a journal addict confession


well, well, well...... my name is grace and i confess, i am a journal addict.  i own a whole bunch { no, i mean really a lot }.   it all started when i was 12 and received my first journal.  mine was red and it had a lock.  yeh, i know...you had one too right, or something like it?  i think every one had one of these.

btw....i came across mine the other day.  oh boy the musings of a 12 year old!

My 12 yrs Old Diary - journal addict

i remember not wanting to write in it in the beginning.  mainly because i knew my little brother was waiting in the wings to grab it and start reading it out loud to the whole world.  i know this how?  cause i saw his non-poker face when i brought this bright red, life chronicle home.

so i waited him out, sorta, and then began writing my 12 yr old hormonal heartwords down in that book.  i must have abandoned it early on because entries abruptly stop at one point and i don't remember what i went to after that.

i might have gone to school notebooks cause i do have loads of those filled with my musings.  maybe i was trying to trick my nosey trickster brother so he wouldn't read it,  you know...hide in plain site kinda thing.  ha!

over the next years i wrote  in my journals on and off, thru most of my 20's.  the next set of journals i remember keeping, and that i still have, were those i wrote in when hubby and i moved to nc.

those were trying times because we had no family near us { his in england, mine in the bahamas } and 2 small children, aged 6 mths & 2½ yrs.  i remember writing thru tears sometimes, pouring out my sorrow at one thing or another.

i still love to journal my heartwords

i journal more regularly these days and, over the last few years have added other types of journaling to my repertoire..... art &  visual journaling, creating lists after lists of "grateful"s and recording quotes and inspiring words i come across { i still keep a journal just for capturing quotes and words that move or inspire me }. another way i journal is to sometimes collage those words and magazine images in my "Yes, This." composition book.

the journal writing i do these days is more about my life and feelings and ideas and lists and following prompts, so much less about my sorrows—which i still experience but, thankfully, on such a scaled down version.  this i think is due to the fact that i live my life so much more authentically and am more in tune with my inner be-ingness.

"Being able to let things go & not hang on to the angst is the one of biggest hurdles journaling will help you overcome." username="kgracehowes"]

what about you?  what do you journal about?  

how has it helped it you move through your day,  a week, your life?  leave a comment below and let's have a conversation.



| Did You Know |

....that a shop journal update will be happening next week? Woohoo!!! ...more spaces to hold your heartwords.

....I'm starting something new { one of those "just because" things y'all }.   With every shop journal update I'll also be emailing out a 10% off coupon to use on any item in the shop.   If you're already a JOY Love Tribe member you'll get the discount automatically. If you're not a JLT member yet, sign up here and get in on all the goodies!

....there's something new in the works for the journals I'll be making going forward. More info about this coming up in the next "Updates & Happenings" newsletter.

why is a diary not a journal?

diary not a journal

a friend revealed a breakthrough she'd had recently.  she admitted that she'd always struggled with the why of journaling. and, despite all that i knew about the benefits of journaling and wanting her to experience this beautiful connection of pen to paper on her own, even tho she'd tried time and time again to surmount the challenge, she just couldn't shake her aversion { that she now knows began in childhood } to the practice of journaling.

until the other day, that is, when she had a BIG aha moment.

that was the day she realized that what she thought of as journaling was really only recording in a diary.  in that one instance i knew that if she felt this way there were probably a lot more of you out there that also think this errant thought, lol and have probably experienced this struggle-to-journal dilemma as well { go on, raise your hand, there's no shame in admitting it }.

how do YOU move beyond thinking of journaling as complete drudgery?

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and what's a journaling revolution-er  { that's me! } to do but bring out the big hammer to dispel this myth, this yucky untruth.  oh you poor,poor souls who have this journaling thing backwards, help is on it's way.  but first....

what's a diary? 

a diary is place where you record the events of your daily life, usually chronologically ---remember those little red journals of your childhood that came with a lock and key? --- it's a list of what you ate and who you saw and what time you went to bed.  no fun right?

what, therefore, is a journal? 

a journal my friend is the perfect vessel to fill up with all your dreams  |  desires|  wants  |  needs|  thoughts  |  feelings  |  expressions

breath in


ok, let's try this.  i want you to close your eyes for a moment and let your thoughts wonder ....to anything AND everything.  no, go on....close your eyes for just a minute, breathing in deeply.  then answer the following questions.

what thoughts were swirling around, through you, within you?  what emotion and feelings surrounded you?   was your first thought your to-do list?  were you thinking about your desires for a particular object, thing, person?  or maybe you were thinking about what's to come in your life, whether good or bad.

THIS.  this is what a journal is for.

"Journaling has the power to reveal that which needs to be uncovered." 

a journal is....

   —  a place to inspire you every wish, thought, idea

   —  a place to record all your gratefuls & daily blessings

   —  a place to get creative { or messy with paint like i love to do }

   —  a place to let words and feelings wash over you to cleanse your soul

   —  a place to note the beautiful, funny, awe inspiring things your kids, parents, family & friends do

   —  a place to doodle or mind map or set schedules

   —  a place to safely place your heartwords

   —  a place to witness the highs and lows of life lived

   —  a place to figure out what | how | where to go next

   —  a place to write that LIFE list { what others may call a bucket list }

   —  a place to bear witness to the wonders of nature & the world around you

   —  a place to get in touch with your inner sanctum, your inner BE-ingness { yes. even this. }

   —  a place to seek ...and find your true, authentic, warrior goddess SELF

   —  a place to shout out loud ... to whisper ... to growl ... to smile ... to inhale breath and, most importantly, to exhale the wonder of YOU living life one moment at a time.

find your haPPy place inside your journal.

write your heartwords.

take time for YOU.


total love headed your way today,


p.s.  sign up below to get my FREE pdf on how to start your own journaling practice.  read more here and here and here about the myths and benefits of journaling.

UPDATE: if you're friends with me on instagram you probably have already seen the sneak peeks i've been posting about what's to come for my shop re-opening.  stay tuned later this week for more info here on the blog.  so flipping excited y'all that my shop's coming back! { i missed creating books for you }

-Ing Factor journaling { find out how it works }

-Ing Factor Journaling

saturday's journal entry

{ see below on how to access pdf  using -Ing Factor words }

today was...

waking up early even though it's a saturday because my body clock doesn't know days of the week { yet }...deciding to go back to sleep but can't cause brain says that sh*t ain't happening...pulling out the laptop to check email and getting swept up in beautiful videos of artists creating their stuff, lots of pulling out what wasn't there before...

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tiptoeing out to the living room an hour later cause now i'm really awake and need the sweet, funny, crazy interaction of family....remembering that they all went to sleep very, very late and won't be up for couple more hours at least, then slowly turning and heading back to bed disappointed...

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not knowing what to do so sitting twiddling thumbs and laughing inside at myself because i'm usually a stickler for the the silence of ordinary days yet here i am waiting for the buzz of this family within these walls we call home....remembering also that my eldest will be leaving in 2 days for his new base and missing him tremendously already, my heart already weeping at not having him near to cuddle at will....

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feeling the nub of hunger beginning and thinking about what will not make any noise preparing it all the while knowing that whatever i eat will not bring the bloated, yucky feeling cause happily i cut out all starch and am eating more healthy foods so that my body can feel as beautiful as my SOUL-heart feels......

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dreading the housework that will fill up my morning later but then feeling good as i begin to clean cause that feeling always slides in as the mess disappears and the cleanliness takes over { momentarily of course }....getting ready to visit the tax dr { as i see them } to put 2015 to rest and glad that some person is willing to learn all the gobbledygook of brain hurt info that is necessary so we can be all good with the feds 'n state peeps for another year....

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loving intensely the silence of this ordinary saturday afternoon { yeh, smiles }  as i sit on the couch listening to the distant snores of family who are taking a catnap or probably a longer sleep { i've still got a teenager. nuff said right? }....

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remembering again the real good news we received this past week and feeling relief that the wait is over plus extreme gratefulness that we survived this period, both hubby and i going thru some serious angst and worry and despair at the loss of control but now we're back in the saddle ready to ride again. woot, woot!....

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looking around this tiny space we've called home for the last 8 mths knowing in my heart that a better place is out there preparing itself for us to move into....smiling at one of the last adventures the family and i will go on tonight knowing that son leaves then daughter leaves to begin her own adulting life on her own a few weeks later.....

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knowing that empty nest head shenanigans will kick into high gear again for me in a few weeks after saying goodbye & good luck to my 2 oldest, beautiful children and that tears will unexpectedly and often rain down my face without me knowing and choosing to sit in this space of heartache and happiness at the same time....relaxing with a glass of wine in my comfy clothes watching who knows what on the telly while also sneaking in a bit of work on the laptop.....

smiling as another day comes to a close.


p.s. download the FREE -Ing Factor Journaling pdffrom my new JLT Resource Libraryhere, where you'll find fun and helpful downloadable pdf's & printables plus videos and tutorials on all sorts of interesting topics ready to jumpstart your creative journaling practice.

btw....stay tuned for the new SPECTRUM giveaway coming up the next in 3 days!

what is all this buzz about having an inner superpower???

about 4 years ago perusing some blogs i came across this question...

what's your superpower?

the immediate thought that came up for me was:

....what the heck is that? ....personal superpower actually exist? ....do i even have a superpower?

in that moment questions, or rather lots of puzzlement came up because i didn't know much about it and that everyone had one, plus, what the heck was mine???  i remember sitting there with that duh look on my face trying to figure out how me and this question fit together.

because it puzzled me so you would think that i went off in search of what my superpower was right? nope. after a couple of days i let the question falter.  i left it by the side of the road where i met it and walked on.  c'est la vie.

fast forward to late last year, in my previous mastermind group, this question met up with me again.

What's Your SuperPower?
What's Your SuperPower?

and lo and behold, as i read the question, something immediately popped into my head.  my superpower is being quiet. what?????  seems since my 1st encounter with that question it must have done some subconscious pondering because i knew.  i just knew.

in the last few months i have been concentrating on a quest i set out to do.  i got it in my head that i want to create a Journaling REVOLUTION, gathering people together and getting them to embrace the awesome power of journaling.

{ click on the button below to hear what my friend liz recorded for me.  so cool! }

it dawned on me today......my superpower and my purpose are beginning to align { how wonderfully perfectly awesome is that! }.

i want people...ah, scratch that ...i want YOU....to know that being quiet, getting introspective and reflecting on circumstances, events, thoughts that happen to you and writing about them is one of the most beneficial, empowering, awe inspiring acts of self love you can do for yourself.

to go quiet, to head inward and sit a while; to allow your SOUL center, your inner goddess complete access to your outer reality can help to inform your being on such a deep, magical level it can be....well, orgasmic { yeh, i went there }.  that centerspace is where your superpower reigns.  this is what The JOY Work Circle is about.

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being quiet and writing your heartwords.


so...... what's your superpower?

{ leave a comment below to share your thoughts on your brilliant superpower and how SHE helps you be you }

take care,


guess what?  my JOY love newsletter has been hitting mailboxes all over the place.  if you haven't already signed up to get some free love { and JOY tidbits } use the box below to get in.

journaling with photographs

welcome back.  in the last 2 weeks we started the "beginning our journaling journey" by writing our thougths surrounding the 5 prompts in you found in my free pfd and last week, we did a bit of storytelling with our journaling. how was that for you?  tell below in the comments.  a few of you have checked in with me and i thank you for allowing me into your sacred space.

Journaling with Photos

what's on task for this week of SELF-Love journaling?

this week we'll be documenting  with photographs.  some of you are already familiar with documenting with photographs { scrapbookers definitely! }   but this time we'll be doing something a little bit different.  i want you to go to your large stock of photos of life & living you have on your hard drive or in a box or album somewhere.  have a good gander and choose 5 photos that bring up some sort of emotion for you.  

  • maybe it's one that made you guffaw with happy laughter the minute you pulled it out...
  • maybe it's the one that brought on a rush of sadness.  hold up now...don't put it away.  these types of photos are perfect to access some much needed introspection and clarity...
  • maybe its one of you as a young child or one of your kids {or niece, nephew, cousin } years ago...
  •  or maybe it's a photo of a time that brings back such vivid memories, almost like you can plant yourself in the picture and hear and see exactly what's going on.

pick 5.  one for each day this week.  tuck 4 of them in the back of your journal for later journaling and write about what you see in the 1st photograph.  let the words flow.  access that inner sanctum that you  sometimes choose not to enter.

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="yes" overflow="visible"][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="no" center_content="no" min_height="none"][bctt tweet="Just go there. Write your heartwords.  Journal your SOUL."]

remember, this is YOUR space.  for your eyes only.

now go......begin your february visual journey.


are you 100% in? { feb journal prompt/1 }

where in my life am i not 100% in?where am i working hard to move forward but subconsciously holding myself back? ~ amber bonicci

i read these words in a newsletter i received today and got stopped in my tracks.  how did she know i was in overwhelm this morn?  how did she know there were thoughts of "what's it all for?" ringing in my ear.

Are you 100% in?

she didn't of course.  but the Universe did.  the Universe heard my query, saw my waryness and sent this message to me to hang in there, to keep going, the rewards will pay off and to....

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="yes" overflow="visible"][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="no" center_content="no" min_height="none"][bctt tweet="Remember the bigger picture."]

and boy do i know i'm in that space of uncertainty and query when i knowingly choose to do housework instead of sitting at my desk and working { duh right? } or when i allow myself to go down the rabbit hole of blog reading { or binge watching youtube art videos..heck yeh! } that has nothing to do with what i'm doing or need to do.

yeh, i was in overwhelm and needed a jolt that came in the form of those words planted in my inbox { btw....i got that email yesterday and didn't open until today cause i didn't have the time.  today i did }.

so now your turn.

in which way are you not 100% in?

are you finding yourself a bit like i was today...dragging, trying to gather up the energy to move another step closer to the goal, wondering if you actually have it in you to do it, to attain that 1oo%?

it can be daunting and scary to be in that doubt.  i know as well that that space of tranquility and certainty can be difficult to access when the gremlins are constantly tapping you on the shoulder reminding you that deep shit is possibly on the way. but....

i believe it's in these moments, these precious moments in our lives that we need to step back from the mess piling up in our heads, to seek a different avenue, to go to our store of self-care ideas and pull one out to restore the imbalance.

i know this. i do.  and today......today i got a reprieve.

thank you Universe.

thank you fate.           thank you serendipity.

100% is looking once again like it can be done.  i can do this.

can you?  if you find yourself in this space go get your journal and write.  write your heartwords.  release all that junk of uncertainty into a space you that's always available to you. write until you're dry of words, relief spreads over you, and you can see that 100% light again.

take care,


p.s.  if you're in a space where you need a shoulder i am over here for you making space. email me or leave a comment below and release.

#makingspace        #holdingspace        #creatingspace