Tag Archives: journal

Throwback Thursday: Dear Diary Edition

In search of the perfect Throwback Thursday post for this week, I happened upon a fascinating little book called…my first diary.

I was 10 when I started writing in it.

diary excerpt3

Classy right? I mean, nothing screams “Miss Havisham: The Early Years” like brocade fabric and a floral arrangement. Add some dust to the bears and I’m set.

No, seriously. If y’all catch me wandering the blogosphere in my wedding dress, wearing only one shoe…somebody better speak the fuck up!

Look at the lock on this thing?! I picked it with a bobbypin.

diary excerpt4Who, exactly, is this going to keep out?

I guess it’s a good thing I at least hid the book somewhere safe because otherwise the kids on the playground might have decrypted my code names for the boys in our class.

diary excerptIf you can’t read my writing, it says:

“I’m sort of calling the boys names like tweeter butt, piddle skiddle, flem wad, emo ponco, tonto, estupedo,…”

I vote here and now we bring piddle skiddle and tweeter butt back!

*begins painting picket signs – Long Live Tweeter Butt! Piddle Skiddle is my Homie!”

Here’s another glistening dewdrop of an entry from my 10 year old self:

diary excerpt2Eh-hem:

“Dear Diary,

I decided I don’t want a boyfriend. I can wait.

I’m in a reading program!! It is fun.

I’m on break for piano lessons. I’m glad.

I’m not mad at anyone. That’s good, huh.

I have 3 penpals: Andrea, Jessica, and Katie. Their (yes, I know it should be ‘They’re’) from PA, WA, and WI.

Ok. Let’s just ponder this post shall we?

I think, rather I KNOW, my favorite part is “I’m not mad at anyone. That’s good, huh.”

In true form, I used my diary as a venting tool, and I’m betting I’m not the only one who did so. Therefore, the majority of its pages are filled with angry content about how mean all my siblings are and what backstabbers my best friends are.

Can someone say redheaded temper???

I can graciously say that I no longer fill my diary’s pages with name calling and hate letters. I’ve grown up since then. But there’s something to be said for the way a child gets things off her/his chest and moves on. They fume for the length of a page and then they wonder what’s for dinner. As adults, we don’t always heal so easily. As funny as these diary entries are, they are also a good reminder not to dwell on the negative things in life, but to move forward and enjoy the positive. Like reading programs. 😉

Did you ever keep a diary?
What shocking things did you scribble on its pages?
Do you journal now? What do you like/dislike about it?

 

How to Survive Cabin Fever

source: google images

It’s winter, winter everywhere, and not an ice scraper to spare!  The six day work weeks have begun for me, and no matter what my shift is, it seems I’m going to work when it’s dark, and it’s really dark when I leave.

So, I’m getting cabin fever.

Here are the rules and realities that I’ve come to believe in for surviving the perpetual darkness of the winter season:

  1. Crazy colored, fuzzy socks are a must!  It’s true, especially if you’re boyfriend won’t turn the heat up anymore.  Big, fuzzy, warm socks are a godsend after 9 hours on the sales floor.
  2. So is an eclectic mug collection.  I’m too lazy and a wimp to brave the cold and see my favorite coffee shops, so I save time and money with our Keurig single cup coffee maker.  I’m well stocked on apple cider, cafe’ mochas, espresso, and a variety of bold blends.  Pick your mug for fun: the flamingo? the New Orleans cafe’ du monde mug? one of the maple leaves set?
  3. If it’s dark all the time, it means it’s the “night life” all the time!  Wanna know what I’m doing for fun this holiday season?  I have SOOOOO many cosmetics (Hello, I work at the mall and manage that department!) that I’m going to wear each and every one of my eye shadows until I’ve gone through them all!  Today I wore Turquoise Sands!  Doesn’t that sound like I do in fact have a life?  I said sounds like!  Stop that snickering!
  4. Stay indoors.  Watch The Vampire Diaries.  I will leave the house, a drastic and bold move (if I plan, I just go right after work) to venture to the library and stock up on whole seasons of TV.  I’m currently rewatching Season 1 of The Vampire Diaries since it’s newest season is on that ridiculous thing the networks call “midseason finale”.  How garish!
  5. Household chores gettin’ ya down, throw in an audio book!  I’m trying to madly finish up a few titles on my To Be Read list for 2011, so I’ve been double-tasking by getting ready in the morning to an audio book.  I can also listen while cooking, cleaning my room, or wrapping presents.
  6. Become a Sports Fan.  Nothing like a fan club that requires sitting in front of the TV, snack food, and obscene amounts of cheering.  Looking for a team to root for?  *brushes shoulders*  Might I suggest the ol’ Green and Gold, 14-0, Titletown Champs Green Bay Packers?!  Alright, alright!
  7. Write in a journal.  Start a journal.  Now more than ever, keeping a gratitude journal has been important to me.  The long hours and days at work and little free time makes it important to spend that time in a meaningful way and be grateful for the little things like taco dip, vampire TV, and Aveeno creamy moisturizing hand lotion (OMG – this cold weather on my skin! Grrr!)
  8. If you can’t hibernate, have a party!  The holidays should be a time for friends and family.  Spend your days with those you love indulging in laughter and creating new memories.  What will I remember about this holiday season so far?  My toddler niece telling me on the phone “I found Coco the Elf, he’s down the hall!”

 How are you handling Cabin Fever this winter?

The Happiness Project Case Files, pt. 1

“I’ve been journaling since I was 15.  It’s a wonder that I’ve managed to be a successful human being considering how pathetic I appeared in many of my daily musings.”  –Oprah, in Oprah Magazine April 2011

I caved.  I was standing in line at the grocery store waiting to check out and glancing over the magazines they strategically place right near the counter when I read the cover for Oprah’s newest issue.  In the magazine, she shows you pages of her journals from 1970-1985.  I had to read it.  And wouldn’t you know, most every page had to do with some boy.  She’s been keeping a journal since she was 15, and I’ve been journaling since I was 13.  I’m sure a fair amount of my “daily musings” were about boys, in fact I’m positive they were.  But, I also changed the purpose of my journaling just like Oprah did.  At some point in her life, she began to use her journal as a place for gratitude and blessings in her life rather than recounting all the bad stuff.  By allowing herself that positive space she allowed good things to enter her life.  I’m not going to tell you it’s easy.  It isn’t.  Despite all the advice I get from Oprah, or from Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project, which I read last year and which prompted the beginning of this wayward blog, I by no means have it all figured out.  But, I’m getting there.

I’ve also been reading the book Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine.  It’s a young adult novel about a 10 year old girl with Asperger’s Syndrome, a disorder that makes it difficult to understand and express emotion.  Despite her disorder, I find Caitlin extremely delightful as she practices naming emotions on the playground, making friends, and celebrating the things she’s good at like finesse.  Here’s an excerpt that made me laugh, because I know exactly how she feels.  The scene is Caitlin is in the school office talking to her counselor on the phone.

She says I have to be patient and keep trying.  Sometimes things don’t work the first time but then eventually they do.

Like finesse?

Exactly.

And making friends?

Yes.

Even for me?

Absolutely.  I have confidence in you.  You just have to keep trying.

Josh is walking into the principal’s office when I get off the phone.

He turns his head to me and whispers, Loser.

I know, I tell him, but I’m going to keep trying.

To put it in Caitlin’s terms.  “I Get It.”  I know how she feels.  Because I feel that way too.  What does Oprah and a 10 year old with Asperger’s have to do with your blog, Jess, you ask?  I guess they represent where my head is at in this writing journey of mine.  I know I’ve come a long way, but I have to keep trying.

Case in point, an excerpt from my April 1, 2000 journal ( I was in 8th grade):

In the future I want…

  • to be a famous, or at least published authoress
  • to travel all over the world
  • to happily marry a wonderful, handsome, God-loving man
  • to some distant day have a baby girl and a baby boy
  • to maybe direct or write or act in a good movie
  • to meet my penpal, Andrea
  • to be rid of this dreadful retainer!

Lylas (love you like a sister),

Jess

What do you think?  What parts of your writing journey do you have to keep working at?  What about your happiness journey?  Do you have goals from childhood you’re still working on?  Ever pull out your old journals and try to name the emotions in them?  lol.

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