Today I am very excited to share with you my absolutely incredible gift to friends, family, and clients, a vintage junk journal! I call it my “weekly planner” because it gives me notes on what I have done during the past week. It tells stories and helps me remember what I’ve been doing and why. It also inspires me in so many ways every single day. Here is how it works:
Everyday when I wake up I take a little peek at my vintage journal. Each morning I open it up and begin to tuck away my thoughts and ideas that don’t make the grade that day into my treasures of ephemera. I store photos, letters, receipts, art, and anything else that have my name or a description on it in a spiral notebook that I have created specifically for this purpose. I call it my “vintage treasures,” and they are all tucked away in my spiral notebook. Today, I am sharing it with you!
Each week I tuck my vintage junk journal page layouts into my specially designed wallet to keep them safe and out of harm’s way. I am very careful about keeping my journal private and I only share it with close family and friends. They have helped me sort through the piles of paperwork that accumulate around my desk and drawer. They also help to remind me what I have already accomplished and remind me why I continue on with my goals.
For instance, one of the trips I made last week to the Dollar Store left me with several small items and two or three broken CDs. I managed to find a hanger that would slip over the top of my bookcase and hide one of the CDs. I took the cashier’s number and handed it to her while I kept one of the other CDs hidden in my “vintage” stash of old papers. It was quite an adventure getting my hands on this CD, but worth the search! Now my collection of old CDs is tucked safely away in a secret spot at the bottom of my shoe.
Each month that passes, my “junk” diary has a new purpose. Sometimes I can relate a particular experience from a memory, I am trying to recall, such as a trip I took with my sister where we ate at a “friends” house while we cruised on our bikes. Other times, the journal thoughts and ideas just flow during the day and I need to jot them down in my notebook to remember later.
My vintage junk journal is fast becoming my “secret treasure chest,” so to speak. Every month, I receive a new shipment of photos and greeting cards from my “special friends.” I store the cards in the inside of my “vintage” stash of old newspaper, but I now have room to add larger cards and more photos as my personal collection grows. This is an ideal way to express my thoughts on certain things that are happening in my life at that time. I no longer have to worry about replacing a post or tear out the exact words from a greeting card because I know I can always find them in my “junk.”
The double flap envelope that contains the inside flap contains my treasures as they are delivered to my mailbox every month. One of my treasures is a photograph of my grandkids taken while I was vacationing in our hometown. Another is the receipt from the grocery store where I purchased a loaf of bread with my daughter’s name on it. And, my treasures are the receipts and window pockets that contain notes and lists that remind me to do something specific to improve my health, such as adding a new window to the home or starting my diet.
Vintage junk journals are also useful for creating “ephemera,” which is just that – extra or unique written information that you keep in your pocket or in a document. These ephemera can be anything that you want to remember a specific event or detail. A great example of this would be the “Lilly of the valley” which chronicles a historic journey taken by Lilly of the Valley, a Scottish actress who came to be one of the greatest Scottish actresses of the late 19th century. Ephemera like this is valuable both to collectors and for historians who can learn a lot about time through the written words.
Lisa is a lifestyle article writer for a local newspaper. Aside from that, she is part-time English teacher on a high school. She also speaks at seminars and workshops. She is currently living with her husband and two kids.