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Monday, June 25, 2012

Mommy & Me Journal

Several years back, when Sweetie Pea was just a two-year-old tot, I was in a ladies Bible study.  One night we, women, were sharing some thoughts about parenting and a friend told of a letter writing exchange that she had started with her daughter to cultivate their relationship.  After mulling over her thoughts for a few days, I decided to put my own personal spin on it by using an inexpensive composition notebook covered in scrapbook paper to create this mother-daughter journal.


Mommy and Me Journal


I had two main reasons for beginning this journal writing process with my little girl.

  1. I wanted a way to permanently record my love, prayers, and thoughts for her.  Obviously, I could and DO tell her all of this out loud, but audible sentiments can not be preserved for long-term safe keeping.
  2. I wanted a way to create an OPEN line of communication with her.  Now granted, at TWO, she freely told me EVERYTHING.  But, I realized even then that there would come a day...ten...twelve...fifteen years down the road...that she would have thoughts to share that might be difficult for her to admit out loud or divulge in person.  I hoped this could be one outlet for her to remain OPEN with me.



Mommy and Me Journal for Preschooler

We keep this journal in a central spot that is accessible to both of us.  Typically, if I having something worth sharing with her, I jot a quick note in the book and leave it on her bed.  When she finds it, she quickly responds with a note of her own and then leaves it on my bed...and vice versa.  Often, there will be a rapid exchange of several entries over the course of a few days.  And sometimes the journal will go unopened for months at a time.  

Mommy and Me Journal Excerpt

Admittedly, when we began this little chronicle, Sweetie Pea could neither read nor write.  But, that did not stop us from journalling together. As you can see from a few of our very first entries, I wrote short phrases...some silly, some serious...and created illustrations for her to be able to circle or mark in some way.  When she found her journal, she waited for the Hubs to come home from work and asked him to read it to her.  He would, then, help her answer the questions with a few simple instructions.

Sweetie Pea's Journal

Since that time, our letters have gotten less silly and more serious.  I have gotten permission from my girl to show you a few of these beginning pages, but for the sake of her privacy, have promised not to reveal any of our more recent notes.  

In the last six years, I have been able to use our book to celebrate answers to prayer, give extra thoughtful birthday wishes, encourage after hurtful words from a friend, and simply say "I Love You" in many unique ways. 

For more great ideas for mothering daughters, be sure to check out...



26 comments:

  1. Great idea!! :) I might have to borrow it for my little ladies too!

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    1. Please do. It has been such a great thing for my relationship with my daughter. Hopefully you'll be able to say the same.

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  2. Oh, this is so precious. My daughter and I exchange notes on our beds, but they always get pitched because...well, I don't like clutter. ;) This is a great idea to keep it all together. Pinning it!

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    1. Thanks for the pin, Heidi. You'll have to let me know if you end up making one...or buying one...any notebook would do.

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    2. Just started one with Emilia and she really likes the idea!

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  3. This is a great idea! My husband and I share a notebook like this. Now I'll have to do one for my girls too.

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  4. This is such a great idea. I'd love to do an entire family journal on the dining room table for all of us to add to. Thanks for the inspiration!

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    1. Ooo...that's a great twist! Hope it is a great success.

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  5. we've got one of these, too. though not as pretty on the outside though :) what a great way for us to connect with our kids when they might not be as comfortable doing/talking face-to-face. thanks for linking up to tip-toe thru tuesday!

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    1. It's been "well-loved". Notice the grease stains on the cover from sticky fingers.

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  6. Jamie, this is such a sweet and sentimental way to bond with your daughter. What a lovely idea you will both cherish forever! With your permission, I would love to share this idea on my other blog, Never Lose Your Sparkle and on tiarasandbowties.blogspot.com as well as a wonderfully unigue way to build self confidence and self esteem in a child! Please let me know if that would be ok with you! Perhaps you would be willing to share another idea or craft with us in the future as a guest post? The idea behind what I'm looking for is to foster a child's inner light... what make them sparkle!
    xoxo
    Kim
    (Andie's Cohost from tip toe thru tuesday)

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    1. That would be great. Please just make sure to include a link back here to the original post.

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  7. What a gift! This is one of those things that I would hold onto and continue for a lifetime with my children!

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  8. Hey, stopping by from kbn/kid co-op link up. Love this idea it is so sweet. What a great way to interact with your child. Thanks for sharing- frogs and snails and puppy dog tails
    ps joined your GFC

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  9. We do this too. (This will be in the July Notebooking Round up as well!) love it.

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  10. You are amazing!! I've seen a few mommy daughter journals and have wanted to do one but I figured my daughter was too young. Even though she can't read much and her pictures are not the bet you have given me a great idea. I'm definitely going to following your blog now!

    Jamie
    http://sjthomeschool.blogspot.com/

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  11. Just wanted to let you know that you have been featured this week on my blog for Tip Toe thru Tuesday!

    Kim

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  12. That is a great idea and something that will be cherished for years to come. Please stop by and add a link to this post on Artsy Play Wednesday on Capri + 3. Today is the first of what will be a weekly linky featuring posts about arts, crafts and play activities. Your journal is very artistic and I like that your daughter has added her own drawings. I hope you will join in.

    : 0 ) Theresa
    http://www.multiples-mom.com

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  13. We will definitely need to begin this today!

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    1. Great! I hope it brings you as much thought provoking dialogue as it has for us.

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  14. How did you cover the notebook? I'm curious as I could just see it ripping or something is it covered permanently like glued to the cover. Or is it made into like the covers you would put on books for school? Just curious on how you did yours. My daughter would love to do this and I just wanted some pointers on decorating it. Thanks!

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    1. If memory serves, I used Modge Podge, scrapbook paper, and maybe some really strong scrapbooking glue to attach the ribbon. But I made it seven years ago, so, that's kind of a wild stab in the dark...educated guess.

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    2. Thanks so much for the info...you've given my daughters and I a project to cherish for a lifetime! :)

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