2018 Bullet Journal

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In January of 2017 I started keeping a bullet journal. A bullet journal is a self-created planner and organizer. I love bullet journals because they are created and customized by their creator. When you buy a planner from a store there are always features that don’t fit every planning style.

Not only does bullet journaling help to keep me organized, but it also helps me to expel some creative energy.  I’ve enjoyed building up my art supplies this year and dabbling in the use of washi tapes, watercolors, Tombow brushpens, stickers, and all sorts of paper crafting goods.

I used to give updates on my early progress with bullet journaling. If you are interested check out these posts:

One Month of Bullet Journaling

Bullet Journal Updates

March Updates

Bullet Journal February Updates

I want to give you a peek at what I’ve been working on so far this year in my newest bullet journal. As you can see above, I decorated the outside of my Leuchtturm 1917 notebook with Cricut vinyl cut using my new Cricut Explore Air 2 machine. I used to own a Cricut about ten years ago, but they have come a long way and the extent of its uses is now unfathomable. Since I received it in June I have made tshirts, cards, wall art, and magnets with my new machine.

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Collections

Bullet journal Collections are pages that are ongoing throughout the time you use a particular notebook. There are so many ideas on Pinterest of things to track in your journal. I’ve chosen to track things like book lists, home improvement ideas, sports statistics for my daughter, blog schedules, Netflix shows I’m watching, a future log, and movies I’ve watched this year.

Creatives

Creative pages are ones in which I play around with creative techniques. This year I’ve been focusing on hand-lettering and calligraphy. I’ve started quite the collection of Tombow brushpens, Mildliner pens and washi tapes. I use these pages to work on skills and play around with ideas.

Monthlies

Something I started this year is using a monthly theme. Every month I start with a title page that introduces the theme and then I include those ideas in my habit trackers and anxiety trackers for each month.

Weeklies

Every week I use a similar layout to the one below. The weekly pages are where I break down my daily tasks and oftentimes I journal on these pages as well.

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How I Use It

Every night before bed I open up my bullet journal and update the weekly page with tasks and journaling. Then, I record in my habit tracker what I was able to accomplish that day. Finally, I evaluate my anxiety level for the day and track that appropriately. Doing this at night leads me to self-reflection on a daily basis. This practice has helped keep me focused and organized.

Any other bullet journalers out there? I’d love to see your pages!

The Ameri Brit Mom

 

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March Updates (Bullet Journal)

Three months into my bullet journal and I’m feeling more organized and productive. I’ve nailed down a weekly spread that works for me and I’ve added all sorts of collections that have allowed me to dump my mind. I used to carry around these lists in my brain and now I have a place where they belong. It’s been very freeing and allowed me the chance to relax in ways I hadn’t before.

There are times I have to jot something down while it’s on my mind, but there are no more worries about whether or not I will forget it. Every list has a place in my bullet journal. It is a customized book that I am filling constantly. No more wasted space in a planner created by someone else! I am utilizing every page and making it work for who I am and the types of lists I incur.

Here is a look at some of my newest pages in my bujo:

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The Ameri Brit Mom

Bullet Journal (February Updates)

I’ve been an official Bullet Journaler for two months now. In February, I took on the February Journal Challenge where I created a new page or idea each day based on a prompt. I also started some new pages and added to ones from last month. I have been really pleased with this new hobby. It’s been a nice way to use my creativity and it helps keep my life organized as well.

Here is a look at some of my newest editions to my Bullet Journal in February:

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The Ameri Brit Mom

Bible Journal Update

A few weeks ago I purchased a new Bible Journal and shared some of my earliest studies and artwork with you. Today I wanted to take some time to share some of the things I’ve been reading and creating lately as an update on how I’m using my Bible. At the end of July and beginning of August I studied the book of Daniel. Using the She Reads Truth app I read through the book and was challenged by many of the ideas presented. Through studying Daniel I was pointed to other scriptures as well such as 1 John 2:15-16 and 2 Peter 3:9.

 

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After I wrapped up my study of the book of Daniel I began another study which walks through the life of Moses beginning in the book of Exodus. Currently, I’m still reading through the this study using She Reads Truth as a guide for my daily reading and devotions. Here is a look at some of the major ideas that have spoken to my heart in Daniel and the beginning of Exodus.

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Each day that I sit down to study God’s Word I bring my Bible, journal, and a plethora of art supplies. I read through my daily passage and devotion. Then I pray over what I read. Some days that time of reflection leads me to a specific image or work of art. I spend another twenty minutes or so focusing on what the scripture says and how it applies to me as I create my works of art. In the pictures above I’ve used pens, colored pencils, crayons, water color paints, stickers, and stencils. I am an artistic-minded person and so I get so much joy out of this time interacting with God’s Word and my illustrations help me to remember the passages and tattoo them on my soul. I’m excited to branch out with my illustrations and try some new tools and materials in the future. I’m also learning so much as I walk through the Old Testament.

The Ameri Brit Mom

Journal Bibles

One of my favorite blogs which I follow is by Rachel Wojo. She is a creative and inspiring person who posts about her faith and journey through God’s Word. Lately, Pintrest and Rachel’s blog have been capturing my interests with this new phenomenon in Bible study methods.

Essentially Bible Journaling is an illustrative approach to memorizing or dwelling on scripture.With this practice you turn your Bible into a visual scrapbook of your faith. You can journal within the margins of any Bible, but the exercise has become so popular that many Christian publishers now offer Journal Bibles.

After a few months teetering on the edge of the practice and attempting to journal within the margins of my NIV study Bible, I think I am ready to take the plunge. I would like to purchase a Journal Bible. I’m reaching out to my community for help.

Journal Bibles are a large market.

Not only are there different publishers, but there various translations, styles, and font sizes to choose from. I want to find a Journal Bible that is affordable, but that will also last. I’d like the pages to be thicker than a standard Bible and plenty of space to write and draw. There are so many choices that I’m completely overwhelmed.

Below are my top three picks. If you are experienced in the craft and have better options to suggest please do so. Otherwise, I’m looking for opinions 🙂

  1. Inspire Bible-NLT-Elastic Band Closure, Teal Imitation Leather

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2.ESV Single Column Journaling Bible 

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3. ESV Journaling Bible, Interleaved Edition (Cloth over Board, Turquoise/Coral), Multicolor

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The Ameri Brit Mom

 

A Short Story About Mermaids

Lately, I’ve been trying to work on honing some of my writing skills by sitting down to craft a short story for a fifteen minutes or so each day. With each story I am focusing on something. Sometimes I choose to focus on characterization and really take time to develop a vivid character. Other ideas I’ve focused on in my prompted ramblings are setting, conflict, dialogue, and grammar. A website that has helped me not only build my skills through short lessons on writing, but also provided me prompts for writing ideas is called The Write Practice.

Today, I’ve decided to share with you this part of my creative writing process. This particular story was written with a focus of revealing plot information through dialogue. It may be an off-the-wall topic, but it was a good way to practice a skill I desperately need as I edit my novel.

The prompt is fantasy in nature: Mermaids attempt to install a democratic form of government, but the cephalopods are causing trouble.

Here is a glimpse at a short writing I did and posted on The Write Practice website.

The Oppression of Squid

Lauren Sisley

“Mira, where are you going?” Alexandra called after her best friend. She struggled to keep up with Mira’s pace as they swam through the Coral Village.

“I’m going to set this all straight. I’ve had enough.” Mira called back. Her voice trailed off in the distance between the two mermaids. Alexandra looked ahead and saw the golden locks of her best friend as she swam toward the Village Square. Soon her friend would be lost in crowd of sea creatures so Alexandra kicked her fins as quickly as she could. She began to gain on her friend.

“What makes you think the Dictator will listen to you? Plus, how do you plan to persuade an entire panel of cephalopods? They hate the mermaids. That’s why we’ve been living in oppression for so long.” Alexandra did her best to talk her boisterous friend out of whatever plan she had secretly devised.

“I’m so sick of this. I’m sixteen. I’m old enough to make my own choices and decisions. Why must I serve these nasty creatures?” Mira slowed down to look at her friend. Her blue eyes glistened in the light of the sea. They were large and round.

“Mira, it’s all part of our history. You know why we serve the dictator and his team of tentacles.” Alexandra reminded Mira of the fact that Hostile Mermaid History was the only true subject that the girls were taught in school.

“It just isn’t fair. You and I were not behind the nasty stories that were passed down orally for centuries about the cephalopods. Why do we have to pay the price?” Mira crossed her arms across her chest bumping the teal bra that she had made herself from shells she had found at the discount shell shop.

“No one ever said it was fair or justified. Nothing ever is here. But, it’s their reasoning. Don’t think for one second that a head strong sixteen year old will change the way things have been for so long.” The two girls moved closer to the town square. Their tones became hushed as they feared being overheard by the average passerby.

“Then let’s run away.” Mira’s eyes drifted to the distance as she entertained the idea in her mind. A devious smile creeped itself across her face.

“What are you two girls doing in the square unaccompanied?” A large squid dressed in his official uniform came within a tentacle’s reach from Alexandra. She moved back subtly.

“We are sixteen, Sir. That’s of age. And we’ve only come to speak with the Dictator.” Mira spoke matter-of-factly.

“Sixteen or not the Dictator will never hear from two young mermaids unsummoned. Run along to the village and get to work.” The officer spoke haughtily toward the girls.

Before she could respond the squid made a lunge toward the girls. Mira acted quickly pushing her friend out of the squid’s grasp. Taking Alexandra by the arm she pushed her way past the squid toward the large public square in the distance. The squid was caught off guard and soon lost the two mermaids in the sea of creatures going to and from the shops and reefs…