Feature Focus: moon phases and day counts

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I’m curious to know how many people use planner features like the phases of the moon and the day count, shown in the photo below.

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I personally enjoy knowing the current moon phase, but I don’t use the numbers that count how many days have passed in the year and how many there are to go.

These features in planners are reminiscent of the days before planners, when almanacs were widely used. Below is an almanac for this year.

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The almanac has pages for each month detailing moon phases and zodiac details.

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In her book The Accidental Diarist: A History of the Daily Planner in America, Molly McCarthy discusses how people used almanacs extensively. They allowed people to keep time before clocks and watches were very accurate, and before planners became popular time management products. They helped farmers know when to plant and harvest. Often users had pages interleaved so they could use the almanac as a rudimentary diary.

It’s interesting to me that features which were part of a previous time-keeping method are still retained in modern planners. I think they are still useful and interesting.

What do you think? Do you look at the moon phases and day counts in your planner?

5 thoughts on “Feature Focus: moon phases and day counts

  1. I actually use an almanac daily. So would go so far as to even suggest an star chart.
    Any information like solar eclipse/apogee/perigee etc would be most welcome, because what people do not realise is that most holidays like say Easter/Christmas/Ramadan are linked to astromomical events.

    Many watches still have moon phase and sky charts, so why not.

  2. Living on the coast, the moon phases can mean the difference between serious flooding with massive beach erosion in bad weather or a nice walk with low tides. Plus I garden and the maxim waxing for leafy crops, waning for root crops is still something I try to keep track of.

  3. I definitely use the moon phases and if they aren’t in a planner I write them in. I live in a very small town in the remote high chaparral and nature matters as I take pre-dawn walks and need to know where the lights are from week to week as I plan those excursions. Wildlife responds quite obviously to new and full moons, and if your activities bring you into contact with the natural world you will want to be aware of the lunar phase.

  4. I do like having the moon phases and day counts in my planner, but if they’re missing I don’t consider that a “deal breaker.” It’s an interesting feature, but I don’t really use it for anything. What I really love is a planner that includes a week number that shows how far along we are in the year. For some reason, I find that much more useful.

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