How To Use A Journal To Document Everyday Memories
Hello all! This is Amanda aka @shenoteditall from the Archer and Olive Ambassador team. In todays blog I’m really excited to talk to you all about one of my favorite ways to use my journal. Memory keeping. Specifically memory keeping using photos and graphics. For many of you the idea of memory keeping makes you think of the scrapbooks of yesteryear, but I like to think of my take on it as being more like scrapbookings’ hip granddaughter. First of all, it involves using a small, streamlined bullet journal (or memory planner, whatever works best for you), not a big clunky 12x12 scrapbook album, and second, it focuses a little more on intentional embellishments rather than hordes of printed pape and cutouts using funky scissors.
Before we get into the how, I would like to share with you some of the fun products I use when I do memory keeping:
First off, I like to have as much space as possible so I currently use an Archer and Olive B5 Sized notebook as my memory journal. Here are a couple that I love…
Then, for creating any graphics, words, or art around it I love to use both caliographs and acrylographs. Here are some of the colors I’m loving right now…
Ok, now, before we getting into the creating, lets talk about photos...
Two of the most frequent questions I get asked on social media are “where do you print your photos?” and “how do you get them so small?” To which my answer is always “well, it depends.”
First I’ll address how to resize photos. The tactic I use most often to resize photos is by using a photo app on my phone. The app itself doesn’t matter and there are plenty of free and paid options for both android and IOS with a quick search. Another option, if you would prefer to use a computer, is placing the photos in a word document and then resizing each photo to your preferred size. For my B5 size journal I most often resize my photos so that they’re 2in x 1.5in.
Then, when it comes to printing photos there are many options. The source I use is entirely dependent on where I am and how quickly I need them.
Here are my go to’s:
- Professional Prints: This is my top choice when time allows it. I typically print off my collages in a 4x6 size at the local drug store. The colors and quality are always the best when I do it this way.
- Home Printer: This is what I use when I need a photo quickly, when I’m at work, or when the specific graphic I’m printing doesn’t need a particularly high pixel density
- A small portable printer like an HP Sprocket or Canon IVY: Color quality on these aren’t as nice, so they’re best used when I need a quick photo or when I’m traveling
Another option is a home photo printer, whether small personal sized like a Canon Selphy, or full sized photo printer.
Documenting your memories
One thing I love about journaling is that it’s so personal. There is no one right way to do it. This year I have a dedicated memory journal where I have a combination of written and photographic documentation. In the past I integrated my memories into my regular everyday bujo, and that was great too. I also have special travel bujos where I only document my travels and keep them separate from everything else. I tell you this mainly because I want to encourage you. However you want to include memories in your bujos go for it!
Different types of memory spreads
This is a fun 1-2 page spread you can add to your journal. Document each day using a photo, stickers, graphics, descriptions of events, or a combo like I did in this spread.
Another take on the calendar spread is “Project 365” or a photos a day. You can easily draw this out in your journal but for those months where you might not have the time I also made a fun printable you can cut out and glue into your journal to give you a head start.
We all have little moments from our weeks and months that may not fill a spread by themselves but that are still worth chronicling. I like to give these a special spread of their own. Notice I even added a little doodle in this following spread to tag along with my memory.
I recently got the chance to go to “The Friends Experience” in Seattle and came away with enough photos to fit three spreads! I knew the eventual pared down spread I did make had to be special. In the end I included the shows famous font and added a couple graphics, like Monicas peep hole frame and the Central Perk logo, to add something extra to the spread.
Special events can also look like a family game night or a day trip somewhere fun. In the spread below I didn’t have enough photos of my day trip to Anacortes to do a two page spread but was able to easily make a one page spread (and even add a doodle of a tree!).The
Sometimes it’s fun do document the little things in life that seem mundane and everyday. One cool idea to add to your memory journal is a playlist of your favorite songs right now. To make the spread below I printed out tiny album covers of each album to make a mock Spotify Playlist in my journal.
Other similar ideas you could document are top 10 lists, what you’ve been binge watching lately, or top podcasts.
I set up my memory journal by month so before moving on to the next month I’ve found it fun to do a monthly memory recap. This is a great place to write fun facts from the month, both things you may have already documented and not. For example, I work as a flight paramedic. In my spreads that include work I often include photos related to medevacs I went on, but it’s on my review page where I put my stats about the medevacs and search and rescue missions. The little tidbits you can include on a page like this are endless as are the graphic possibilities. On my spread below I included both photos from my memories as well as print outs of two of my favorite media I watched that month.
Memories, while maybe not as exciting to review right now are immensely fun to look back on in the future. Think about it, 3 years from now you could open up your memory journal from 2023 and be pleasantly surpised to read about the adventures you had this week or laugh about that reality show you couldn’t stop talking about.
As they say, “a photo is worth a thousand words,” that’s why I fully believe you can say so much more in a bujo spread just by simply including photos. I truly hope that you gained some helpful information from this post. If you want to see/hear more I also created a video you can find on the Archer and Olive Youtube page, linked below. Thanks for reading!
If you’ve been inspired to create a memory journal and would like to find even more inspiration from other creators here are some other A&O blog posts to take a look at: