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postheadericon Art Journaling…

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I have recently discovered something I am trying to do… Art Journaling.  I love the idea, but I don’t think I interpret it the same as true journal artists, but then again, it is not about “the outcome” but about the “creative process” as explained by Daisy Yellow in her Art Journaling 101 post.  In a way, a blog is an “art journal” but it is in electronic form.  A blog author writes their thoughts and illustrates with digital photos either produced by themselves or found on the internet.  These days I am more into actually putting pen to paper and recording thoughts or ideas instead of producing them electronically.

I recently joined an Art Journal Swap group on Facebook, hosted by Penpalling & Letters.  We start out by creating our journal, then decorate a few pages, then pass it on to the next person on the list.  You receive a journal from someone else, you decorate as much as you like, then pass it on again.  It will continue until everyone on the list has had a chance to decorate pages in everyone’s journal.

Aisling D’Art says that “An art journal can be a record of your daily thoughts, a travel journal, an exercise or diet diary, a dream journal, a place where you jot down your goals or to-do lists, or… well, almost any record that you’d like to keep in a book or notebook.”  So far, I haven’t allowed myself to record my daily thoughts.  The pages I created have been more about myself in thoughts and phrases, rather than thoughts of other things.

I made a small journal, about 4″ x 5″, and I used different colored card stock for the pages and a foam sheet for the cover.

I used phrases such as “Southern”, “Tradition”, “Manners” to describe where I live… in the South.

Other phrases “Hospitality”, “Grace”, and “Charm”; then illustrated with embellishments.

I forwarded it to the next person on the list.  I posted photos on the group of my journal, and several members of the group posted that they liked it.  So far, I am the only one who has posted pics of their journal.

I am a creature of habit, I like things in order, in their proper place and a “place for my stuff”.  I have to retrain my thought process in order for me to feel like I am going to successfully start this project.  The artist at Journal Junk says “You don’t need a class to Art Journal. It’s a book in which you put yourself in. There are no rules. Just do it. You will find your way.”  One day I am going to surprise myself and just splat something on a page, and it will probably be the best thing I have ever done.

A week ago, I received the 1st journal I am to decorate.  Her book is 8-1/2″ x 11″ and at first I was overwhelmed at these blank pages to fill.  She didn’t fill any except to write a note on the first page to decorate with information about the person and where they live.  I find myself doing the same thing, again.  This is the start of the first page I am decorating.  I haven’t glued anything down yet.  It has taken me all day to put this together.  I am going to wait until tomorrow to glue it all down, just in case I come up with something different overnight.  I wanted to share my love of family and my heritage, along with a sample of my poetry about my children.

My other thoughts for other pages are using postcards from the town where I live.  Unfortunately, we are not rich in history, or have big tourist attractions here.  About the only thing important I could say about current affairs is I live in the same hometown as the former Governor of Georgia, Sonny Perdue.  I don’t really have a great love of my “hometown” other than this is where I live and where I grew up, and my family is here.

For my 3rd page, I doodled a picture one night in pen.

And, wouldn’t you know…  my 7 year old picked it up and painted it, in fact, she painted it several times in different colors.  I won’t post all the pics here, but her last one was the best in my opinion.  She may be putting me to shame.  She painted it freehand, without using a copy of my picture to paint.

I posted this doodle on my Facebook page and commented that I was afraid to paint it in the Art Journal.  One of my friends asked “why”?  Because I’m a big chicken, that’s why.  LOL.  No, seriously, I am, I am so afraid of setting something down in stone and then feeling like I messed it up.  Obviously, my daughter doesn’t have those apprehensions at all.  She can create at the drop of a hat.

I can only aspire to expand my art to share my thoughts and dreams in a more free way, such as shown on this Art Journaling Tumbler page here or here.  Both examples are total opposites of each other.  Karen Stockham, a licensed family therapist, states that “Allowing for self-discovery triggers emotional catharsis. Gaining a sense of empowerment and a bit more control as you heal is essential. Art journaling is a gentle, safe and private way to let it all out. Through this process you can vent spontaneously, creatively and lead yourself to some therapeutic relief.”  I am so in need of a way to release stress and frustration.

I will keep you updated on my progress of my “art journaling”.

 

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postheadericon Snail Mail Pen Pal Sunday Roundup 4/3/11

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Happy Sunday.  I haven’t posted in a while because life has been so busy lately.  So I thought I would post a few of the things that I have made for my swaps.  I have had a lot of fun with these swaps, and I hope my partners liked what I sent.

The two photos above are some of the handmade Valentine’s cards I sent.

Handmade Simple Bookmark

 

 

Friendship Books (FBs) I made

Handmade Tea Bag Packet, Note, & Recipe Swap

Seed Packet Swaps

Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) with handmade envelopes Swaps
The first one is from one of my photographs.

Crochet Granny Square Swaps

I swap on Swap-bot

 

I am busily responding to bunches of pen pal letters.  I have met a variety of normal women and moms from all over the US.  I so hope that we can all continue to write to each for a very long time.

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postheadericon Snail Mail/Pen Pal Sunday Roundup

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I wrote a post recently about Letter Writing and I have received my first pen pal letters.  I signed up on several sites:  Swap-Bot, Postcrossing, Sandbook, Lettersets, and Friendships By Mail.  So far, I already have a handful of pen pals lined up and I’m happily letter-writing away.  I have also registered my daughter for a pen pal.  I can’t wait to get that started.

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Yesterday, I received my first postal pen pals from Swap-Bot.

My daughter and I were very excited when we saw the envelopes in the mailbox.

We opened the big envelope first.  This one was from my 20 Facts Swap on Swap-Bot.com.  The writer is a newly married, young lady from Illinois.  She sent two postcards from Chicago.  It was a lot of fun reading about all the things she likes.  My daughter was giddy over some of the things, like Hello Kitty and fingernail polish.  It’s not a requirement for me to write her back, but I think I will.  Sounds like she could be a great pen-pal.

Then we opened the second letter with the brightly decorated envelope.  This letter was from a lady closer to my age living in Ohio.  It was a well-written 5 page letter introducing herself, and I’m very pleased to say she is definitely someone that I think I can correspond with on a regular basis.

I have a valentine swap that I’m participating in.  I have collected some valentiney things to create a card with.  Now all I have to do is sit down and start creating the card.  Right now, I have no ideas, but I’m sure something will come to me very soon.

I can’t wait to get more letters.  This is going to be an exciting adventure.

This post was written to participate in Day 23 of the BloggyMoms.com Blog Dare.

[Mission accomplished: Started networking my Linky List Library Blog.]

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postheadericon Celebrate – National Letter Writing Week

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Did you know it’s National Letter Writing Week?  I don’t even know what search I was on to come across this one.  But I did, and it got my curiosity going.  I used to love to write letters.  The most precious letter writing I ever did was to an American soldier in the Gulf War.  We were dating and he eventually became my husband (sadly, now my ex-husband).  I saved those letters for a very long time, but eventually I packed them away forever.

I don’t write letters any more.  In fact, I didn’t even send out Christmas cards this past year.  I just wasn’t in the holiday mood, I guess.  I prefer typing in a blog and communicating that way.  But I believe letter writing is a good way of recording history, of the present, and maybe of the future.  Every person should take the time to write a letter, to a loved one, to your child, to a deceased family member, or a stranger, or a friend from long ago.  It’s a good exercise to remember or to communicate things left unsaid.

I decided I wanted to find a little history of National Letter Writing Week and it took me forever to find anything.  I was just curious to see how long it had been around.  The following is the only reference I could find.

  • 1982 – The US Postal Service and the Balloon Federal of American sponsored a kick for National Letter Writing Week and to commemorate the 199th anniversary of the first modern-hot air balloon flight in Paris in 1783, as reported in The Union Democrat on September 20, 1982.  The balloons carried “spirit-lifting” letters written by those in the local area and placed in special blue envelopes.  The letters were then delivered to the local post office for delivery.  Local schools participated in the instruction of letter writing skills and attended an open house at the post office.

I am planning on handwriting a letter before the end of this week to send to a friend.  One of my friends somewhere out there will be getting a “surprise” in their mailbox, haha.  They will think I have gone mad.  Well, some already know that I’m crazy anyway.

I also signed up for a snail mail swap at Swap-bot and a postcard swap at Postcrossing.

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Postcards Exchange

Why don’t you join me this week and write a letter to someone?

This post was written to participate in Day 11 of the BloggyMoms.com Blog Dare.

[Mission accomplished: Finished my daily post before midnight, lol.]

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