Tag: journals

A Cabin in the Woods

Here’s my gratitude journal entry for today.


Sometimes you live for the moments when the fog lifts and you find a cabin in the woods. A hot, welcoming meal, friendly faces, an invitation to stay for a while. If you persist long enough, you may just find that eventually, the fog descends a lot less often than it used to, and you can see farther ahead.

If you’re not there yet, just hold on to the hope of a few moments of clarity and respite. Keep walking, keep reaching out.

Year 6


Yesterday’s journal entry was in memory of the victims of the Ampatuan Massacre. Year 6, 99 arrests made out of almost 200 suspects, 3 witnesses killed, zero convictions. ­čÖü


I’ve been drawing things with the oblique holder I got from The Curious Artisan and I must say, it’s really enjoyable to use for line art. I’m still trying to get a hang of it, but I love how varied the line widths can be and I like using Sumi ink. It’s a vibrant kind of black. Not waterproof, though.


Gratitude Journal

PB228746My brother bought me this cute Moleskine journal during his HK trip last week. Moleskines aren’t known for holding up well to wet writers, but I found that they take fine nibs, chalk-based stamp pads and (surprisingly) brush pens just fine. It’s also super-cute. I absolutely love The Little Prince! I find the color theme of this notebook (cover, bands, etc) as such a happy and vibrant color theme. Very fitting. ­čÖé

I decided that I would use it as my Gratitude Journal.


Whether you are religious or not, being conscious of the things you are grateful for can add so much sweetness to your life. It neutralizes the negative thinking and helps you focus on the things that are going right. It helps you have a hopeful and positive attitude. As a Christian, having a grateful attitude is important for me because God has done so much in my life. Sometimes it’s so easy to take that for granted. The Bible tells us that we should always have a thankful attitude. It’s amazing how uplifting writing down your thanksgiving items in a journal is. Even if it’s for something as silly as…


Of course you can include doodles, washi tapes, stamps, watercolor paintings (if your notebook can handle that), calligraphy, photographs and other things to make your gratitude journal as fun and possible.

Here is a nice article about how a grateful attitude and keeping a gratitude journal can help your overall well-being.

A Happy Mess of Stamps and Stamp Pads


Today, the rest of my stamp pad purchases from Crafty Lane arrived through a courier. I added the flower pot set to my collection because I thought the colors were really pretty. Suffice it to say that I made a happy mess on my table today. I’m very happy with my experience with Crafty Lane. Prompt responses, no hassle payment and shipping methods. Her prices are very reasonable too. *high five, sis!* I don’t see these stamp pads in book stores (or maybe I’m just not looking?), so I’m really happy they’re available online. These online craft shops are pretty awesome.


Since it’s my first time to try out stamp pads, I’m surprised that there are so many colors available. Honestly, my only idea about stamp pads are those you use at the office (watery, dark purple ink). These are pretty different. I love the vibrant colors and how they really just pop on the page.

(L-R) Lilac Posies, Spanish Olive, Potter’s Clay, Ocean Depth, Red Brick

The top colors are the first ones that I tried. Lilac Posies is scented, and I love the color but it has a tendency to bleed through paper. I would recommend using this on thicker kinds of paper. I think the Memento stamps in my collection (Lilac Posies and Potter’s Clay) are a bit more watery than the others because they’re made of dye ink. The texture feels different. Potter’s Clay doesn’t bleed as much, though. I would recommend just a few dabs on these before applying the stamp on paper.


The flowerpot collection is pretty awesome. I absolutely love the colors. Aside from Lilac Posies and Brick Red, the rest of my collection uses chalk ink, so it feels a bit thicker. They’re not very prone to bleed through paper, either.


The way these stamp pads are designed makes it easy to get the ink on stamps, even if they are small. Plus, they’re pretty easy to carry around in a pencil case. I’m not really sure what they’re made of, it feels like a dense cake that holds a lot of ink. Just a few light dabs on them is enough to get sufficient ink on the stamps.

Here’s an example of how I used stamp pads on my journal entries. I’m still feeling my way around it, but it’s super fun and that’s really all that matters.


To me, the greatest pleasure of writing is not what it’s about, but the inner music the words make. ~Truman Capote

A Fresh Batch of Empty Pages

So happy to get these in the mail this morning from Pengrafik. Like I always say…there is no such thing as too many journals. ­čÖé


There is something so hopeful about a diary, a journal, a new notebook, which Joan Didion and Virginia Woolf both wrote about. A blog. Perhaps we all are waiting for someone to discover us. ~ Lily Koppel

Writing and the Contemplative Life


After a long, punishing summer season, the rainy season is finally here. I woke up to the sound of the patter of raindrops on our rooftop and with the cat comfortably curled up at the foot of our bed, sighing contentedly. It was so cold that for a moment, I thought my husband┬áhad turned the airconditioning unit on while I was sleeping.┬á Continue reading “Writing and the Contemplative Life”

Writing About What You’re Reading

Reading without reflecting is like eating without digesting. ~Edmund Burke

I love to read. I found that these past few years, I’ve drastically changed the kind of books that I read, though. It’s a drastic change brought about by drastic turn of events in my life. A few years back, I also started writing about the books that I read. This is aside from┬áthe commonplace book of┬áfavorite lines┬áthat I keep.

It’s not too often that I find friends who like to read the same books that I do, and those who do read the books that I read don’t always have the time to talk about it. Writing about my thoughts helps me process which parts made an impact on me and why–a lot like a conversation with myself. I write about personal experiences that are related to what I read too. I found that writing about what I’m reading as I read it helps me to slow down and really digest what the author is trying to say. It makes the book more meaningful, and the very act of┬ápausing to think and write enriches the act of reading. It’s like I don’t just consume the book, I chew on it slowly and thoughtfully. I enjoy that.

I also noticed that some books don’t read the same way a few years after. Somehow as I grow older and gain more insight about life, old books that I liked are infused with new life and meaning. A childhood favorite, Hope for the Flowers, is a story that opened up and bloomed pretty much like a lovely flower as I read it again and again at different times in my life. It’s great fun to read journal entries about a book that I read and realize that I’ve missed a few things, in retrospect. Or that my views have changed because of one reason or another.

Writing, in this way, creates a series of snapshots to help you remember how you thought in the past years and appreciate the changes that you went through and, quite possibly, are still going through until now. I find that fascinating.

In this photo:
Black Parker 51 Vacumatic, Medium inked with De Atramentis Olive Green
Navy Gray Parker 51 Special, Fine inked with Diamine Onyx Black
Maroon Elias Notebooks single pen slip in leather suede