Creativity Leads to Self Sufficiency

Every article I write is aimed at this realization.

By suggesting that “traditional skills” are indeed important to cultivate in our modern day, I hope to inspire others, especially the less inclined to be creative type people, to learn a craft. If every person would just experiment and find a craft or skill that they could develop a talent for, then every person would be able to feel that they had something to offer to the world.

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The “end of the world” proclamations and jokes are ever abounding. More and more people are seeking out how to live outside of a city, how to grow gardens, how to make food from scratch, and essentially to adapt into a lifestyle of homesteading or “prepping”. None of these are unworthy goals. All are indeed wonderful and essential skills and goals to have. The threats and the “what-ifs” are always there and even seem to be increasing as time passes.

Computer Sciences are also a very real skill that is required in this modern day. It is nothing to sneeze at. But imagine, we lost the ability to use our modern technologies? Having a trade-skill in that scenario would be priceless. The great thing is that while we have it…we should use it! Learning and gaining knowledge has never been easier. The internet is a valuable tool for those that seek to be educated.

Will it ever happen? That’s in God’s hands.  If I (and suggestively “you”) don’t take the steps to cultivate some of these skills into my (our) everyday living and teach them to friends, neighbors, children, and grandchildren, then the traditional skills that our ancestors built this nation on, will die out. In the event of an “end of the world” scenario, too many will not know how to build it back up again. We have forgotten how to be creators, how to imagine something and then have the skill set to be able to build it.

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Our best friend’s recently built their own home from the ground up. It is the cutest little dry cabin in the woods ever! My husband and I helped a bit with the construction, and all of us learned what it takes to build a home as it was constructed piece by piece. We had the worst winter in years, and that little hand-built, owner engineered house withstood it all and kept a family of seven warm and cozy. I have to say we are all feeling pretty good about that, and it proved that we really can do things ourselves. 

 

Be a Butterfly.

Heidi

P.S. I was lucky enough to chat with writer and Youtube hostess Esther Emery of Fouch-O-matic Off Grid on her homestead wife channel about how yarn and fiber arts are relative to homesteading, preparedness and survival. Watch it below or go here!

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Journal Your Way (part II)

The snow is falling on our little log cabin in the mountains of Idaho today. In fact, there is a winter advisory in affect until late tonight-we could be standing knee deep in snow tomorrow!

For me, this is the perfect time for projects. With Christmas just a few weeks away there are plenty of projects to choose from. Today, I hope to inspire you to work on a new project this winter.

In Part I of this journaling series I asked the reader if they were recording their life and then went on to share why keeping a record is important.

Something that helps me is to have materials available to inspire me in whatever my goal is. For journal writing this means a book/notebook that pleases me and a pen, that works.

Here are 10 ideas, so you can Journal Your Way:

1. Altered Composition Book 

I love these ones because they are so inexpensive and easy!! This is an option I use for my different planners and kids journals we use for homeschool and such. Type this search into google, Pinterest, or Youtube and you will find a plethora of ideas. To get you started here is just a couple of ideas for altering a composition book:

**This one is just a simple way to decoupage the cover to make it cute. I picked this example because I loved the motivation behind the creation. They were prepping for a  MOPS group craft under the theme “A Beautiful Mess: Embrace Your Story”. I have also seen this process using fabric: http://www.craftytexasgirls.com/2013/08/make-it-beautiful-mess-notebook

**The next one is how to make a “junk journal”. So, basically you put all sorts of random items and papers creating an interesting collection of stuff plus journaling. This is the first video in a 3 part series and is just the intro into what it looks like:

(*If you like this one you might also like to search: smash journal)

 

2.Bullet Journaling “track the past,organize the present, plan for the future”

Pay attention to the make-up of this system of journaling. The current system (Life Journaling) that I use is a personalized version of this and I will be sharing it in Part III of this series.

There are now fancy “bullet journals” you can buy, but it also works to get the composition books that have graph paper. View the original “How To” video below, but if you look there are many more videos of different versions on the Tube and Pinterest.

 

3.Repurposed Book

This is one I really want to try. My daughter and I love old books and they always draw our attention when we are at the thrift store.

**This first example demonstrates how to completely remove and replace the pages:

https://itsalisa.com/2013/06/08/how-to-turn-an-old-book-into-a-new-journal/

**The next one is more “artsy” and this is what I want to do…it involves painting the pages. I have also seen examples where several pages are glued to gather to make them thicker. This is a popular choice of methods when making an Art Journal which is next up on our list. This method could also be used when altering a composition notebook.

http://www.punkprojects.com/2012/04/salvaging-book

4.Art Journaling

If you have a creative soul and need an outlet this would be a perfect pick. Many people use it as a method of therapy.

This is a sweet little video explaining what Art Journaling is. Simply put: it’s anything you want it to be. After watching this video I was inspired to create an art journal as a collection of my favorite quotes, thoughts, or ideas that are in my completed Life Journals. What a fun way to go back and be visually reminded and inspired.

 

5. Blogging or Vlogging

These are the tech versions of a journal, and while the purpose of this series is to inspire you to pull yourself away from the social recording of events, I understand there are some who express themselves best through a keyboard or video. In this case I do encourage you to follow your heart BUT, somehow, someway make something that can be held in a hand, or found in a box.

If you keep a blog: consider getting it turned into a printed book every few months to a year (depending on how often you make entries). I have an old homeschooling blog that I really need to do this for. Time did not allow me to watch the whole video-but this looked like a good explanation on how to do it:

For the Vlog journal (a video journal) I would suggest that you keep some sort of written log of your content. Making an Art Journal of your titles with some quotes, or creating a topic log in an altered composition book, or bullet journal style that has alphabetical tabs or perhaps by months would be a simple way to keep a written life record.

6. Recipe Journal

I could not find a good example that I liked for this one. Really it is because none of them fully implemented the idea I wanted to suggest. There are however, many ideas out there on making personalized cookbooks. The idea I wanted to suggest was to take this a step further, leave space or even pages on or between the recipes to record memories that are attached to them. Especially if they are those treasured recipes handed-down from Grandma. What a great way to record the stories behind the food. I know at our house-life happens in the Kitchen-oo I think I just found the title of my Recipe Journal! Perhaps there is future series in it….

7.Genealogy/Family Tree Journal

This one I actually thought up over the summer during all of the family reunions. I thought “I should totally bring some sort of scrap book or large journal to the reunion. There should be a picture of each person/family and then everyone should write memories/stories associated with them.” It didn’t happen because as usual, my ideas are more that my time, but now that it has had some time to hang out in my idea center-it could be one of those projects I pull out and prep for future reunions!

If you are really zealous about family history, you could compile old photos and create more of a scrapbook style record. Then try to interview family members for the stories and memories that should be added with the photos. Here is an example of someone who has done this:

http://dreams-of-days-gone-by.blogspot.com

8. Scrapbook Journal

Similar to the idea above ,this journal involves photos of events or just in general. At the beginnings of our family I did well to print photos and add explanations into scrapbooks. Several kids later and the pictures are just in boxes or worse-on a hard drive. Here is another inspiration for you from my idea center that has been sitting collecting dust: Pick an event, a month, or other category. Print just those photos. Have scrapbooking materials available. Give the kids the pictures and supplies. After they have created their own scrapbook pages-you write the explantation or memories on the page. Or if they are old enough, they can ask and record the stories themselves! Tahdah! Everyone’s scrapbooks get filled up and they can have fun with photos of themselves. When one group of photos is completed order the next set!  Someday I will do this!!

9.Birthday Journal

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This works for yourself or to create for your children or grandchildren. It is for those who really aren’t inspired to write often but can manage to write something once a year. When my first daughter was born I was given a journal that had a spot for a photo on the cover. It inspired me to put a photo of her, and then recored events of her life in it. At first it was fairly often as babies change so quickly. Then gradually it has turned into a once a year record on her birthday. I tend to sum up our year, and how she has changed. Often telling her of the accomplishments she has made and how her father and I are impressed. I plan on giving this to her when she ventures out of the nest-which isn’t that far away.

I just had a thought-if I were to start over I would add a story from my life at the same age for a fun comparison and record. I suppose I could do that now with future entries.

10. Life Journal

Last of all, this is the style of journal I am currently using every day, and was the inspiration behind this series. It compiles needs of everyday life-such as grocery lists, planning, and notes, with journaling. We will take a look at it in the next post of this series.

Until then, think about and research which type of journal suits your personality and needs.You might be like me and compile some of these ideas into one. Remember:

It doesn’t have to be just words on a page-you really can Journal Your Way!

Thanks for being a friend!

Heidi

Read Part I of this series to learn how taking the time to journal can benefit your life.