When the days have turned into struggle street and the jobs are endless, and ground hog is only a sleep away – take a break.  One of my favourite breaks for the intense moments in my families life, is to step off out, grab ya nature journalling bag and start looking.  Gather the kids, tell them that “we’re going on a nature walk” or “lets go outside and do some journalling”.  If the kids are really small, and maybe the not so small, i love to start with “we are going on a bear hunt…”  Kids love it and it keeps them interested and active along the way.  Heres the book if you don’t know the story.

7 tips to get journaling fast

  1.  Your NOT on fire.  But STOP everything, DROP the list of to dos, and ROLL right out of your place.  STOP, DROP and ROLL
  2. Grab ya journalling bag.  Here is a linky for what our little bag looks like and what we have in it, and where it lives? (i know it likes a secret, you may be surprised)
  3. Grab a drink bottle and a packet of something, or a few pieces of fruit
  4. Slip, Slop Slap.  Slip on some shoes, slop on something warm, and Slap that bad ass day in the behind.  Obviously if its 35 degrees out, slop on sunnies, hat and sunscreen.
  5. Upon arriving, take a big breath and tell the kids to find a treasure from nature
  6. Sit down and draw, date and name that masterpiece.  Give lots of feedback even if the picture is interesting.  “wow, what do you love about it?”  “love all those lines” “the colours you used look cool”  No lip service, the kids know, but sometimes its hard, I know!  But i always think of it like getting a gift, find the best thing about it and wax lyrical or at-least squeak out a good effort and ask them a question about their masterpiece.  “what do you love, what was hard to do, are you happy with your masterpiece”.
  7. Now relax mumma, while those kids go feral in the field.

7 thoughts to help with the struggle street Journaling

  1. You are not going alpine climbing, so bare necessities will be fine.  Something to protect against the weather (top or hat)
  2. A drink bottle and a piece of fruit –  something easy and quick. You want to establish quick trips with nature journalling, so you break the routine.  But don’t be fooled that just because they have just eaten and drunk, that they won’t want food and drink within 1 minute of getting out the door.  They will, and they will make you hurt if you don’t have it.  This is an ALWAYS better to be prepared with these essentials than spoil for a fight.
  3. Don’t go too far.  Keep it nice and simple, down the street, outside in the back yard, to the playground.  Forget the car!  Remember you are also taking that cake you ate for a walk, and hopefully leaving it behind!
  4. Don’t worry what the weather is, unless it is POURING outside, but you will be surprised how resilient, fun, and crafty you can get in the weather.  Hunkering under a tree to draw or tucking yourself around a hedge to get out of the wind, helps the kids look at things differently and experience familiar places differently.  And sometimes the most amazing things happens.  Like rainbows, they are always so neat!
  5. This feels odd at the time, but get the kids to look up, look down, close their eyes and hear the sounds around them.  Don’t worry if they don’t do it, model it each time and they will come around… e.v.e.nt.u.a.l.l.y and even if they don’t you can enjoy the process!  And thats your meditation for the day done and dusted.  High five Mum!
  6. This is journalling at speed, we don’t need kids doing art to be handed in and marked.  We are wanting the kids to observe there surroundings, observe their treasure.  Practice them using their super cool Yo-yo eyes..
  7. AND Relax, this is the easy stuff, don’t stress if they don’t want to journal, or if there journaling is a scribble.  Affirm what they achieve “great work walking here Sam”, “I like that you are here Anna, you don’t have to draw today, but what is the most interesting thing here” develop conversation.  Be together!


Over and out, until next time! K