This is why you should keep a Journal…

{FYI: My kids names have been blotted out.}

There are many ways you can journal.  Honestly, I didn’t realize HOW many ways I journal until doing a little research for this post.  As a matter of fact, I think I will only share 2 ways today as to not make you feel overwhelmed.  The idea is to motivate and inspire journaling rather than the opposite.  Basically, I like to change it up a bit, it makes it more fun.  I also tend to journal better when I have things compartmentalized rather than just a blank open page.  You’ll see what I mean.

Two Ways:

1.) Notebook Style Journal

2.) Family Values Journal

The scanned journal page seen above was such a treasure to read on Sunday.  I accidentally grabbed the journal and stashed it in my Sunday church bag.  I pulled it out during our worship service trying to find something to keep my daughter quiet.  I flipped through it and found this entry.  In this particular notebook style journal this is the only entry from 2005.  Two entries for the year of 2006 are recorded and only one entry for the year of 2008.

As a Mom, there are what I like to refer to as joy moments.  Fairly seldom do Mom’s feel continuous joy throughout a whole entire day.  A Mother’s work can be draining and monotonous.  I have found as I go back through my journals, I like to record these joy moments.  This entry clearly describes the joy I felt seeing and hearing my girls playing with one another.  I can picture in my mind the girls talking and giggling.  Our girls are much older now and yes, they don’t play together.  My oldest just turned 16.  Most 16 year olds are past the stage of wanting to play tea party or Barbie dolls.  Reading this did bring a few tears to my eyes.  However, I was extremely grateful I took the time to record that joy moment, in a way, relive it.

Another way I like to journal {besides the obvious, blogging} is by focusing on a particular topic.  I have a journal titled “Our Family Values.”  At the beginning of the journal I listed what our family values were.  For example: Responsibility, Love, Courage, Perseverance, Honesty, Patience, Compassion, Dependability…the list contained 33 values total.  The pages are filled with journal entries that celebrate someone in our family living one of the values.  The following is a typed version of my very first family value entry:

Monday, November 5, 2007

“Today was a special day.  I want to honor A.  She took out a game and was playing with it.  Right before Family Home Evening I witnessed a miracle.  She put the game pieces back in the box and placed the game back to the cabinet where it belonged.  She did all of this without me asking her to do it!!  I was so excited I picked her up and twirled her around and told her how happy it made me.  J wanted me to do the same for him so he began to put magazines away in their basket.  It was pretty funny.  This action showed great responsibility on A’s part.  This is a value we hold dear in our family!”

Now, this journal I openly share with my family.  I usually read the entry to the family the day I write it; doing this reinforces how important the value is.  It is a way of expressing our gratitude to our children for living what we believe.  The Family Values journal reminds me to reward good behavior.  Sometimes as parents we don’t focus on the good behavior enough.

So even though in the first notebook style journal I skipped the year 2007 entirely, I didn’t go the whole year without journaling. 😉 I just used a different format.

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Last Minute Tips:

  • Don’t pressure yourself into writing every single day.  If you can, great!  A few days a month or year is better than none.
  • Don’t think you have to fill the entire page with writing.
  • Write about your joy moments.
  • Remember, this is your story and legacy to your posterity.  What do you want them to know about you?  What is the legacy you want to leave behind?

Write in a journal today {in a few years, you’ll thank me},


  1. Oh …. do you ever need to do Project Life. You would totally embrace it and be SPECTACULAR!!!!
    Stephanie Click recently posted..Happy 9th Anniversary

  2. I love that value journal idea! I’ll have to adapt it to our family!


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