list is a MESS. I really need to update! I have addresses, phone numbers, and emails everywhere!

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  9. Anne

    10/29/2013

    I have been adding, little by little, the addresses that I was using at any time, to my Mac computer address book and it is now syncing with my iPhone (a setting you simply activate) that I ended up buying last year. I love it because I will not lose them, since they are synced, even if both my computer and iPhone die. I can retrieve them on iCloud anytime.

    Also, I love it because there are many options you can use within the address book. For instance, adding almost as many line as you want for a person or business for all the phones of the family (and you can then call them just after a few touches on your iPhone screen). Also, I love the feature where you can make as many “files” as you want: school friends, college friends, family, family abroad, child #1, 2, 3 etc’s friends’ parent’s numbers, work, husband’s colleagues, you name it. So if you want to invite/write to a specific group of people, just click on that group and you won’t forget any!

    I love it because I have every single info I put in on that person or business with me on my phone at all times (at the Dr’s office, at school, with friends etc) and I can include new addresses and data on the go at anytime, it will then sync with my computer.

    I can also send some of the addresses to my husband’s Mac or iPad if I need to.

    Lastly, it is possible to select and add someone’s birthdate in the Mac Address Book and that will appear automatically in your Mac Calendar!

    I would find it hard to be without these features by now. I just took it slowly, adding the addresses as I was using them, and then I would add a few more each time. It is a blessing!

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  10. erin

    10/29/2013

    who did you order your holiday cards from?

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  11. Melissa

    10/29/2013

    Gmail contacts for us too, we have a family email address that we use that’s on all our devices so we can access contact info from anywhere, for anyone.

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  12. Angela

    10/29/2013

    I too use a paper address book and love it! My old one was falling apart, and I’d mistakenly written in ink the first time; so when I went looking for a new one, I ended up getting a Filofax. I keep my calendar and a few other types of paper in there so it can always be handy. This time, I keep it all in pencil, and if I need to, I can add pages since it is a little binder. I love hand addressing envelopes too, to make it all more personal. I love that you are sending out Thanksgiving cards! A friend of mine sends out new years cards, and I appreciate those a lot.

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  13. Annette

    10/29/2013

    I use a bound address book and I love it! I have everyone listed by first name. In the back there are stickers for changes.

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  14. Margaret

    11/02/2013

    My frequently used contacts are in my phone and synched to the cloud. But for those once or twice a year addresses, I still use an old school Rolodex! I hated having an address book with crossed out entries and a separate folder for business cards. My vintage style Rolodex looks great on my desk and is always up to date. If someone has an address change I just pull out their old card and write a new one. I have a separate section for doctors and one for home maintainence. Since the cards I use are large enough to accommodate business cards I have those in my Rolodex as well. Fifteen years after I bought it my Rolodex is still useful!

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  15. Amanda

    11/02/2013

    I use an excel spreadsheet which started with our wedding (used it for shower, wedding and thenthank yous)… I kept it updated and was easily able to copy people I needed to a new spreadsheet when some of my bridesmaids threw my baby shower. I also was able to use that as the basis for my Christmas card list. I look over it annually and make sure that anyone thatoved has been updated, and also that I add/delete as necessary. I actually do a mail merge into a word document and it prints address labels for me. It seriously has saved me hours since I started printing them that way.

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  16. maxine

    11/03/2013

    Dear Andrea, I do exactly the same thing with addresses in an address book written with a pencil so that I can erase if an address is no longer relevant or if an address changes. There is also space to write why the address is relevant and to write the phone number if needed.

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  17. Cherie

    11/04/2013

    I am using evernote now to house my contacts so that I can have them on the go.
    I use the spread sheet feature and keep them under a tag called contacts.

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  18. Kathleen

    11/18/2013

    Hi Andrea,
    Forgive me to be self promoting but I can’t help but respond. I was looking up Virtual Assistants and found your site here. I use Send Out Cards to keep track of my contact addresses now. I can put in reminders for Bdays/Anniversaries and send cards and gifts. And I can group the contacts under a group name.
    I started using it for my real estate business and then became a distributor so I can share it with others.
    If I attend an event and meet a lot of people at once I’ll put their contact info in a spreadsheet and then import it into Send Out Cards under a group name where I met them.

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