Works For Me Wednesday

About 5 years ago, I presented each of my older daughters with a journal. The idea was for this to be a shared diary, to be passed between my daughter and myself. We talk about recent happenings, hash out solutions for things that have been frustrating lately in our household, and share plans for things we’re looking forward to. I try to keep my contributions to the journal upbeat and encouraging– no lectures. I praise admirable character traits, and encourage each girl along in her endeavors and interests.

There are times when one of the journals gets stalled in my bedroom or theirs, and we go for months without writing. But somehow the journal is all the fresher for the little break. When the journal is resurrected we look back over our writing and remember where were were a few months or years ago. My daughters are 16 and 18 now. It is fun to see how the girls’ handwriting has changed over the years. The concerns and the interests change as well. I’m really glad we started this project. Years from now I think these journals will be a great reminder of our shared past and will probably be even more of a treasure than they are right now.

Now, just who had those things last, anyway? I need to do some writing…

For more Works For Me Wednesday participants, visit Rocks In My Dryer


  1. What a great idea! A shared journal…I never thought of that. We've got hers, mine, his, and this — but a dialog journal is something I think I will invite my girls to do with me.

  2. This is a great idea! I think I will write this one down and share with my kids. (If I have any!)

  3. THIS is a beautiful idea! While my own daughter is 25 and married…maybe I will gift a journal to her future grandbaby–!!!! It's definitely something that I will incorporate with my foster-grandchildren immediately!

    I am thankful you shared such a creative parenting tool…..and treasure today!


  4. The writer in me is tickled pink with this idea. How old were your girls when you started? My Libbyline is 10. I'd love to start doing that with her.

    Thanks for sharing!

  5. I am going to do this! Thank you for the fabulous idea.

    DD#1 is starting to write and I would love to have a record of how she spells things too. Nice (nise)!!!

  6. I am going out today to buy a journal for my daughters and I.

  7. I am going out today to buy a journal for my daughters and I.

  8. Lovely idea Owlhaven!

  9. I love the idea, and though I have only one daughter actually writing at this point, I'm sure the other two will be shortly! I'm going to pack this idea away for future reference! It is beautiful, and thank you for sharing!

  10. Wonderful idea, Mary! I'm definitely going to do this with my girls and I'm going to encourage my husband to do something similar with my son, when he gets older.

  11. I would have never thought of a sharing a journal. What a great idea!

  12. I think keeping the lines of communication open is one of the most important and challenging things about parenting…I have 3 daughters;one tells me everything, one tell me nothing and one is just learning to write, this suggestion couldn't have come at a better time, thanks!

  13. Thats a really cool idea! What a great way to keep up with the memories!

  14. What a Great idea!

  15. fantastic idea, mary!

    no doubt those journals are full of priceless memories of the funny things your younger kids have done. how fun to re read those when they're all older!

  16. I am LOVING that!!!! My oldest has a journalish book she writes in but the "shared journal" is such a great idea. Thanks for sharing that Mary!!

    Hey, have you heard of It's a parent's advice website. I write a lot of "worked for me" kind of stuff. Would you consider writing this post over there?? OR I could do it for you and give you all the clicky credit???

  17. What a wonderful treasure. I have all my journals from about age 13 on, but how much more special to have had my mom's thoughts! I'd love to do this for my girls. Never would have thought to share it.

  18. This is an awesome idea. With three girls, I'm always looking for ways to connect with each one indiviually. My oldest is six, so within the next year or so, we should be able to start this. Thanks for sharing, Mary!

  19. Now that is a good idea!! Thanks..since my kids are young, it's something we could start now and continue throughout their lives!

  20. I really like this, Mary. Especially the idea of encouragement and praise being available to them, in writing, any time they might want to read through for a bit of affirmation. Awesome!

  21. that is such a wonderful idea and what a treasure it becomes over the years. you don't do it with your sons?

  22. Wonderful idea Mary.

  23. I've written journals since elementary school. Unfortunately my mom lost that one and a good friend I trusted with my teenage one lost it also. So sad!!

  24. Great idea! I gotta do this one! Thanx.

  25. Anonymous says:

    My husband and I have a shared journal- I love it! When I have children, we may have to try this!

  26. I love this idea!

  27. Andi and I did that for years too. I would just find it under my pillow some nights. Then it would be my turn to write.

    My favorite entry – "Mom, you told me to tell you when I got my first kiss. It was tonight."

    This is a great way to keep communication open during teenage years.

  28. Ok, now that is just the greatest idea!!! Got to remember this one! 🙂