June 15, 2017

Diaries, Notebooks, Journals - Oh My! Tracy Krauss

I must admit that I have been thoroughly enjoying this month's contributions since I am a die-hard journaler from way back. Writing things down is such an integral part of my life that I'm not sure I could make sense of it otherwise.

I always take notes during sermons, workshops, or other teaching sessions. I don't always go back and read what I've written, but somehow taking notes helps me to listen and hopefully internalize what is being presented.

I keep a little notebook in my purse so that I can jot down random thoughts, snips of conversations, impressions, make lists, or even just doodle. Don't leave home without it!

I've found a daily log book or diary a wonderful way to keep track of what I do during a holiday. It's very useful when settling disputes that arise after the fact, and helps to make sense of all the pictures my husband takes. (He's the photographer. I'm too busy taking it in to bother with taking photographs.)

Pouring my heart out onto a page helps me process the difficult times, and brings my hopes and dreams into focus. This is my primary journalling activity and I've filled countless books of all shapes and sizes. I decided to gather them all up into a banker's box, but I had to start box number two earlier this year since I couldn't squeeze even one more in. I enjoy flipping through these journals. I can see how I've grown and changed, as well as see the patterns that have emerged over time.

Finally, one of my favourite journalling activities is to write out my prayers. I'm currently using a little monthly prayer journal that I developed last summer called 'Thirty Days of Targeted Prayer'. In it I pray about something specific each day. But even without that little tool, my journals tend to be a mixture of prayers, musings, and a record of events. I don't try to keep everything separate (except for the one prayer journal) but just let it all flow together.

I realized how much I rely on my journalling habits recently when I underwent open heart surgery. Obviously, I didn't write anything for a couple of days and even after that I found I didn't have the strength to write more than a few sentences for several days afterwards. However, the desire to record my thoughts was strong and I tried using the 'record' option on my phone. It wasn't quite the same, but I can see where this would be a useful tool for chronic journalers who can't physically write for whatever reason.

I've wondered if anyone will ever read what I've written. I've caught myself censoring my thoughts a time or two with that in mind, but most of the time I just pour out my soul, come what may. For me it is less about leaving a legacy and more about processing life.

Tracy Krauss journals (among other things) from her home in northern BC. Visit her website: http://tracykrauss.com   -fiction on the edge without crossing the line- 


  1. Tracy,
    I can relate to much of what you shared. "I've wondered if anyone will ever read what I've written." Yes, sometimes that's a scary thought, but by then we probably won't be around. Hopefully the way we processed our lives will be a helpful legacy to whoever happens to read our thoughts!

    1. I have many of my mother's old journals and I have to admit I haven't gotten around to reading much in them yet. Perhaps i will have time this summer...

  2. I pray, Tracy, that God will help you use this time of slower living as a growth period for you and restore you to peace, joy and good health.

  3. I've enjoyed this month's theme as well. Hearing the different thoughts about journal writing has been so interesting. I wouldn't be able to have my mother's journals in my possession and not read them. I so wish she would have written something for me - even a letter. I hear you when you say, that you have censored some of your own writing in your journals.

    1. Hi Tracy, Thank you for this post on your journals! I was just looking at my variety of journals. I have journals that were for a season of life, notebooks for good (counselling) notes and resources, sermon/podcast notes, prayers and last week I started a journal for interesting quotes. I've also been thinking of starting a gratitude journal too. I wish my Grandma (woman of faith) had left some journals, I would love to have read any kind of random thoughts she had as a younger woman.


Thank you for taking the time to join in the conversation. Our writers appreciate receiving your feedback on posts you have found helpful or meaningful in some way.