The 5 W’s

Dear Fellow Journalers,

Remember when you were in school and  you had  to write  a composition? I remember the teacher, who happened to be a nun, telling us that if we wanted our stories to be unique we had to answer 5 questions within the first paragraphs. Who, what, when, where, and why we’re the guidelines we should follow.

I mention this because I sometimes feel as though I repeat myself in my journaling. If I’m bored or tired I just write the same old stuff. Being one who is creative by nature and wanting to be true to herself, I find this behavior self-defeating. If I find myself writing such things as “nothing much happened today”often I have to verbally stop myself.

So how do we overcome doldrums? I don’t think it matters what type of journal you’re writing – the problem is still the same. What to write about and should I write when I’m bored?

Peach Tree Farms by Charles Wysocki

Above my roll-top writing desk is a framed print called “A Peach of a Day”. The original was painted by  a well-known artist by the name of Charles Wysocki. The picture always makes me happy. I try to surround myself with things like that -a scented candle, a lighthouse themed quilt, a mason jar mug of the beverage of the day. But still, sometimes I have problems writing.

Experts have different techniques that help with this issue. I have, on occasion followed some:

  • Go for a walk.Sometimes nature can sooth our souls. If impossible, due to weather, watch a nature or travel show on TV.
  • Knowing the best time for you to write in your journal is a good thing. Try experimenting say write in the early morning or at lunch for a different spin.
  • Listen to an audio book.
  • Pick up your favorite book and read one chapter. More than that and you’ll finish the book!
  • Create some art. When was the last time you added any “bling” to your journal cover?
  • Watch a TED talk.
  • Make a self-care kit for when you have a bad day.
  • Do you often go by a certain restaurant or store and never stop to browse? Now’s your excuse.
  • Try writing in your journal at a coffee shop or outside.
  • Color a page in a coloring book.
  • Practice mindfulness.
  • Do a random act of kindness for someone.
  • Visit the library and bring home some awesome books.
  • Write about your present moment.
  • Maintain a success log.(Your accomplishments no matter how big or small) For instance, I drove in the pouring rain at 2am to the hospital. (I don’t like driving at night and especially don’t like driving when I don’t know how to get where I’m supposed to be).
  • Write in the third person. For instance, “Kelly woke up at 8 am” not “I woke up at 8 am”.
  • Write in a different pen color.
  • Make a list of things to buy or do.
  • Try writing in your non-dominate hand.

Finally, JUST WRITE!


  • .

June Monthly Journal

June is traditionally the month of the beginning of summer, graduations, weddings, and Father’s Day….

  1. What is your favorite thing about yourself?
  2. What is on your summer reading list?
  3. What is the most important thing you have learned from your grandparents?
  4. What is your favorite memory of your Dad?
  5. ‘re-read Dr. Jesus’s ” Oh the places you’ll go” and then encourage a new graduate to follow their dream.


Wednesday words to live by


Self Discovery activities

Dear Fellow Journalers,

Someone once said “it’s not enough to talk the talk, you have to walk the walk”. In other words, if you are really serious about discovering who you are then you have to put on your discovery hat and go for it!

One of the ways to enhance your growth is  to write in a  journal. But you are already doing that! Another way is to write a Personal Manifesto. Simply put, you describe your core values and beliefs, the specific ideas and priorities that you stand for and how you plan to live your life. This document will help frame your life, point you in the right direction to help you achieve your goals and become more attuned to becoming your real self.

To get started ask yourself questions that require more than “yes or no answers such as what things do I stand for? How do I want to live my life? What type of mentors or friends do I need to help me on this path I have chosen?

Print out your Manifesto and refer to it every day.







Memorial Day – revisited

Dear Fellow Journalers,

I found this true story recently and thought I would share.


In September of 2005, on the first day of school, Martha Cothren, a History teacher at Valley Heights High School in Port Rowan, did something not to be forgotten.
On the first day of school, with the permission of the school Superintendent, the Principal and the Building Supervisor, she removed all the desks in her classroom.
When the First Period kids entered the room, they discovered that there were no desks.

“Ms. Cothren, where are our desks?”

She replied: “You can’t have a desk until you tell me how you earn the right to sit at a desk.”
They thought: “Well, maybe it’s our Grades.” “No.” she said.
“Maybe it’s our behavior.” She told them: “No, it’s not even your behavior.”
And so, they came and went ~~~ the First Period, Second Period, Third Period.
Still no desks in the classroom. Kids called their parents to tell them what was happening and by early afternoon, television crews had started gathering at the
school to report about this crazy teacher who had taken all the desks out of her
The final Period of the day came and the puzzled students found seats on the floor of the desk-less classroom.
Martha Cothren said: “Throughout the day no one has been able to tell me just what he or she has done to earn the right to sit at the desks that are ordinarily found in this classroom. Now I am going to tell you.”
At this point, Martha Cothren went over to the door of her classroom and opened it. Twenty-seven (27) Veterans, all in uniform, walked into that classroom,
each one carrying a school desk.
The Vets began placing the school desks in rows, and then they would walk over and stand alongside the wall. By the time the last soldier had set the final desk in
place, those kids started to understand —
perhaps for the first time in their lives — just how the right to sit at those desks had been earned.

Martha said: “You didn’t earn the right to sit at these desks. These heroes did it for you. They placed the desks here for you. They went halfway around the world,
giving up their education and interrupting their careers and families so you could have the freedom you have. Now, it’s up to you to sit in them. It is your
responsibility to learn, to be good students, to be good citizens.
They paid the price so that you could have the freedom to get an education. Don’t ever forget it.”

By the way, this is a true story, and this teacher was awarded Veterans of Foreign Wars Teacher
of the Year in 2006. She is the daughter of a WWII POW.

Let us always remember the Men and Women
of our Military and the rights they have won for us.

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