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Filtering by Tag: journaling

a family self-care (smash) journal

liz lamoreux

 adding to the list


Yesterday, I was talking with a friend about the idea I have that so often we are triggered by another's blog or Facebook post etc. because we fill in the blanks of what someone doesn't share in these posts with our assumptions. (I talked about this idea in this February post.) We were talking about how we can think that someone's life is a certain way because she doesn't ever talk negatively about this or that or that someone's life must be so perfect because she is doing so much or "makes it look easy." 

A simple example: Sharing photos of your happy smiling family doesn't mean that everyone is always happy and smiling. But, it would be a bit odd to begin taking photos "for your blog" during an argument, wouldn't it? Yet somehow when we see these smiling happy photos on a day when our own family might not be smiling or happy, we might find ourselves triggered and thinking "well, my life isn't like hers because she has it so easy + a book deal + cuter clothes + a better camera [or fill in some other similar thought here.]"

My point in sharing this today is that over here, we are navigating the experience that is a marriage in the midst of toddler world + a growing business (and not enough childcare) + other things that are real life things and too personal to share here. In some ways, I touch on these things in my posts, but really, this is a story that involves more than just me and many pieces of it feel too personal for this space.

That said, I really want to begin to share (as an accounting of myself of sorts) some of the ideas we are implementing to support one another a bit more over here. Ideas that are about leaning into living and figuring out how to let in more light + love in the harder moments. 

A few weeks ago, I gently pushed Jon on the idea that he doesn't have many self-care moves. And you know me, I am all about the self-care. But, I do know from experience that it isn't easy to implement simple self-care practices if you don't know where to begin.

So we've started a family Smash journal.

 We are beginning to fill it with sections on adventures we want to take, go-to meals + recipes we want to try, solo adventure ideas for both Jon and me, and self-care ideas for Jon. There is a section called "home" that will include lists of things we need to do but also a few lists of what we wish and dream for our little home. We are making lists of things to do with EJ when it rains and when we are exhausted but she isn't (for real - this will be a good one). And this weekend I hope to make a list of dates we would like to go on.

I've also started a "Summer Manifesto" inspired by Ali and Andrea, and I'll share it soon.

I want this journal to be a resource for Jon and me because the truth is that sometimes it is easier to focus on "getting through" instead of living deeply. For example, on the days when I don't eat before Ellie gets up and then her needs (and business stuff) takes over and then suddenly she is napping and I find myself still in pajamas and nauseated from hunger...yeah...those days are more intense than they would be if I just spent a few moments bringing more awareness into the day and into what I need. And I see Jon adopting similar patterns when he is on break from work. Sometimes we need pajama days, but we've noticed that life is softer when we bring in more awareness and, well, fun.

I will share more about this journal as we keep using it, but today, I just wanted to share the idea in case you want to create a space to hold your "go-to" family self-care moves. (We are using the orange Smash journal because it seems to have more blank pages than the other colors, which makes it nice for lists.)

May your weekend be full of lightness and good things and rest,


poetry and smash books

liz lamoreux


I am having so much fun over here in the land of poem it out and smash books and cheese and my mother's cooking that I wanted to check in with you in a video today.

Notes from the video:

I talk about how I am using yet another Smash journal (this time the "mod black" smash folio) to catch all of my ideas and inspiration about poeming. (And I share a peek at the new HUGE Smash book you can find here.) Best prices on the new large ones might be at Michael's with your big coupon of the week (oh and I want to share that I get the weekly coupons by email and just learned that you can just open the link to the coupon on your phone and they can literally scan your phone!).

I read a poem by William Stafford (and a short excerpt from an interview with him) from the book The Answers Are Inside the Mountains: Meditations on the Writing Life by William Stafford. 


And after several emails asking me to share book and journaling recommendations, especially poets/books to begin with when one wants to really become friends with poetry, I decided to do two things:

1) Begin a new series of posts about some of my favorite poetry collections and poets and books about writing and poetry. Look for the first in this series next week.

2) Create an Amazon store to have a place where you can easily go and check out the poets (and a few other god things) that I recommend. There is a section called "Poetry: Start Here" that lists the books I think might help you fall in love with poetry. There is another ever-growing section of the books of poetry I turn to again and again. (And as a writer, I feel really moved to say: Consider buying your books from your local independent bookstore or checking them out of the library.) And just to be totally clear: If you do buy through my Amazon store, note that it is part of the Amazon affiliate program, which means I get a small commission of your purchase. Next week, I will share a bit about the dream I had in my 20s of opening up a bookstore called "Curled Up (With a Good Book)" and how adding things to this simple Amazon store feels a teeny bit like choosing books to fill that fictional bookstore.

May your day be full of lightness and moments to just rest. Thank you for visiting my corner over here...


PS speaking of poetry, have you seen what Maya Stein is up to? oh my goodness how that woman inspires me.

PPS if you are new to my corner of the blog world and want to find out more about my wholeness practice and how the Smash journals are helping me with it, check out this series of posts on journaling.

brain lint :: journaling

liz lamoreux

The first sentence of this page of my journal says, "this is the page where i am going to just dump the stuff that i don't need to hold onto like worry and not enoughness and how the **** will i get it all done..." Since writing those words, I have turned to this page and filled it with uncensored fears when I get distracted while working.

The idea to do this came to me while I was working in my red Smash journal that houses ideas for my ecourses and other online projects I am working on. While putting these ideas to the page, I can find myself pulled by the "what ifs" and the "shoulds" and how the list goes on. On this day, I was writing down ideas for a possible ecourse connected to the project Jen Lee is producing that will be out later this spring (will share more about this project soon! we are having so much fun putting the finishing touches together before it all goes to print), and I had a flurry of a brainstorm that got me very excited. But then I got stuck as some gremlins came up. So I flipped through the journal to another section to give myself a break from thinking about this idea and came to this page that said, "Brain Lint." 


Because this is exactly what the not enoughness is sometimes: lint that is just taking up space where something else could reside.

I love how my Smash journals often provide just the prompt I need when I am working. They really seem like magic sometimes. (Not kidding.) You can read the other posts in this journaling series inspired by my excitement over my first Smash book here.

An Invitation

Reserve a few pages in your journal for some uncensored brain lint. Let it be a safe space for you to let that not enoughness or the fears or the worry land so you can lean into the real work.

And consider joining us over in the Notes for the Journey Flickr group where we are sharing pages from our journals and where we are journaling. Also, if you are on Instagram, a group of us are using the hashtag #journeynotes when we share our journals. Oh and if you use an app like Instagram, you can easily use the blur feature to blur out your personal journaling but still share your photo. 


liz lamoreux

here #journeynotes

this week, i have been leaning into rest. i have been reading (just for fun) and working in bed while she naps and even napping once or twice. jon and i went on an impromptu valentine's day date (the babysitter had come over so i could work, but instead jon picked me up and we had an early dinner...it felt like breaking the rules in the best of ways). i have been trying to get to bed earlier. and i've been trying to observe myself with a more compassionate focus.

i am noticing that life feels softer when i rest more. i feel softer. i am more likely to move through my day with kindness and love (toward myself, toward others). it seems so obvious but it simply is hard for me to remember some days (and weeks it seems). 

tonight, i am thinking about how the remembering feels like a dance of getting to know myself again and again. and i choose to see this as a beautiful gift i give myself. because there will be days full of overwhelm and misunderstandings and forgotten deadlines and unexpected bumps in the road. but i will keep reaching for compassion, and i will try to remember that rest is so often the answer.

the poem that is pasted into my journal in the photo above is "love after love" by derek walcott. it is about remembering yourself. i keep it in constant rotation over here. i invite you to add it to your self-care toolbox. you can read all of this poem over here.

a self-care letter :: journaling

liz lamoreux

self-care letter (more on the blog soon)

a page in my creative wholeness journal (in the eco-green smash journal)

I am deeply enjoying the conversations about journaling that have been happening since I posted my first video two weeks ago. Some of you have mentioned that my posts have encouraged you to get back to journaling; some of you have emailed me and said you are going to try your own version of a "creative journal" where you hold yourself accountable to the big dreams or the day-to-day business stuff. I am guessing some of you just kind of fell in love with the Smash journals when you saw them. Some of you are trying the "Jen Lee-inspired method" of keeping one main notebook/journal of everything. I just love how these conversations are unfolding and I so appreciate you sharing your experiences with me.

Seeing your journals pop up on Flickr and Instagram and Twitter made me think that it would be fun to have a journaling Flick group where we could cheer each other on and share ideas and pages and other good things. I have decided to call the group "Notes for the Journey" because that is what journaling feels like for me; notebooks and journals in all their forms become a place to capture pieces of ourselves that often become the notes we piece together to make sense of our experiences.

This group isn't just for Smash journals or business journals. It is simply a group to share photos of your journals and where you journal. You might share the pages inside your journal, notes about how your are journaling, and so on. If you are trying to create a daily journaling practice, you might post a photo each day of your journal and the mug of tea you drink while you write. If you are a journal buying addict (ahem...I now know I'm not the only one), you could share your finds. My hope is that we can support each other through sharing photos. I know it will help me hold myself accountable just a bit more so I keep going with this practice.

Just click here to join the group and start sharing (you will need a Flickr account). 

UPDATED :: A group of us is now using the hashtag #journeynotes over on Instagram if you want to join in.

As I focus on my own journaling habits and needs, I will continue to share what I am discovering and talk about how holding myself accountable is affecting me. I also plan to share some prompts or invitations every now and then that might inspire you to write in your own journals (or on your blogs). In that spirit, I want to tell you about an exercise I did this week.

A Self-Care Letter

As I mentioned in my previous posts about my new "creative wholeness journal," I have a section about self-care. In this section, I am listing my go-to self-care practices so that I can turn to them when I begin to notice I am feeling depleted but also when I just have a few minutes to myself and need a place to begin.

Earlier this week, I turned to the page shown in the photo above and decided to write myself a gentle reminder to rest. I thought about all the women I have connected with through the Be Present Retreats during the last three years. I thought about the stories they have shared and the ways in which we have held the space for one another as these words are spoken aloud. I thought about you and you and you and what I would most want to tell you if you needed a reminder to rest so that you could keep living your dreams into reality. And then I wrote the words in letter form right into my journal.

An Invitation

In your journal, write yourself a self-care letter that tells you whatever you most need to hear in this moment. Maybe you need a reminder to rest or to pay more attention to when you are hungry or maybe you need to give yourself permission to write and dream and know you are enough.


A few people have emailed asking about where I have purchased my Smash journals. Here in Tacoma, there is a local store called Artco Crafts that is carrying them and has them on sale right now. I have also seen the accessories at Michael's and their website indicates the stores carry the journals. Amazon has quite a few Smash journals and products available (and they have the best prices I think). It looks like they are available at Paper Source. Please share any shops where you have seen them.

Blessings and light,


a few more journaling thoughts

liz lamoreux

So the Smash Journal love continues. As I mention in the video, I received a few emails with questions so I thought I would share a bit more in this video. (Be sure to check out my first post about how I am creating a practice around my journal and read the great comments in that post where people share their own thoughts about journaling.) I have decided to just call this my "Creative Wholeness Journal" because that really sums up all that it holds right now.

Settle in with a cup of tea...

A few notes about things I mention in the video:

1) Jen Lee totally made a video when I asked her to share the way she uses her journal. So excited for you to hear her thoughts and be inspired. Watch her video here. (Thank you Jen!) And while you are over on her site, check out the t-shirts she has been posting about that are coming soon. LOVE her shirts!

2) I am using my new red Smash journal for ecourse ideas. I really do think creating a journal with tabs for your current projects is such a good idea. Do you do this? Would love to know more from those of you who do. I have tried the 3-ring binder approach in the past, but it didn't stick. Hoping this will as my current approach of having notes in three spiral notebooks (depending on which I can find in a given moment) is not so much supporting me.

3) Here is a link to Tricia's shop of beautiful handmade journals. I have one of her coptic-stitched hardcover journals that I use for notes at my retreats. Love it.

4) A few of you have asked me about the sticky notes I am using (since you too thought they were cute!). It looks like the company, Galison, that makes them has discontinued this exact line, but I did find their website with so many other delightful options and other good things to distract your for a bit. I also have these that I am using in the new journal. 

Thank you for continuing to share your thoughts about your own idea journaling and daily journaling. It is so much fun to learn from one another.

a journal (a post in moving pictures)

liz lamoreux

Today, I spent some time working in my "Smash" journal, and I began to get so excited about it that I decided to create a little video explaining how I am using it to hold myself accountable this year when it comes to living from wholeness, my intentions for my blog, practicing self-care, and making my big dreams a reality.

In the video I mention:

The Smash journal and all the fun accessories you can buy like the tabs and pockets  

My habit of buying these Moleskine journals (I love them and still use them for various things but not for my idea journal. I think they simply blend into my home too much because they are so skinny. But they are perfect for one project or taking notes. And here is the truth: I could turn any of my journals into something similar to how I am using the Smash book BUT I don't have time, and waiting for that time was stopping me from putting pen to paper.)

Jen Lee's way of journaling (I couldn't find a post on her blog about it [I will ask her if she has one], but I did remember this story from Karen Walrond about her conversation with Jen about journaling)

My business coach Nona Jordan

Mondo Beyondo

My post on Roots of She about how this year might unfold if I leaned into wholeness, my post about nourishing myself and family through cooking more, and my post about showing up as me and telling more stories here on my blog

Oh and I am totally wearing the simple "Pigtails" necklace. How she makes me smile! I am working on telling the story of how the one word . one girl collaboration with Kelly was born and will be sharing soon. 

I would love to hear about the way you journal. Do you have one notebook? Do you keep track of your ideas in one place? Do you "hold yourself accountable" when it comes to your dreams? 

PS While browsing the Smash website tonight, I discovered that they have a YouTube channel with short videos with a glimpse inside each of the various journals (because they all have different papers/graphics).