I was wondering if you still keep a personal journal or if this blog is it for your personal chronicles. Do you ever feel like their are more personal things you don’t want aired on the internet but want to record?

I do still keep a personal journal, because I’m addicted to record-keeping and I like to keep little ticket stubs or sentimental things somewhere.

But I only update it four or five times a year with things that I don’t write on the blog.  I figure this blog is my journal and I will print it out in a book when I get my act together.  Although there are some things that I don’t share, I’m a pretty open book.

Besides this blog as a family journal, do you keep individual journals for your kids? What did you do when they were little to record their growth and development. I have a 4-year-old, and a 3-month-old, and have so much I want to write and remember for them, and myself. I don’t know if I should keep it all in one family blog/journal, or have separate journals for each of them.

I write each of my children one special note every Mother’s Day. It’s in my own handwriting and it sums up my feelings about them and what they love and are interested in at that time.  I also write on this blog all the things I love about them on their birthdays.  Last year I went and bought five “journals.” I share one with each of my children.  We have started writing notes back and forth to each other and I’m looking forward to having that as a record for them some day (that great idea was from a friend…thanks Gale!)

When my kids were babies I kept track of what milestones they met each month.  I just scribbled down notes in my planner or on scrap papers (because I’m super organized like that 🙂 and then wrote them up nice in their baby books.  Here are a couple of Elle’s:

Oh man, look at that sweet baby girl.

Each child up to Lucy has a special “baby book” with these updates and hundreds of pictures of them in it.  Max’s books go up to age eight:

… but I tapered off after that.  (Lucy will have a digital book made some day.)  I used to be a total want-to-be-scrap-booker…have I ever mentioned that?

Now I can’t bear to touch those dusty supplies with a ten-foot pole.

I do keep one box of keepsakes…a couple of my favorite baby dresses, handprints, hospital tags, etc.

I keep jerseys from sports in there too and fav. t-shirts (student council, summer camps…just a few of the most special ones).  My plan is that when my kids go off to college I’ll make them each a quilt with pieces of those things sewn in.

I can’t wait ’til I can post a picture of my brand-spanking-new Blurb book on this blog.

But first I have to start on it.

And I promise I won’t mention it again ’til I do.

Baby steps.

How do your kids feel about your blog? Do they read it? Do they mind being featured on it?

It’s usually one of the first things they do when they get home from school.  They love it and I love that they do.  It’s sometimes the best way I can praise them and build them up so I love it for that.  On rare occasions I’ll take a picture and they’ll say, “don’t put that on the blog!” but more often they’ll excitedly ask, “are you going to put that on the blog?”

How do I subscribe to your blog? (i.e. get an email with any new blog posts you do). I’ve figured out how to subscribe to particular blog posts’ comments (and even then it doesn’t give me a delivery email address option – just goes straight to my husband’s email that’s set up with this computer), but not to new posts you do.

think I got this fixed…I think you just click on the “subscribe” button on the right.  Let me know if that doesn’t work.

Do you take pictures of your children’s art and scan it in before you toss it?  It would be cool to take the pictures/scanned images of their art and make a HUGE coffee table book of all of their art, so you can enjoy it forever! I may do that one day with my girls stuff, but for now, I have saved all the notes/letters/cards/drawings that I can and will make a project of it once they are all grown up!

That’s an awesome idea.  I’m still trying to figure out exactly what to do with Lucy’s art work, but for now I have pictures of it and I keep it in her special file (the one I talked about back here and here).  I keep the other kids’ art they’ve done through the years in those files as well, aside from what I have hanging in my laundry room:

It’s high time to update those things, but really, how can I every replace Max’s “Huck” masterpiece??

ALERT:  There are a couple of awesome Power of Moms Retreats coming up in Idaho Falls on Sept 15th and Spokane on October 13th. Here’s the link for more information about all the upcoming Retreats: http://powerofmoms.com/upcoming-retreats-and-workshops/

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  1. I love reading your blog and find great inspiration in you and your family. I have a question for you…how do you work with your kids and practicing their instruments? My child plays the piano and I find myself gearing up for the fight everyday and wondered if you had some insight in how to do this with less friction. Thanks!

  2. I make a shutterfly.com book for my kids every year that reflects their life from the first day of school to the day before the next first day of school. I include photos, report cards, school work, artwork, certificates, etc. I love the idea of the shared journals between you and your kids. What kind of things do you and they write about?

  3. I just downloaded a fabulous new app on my iphone called Artkive. You take pictures of your kids artwork and it archives it for you, you can date it, etc and then when you have lots of them it lets you print a coffee table book of your kids art. So far it's fabulous! Highly recommend for adorable Lucy's art!

  4. Yay! You answered my question about journal keeping for the family. Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed as I manage my way through uncharted waters as a mother of young kids. Your blog is my number one inspiration. Thank you for sharing!

  5. Oh, I am so sad I can't go to the power of moms retreat! I live in Idaho Falls and would have loved to attend! I can't go because I am being induced to have a baby this Monday, the 10th.:)

  6. Thank you so much for sharing these ideas, Shawni! I'm just a single girl trying to navigate the often-awkward YSA scene in Salt Lake, but I keep a file of ideas I hope to use with kids of my own some day. I always find great suggestions here!

    I aspire to be a mother like you some day.

  7. SO excited for the Power of Moms retreat here in my town, good old Spokane. I couldn't believe I'd read it right there would be a fabulous meeting of the mom minds right here!

  8. I was recently introduced to bloglovin.com. You pick all the blogs you want updates on and once a day they send you an email telling which ones have been updated. Seriously awesome.
    I know how you feel about scrapbooking. I used to be awesome. But then the era of digital cameras, shutterfly, mixbook, blogs, blurb came along. Thank heavens! I think I would have gone crazy long ago if I was still trying to keep up on my scapbooks! At least all my old supplies have come in handy for school and church projects.

  9. I jsut heard about doing a family year book… all the fun things that you did that year. the good, bad, ugly, and then print it every christmas.. i think thats the way to go for me!!!

    PS, are you going to be speaking at any of the power of moms meetings?

  10. For each of my kids I have done a baby's first year calendar. I record all types of information on it-from dr visits and health stats, to their "first" rolling over, foods, steps, time going down a slide, sleeping all night, etc. I love the calendar for these. However, as a journaler, I do also keep a journal for each child and have recently started the back and forth notebook with my 8 year old. I love reading through them and so do the kids!

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