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Monday, March 2, 2009

Motivational Monday - Journal Writing

Our prophets have requested that we each keep a record of our lives in:


Last week while I was doing my Visiting Teaching, I talked my Mom into going with me since I currently do not have a partner. One of the ladies I visit is elderly and has such a heritage of personal history written and compiled for her children.

A couple of months ago during our Stake preparedness fair she had a booth filled with her personal journals, missionary journals and photo albums. She has gone on around 6 missions, her personal mission, a family mission and her and her husband went on several. It is VERY amazing and inspirational every time I get to visit with her.

Since my Mom was there we showed her some of the things she has compiled. She also teaches a class in Sunday School about journal and history writing with genealogy. She is WONDERFUL!! She gave my Mother a handout to get her started on writing her personal history. To me, this would be the biggest treasure she would leave behind to our family.

My father passed away September 2007. He was remarried to a woman who hated his children. We didn't get anything from his estate, no personal memorabilia or anything. It is a really hard thing and we have been kind of mad at my father that he didn't leave anything personal for us children. His heritage is gone and we will never get it back. (I am still working through that anger today).

Your life is as unique as your fingerprints. It is a precious piece of time that should not be forgotten. There has been only one life like yours in all time and only YOU can leave an accurate account of it.
You are a bridge between the past and the future. History disappears if it isn't recorded.
Each of us has also been invited to write our own PERSONAL and FAMILY HISTORIES. Why?

President Spencer W. Kimball: "What could you do better for your children and your children's children than to record the story of your life..... ? ....... maybe the angels will quote from it for eternity."

Who is going to tell my family about my family or about me and the world live in, if I don't?
This is a journal scrapbook from my life. It has every school picture and class picture from my school years, my awards, pictures I have drawn, love letters from boyfriends, plays I attended, church handouts from mutual. It is very dear to me. I have always loved keeping my memorabilia and have always scrap booked. When Jason was a baby and the whole acid free concept came out, I compiled all of my memorabilia to an acid free book.

Some idea's from the hand out to complete the record of your life are in italics:
1. Some writers start their memoirs with birth. Others start with dramatic episodes in their lives, such as a turning point.

2. Always have a beginning, a middle and an end to each story.

3. Aim for an ear-catching beginning to each story.

4. Make your ending statement or idea a memorable one.
5. Eliminate unnecessary words or distracting thoughts or ideas.

6. Where fitting, answer the questions who, where, what, why and how.

7. For length, aim for 2 double spaced typed pages for each story.

8. Give each episode a title. Words trigger thoughts. Titles help identify the story and can spark interest.
9. Use imagery, action words, descriptive words, snippets of conversation, suspense, surprise, ask questions, use symbolism, comparisons, etc.

10. Simplify, clarify. I love Journal in a Jar ideas. If you can't think of a subject to blog about or write your personal histories, these ideas can get you started. Here are some links:
Lots a great inspiration out there. I think the biggest lesson I learned is to just write short stories about events in your life. Two pages with a title and ending. DON'T try to just write one big long boring story about your life. Write something that is entertaining and fun to read. Add pictures. Isn't that what a blog is about ? Short and fun?
You know I love printing my blog into books. I have four now and love this part of my history for my children to have along with scrap books. I am going to try these techniques to write my history too.


Ann Marie said...

Whoo-hoo! I love journals, Diaries, And BLOGS! I love that you have been printing them out..

I am going to print all of my las year after I go through and edit..

Does yours print the comments? I want my comments also..

Sondra said...

Yes Ann Marie... the book comes with all of the comments (which I LOVE too!). The only thing is that they don't show up with the particular blog. They are all at the back of the book with a reference to which blog they belong to.

They are working on getting it to print with the blog it goes with. But at least they are there for now.

I print it out every month to be able to afford it.

Cherie said...

That is one reason I feel so good about spending time on my blog. I started it as a way to tell my stories and my families stories.

I have scrapbooked for years and I still enjoy doing that too.

I have heard that Heavenly Father let the computer be invented so we would have an easier way to do our geneology, Temple names, etc...and I think that goes along with keeping a record of our lives aka blogging:D

Great post!

Zoey said...

I love journaling - thanks for sharing this with us!

Tigersue said...

Book2blog doesn't work with Haloscan comments, so be sure to let your readers know that, same with blurb, I didn't get my comments there either. Not that I mind much, I would rather have the space for my blog.

I have gotten blurb to work now with blogger, and what I have enjoyed is I can edit it easily and I have been able to add material that I did not blog about. So more pictures of my kids! I tried to edit with the book2blog and could never get it to work., is a nice place for those of our faith to go journal if they don't want to blog, or if they are like me, want to talk about something too personal to put on my public blog.
It has also added a journal jar, so journal entries have a suggestion for an entry, and it also has an all about me section full of ideas to answer.

I'm not as verbose as it seems and most of my entries are short and to the point.

I also believe that there is value in handwritten work. My father just gave me some items of his mother's to transcribe, and I cherish the handwriting and that is more valuable that anything else.

Sondra said...

Tigersue, Thanks for the information. I know anyone who reads this blog will be thankful for that information. Thanks!

I've tried to use a couple of other companies to print my book. I find editing it a huge time consuming pain... I just don't have the time and that is why I like blog2print. You load it and print - easy for me and my schedule.

Thanks again!

Blog2print is so fast and easy without extra time to "edit" it. My life it too busy to take that extra time.

Small House said...

Sondra, I love your post today! You have totally jazzed me to get my act together. THank you!

I've got a pile of "OH, PLEASE PUT ME IN A BOOK" papers and pictures.

So, you're available for enrichment in a couple months right?

And, I must confess. I didn't come up with the spray the board with chalk paint. I saw it somewhere, lots of where's actually. I just put it to good use. It was just my good idea to put those cute kids to work. :)

T. L. C. said...

How neat! I was wondering what was the best avenue to go through to get mine printed.

I love all you ideas about journaling. I've done almost the same thing with all my school awards and Young Women stuff.

What a NEAT lady. All those missions. I couldnt even imagine what stories she could share.

Do you have any neat ideas for Visiting Teaching? I think I might do a post about it and see what other sisters would share.

swimmingviolist said...

You are right about the ease of blog2print to publish, that is the benefit of it there.


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