In a Vase on Monday -(journaling) old favourites and new memories

Everything is going to work out just fine. Probably – Anonymous 

If you’ve read my blog for a while, you’d notice I like quotes nearly as much as I like taking photos, especially of flowers. One of the reasons, I take photos is to keep a records of things, what’s flowered when, whether it’s early or late, beautiful gardens and views, as well as nature in its widest sense. It helps me remember good times, and also reminds me where things are – literally like the bulbs, but also so I don’t have to remember things in my overloaded brain!

This week’s In A Vase on Monday, has alot of old favourites which have a good memories, including the vase and something new – the sign 🙂

  • A standard size Cerise pink dianthus and some pink and white dwarf dianthus.
  • lilac violas – these were part of our wedding centre pieces.
  • Fuchsia – this is a hardy one which grows outside our kitchen window – it was in a Vase last week.
  • The vase is recycled purple glass bought at the Eden Centre in Cornwall. It has appeared before, usually, with sweetpeas.  Most recently was  July 2016 (blissful), when I wrote about our engagement 🙂
  • The sign was given to me by a great friend. It also appeared in our wedding centre pieces.  You ALL know how much I like being in the garden 🙂

Cathy, who hosts the meme over at Rambling in the Garden, has some stunning orange and white amaryllis this week. I’ve never grown Amaryllis.   The idea of IAVOM is to pick, and display, flowers and plants from your garden or locality each Monday.  The diversity of vases from across the world is staggering. It’s wonderful to see the Spring across the world in Australia and New Zealand. Just what I need on a freezing cold but sunny day in Manchester.

Small purple glass bud vase with lilac violas, pink and white dianthus and pink fuchsia

29 November 2017 – In a Vase on Monday purple vase with dwarf lilac violas, pink dianthus and hardy fuchsia

I take photographs of all sorts of other things too, receipts, recipes, books to read, useful websites, notes I’ve made, etc.  I find it easier to have visual records, and use journals and lists. I use Trello for  electronic lists (I’ll write about that another time) and I’ve got a simple electronic diary shared with My Chap.

Writing things down, taking photos and also help with my planning, wellbeing and making memories, as well as self-care. Ive tried out bullet journals but it doesn’t work for me; I think it’s the pressure to complete things everyday.

So I thought I write about my daily planning and what journals/books I use. They definitely helps me with #365daysofselfare

My daily planning tools – journals, diaries and lists 

  • CalmCalm the Mind, Change the world by Michael Acton Smith

This is a lovely book – it explains mindfulness and meditation in a very straightforward, simple way and gives you ideas for activities in Nature, with Children, Food, Friends, etc.  It has quotes and poems too. It’s a pretty book which is why I’m reluctant to write in it 😉

I’ve had it a couple of years, and I dip in and out, using it to inspire activities or self-care depending on what I’m doing. Often, I use the gratitude, highlights and what’s made me feel calm today? How and note these down in my It’s going to be OK journal. 

I don’t use the app associated with Calm; mainly because I’ve never got around to downloading it 😦 I’m using the Headspace app at the moment, guided meditations on YouTube, and in particular, guided body scans. These connect well with my yoga practise too.

29 November 2017 – Calm Journal, Weekly Planner and It’s Gonna be Okay journal 

  • Stigu Journal – a rest and zest handbook I’ve written about Stigu before (including last week) and I’m just starting to fill in my 2018 Stigu.  It’s a mixture of a diary and a journal/note book. Each month has a theme – Reflect is November’s theme. The left page is for notes and suggestions for activities.  This week’s suggestion resonated with me – a puddle reflecting only what’s above it, for example clouds,  and keeping no ‘memory’ of what’s passed. Stigu asks us to imagine what our minds would be like if we could practise this?
  • Weekly Planner – from Sainsburys!   It has days of the week, notes and to do list. This is where all the detailed, mind dump, boring lists like the shopping!, reminders for bills, clothes for yoga, etc are recorded.
  • It’s Gonna be Okay – An inner truth journal. As the photos show, this has a quote on one side, date, What Im hanging hope on todayprevailing outlook for the day.   I use this as reminder of how my days gone, a narrative, notes – what’s gone well what hasn’t. The odd rant too.  It’s very much my secret, private thoughts. It has a quote for every day and sometimes I just flick through it looking at the quotes.

29 November 2017 – It’s Gonna be OK journal inside layout 

My Stigu journal and Its going to be OK journal also helps me record my symptoms too.  I don’t really use paper symptom or habit trackers – pressure to fill in boxes (or not fill them in!).  They’re a prompt to monitor my arthritis symptoms in a health app. I was part of a citizen scientist project, in 2017, called Cloudy with a Chance of Pain, which monitored the impact of the weather on arthritis and pain symptoms. The full results should be out next year. 

So for my #365daysofselfcare today, I went for a walk around Monton. It was freezing, but sunny skies and I wandered around taking photos.  Im very grateful to live where I do, close to woods and a canal, yet only six miles to the centre of Manchester.

My #selfcare plans this week include walking more and more gardening – #OneHourOutside and #bekind too

Do you use journals or diaries? Do you use them for selfcare or recording gratitude / positive events? Let me know in the comments or any suggestions you have

Carpe Diem

Love Bec xx xx xx 


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14 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday -(journaling) old favourites and new memories

  1. PrincessofVP

    I’m in Zone 2 in London. I have houseplants and a few squares of patio, upon which o can’t even keep a geranium alive. Yet this piece really spoke to me. I think because I’m finding life hard right now but this is about doing and continuing, it’s helped me have hope. Thank you.

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    1. Bec Post author

      Gardening and flowers really help me – lifting my mood. Even being outside for an hour. When I’m at work I walk to another building to eat lunch. Or sit outside if it’s not raining, I try to sit where I can see greenery. it seems to help. If your patio is v shady you could try woodland bulbs – anything like mini iris, crocuses, tete a tete daffs, and in the winter cyclamen. Imagine Dappled woodland shade. They don’t need alot doing to them – tulips too. You can plant at different times too. I’m absolutely rubbish with houseplants :-(.

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  2. Donna@GardensEyeView

    I love seeing the bright happy flowers in your vase….and wow that is a lot of journaling. I have a hard time journaling but do so on occasion and am religious about meditation too. These all help. I will have to check out your Stigu journal. I have been refining daily habits too as I heal my life and body….I’ll be sharing my journey with my walking habit in a couple of weeks….thanks for sharing all this!

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    1. Bec Post author

      Thank you 🙂 they’re bright aren’t they? I think it’s going to be shrubbery next week in the vase. My journaling is mostly bullet points and I don’t write in my blue journal every day. Stigu is great – no pressure to fill things in. Walking and mindfulness definitely help me.

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  3. MissPond

    I love these flowers Bec! So pretty 🙂 I have a good old Filofax at the moment. I found my bullet journal a bit triggering for my OCD so my counsellor has told me to avoid. I’m trying to only write down things I’ve accomplished too so I don’t feel too overwhelmed, that’s really helping. I’m glad your system is working for you 🙂 I also have the headspace app and it’s great!

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    1. Bec Post author

      Thanks Emma – they’re the last of the flowers in the garden – though bulbs are poking up – bit early. I used a filofax for years (note on one side diary on other) but started using Stigu as I’ve got big scruffy writing – bullet journaling is too much for me – I can’t even manage paper habit/symptom trackers. I think a ‘done list’ is good too. Love bec xx

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  4. Missy

    Sounds like you live in a stunning location. I really like your plan of one hour outside too. I wish i was good at flower arranging, they just never seem to look quite right when I try. A stunning collection of blooms in your vase though!

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    1. Bec Post author

      Monton is lovely – I’m planning on writing more about it – many woodland and canal walks. these flowers were plonked in the vase. If you look at hand tied bouquets on Web that should help your flower arranging 🙂

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  5. Noelle

    A lovely post with ideas of your life around your posy. Interesting bits about arthritis, looking forward to your views on the results of the survey when they are published. I use of a journal of sorts…not strictly and from time to time, when I feel that I need to organise things, get them down on paper, rather than have things flying round my brain. Much rather have time to stand and admire things like the wonderful sunset we had this evening.

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  6. Cathy

    What bright and cheerful flowers for the end of November, Bec, and good luck with your various journalling routines. I kept a kind of thought diary for many years as a teenager and again more recently but often used to write at great length and certainly wouldn’t have time these days – but then again I don’t have the same need to write as I did during those those periods

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