Monday, September 12, 2011

Journaling 101

So, because of September 11th, I decided to dig out all my old journals. I wrote 19 of them between Jr. High and the time I got married. They were all different sizes, some hardly fit anything. I was young and stupid, so 95% of them are about boys. It's  fun to look back at things that I had noted, but not noticed. I was so convinced that no boys liked me in High School, but I look back now and kind of what to smack myself in the head. I sabotaged myself numerous times and didn't figure out that I LIKED being me until it was too late.

Anyway- luckily I included some of the most important things in my journals as well. Things I wanted in a man (kind of eery to read them and realize how much Roger fits the bill there!!), reasons I was mad at my parents (that are the exact same reasons my kids will be mad at me), important happenings in the family.

I've had a few friends ask about HOW to journal. I get very excited because I have my preferred method, which I LOVE to teach, but there is honestly something for EVERYone. It doesn't matter how busy you are, how creative you are, or how much moolah you have (or don't have). Journaling is as individual as the individual doing the journaling. To start, I'd like to talk about some different journaling methods.

The first, cheapest, and easiest, is what I call a Jar Journal. I do this on top of my regular journal. As funny little things happen during the week, I jot a note down (ALWAYS include the date). Then I fold the note up and put it in the jar. Our plan is to read through all the notes on New Year's Eve (or day, depending). I'll then record them all in timeline order in a regular journal. The nice thing about this is anybody in your family can add notes at any time!

The second method is your traditional journal. There is a common misconception that you need an ACTUAL journal to do this, but really? Any form of bound paper will work! After school starts, you can get nice composition notebooks for around $.25 at WalMart. There are a couple differnent ways to use traditional journaling. First you have to figure out WHAT you are journaling- a family history? memories of your parents? lessons to teach your children? why you love being a parent? trying to improve writing skills? This will set the tone of your journal and help you feel less lost when it's time to write. More on this in another post.

The third method, one I have never tried, but kind of want to, is printing your blog. If you are really good at typing all the stuff you want to remember, including pictures, then perhaps this would be the best choice. Downside? It costs money. But still, it's a really cool idea!!!

Lastly, but DEFINITELY not the bottom of my list... is Art Journaling. I do love a good art journal. The fun thing about an art journal is that it makes you WANT to write. Makes you want to fill in this space and create something beautiful. There is no set medium, template, or set of rules that you have to follow. You do what YOU want to create something beatiful. I am certainly no expert here, but it is my favorite way to journal. I laugh at myself a bit because my "style" is a little more left brained than most art journalists, but I like it that way. I'd like to do a full blog post about the different styles (and ways to start) soon!

So!! Who's up for a journaling challenge?!?! This is for you, Tera, Michelle, and Janelle!!!!! (And anybody else who would like to join, of course!!)

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