Browsing through the gallery - journaling

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Posted 7/6/2013 by PEArfect in General Scrappin'

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 452,048
January 2010
Posts: 6,190
Layouts: 9
Loc: Indiana

Posted: 7/6/2013 11:09:44 PM
I noticed that a lot of the pages posted do not have journaling on them, but I see so many topics about adding journaling. Do you add journaling to your pages? Do you use hidden journaling? Do you rarely journal?

I usually leave room for journaling, but don't always journal when I complete the page. I'm trying to break that habit this year because I'm afraid I'll forget details I wanted to document.

My mom lost the ability to write because of her ALS, so anything I find in her handwriting is special to me. I think my dd's will appreciate the journaling as they get older too.



PeaNut 380,430
June 2008
Posts: 25
Layouts: 19
Loc: Geelong, Australia

Posted: 7/7/2013 12:18:53 AM
I journal on all my layouts; I think it's just as important as the photos. It doesn't have to be anything elaborate, the date and who is in the photo is fine.

It doesn't make sense to me when people don't journal considering that one of the reasons for scrapbooking is preserving memories for the future. I just think that if anyone looks at my layouts in the future the first thing they will want to know is who is in the photo and when was it taken?

If you really don't want visible journaling you can also do some hidden journaling or write it on the back.


PeaNut 474,516
July 2010
Posts: 525
Layouts: 46
Loc: Utah

Posted: 7/7/2013 12:37:31 AM
Telling the story is why I scrapbook. I *always* add journaling!


PeaNut 9,010
January 2001
Posts: 230
Layouts: 306
Loc: California

Posted: 7/7/2013 12:42:45 AM
Everyone scrapbooks for different reasons. For me, it's another art form. I also art journal, create mixed media art, scrapbook, and participate in project life. I'm not a very big story teller. I prefer to let my art tell the story. Sometimes I'll add hidden journaling if I feel that I need more to tell my story.

I guess I feel that we all like different flavors of ice cream and I think of scrapbooking as such.



PeaNut 405,965
January 2009
Posts: 181
Layouts: 51

Posted: 7/7/2013 12:44:36 AM
Most of the time, I add journaling. Sometimes, though, it isn't *really* needed. Just depends on the page.

journey fan
"Don't Stop Believin'"

PeaNut 308,186
April 2007
Posts: 12,538
Layouts: 0
Loc: California Coast

Posted: 7/7/2013 12:59:14 AM
I journal on every layout. It's part of the reason for scrapbooking to me. I rarely use hidden journaling; the journaling is part of my page and I want it visible to anyone who views the page.

2 thoughts on gallery layouts lacking journaling - maybe they:

1. tend to post their more artistic or product-heavy layouts where journaling isn't as important.

2. don't want to post lots of personal details on the www for all to see

Personally, I think most scrapbookers are journalers even if that's not represented in online galleries


PeaNut 172,235
October 2004
Posts: 15,755
Layouts: 0
Loc: England UK

Posted: 7/7/2013 3:09:18 AM
Initially I did because it was the 'right thing' to do when you scrapped but I never liked how it looked really. Then I moved away from scrapping for that purpose, instead of doing it 'to record the events effectively' it became more of an artistic outlet and I didn't want to journaling on the page as it detracted from the visual effect I was after.

In the end I would 'sometimes' record the person's name and the date, sometimes the location, in tiny letters somewhere (which became easier when I went digital) and that was it.

I'm fine with that because now I'm doing pages almost purely for artistic/visual effect and not to record events.

Today, I will be colouring outside the lines.


PeaNut 555,886
May 2012
Posts: 326
Layouts: 5
Loc: England

Posted: 7/7/2013 3:55:28 AM
If I am putting pictures of my layouts online, I will mostly photograph it to upload before I journal.

This is because I don't necessarily want all the details of our lives on the internet and I'm usually uploading the layout to show the technique I did or how I used the sketch or something like that, not to share my journaling. And also my handwriting is messy and usually they look better before I scribble all over them

I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of people do the same thing, especially with layouts about their kids.

Jill Sprott
Garden Girl

PeaNut 83,420
April 2003
Posts: 9,679
Layouts: 840
Loc: Hawaii

Posted: 7/7/2013 5:50:57 AM
A layout doesn't feel complete to me without journaling.

My mom lost the ability to write because of her ALS, so anything I find in her handwriting is special to me. I think my dd's will appreciate the journaling as they get older too.

This definitely puts things in perspective. I've been going through stacks of old photos from the 1940s-1970s this summer, and so many don't have anything written on the back, and the people who know the stories behind the photos have passed away. Words matter.


PeaNut 288,074
December 2006
Posts: 4,556
Layouts: 0

Posted: 7/7/2013 5:54:23 AM

I journal on every layout. It's part of the reason for scrapbooking to me. I rarely use hidden journaling; the journaling is part of my page and I want it visible to anyone who views the page.

I feel the same, to me, journaling is just as important as the photos

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PeaNut 579,055
January 2013
Posts: 2,048
Layouts: 91

Count: 1
Posted: 7/7/2013 6:20:53 AM
i don't journal (or title) every layout. as long as i get the story down on one, it isn't necessary for me to write a blurb about each and every photo.

we do not have children, so my reasons for scrapbooking may be different than a woman that knows her albums will be passed down.


PeaNut 344,026
October 2007
Posts: 3,695
Layouts: 3

Posted: 7/7/2013 7:15:59 AM
Journaling is just as important to me as the photos

Amber Girl

PeaNut 197,200
March 2005
Posts: 3,172
Layouts: 211
Loc: Sate of Random Scrap

Posted: 7/7/2013 7:41:26 AM
Journaling is paramount to me, but I struggled with having enough space to tell the full story on a small journaling spot or notecard. What I've been doing is typing up the entire journaling in a letter format trimmed cardstock sized 8.5 x 12" so it can fit through a printer. I attach a 'pull' tab and place it behind the LO in a page protector. I've done numerous pages like this one.


PeaNut 397,756
November 2008
Posts: 596
Layouts: 31
Loc: Massachusetts

Posted: 7/7/2013 7:45:38 AM
I always journal. It's my favorite part of scrapbooking. The way I see it is, what's the use of the photo with no story. My mother has tons of photos from her parents and from when we were children but can only tell us small amounts or nothing about the photo. I'd love to know the story behind some of the photos but they are just a faded memory. I want to preserve memories and that's what I love about scrapbooking. The journaling, and of course being creative.

Different or Ordinary
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PeaNut 224,298
September 2005
Posts: 997
Layouts: 35
Loc: Florida

Posted: 7/7/2013 8:56:50 AM
I do as Amber Girl does, with a full sized sheet behind the layout. My "pull tab" is just a piece of ribbon stapled to the top of the paper, though. I sometimes have enough to print on both sides of the pull-out.

It's a good way to hide the more personal aspects of a story. The surface story is good enough for general consumption. Even then, there is some journaling on the page itself. Just not all of it!

"If you don't like your neck in photos, crop it out! Who needs to see all those chins anyway!"

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Ellen in sunny south Florida


PeaNut 535,248
December 2011
Posts: 934
Layouts: 39

Posted: 7/7/2013 10:19:14 AM
I journal on all my pages. It's not always a lot of writing, and sometimes it's hidden, but it's always there. I've taken to writing it on the backs of pages if I can't fit it into the page design anywhere, and recently I used the "type it, print it, and glue it on the back" method for a particularly long story that was more about my feelings about something in the photo than the event the photo captured. I don't bother putting tabs on layouts with journaling on the back because I do it so often that I'm just going to assume, in the future, that if there's no writing on the front, I should pull the page out and check the back.

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PeaNut 188,495
January 2005
Posts: 3,657
Layouts: 243
Loc: socal

Count: 1
Posted: 7/7/2013 1:01:46 PM
Journaling is important to me but sometimes I struggle to capture the story. As a result, it's not always on my project when I upload/share it. Almost all of my layouts have journaling, whether you see it or not in my gallery.

Sometimes it's missing from my gallery because:
1) it's private
2) it's hidden (though this is a rarity)
3) I haven't gotten around to it

Hope that helps shed some light on missing journaling. For at least this pea anyway.

OLW 2013 - DO
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PeaNut 116,261
November 2003
Posts: 25,809
Layouts: 102

Posted: 7/7/2013 1:04:46 PM
I do a lot of my journaling on the back of my layouts. If I do, I indicate that by putting over for journaling somewhere on my layout.


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PeaNut 997
July 1999
Posts: 4,441
Layouts: 12
Loc: Kansas City, MO

Posted: 7/7/2013 1:09:06 PM
A lot of my scrapbooking lately has been vacation albums. I have a tendency to "embellish" with words/word products but I also, commonly, have 2 or 3 pages at the end of the album with the travel story. I usually have those pages typewritten then print, landscape format (long ways) on vellum and adhere those pages to a background (often it is one of those pages that is "too pretty" "too scenic" to cut or to use any way!).

Old Dogs are Best!

PeaNut 92,987
June 2003
Posts: 23,741
Layouts: 367
Loc: With my dogs

Posted: 7/7/2013 1:10:28 PM
In the past when I posted to the gallery I left off the journaling on many pages.

Perhaps others do the same.

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PeaNut 114,614
November 2003
Posts: 22,668
Layouts: 499
Loc: Ontario, Canada

Posted: 7/7/2013 1:17:19 PM
I journal on all of my pages now. I think over the past six months I've made two pages that had hidden journalling. Once for privacy, and once because it worked best, design-wise.

Last night I unpacked all of my scrapbook albums. They had been packed since we moved, while I was deciding where I wanted to store them so I could buy something to fit the space. I looked through every single one of those albums last night, and I was struck by how much I did not journal on my pages when I first started scrapbooking, and how meaningless those pages seem to ME, now. (I'm not saying anyone else's pages without journalling are meaningless, either to them, or me, just that mine seemed lacking and empty).

When I first started scrapbooking I felt so awkward and exposed about journalling. I hated the struggle of finding what I really wanted to say, I hated writing something to just realize I couldn't stand the way it sounded, and when I DID journal, I COULD NOT BEAR for anyone else to read it. I'd have to leave the room when people started looking at those pages, and would cringe and wince when they started reading them aloud.

Then, something changed. I think I got tired of wanting to scrapbook to tell a story -- because I AM a story-teller at heart -- and got tired of that struggle. So with some work, I found a way to journal that worked for me. I sometimes still feel really awkward when people read what I've written, but I feel like those pages with my own words on them really do say so much more than those early pages that were empty.

I still have to put up a little mental block when I see someone reading my pages (I have those little do-do-doodley-do tune I hum silently inside my head) and just have to turn off those feelings of being overexposed, but I'm glad I'm telling stories now. And when I am either dead and gone, or before that when I am a senile old lady, and my children and (I hope!) grandchildren read those books, they will know that I loved and cherished these moments at home with my family, and they will know they were greatly loved and treasured. And I won't know what's going on.

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PeaNut 561,149
July 2012
Posts: 602
Layouts: 15

Posted: 7/7/2013 1:23:15 PM
I like to journal but sometimes I scrap a photo b/c I just really like the picture and don't have a story to go wtih the photo.

Other times I will post the LO before I do the journalling if it's more private and I don't really want to share.

Most of the time I will add a story or some journalling. It's good to have a story written down so you can remember!


PeaNut 268,680
July 2006
Posts: 4,931
Layouts: 805
Loc: Wisconsin

Posted: 7/7/2013 1:27:44 PM
I journal on every page and always have. I do scrap just for myself, but if I'm taking the time to scrap it there's some sort of story to tell even if it's just that it's one of my favorite photos . Even if I just love the photo there's a reason for it.

I don't consider my layout done until the journaling is on the page, so it's just part of my normal process and always has been. I also always journal in my own handwriting because I know how important it may be to people looking at my layouts some day and if no one ever looks at them again I'm okay with that too.

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PeaNut 463,295
April 2010
Posts: 4,172
Layouts: 3
Loc: New York City

Posted: 7/7/2013 1:32:09 PM
I journal on 99% of my layouts. And my layouts are somewhat artsy, but I make sure the journalling fits into the design.
I don't scrapbook primarily to preserve memories, it is more of a creative outlet for me, BUT since the memories are still getting documented I want to do it right, and journalling to me is part of that. Also, my grandmother died from Alzheimer's so I am keenly aware of the possibility of having it myself, so I want to make sure I have my albums in the future to help me remember if needed. So basically I combine business with pleasure and make artsy layouts that I date and journal on.


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PeaNut 163,613
August 2004
Posts: 78,773
Layouts: 236
Loc: *Sunny Southern California*

Posted: 7/7/2013 2:50:32 PM
When I started scrapbooking 44 years ago I always wrote on my pages.

Then after DS was about 5 (10 years ago) I stopped. I think because people were starting to read what I wrote and it makes me uncomfortable.
I am very private and don't like to feel exposed, which I do when people read my journaling
I started to journal again a couple years ago because I don't want my kids and Grandkids to wonder what the stories behind the photos were.
I just don't share my albums as often now. Only with my immediate family.

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PeaNut 184,038
January 2005
Posts: 1,545
Layouts: 173
Loc: Dusty Ol' West Texas

Posted: 7/7/2013 4:08:15 PM
Maybe people journal on the back/hidden or they enjoy the artistic aspect more...
In my case I journal about 99% of the time and plan my pages with journaling placement in mind. Actually, the way I approach my design is to think first of what I want to say about certain photos or I know of a story that I want to tell and look for photos to go with it. I have several notebooks with journaling or planned pages in them to refer to when I'm ordering photos or getting ready to scrap photos.
Like a previous poster, I lost a grandmother to Alzheimer's and all of her stories along with her. And when I was a kid, my mom was too busy/tired from working to make ends meet to take many photos or tell us stories about when we were many details that I would like to know just lost. I don't want my dd to have to wonder.

Pixie Pea

PeaNut 41,800
July 2002
Posts: 13,016
Layouts: 660
Loc: Arizona

Posted: 7/7/2013 5:40:42 PM
I add journaling 99% of the time.

Kelly Goree
The Princes & the Pea!

PeaNut 116,087
November 2003
Posts: 12,900
Layouts: 848
Loc: Saddlebred Capital of the World

Posted: 7/7/2013 6:10:35 PM
Ita, Antheam - for me scrapbooking is about telling your story and that means journaling. Otherwise I truly feel that photo albums would suffice and for me they just don't.

How many of us have boxes and boxes of old photos from parents/grandparents, etc. that we have NO idea who is in them, why it was taken and what they were doing? I know I do so I'm trying to change that for my kids with my scrapbooking.

Kelly Goree
My Blog

In The Shadow

PeaNut 180,553
December 2004
Posts: 1,715
Layouts: 26
Loc: Columbus, Ohio (Southwest of)

Posted: 7/7/2013 6:31:28 PM
I posted this a couple of months ago but want to post here because I feel journaling is soooo important.

Years ago, maybe 1998, my Mom introduced me to Creative Memories. She came to visit with a completed album for my oldest brother for me to see. She said she was going to make one for all five of us. She brought me a circle cutter, a corner rounder, an album, paper, adhesive and some cool scissors.

I had always scrapbooked with construction paper that bleed through my pictures.

In 2000, I made copies of the pictures and sorted them into four file folders so she could get started on the remaining four albums. As far as I had known she never got started on any of the albums. I found the four file folders but I didn't go threw them. I have been taking care of her for a year, Alhzeimers. She died in March, 2013.

I was spring cleaning her room and packing her things and my son found a CM box. My name was on the outside of the box. Inside was 22 completed pages with her handwriting. I cried for two hours. A pot of gold would not have been as precious.

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k d girl

PeaNut 68,628
February 2003
Posts: 546
Layouts: 28
Loc: southern california

Posted: 7/7/2013 6:35:10 PM
80% of my layouts have journaling, but once in awhile I like to just do a page that's just about the creativity. Especially if I've already done a page with the same photo, or same topic.


PeaNut 504,615
April 2011
Posts: 2,067
Layouts: 404

Posted: 7/7/2013 9:07:46 PM
More often than not, i journal after i post in the gallery. I like to take my time and complete it as i enjoy my artistic creation.


PeaNut 473,951
July 2010
Posts: 2,011
Layouts: 104

Posted: 7/7/2013 11:32:06 PM
For me, it totally depends on the LO. I just finished a page today that had no journaling. It features a couple of pictures of my cat sleeping beneath the Christmas tree among the presents. I don't need to really tell a story for that. Some pictures need the story told because of the importance of the event, or background is needed to really understand the page.

The journaling is for me. I have no children, so most of my pages will likely be thrown out when I am gone.


PeaNut 288,379
December 2006
Posts: 897
Layouts: 340

Posted: 7/7/2013 11:43:18 PM

Initially I did because it was the 'right thing' to do when you scrapped but I never liked how it looked really. Then I moved away from scrapping for that purpose, instead of doing it 'to record the events effectively' it became more of an artistic outlet and I didn't want to journaling on the page as it detracted from the visual effect I was after.

In the end I would 'sometimes' record the person's name and the date, sometimes the location, in tiny letters somewhere (which became easier when I went digital) and that was it.

I'm fine with that because now I'm doing pages almost purely for artistic/visual effect and not to record events.

EXACTLY this. It's an artistic outlet for me at the moment, not a way of preserving memories. I do PL on the side for memory purposes. It's very simple, just the cards, pictures, and journaling.

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PeaNut 15,878
May 2001
Posts: 25,921
Layouts: 71
Loc: LI, NY

Posted: 7/8/2013 5:37:18 PM
I journal on 99.9% of my layouts. It was so frustrating going through an old shoe box of photos that belonged to my mom. There were pictures from the 40's and 50's and I didn't know who most of the people were or why the photos were important.

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This Black Butterfly

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 452,048
January 2010
Posts: 6,190
Layouts: 9
Loc: Indiana

Posted: 7/8/2013 6:39:08 PM
I guess I was searching through the gallery for inspiration and ideas on different ways to journal and it surprised me how many pages didn't have journaling. It does make sense to journal afterwards, I do that myself sometimes. Thanks for all of the responses. It's interesting to hear about what others do and why.


Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 26,836
January 2002
Posts: 19,090
Layouts: 86

Posted: 7/9/2013 8:43:43 AM
I always journal. As a genealogy buff, I have been given many bags and boxes of old family photos, and it is so frustrating to not know who these people are or when the photos were taken or where they were taken. So I want to always include the basics, at least.


PeaNut 554,147
May 2012
Posts: 618
Layouts: 55
Loc: Canada

Posted: 7/9/2013 8:50:49 AM
I'm trying to make more of an effort to journal on my layouts, even if it's just the basics. I like to journal more in my Project Life rather than on my pages. For me, PL is more about the memory keeping/documenting compared to my layouts, which are sometimes more for a creative release.


PeaNut 562,539
August 2012
Posts: 166
Layouts: 112
Loc: Arizona

Posted: 7/9/2013 9:03:32 AM
I journal on most of my layouts. But some layouts don't need it because I know that where the layout is going in my album just doesn't need a lot of writing. I do hide my journaling a fair bit and sometimes I write on the back of a layout if I want to say something but it just didn't work to write on the page. I do think the stories are important, but the art and enjoyment of creating is also important for me right now as well.


PeaNut 298,188
February 2007
Posts: 2,648
Layouts: 668

Count: 1
Posted: 7/9/2013 9:07:07 AM
I always include journaling on my layout! I can't make a layout without it.


PeaNut 113,955
October 2003
Posts: 2,099
Layouts: 29

Posted: 7/9/2013 9:19:02 AM
I write something on almost every layout. There are a couple where the picture tells the story like a picture of DH & I on Main Street in Disney. It would be part of a collection of pages so it's pretty evident what's going on there. But otherwise, I want to tell the story otherwise it's just a fancy/decorated photo album.


PeaNut 405,260
December 2008
Posts: 281
Layouts: 0
Loc: Tampa, FL

Posted: 7/9/2013 9:28:38 AM
I usually journal after the page is complete and after I have posted it. Journaling is so personal. That sometimes I don't want
To share it in a public forum. So I journal on every page but not until after I post it. And I let the pages kinda marinate after they are done. Sometimes the story changes from what I wanted to tell when I started. Sometimes It has totally morphed to something completely different. And that's okay with me. It plus that way I don't feel rushed to write. Sometimes when I do that my writing isn't cohesive. It just sounds like a bunch of sentences thrown together.

So intake my time with my words.
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PeaNut 459,230
March 2010
Posts: 11
Layouts: 4
Loc: UK

Posted: 7/10/2013 1:49:26 PM
I am very journalling centric with my scrapbooking! There's always something on there, even if it's just hidden or in tiny handwriting. Sometimes even the title is part of the journalling. Maybe that's why my sister refers to my albums as my memoirs

I do have quite a few layouts where there is no photo, but a ton of journalling; I don't think photos say a 1000 words - there's just a 1000 interpretations. In my layouts, it's my interpretation that counts so that is what's most important to me. But, I do have at least one layout which was more about trying out a new technique but the journalling explains that.

I do have to admit I'm not sure if I'm comfortable putting some of my journal-heavy layouts online (some of them are definitely not for sharing publicly). Anybody else feel similar?
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