2 Page Layout with Journaling

What is journaling? Why is journaling necessary? Do I really have to write on my layout? What if I don't like my handwriting? I know what these photos are and who are in them, so why do I have to mess it up with writing?

These, and more, are the questions that every beginning scrapbook artist asks. Even I did when I began. I didn't like my hand writing. I made mistakes when I wrote and messed up the pages. Those mistakes were glaring to me and made me not want to share all the hard work I had done. So why is journaling so important in layouts?

Journaling can be one single word. If, for example, you have a few photos of your young son, or grandson, jumping in a water puddle. You have one photo of him in clean clothes while the next several photos show him increasingly wet and mud smeared.

Journaling for this page layout can be the single word "PUDDLES". This can be made the TITLE of your page(s) and everything you want to say is right in that single word. It can be made up of chipboard letters, die cut letters on card stock, stenciled using acrylic paint or markers, made with stickers, or printed on card stock using a Desktop Publishing program. The child's age and the date (approximate if you don't remember the date) can be hand written on the bottom of one of the pages.

Whether you realize it or not, this is your "Once Upon A Time" story. You are writing and publishing a book about your life. When you finish your book it will be complete with the highs and lows of life, drama, pathos, love, danger, and most of all a time capsule of you and your family's life. You will document the growth of your family from your marriage, the birth of your children, their schools years, the people they become as they grow up, their dating and eventual marriage, and then you as a grandparent and celebrating the new lives entering your growing family.

Have you seen the commercials for We want to know where we come from. Who do we look like? Why do we talk with our hands, or with an accent? Why do we gravitate to some lines of work while others in our family go a different direction? Far in the future someone is going to come across your "Once Upon A Time" book and page through it. They will find answers to some of their questions because you created a legacy through a scrapbook of your family not thinking of the future but of the things that happen in your life right now.

I have more of an affinity to scrapbooks than to card making. The reason for that is my sister and I grew up in foster homes. We didn't have "family" as you may know it. We were not made to feel special on our birthdays or at Christmas time. No one documented when I got hit in the head with a baseball bat in the third grade and had blood running down my face. Then to have stitches on my forehead that freaked me out because I thought I had a spider on my head.

I'm not telling you this to make you feel sorry for me. These are the kinds of things that I now document for our children and grandchildren. We celebrate the birthdays and the Christmas holidays, vacations, time spent with MY family and the things we do. Life is celebrated in my scrapbooks - all of life. The ups and downs, as well as the times of learning and accomplishing goals.