Tag Archives: journaling cards

Christmas Journaling and Icebreaking Activity Cards

The front sides of some of the Christmas journaling cards.
The front sides of some of the Christmas journaling cards.

A few weeks ago I listened to a great podcast by the Scrap Gals in which guest Amy Sorensen discussed prompts for journaling about the holidays. Some of the prompts were in the form of questions and they reminded me of the activities my Mom used to like to do at Christmas parties. I was inspired to make some cards with prompt questions to use on our Christmas Day gathering and perhaps to later use as prompts if I ever decided to make Christmas journal or scrapbook. If you celebrate a different holiday you can adjust the questions and decorations to suit.

If you want to make cards like these here is what you will need:

Cardstock (plain will do since it will be covered on both sides with decorative paper)
Lined paper or journaling spots (journaling spots are small decorative pieces of paper or cardstock that are usually lined and are designed to be incorporated into a scrapbook or journal layout and written upon)
Decorative paper in holiday colors – a good opportunity to use up scraps!
Paper cutting system of choice
Glue sticks
Bone folder
Clean scrap paper
Marker or writing tool of choice
Holiday stickers
Decorative scissors
Rubber stamping ink
Small word rubber stamps
Corner rounder
Chipboard (optional)

1. My first step in this project was to decide on the size of the cards. I had a quantity of journaling spots that would work so I let those determine the size. If you want to fit your cards into a pocket page let that determine the size of your cards.

2. Cut pieces of cardstock to the size you determined.

3. Using a glue stick, glue the journaling spots or lined paper to the cardstock pieces. After gluing place a clean piece of scrap paper over each card and rub with bone folder to get a nice tight seal on the glue.

4. Glue decorative paper in holiday colors to the backs of cards and burnish. Make as simple as elaborate as you want and embellish with holiday stickers if you want to.

The back sides of the Christmas journaling cards.
The back sides of some of the Christmas journaling cards.

5. Trim the cards.

6. Cut a selection of light colored scrap papers into strips with decorative scissors. Stamp them with small words that fit the theme. I chose the words celebrate, Fiesta!, party, living, culture, spirit, living, holiday, joy and truth from four different word sets from my Carolyn’s Stamp Store collection. Set these aside to make sure the ink dries thoroughly.

7. Write prompt questions on the front of each card. For ideas I searched online for “Christmas journaling prompts” and used some of the questions I found plus I made up a few of my own. Feel free to use these or your own choices.

What are some of your favorite holiday traditions?

Do you have any New Year’s resolutions?

Is there a new holiday tradition that you would like to start?

If money was no object, what would you give to each person in your family?

What was your favorite Christmas outfit?

Are there any traditions that we’ve let go that you’d like to bring back?

What is your favorite Christmas memory?

What is your favorite holiday food?

What does the “Holiday Spirit” mean to you?

What is one of your favorite Christmas gifts?

How did you find out there was no Santa?

What are you most grateful for this season?

What are your favorite decorations?

What is your favorite holiday song?

What is your favorite Christmas book?

What is your favorite Christmas movie?

What is your fantasy Christmas dinner menu?

What is your most spiritual holiday experience?

What gift did you most enjoy giving?

What do you normally do the day after Christmas?

8. Once you’ve written on all the cards, you’ll have an idea how much room is left for embellishments. Glue on your strips of stamped paper and add other embellishments of your choice such as stickers, rub-ons, and anything else you have that you’d like to use.

9. Round off the corners with the corner rounder if you want to.

10. If you like you can make a matching box for the cards out of chipboard and decorate it accordingly.

I spent Christmas Day with my Dad, my brother and my boyfriend. This was my first Christmas with my boyfriend Ray, and while he had met my Dad and brother before I thought that if we asked each other the questions on the cards it would be a good way to get to know each other better and also be a good conversation starter. I think it worked well, I learned a lot I didn’t know and we had a great conversation. Thanks to Dad, Larry and Ray for being open minded enough to tolerate the experiment! I gave Dad a set – they make a good host/hostess gift!

These cards could be a great prompt for other holiday activities such as a daily anticipatory activity for December or a family journal or album. Use your imagination and have fun!

I’ll have one extra set of 15 cards for sale at the studio shortly, so if you want dibs on it please contact me.

Handmade Birding Journal

Cover of birding journal. Cover collage is made of found images, scrap papers and rubber stamped images from 7gypsies and Carolyn's Stamp Store.
Cover of birding journal. Cover collage is made of found images, scrap papers and rubber stamped images from 7gypsies and Carolyn’s Stamp Store.

Here is a great handmade gift idea for someone in your life that loves to watch birds. A blank journal like my sample provides places for notes, sketches, photos, memorabilia and more. Here is how to make one.

First download my free template, Square 6×6 Journal. Print it out and use it as a guide.

Cut out two pieces of chipboard for covers. Make a collage of bird related images for the front cover. Cover edges of cover with decorative paper. Cover inside front cover, inside back cover and back cover with decorative paper.

To assemble front cover, cut out a piece of acetate and punch small holes. Punch small holes in front cover collage and attach to cover with brads. Make pockets and attach to both inside covers with double sided tape. Cut out a number of pieces of cardstock for inside pages. Embellish with brayered backgrounds, sponged backgrounds, decorative papers, Project Life cards and rubber stamps. Punch holes in all pages and covers and compile together with binding rings. Open rings and add new pages as needed.

Here are some sample page spreads to give you ideas for the interior pages.

A set of inside pages. On the left is a Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies and Carolyn's Stamp Store. Patterned papers are from 7gypsies.
A set of inside pages. On the left is a Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies and Carolyn’s Stamp Store. Patterned papers are from 7gypsies.
On the left is a cut-down Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies and Carolyn's Stamp Store. Patterned paper is from 7gypsies.
On the left is a cut-down Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies and Carolyn’s Stamp Store. Patterned paper is from 7gypsies.
On the left is a Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies and Carolyn's Stamp Store. Patterned paper is from 7gypsies.
On the left is a Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies and Carolyn’s Stamp Store. Patterned paper is from 7gypsies.
On the left is a Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies. Patterned paper is from 7gypsies.
On the left is a Project Life card and on the right are rubber stamps from 7gypsies. Patterned paper is from 7gypsies.
On these two pages patterned paper is from 7gypsies and rubber stamps are from 7gypsies and Carolyn's Stamp Store. The plain paper insert on the right is a piece of sketching paper - it's good for drawing a sketch and it's removable if you want to use watercolor or other media that is messy.
On these two pages patterned paper is from 7gypsies and rubber stamps are from 7gypsies and Carolyn’s Stamp Store. The plain paper insert on the right is a piece of sketching paper – it’s good for drawing a sketch and it’s removable if you want to use watercolor or other media that is messy.

Stamps: Small word stamps are from Carolyn’s Stamp Store, other stamps are from 7gypsies.

Here are links to other products you can use for this project:

Binding Rings

Long Fasteners (Brads)