I write everyday but the thought of journaling leaves me feeling a bit like this.
Too much deep insight and meaningful thought required or so it seems.
Especially in the early hours when I’m drinking my first cup of coffee like my life depended on it, which is when most good journalers journal.
But I do love to keep track with what I’ve been doing, or cooking or reading and with what’s been on my mind. With things that have caught my attention (a song I cant shake), or that one thing around the house here that’s making a difference this week. Or what the kids are interested in and talking about right now.
All the day to day things we forget so quickly because of course the next thing is upon us.
And we think we wont forget but we do and then the funny thing that caused the belly laugh is gone or we are somewhere further down the track and wonder what it was that changed us, or led us a certain somewhere or when did the girl start wanting pink hair or the boy start shaving or the tid bit of a conversation that laid our heart bare.
I know we’ll never remember or capture it all. I’m not sure were meant to.
But a smattering of the good stuff (and hard) here and there, a few things jotted down that capture the aroma and shape of a good life that in a few years might look a whole lot different.
That ordinary life not so ordinary at all
So if your like me and the idea of journaling and deep thoughts seems a bit darn much
Just start with the ordinary old nuts and bolts of everyday life
Because there’s gold right there
Bring it all to the canvas
Here’s the idea
Pick a time once a week or thereabouts. About 20 minutes is all you need – longer if you want
Grab one of those blank notes with the pretty covers that we’ve all got laying around
Pour the coffee or the glass of wine and try one of these
Simple prompts to help you capture a few thoughts and memory’s without it all seeming like hard work.
Take a Scroll
Scroll through your photos and screen shots for the last week
Jot down a few highlights or thoughts about what you were doing or where you were, or something that grabbed you enough to take a photo or screen shot. Point form is fine, simple words.
Here’s an example
These pics from Sunday 6th of September
- Sunday drive with Liv up Mount Ousley
- Spectacular view
- Liv trying to photobomb the pics
- The lookout hangs out over the edge of the cliff – always terrifying
- Went into the gorgeous Italian deli and gelato shop there
- We bought posh pasta sauce and extra wide fresh pappardelle to cook for dinner – Livy’s choice and it was so good, melt in your mouth.
- The Italian mama chatted with Livvy and told her how beautiful she was.
- Bought Ethan a slice of Tiramisu cake. Just had to after the saga with the beautiful big tiramisu cake he found in one of the trolleys at work. Just bought and accidently left behind by a customer. He so wanted to keep it, he could almost taste it, but in the end returned it into the store. Just as well as the owner came looking for it.
(If you enjoy posting to social media – that’s an Instagram or Facebook post right there. Or keep it just for you).
What’s Happening Now
Jot down what’s happening today right now, where you are.
For me I’m writing this post on a Sunday afternoon. Here’s how that looks.
- Sitting out back with my feet up. Still colder than I like it. Thinking about lighting the fire pit.
- I can hear the kids playing in the yard next door. Happy play and then the wheels fall off and it’s WW3. If it was hot I’d hear the splash of the pool from the other neighbours yard. On a hot day it sounds like luxury – so close and yet so far
- We bought two fat gold fish and some aquarium plants today. Ethan cleaned the lounge room tank yesterday and redid the water ie: he held the hose while I ran in and out turning the tap on and off on demand. He’s on a roll now – keeps coming out to discuss fish tanks and show me YouTube video’s of magnificent aquascapes (basically gardens in fish tanks) – fascinating stuff that he’s always been gaga for
- Livvys watching Friends and dreaming of a life in New York. She mentions the colourful night life now and then and my hair wants to stand on end. We’re heading out for a drive soon. Not New York but it’ll have to do, she likes to play her music for me and there’s always chance of a talk
- Yesterdays howling winds have finally stopped. WW3 is over. All quiet for now
The week just gone
A simple list
What you read
What you cooked for dinner
What you watched
Who you saw
Highlights, low lights and everything in between.
Or make it a topic list
- What made you laugh
- What latest thing the kids are into, talking about, obsessed with
- Good conversations you had
- Things saving your life right now
- What’s getting on your last nerve
What You’ve Been Googling
Just use your searches as a prompt.
There’s often a bit of a story there. Pick a couple, write a few thoughts.
Here’s a couple of my searches for this last week and a few thoughts to give you the idea
* What plants repel flies?
Summers not even here and there’s already a great load of flies out the back annoying me. I did promise myself in the deep throws of winter, I’d never complain about the summer or the heat ever again. Forgot about the flies! Not complaining just planning their demise
Just for the record found this
Six plants that repel mosquitoes and flies
* What kind of pork can go in a slow cooker
Monday morning in the Aldi meat aisle wondering if the rolled pork on special will go well in the slow cooker. Ethan’s doing his exams like a legend so cooking him something special. Good food’s his love language.
Found this: HOW TO MAKE PORK ROAST IN AN INSTANT POT Long winded but easy ingredients – stock, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, honey and garlic. In the end I used the jar of smoky barbeque marinade I had in the cupboard already – even easier.
Eth in raptures with the smell of it walking in from school and about an hour before it was ready I headed out to the garden. He came out in a fluster concerned about my cavalier attitude towards the pork . Was I aware it might dry out, was I going to thicken the sauce?, were there buns to go with it? Assured him no need to babysit the pork, yes the sauce would be thickened and alas no buns but I’d cooked a truck load of roast potatoes. Would that suffice? He thought it would
Turned out a treat
What’s making a difference
Jot down a few things or even one thing that’s making your life easier or sweeter or more functional
You can go real basic here
Here’s my “things making a difference” list for last week. I may need to get out more but you get the gist
- Loving my clean car – so much nicer to be in
- Drinking my first morning coffee in the garden instead of in bed. I get to say good morning to all the bunnies. Liv’s first question every morning is “are the bunnies ok”. Now I can tell her straight away “yes my girl they’re fine”.
- The grass starting to grow again
- New favourite lunch. Brown rice, beans and taco spice mix – fried together in a pan. So good. Takes about five minutes. Has the texture of mince. Discovered by accident.
- Listening to “Everything Happens” Podcast . Do not even know how I found it. Has helped me realise there’s not always answers to all the “but whys” but there can be peace about them anyway.
Friends simple ideas as always but I hope that helps you with capturing a little of your world both to appreciate the here and now and for looking back on in days to come.
I’ll leave you with the rest of this quote
Keep your eyes open.
Lean into new things.
Savor what is good.
Bring it all to the canvas as you feel your way through life \ – and don’t be afraid to get a little messy along the way.
2 thoughts on “If Journaling Is Not Your Thing – Try this”
Extraordinary, simple, profound thoughts. Journaling. I really like what you have written here.
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Thanks so much Susan !