Monthly Archives: December 2014

Getting Ready for Daily Journaling Prompts 2015

29th December 2014

Getting Ready for Daily Journaling.


It’s three more days until the Daily Journaling Prompts for Creative Happiness starts here on Journaling Sage. The prompts are ready and I am so excited to be sharing them with you. It’s been overwhelming and humbling to see so many of you who can’t wait to start the new year with these prompts.

As the start is getting nearer, you are probably starting to think about what things you need to get ready for doing the Daily Journaling Prompts. A new journaling project is always a good excuse to get new stationery supplies (wink wink).

Materials you will need

For the Daily Journaling Prompt, the materials needs are very simple – something to write on, and something to write with. From there, you can customise it to whatever you feel like. Here is a quick run through of some of the options, and a sneaky peek into what I will be using.

Something to write on

What you'll need for the Daily Journaling Prompts for Creative Happiness 2015.

The first option for something to write on is of course the notebook. Who can ever get enough of cracking open a brand new notebook in the new year? You could have a special journal just for writing your answers to the prompts, or write your answers in the normal notebook you have along with everything else. It’s totally up to you.

Second option is a Filofax or any other kind of binder-paper combination. If you are a Filofax addict, there’s no reason to tare yourself away from your beloved Filofax. You could create a section to put your prompt answers into, or even buy a whole new Filofax to keep all your answers together.

A third option is to write in a diary. This would keep all your answers in one neat notebook, and encourage you to write about the prompts every day. However just be aware that your answers to a few of the prompts might be long, so you might want to think about how easy it is to extend the pages when you are choosing your diary. I’d recommend at least a 1-page-a-day style diary in A5 or bigger.

A fourth option is a sketch pad or even canvas boards. These are great options if you are going to be art journaling along to the prompts. You might want to prep your sketch pad in advance by covering each page with gesso.

Personally, I will be putting my answers into my everyday journal notebook. I like to keep all my writing together in chronological order. Whatever you choose, I highly recommend buying a something that is nice, but not too nice. If it’s too nice, you will end up stressing about using up something that is too nice. I love Moleskine or Leuchtturm notebooks as they are lovely notebooks but I don’t feel bad about burning through them.

Something to write with

What you'll need for the Daily Journaling Prompts for Creative Happiness 2015.

Fountain pens, biros, roller balls, pencils, coloured pens, markers, paints – there are just so many options for what you write with. So here are just few pointers on how to pick the right writing tool for yourself:

  • Is it easy to write?  The pen has to be easy and fast to write with. If you get a cramp after writing just half a page, it’s the wrong pen. Spend as much time as you want in the stationery store trying out all the different pens available and pick the one that feels smoothest to you.
  • Is it a match? When you go and test new pens in the stationery store, it’s a good idea to take a sample of the paper you will be journaling on. You can then test to see if the pen won’t bleed through or scratch on the paper you will be writing on.
  • Is it fun? Does it come in lots of pretty ink colours? Does it come with different body colours? Does it make you smile when you pick it up?
  • Is it affordable? If you have to buy cartridges or refills or even whole new pens, is it affordable for you to do so?
  • Is it widely available? Again, if you have to buy new ones or refills, can you get it easily where you are?
  • Do you love it? Sometimes, all of the above doesn’t matter, if you are simply madly in love with it. I have a Mont Blanc fountain pen that is a totally nightmare to travel with on the plane (think liquids restrictions and cabin pressure), but I bought it on my honeymoon and no one will ever talk me out of using it.

Currently, I am loving using the above biros, called Bic Clic Gold. They are incredibly cheap (£0.80 or $1.20), comes in lots of colours and writes very smoothly. I love using biros when I am writing in a Moleskine. When I am writing in a Leuchtturm notebook, I adore using my aforementioned Mont Blanc fountain pen with oyster grey ink.

Everything else

What you'll need for the Daily Journaling Prompts for Creative Happiness 2015.

Here’s where you get to have fun. This is your official permission to go out to the stationery store and buy lots of fun accessories for your journal. I’m a sucker for pretty washi tapes (see above photo). I also love using post it notes and you could use stickers, bookmarks, glitters, stamps, anything that will stick onto a page. You could buy some magazines too if you want to add collages into your journaling.

Basically, just have fun. This is going to be an exciting journey, and you should have lots of cute and pretty things to travel with you. Also if you ever get to a stage where you don’t feel like journaling, you can just spend the time making your journal all pretty instead. Trust me, it really helps.

Can’t wait to get started with the Daily Journal Prompts for Creative Happiness with you. Just three more days.

Daily Journaling Prompts for Creative Happiness 2015

27th December 2014

Daily Journaling Prompts for Creative Happiness 2015

Daily journaling prompts for creative happiness 2015.

For 2015, I’ll be sharing a journaling prompt every day. The journaling prompts focus on finding and nurturing your creative self, and building a creative lifestyle around you. They can be used for self discovery, finding your purpose, making your dream happen, letting go of stuff that’s holding you back or simply embracing who you are.

Everyone has creativity burning inside them, even if you have told yourself before that you ‘don’t have a creative side.’ I want you to take the journey with me in gently embracing that creative being inside you and bloom into a beautiful, enriched creative person.

There are no rules to these prompts. You can choose to join me everyday, or do a few on a weekend, or just pop in when you need a creative pick me up. You can write a sentence or a whole page (or more) for each prompt. You don’t have to worry about spelling or keeping it neat. What’s important is that you do them when you need them.

For each journal prompt, if you choose do to blog your answer, you’ll be able to link your post to each prompt so you can share and explore each other’s answers. Or maybe start a brand new journal just for these journal prompts. Of course, you don’t have to share with anyone if you don’t want to.

I’m super excited about going on this journey of creative happiness. It’ll be starting on 1st January 2015. Will you join me for 2015?

2014 Journal Lookback

26th December 2014

2014 Journal Lookback - all the journals I used in 2014.

It’s almost Christmas, and it’s a great time to take a look back at what journals came along on a journey with me this year. In total, I filled up twenty five notebooks this year. It’s certainly a record for me!

Travel Scrapbooks

What made filling up journals a lot easier this year was that I did a lot of travelling. Whenever I travel, I will take a notebook with me to fill with things like maps, tickets, leaflets to things we went, etc. These don’t have much writing in them, but is stuffed to the brim with a lot of memories.

2014 Journal Lookback - all the journals I used in 2014.

This was my scrapbook for our month stay in Paris. It’s full of museum tickets and postcards. When I go to an art gallery or a museum, I like to buy postcards of artworks I really liked. When I get them home, I write the date of visit, and reason why I liked the work so much on the back, then pop them into my scrapbook.

travel scrapbook JapanThese are my scrapbooks for our two-months stay in Japan, with little trips to South Korea and Taiwan. It’s full of hotel and restaurant business cards and maps of cities we visited.

Travel scrapbook from USA, Canada and Europe
These are my scrapbooks from our summer & autumn trip to the USA, Canada, Italy, Switzerland, France and Spain. These ones are rammed full of maps from many cities. The rightmost one is covered in stickers I managed to get at New York Maker Faire 2014.

Travel Journals


When we were on the road for several months, I used pocket notebooks to journal in, as they were more convenient to carry around in my handbag. It meant I had everything in the one notebook, including what we bought, what we did and how I felt.

The Leuchtturms (the two on the left) were perfect as travel journals. The index and the pages being already numbered were both very handy. I used the index to page to keep track of how much we had spent each day on the trip.

The rightmost one came in handy when we were camping across America for a total of 4 weeks. The spiral bound made it much easier for me to write with the notebook on my lap in a cramped tent. I covered it with stickers from national parks we visited.



Together with my travel journals, I filled in twelve notebooks with my own words. That’s about one a month, and I am very happy with that. I used a mixture of Leuchtturms, moleskines and whatever notebooks I could get hold of on the road.

October was a particularly productive month where I filled three notebooks in one month. That was after four months of travelling from hotel room to hotel room, finally settling in one place for a month. That was fantastic to be able to put journaling as the focus of the day again.

Other Notebooks

other notebooks 1other notebooks 2

The first four are pocket notebooks I’ve carried in my handbag (one at a time!) They are just there for me to jot down notes, put shopping list in, etc. Carrying a pocket notebook is really handy if you are like me and forget a lot of things. I always up a pen loop sticker on them so that I can carry a pen with the notebook easily.

The pink notebook was a notebook I tried out for a while as my journaling notebook. I didn’t like it in the end and so didn’t carry on with it. However, I did take the blue version of the same notebook travelling (the one that is covered in national park stickers), and I found the spiral bound handy when trying to write in a cramped tent.

The red notebook is a moleskine notebook that I will be carrying on to next year. It’s going to be my ‘reference’ notebook, where I keep all the info I need to keep referring back to. It contains things like goals for 2015, words I want to use more in my writing, post ideas and post trackers.

All in all, I used 25 notebooks in 2014. I hope 2015 will bring many more notebooks and many more stories to write in them.

How to Photo Archive Your Journals Easily

4th December 2014

How to photo archive your journals easily

Archiving your journal pages by taking photos of every page is a great way to make sure you have a portable back up of everything you have written. I have over hundred filled notebooks and if something happened to my home, there is no way I’ll be able to carry them all out. Knowing that they are all backed up somewhere else really does give me a piece of mind. Also as I travel a lot, having a photo archive of my journals saved on the cloud means I can flip through old journals without having to carry them with me.

However, taking photos of each and every page in your journal sounds like A LOT of work. Well, here is my super fast photo archiving system that’s been perfected over the years. I photo archive my journals about every six months (about 2000 pages or more), and it usually only takes me an hour or so from start to finish. Plus, you only need a few items to set it up at your home.

What you’ll need:

  • A digital camera that can be connected to a remote control
  • A remote control for the camera
  • Tripod
  • Washi tape
  • Your journals to be archived

Here’s my set up:

photo 1

The remote and the tripod is the key to fast photo archiving. They allow you to fix everything in exactly the right position. They also allow you to take photos without pushing the camera all over the place in order to press the shutter button. With this set up, I can take photos of every page of a 250-page journal in about 10 minutes.

Step 1 – Set Up

Once you get your journal and camera into position, you can mark where the corners of the journal should be with some wash tapes. This will save you bags of time as you don’t have to keep peering over the camera to see if everything is still fitting into the shot.

Step 2 – Taking Photos of Your Journal

For each journal, always take a photo of the front cover first, and the back cover last. This makes it really easy to spot in the file finder where one journal stops and another starts. The photo below is a screen shot of the photos on the camera memory card loaded onto my laptop. See how you can see immediately where the black journal finishes and the green journal starts? This will make your life a lot easier in the next step.  Take photos of every page, and don’t forget to take photos of the contents of the back pocket if your journal has one.

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 12.02.07

Step 3 – Load the Photos onto Your Laptop

Once you’ve taken photos of all your journals, loaded the photos up on your laptop.

Step 4 – Put Photos into Individual Journal Folders

Now all you have to do is put the photos into individual journal folders. This should be super easy if you took photos of the front and back covers, as they will be a good visual aid to help you spot where one journal finishes and another starts.

put photos into individual journal folders

Naming of files: I put the first date from the journal, and the last date from the journal. If you use the Year-Month-Date format for it, then your files can be arranged chronologically very easily. I also put the end date, and a quick description of what type of journal it was. This is super handy if you are like me and have multiple notebooks on the go.

And that’s it! Now everything you have ever written in your journals are easy to find at a touch of the mouse!