Mommy Needs to Journal

The other day I was talking with a good friend of mine (who is also a mom of young children) about how we used to spend time in the mornings journaling. (I can’t imagine what could be distracting us nowadays. Hmm.)

I really miss it.

I miss that time to reflect on what God is teaching me.

I miss that time to be still and quiet.

I miss the slow sips of coffee that I actually enjoyed.

But, I wouldn’t trade it for the joy my kids bring to me every morning. The pure, wild, joy they bring.

My friend mentioned that Sally Clarkson wrote a blog post once about journaling with her children every day, and I made a decision to do the same.

A week went by.

No journaling.

The lovely picture of journaling with my kids was still in my head.

Then, the Sunday morning service was about Re-discovering growth.  Colossians 2:6-7

This verse made me think back to when I first started to journal.

Now I wanted to journal, about how I used to journal.

At this point, I didn’t even just want to journal anymore,  I needed to journal.

After reading Casey’s post this past weekend about purposing worship with the kids every day I knew I needed to stop thinking about it, and just GO get the dang journals.

journals from dollar general

So, when I came back from the store, it was really exciting that my kids actually LOVED their journals and wanted to journal right away. “I’m so exciting!”  was the two year old’s reaction.

We journaled about the Sunday morning message – to WALK in Jesus in the way which we have been taught / are learning to do.


I traced the kids feet in their journals and I wrote the letters spelling out WALK inside their footprint.

tracing foot

I described to them how I make a cross while I drew one (it’s like a big rectangle “T” with one rectangle going up and down and one going across.)

I wrote Jesus’ name while singing the letters in his name to the tune “Bingo” and then gave them the pens and told the kids to write on top of my writing and/or to draw anything they want to on their own personal journal page.

journal entry about walking with Jesus

While they did this, I jotted down my own reflection in my journal.

I would have liked this to last 30 minutes, but I was content with two.  I finished the entry later that night after the kids went to bed.

I hope we keep it up.

Leave a comment if you have any ideas for journaling with your kids or tips for finding time to journal yourself.


School Bus Printable Fun

“I’m going to school on a bus today mom” says my 3 year old as he walks toward the door with his backpack on.  He doesn’t ride a bus to school so I reply, “Yes!  Let’s pretend to do that Sean Patrick.  Are you going to drive the bus or is the driver going to pick you up? ”  and the conversation continued as we made our way to the stairs where we pretended to be riding on a bus singing “Wheels on the Bus” and looking out the pretend window  pointing things out to each other.

I asked him what friends were riding with us in our imagination and he named his cousin and a few other friends.

This gave me the idea to make this:

Screen Shot of School Bus Freebie

He is obsessed with school buses.  He tells people when he is six he can ride the school bus.  I am hoping he gets to ride one on a field trip this year.

We have a school bus toy that we drive all over our neighborhood road rug that looks something like this:

Fun Time - Country Fun Kids Rugs - 39 x 58 in.

We read “Gus The Bus” pretty often and there are other great school bus books like  and  and obviously The Magic School Bus episodes and books are great.

So, he had a blast coloring his school bus picture…

SP bus printable

And he did a great job drawing the eyes on the faces… one was shaped like a square so he told me that Mckayla had a square eye haha.

bus printable with eyes


Anyway, click on the link below to download the FREE printable if you think your child would enjoy this too.  You can help your child practice sounding out their friend’s names or just writing the first letter in their name.  Have fun!

[purchase_link id=”3920″ style=”text link” color=”” text=”Download the School Bus Printable now… FREE”]

Handprint and Footprint ABCs

My sister came over yesterday with purple t-shirts and yellow-gold puff paint so that we could gear up for the Fall – cheering on our LSU Tigers.  We wanted to incorporate our kid’s handprints or footprints so we came up with this:

I will definitely be wearing this to the LSU games 🙂

So, this gave me the idea to make a book of the alphabet making each letter formation out of footprints, handprints, fingerprints, or a combination of all three.  This would be up to you and your little one to brainstorm ways to make each letter because that way it forces your little one to concentrate on the letter and problem solve in order to allow for better memory storing of the letter and letter recall.

If your little one is concentrating on letter sounds and words that begin with the letter sounds then you could make a handprint/footprint art book of pictures that start with A (angel) B (bear) and so on and so on…..if you choose to do the activity this way, I recommend this site:

If you do either one of these books, PLEASE  share pictures on the Mommy Teacher Facebook Page….I would love to see them 🙂

Journal Every Day

Today is a simple challenge to encourage you to be intentional about the writing process.   One of the first things I do for children to teach writing skills is to make a journal.  I have made writing templates for you so that all you have to do is print them and 3-whole punch them: click HERE to get them.

Every day date the top right of the page and brainstorm a topic to draw and write about.  I usually pick something that applies to our plans for the day or a reflection of what we did the night before.  Otherwise, I come up with something writing about a favorite candy or food, etc.

Then let your little one draw a picture free of any critiques or suggestions.  You can always give ideas if your little one is stumped but you dont want to squash their creative juices.  Then, guide your little one (dont dictate!) about how he/she will write: start all the way on the left side so you have room to write, write until you reach the end of the line and then start at the beginning of the next line.  Talk about spacing, height of the letters, and other print concepts, but DONT overwhelm or overteach.  Just give them tips and guidance (maybe just one new tip a day.  You will be surprised at their understandings over time.  Help them sound out words, but when you start dont focus on proper spelling, focus on the sounds they are actually hearing in the words.

If your little one asks: “So it that right?” Answer “Those are all the sounds you can hear in the word”

Later on you can show them the way that the word “looks in a book” by writing it out, but encourage them to sound out and write JUST the sounds they hear at first.


Drawing and Writing Printable

I got to be with my nieces for a little while yesterday, and my sweet niece Kaylee, at 5 years old asked me “Aunt Jessie, can you do some Kindergarten things with me?”  We were literally walking out the door when she asked me this and I thought, how can I say no to that? But knowing I would see her again today I said “I will bring something for us to do tomorrow when I come, okay?” She smiled and took the promise to heart.  So, the first thing I did when I got up this morning was to brainstorm some things I might bring to her.

One thing that I decided to bring was a homemade drawing and writing template because she is now at the stage where she wants to know how to spell everything.  Some children are at the point where they are only writing one word to label a picture they have drawn so I made one template with only one line under the space for the drawing.  However, some children are ready to write out one or two sentences describing their picture.  So I made a template with two lines for one sentence and three lines for another.

Writing Template with space for a few words

Writing Template with space for one sentence

Writing Template with space for two sentences

I plan to ask Kaylee to draw a picture for me and then
explain to her that the space at the bottom of the page is for her to write
about the picture.  Then, I am going to ask her to sound out the words and allow her to use inventive spelling.  Inventive spelling is when children simply write all the sounds they hear in the word.  But if they want to know how is actually spelled then I will show them the way that the word “looks in a book.”

But no matter how you use this template….as always, make it

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