Thank you to BeyondtheBlackboard.com for sponsoring today’s post. All opinions are 100% my own.
Friends, we are living in the midst of history-in-the-making. Nothing about our lives feels normal right now, and none of us have ever experienced anything quite like it. In fact, we were recently chatting over the phone with my husband’s 99 year old grandmother, and even she admitted that despite living through various wars and troubling times, she couldn’t remember another situation like the one in which we find ourselves today. The unique and unexpected realities of our lives at the moment are worth documenting, and doing so in a way that involves art can be incredibly therapeutic too. Today, I want to share with you how you and/or your kids can create your own Quarantine Journal to record this piece of living history and to work through the feelings that come with it.
Express Yourself: A Hand Lettering Workbook for Kids (or one of my other lettering books)
Brush Markers (I used ooly Brilliant Brush)
Blank Journal, Sketchbook, or Notebook
Black Fine-tip Marker
The first step is to create a cover page for your quarantine journal. Make sure to include the date! I decided to write mine in a mixture of Brush Script and Funky Print, both of which you can learn to do in the book Express Yourself. I decided to embellish my writing with a few pretty little flowers, found on pages 63-65.
When it comes to other pages, it’s really up to you what types of things you want to include. My first page is a Mood Tracker. I’ve seen these on Pinterest, but had never made my own before. I decided to draw pennant banners, another tutorial found in my book, all over the page and label them with numbers to represent days in the month of April. At the bottom of the page, I made a key showing which colors correspond with which moods. Coloring in the flag for each day helps me to stop and focus on how I’m feeling rather than hiding (or eating) my emotions. I think it will also be interesting to look back on when this time of social distancing finally comes to an end.
I also created an “About Me” page, which is a place to record things like my current wishes, likes and dislikes, and ways I’ve found to cope with the situation at hand. For me, staying busy using my creativity to sew masks for health care professionals has been really helpful. I’ve also been escaping from reality every evening by curling up with my hubby to watch a feel-good Hallmark movie.
Another idea is to use some of the pages in the journal for poetry, song lyrics, and art inspired by what we’re experiencing. A few weeks ago, as I was homeschooling my boys, we did a poetry unit and this is the free verse poem I wrote as an example. Anything goes when it comes to what you record within the pages of your own journal; it’s just a collection of memories, thoughts, and feelings from a time in history that none of us will ever forget. Imagine how interested future generations will be in what we’re documenting today!
This is a really fun activity for all ages. Kids from elementary school through high school can do their own variations, and so can you, whether your mom, dad, grandma, or great-grandma. You can even create a journal together as a whole family! There’s no right or wrong way to create a quarantine journal, just grab some markers and get started (with a little inspiration from Express Yourself, of course!) You can grab all the supplies you need really easily from BeyondtheBlackboard.com, and you’ll be ready to start recording your own memories in no time. I’d love to see some of the pages you create! Be sure to join the Amy Latta & Friends Facebook group if you haven’t already, then share your photos and progress so we can all be inspired. See you there!