Tag Archives: journal

Journaling in a Doodle-y way

I have always loved the idea of journaling and I have tried to journal many different times in many different ways. To me, a writer, the blank page begs to be filled and that got daunting pretty quick if I felt like I didn’t have enough to fill a page. A while ago I found a way of journaling that works for me and I’ve been journaling for a year and a half now – woot!  I love looking at my journals and I look forward to journaling now too.

Here are a few things that help me out:

I break up the page with boxes. The borders can be simple or fancy, but I try to keep boxes close together and fit shapes together. I still want most of the page filled up with writing.

I add color with pens or colored pencils.

I emphasize words by changing the size of the letters or by underlining, adding color, or lines to draw attention. I also use arrows to show direction from one box to another if I need to continue a thought in another box.

I try writing in different styles (I’ve gotten better at this the more I’ve done it and I’ve even learned new ideas as I’ve gone too!)

I add doodles – sometimes they fit what is on the page, sometimes they are there just because I felt like it, sometimes I leave them off because I have a lot to say or don’t feel like doodling a picture.

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Here’s a page before I write on it or add color. I have gotten more creative with my box borders – but I save these fancier ones for when I have a little more time. I also add a doodle in a corner frequently, because I like to doodle here and there (I pull my ideas off Pinterest when it comes to doodles). Maybe you aren’t a doodler.  Maybe color isn’t your thing – that’s okay. Maybe you love fancy borders or just want to keep it simple. Maybe you like lots of boxes or just a couple large boxes. That’s what make this so fun, it’s all up to what you like.  If you are a wannabe doodler like me, I will say that your doodles get better with practice!

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As you can see from the page above, rather than trying to write everyday, I often write highlights from the week – this take the pressure off feeling like have to write a page of amazing when there is very little that happened that day.  If I have a really awesome exciting day, then I can fill the page. Sometimes I have a big story to tell, so I type it up and tape in an insert with Washi tape (because it is fun & colorful). Sometimes, since I like to do larger doodles once in a while, I’ll tape in a doodle insert.

DSC_0778Sometimes I do fold-out inserts by taping to the edge of the page rather than the inside (but I don’t do these as often)

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What do I journal about? Well, from the above you have some idea – I journal a lot of different things.

I journal about daily life in my highlights.

I journal church or other notes.

I journal my scripture study.

Some people like to have separate journals for these, I like to have it thrown all into one place.

I also like to journal lists, because someday maybe someone will read these to learn more about me (like a great-great-grandchild who’s heard stories of crazy grandma J, heh). Here are 3 examples of list ranging from simple words scattered about, to several doodles, to one large doodle incorporating the list.  Or you could just make a simple list on your page – I like to get doodle-y with it, but someone else might not.

 

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Well there you have it! A new discovery that has brought me 18 months of joy and hopefully a lot more to come.

Do you journal? I would love to hear about what works/ doesn’t work for you! Post your ideas in the comments!

A final doodle for you that I did in April to remember our Elizabeth who we affectionately called Lizard (or Lizard breath).

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My One Real Regret

If I have one regret so far in life, it’s that my journal keeping skills have been rather haphazard.

Oh, I have some in books, some on the computer, some blog post, some facebook statuses (actually, i should find a way to gather all those up – I think that would be my most comprehensive journaling to date – so sad), but nothing like I wish I had now.

I suppose, with all the things I had to do in life, writing in my journal seemed less important. Now, praying, and scripture reading, and child rearing received top billing, and rightly so. But journaling was cast by the way-side. If I was going to take the time to write, then it was going to be on my books, etc. There were so many other things to do that were so much more important than keeping a consistent journal.

I was wrong.

So very, very, wrong.

I would give anything now to have a record of Lizy’s life and my memories of her. The few I have, I cling to, afraid the memories will slip gradually from my fingers leaving me with nothing more than a gaping hole in my heart. I devour every word I have written about her, conjuring up the images of her through the years. And how I wish I had written more. SO much, much more.

Since I wasn’t big on journaling, I didn’t push it either. Oh, I gave them journals, but I only encouraged them a little, and now, I wish I had made it a bigger deal. The first thing I did was scour her room looking for anything in her own hand expressing her thoughts and feelings so I could feel close to her. I found some, but I wished for more.

It does little to lament the past. I can’t change it. I can’t make words magically appear on paper from years past, but I can learn from it and change the future.

I am going to be a devoted journal keeper. I won’t let the days slip past without writing about the wonders of the days, my feelings, the amazingness of my children.

My father has brain cancer. I think I mentioned that before. They suspect he has less than a month left and the one thing I am so grateful for is that I have a record of his life, his experiences, his adventures. Robert won’t ever meet his grandpa in person (just over skype) but he can still know him because he has faithfully kept a journal.

I want my kids, grandkids, great-grandkids to know me. I hope I never have another experience like Lizy, but I don’t want to take a chance. I want a record of their amazing lives and experiences – both from me and from them. I yearn and crave Lizy’s words and memories. I want to wrap myself in them. I miss her so very much. I am grateful I have what I have, but so disapointed I didn’t write down more.

I know I can write now, and I will, but it’s not quite the same – remembering rather than being in the moment, but it will still be something.

President Spencer W. Kimball said, “I promise you that if you will keep your journals and records, they will indeed be a source of great inspiration to your families, to your children, your grandchildren, and others, on through the generations. Each of us is important to those who are near and dear to us and as our posterity read of our life’s experiences, they, too, will come to know and love us. And in that glorious day when our families are together in the eternities, we will already be acquainted.”

Please, if you are inclined, learn from my mistakes. Tragedy can come when least expected. I would hope that it evades you completely, but don’t take the chance. Keep a journal. Write down everything you can about you, about your children, you family, your experiences, your adventures. I promise it will be a comfort to you if tragedy strikes and it will touch the lives of those who will read it in the future.

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Filed under Child loss, Opinion, Parenting, Philosophy, Religion