Works For Me: Mother’s Notebook

Next time I’m asked for my best advice for mombloggers, I have a new resource I’m going to recommend.

The publishers of Writing Motherhood (by Lisa Garrigues) sent me a copy of their book to review.  And while it’s not a resource about blogging, it’s purely about content and writing–an extremely important element in a successful blog.  It’s geared entirely toward women who are looking for creative ways to express the ups and downs of motherhood, and it’s full of practical advice and some really good writing prompts.  Books about writing sometimes fall flat, honestly–it’s a hard skill to teach someone.  But this book delivers helpfully concrete tips, like this one, from page 28:

In my experience, writing to a time limit prompts me to speedwrite, helping me outrun my inner critic, while writing to a page count encourages me to freewrite, letting me fall into the rhythm of my breath as I find my own pace.  You decide what works for you,  But whether you write for two pages or fifteen minutes, once you begin, try not to stop until you reach the finish line.

One of the most practical tips I took with me–and one I’ve implemented in my own life–is the idea of a “mother’s notebook”.  It’s little more than a journal, really, and I’ve adapted the author’s recommendations for this notebook to fit my own life.  I’m keeping it as a record of our daily events–the things that are too private or too routine to write in a blog post.  I’m not worrying about form or even complete sentences, I’m just jotting down events and emotions I want to reminder.  And I’m trying to do it every day.  I think that, especially when you’re a blogger, having a private place to write is actually quite therapeutic.

I highly recommend Writing Motherhood, especially if you’re interested in honing your skills as a writing mom.

: : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : :

Leave your Works-For-Me Wednesday links below.  First timers, check out the guidelines herePlease note that the links will close at 8 pm CST tonight, in order to keep away the spammers! And please, no political posts.

Was your link deleted?  Click here.

1. What About Mom (Fanny\’s Dream)
2. The Well-Rounded Woman( You put WHAT in your cookies)
3. Happy To Be At Home (erasable pens)
4. Daiquiri (Blogger tips & tricks)
5. Memarie Lane (pregnancy pedicure)
6. The Diaper Diaries (nightly routine)
7. Amy @ MomsToolbox (Hurricane fridge)
8. A Simple Walk (homeschool assignment sheets)
9. Mother Hen (Wicked-Delicious Beans
10. Hotomom (Barbie Storage)
11. Stretch Mark Mama (Eco-Friendly Tub and Tile Cleaner)
12. Alison @ Wholesome Goodness (Teeccino Herbal Coffee Recipes)
13. Laura @ Heavenly Homemakers (Eating Healthy – You CAN do it!)
14. My Precious Pennies {TV Trays!}
15. Christa @ No End in Site (pancakes witha twist!)
16. Soy (Fall Craft Project)
17. Many Little Blessings (Calling Cards plus Free Download)
18. Green Baby Guide (More Exciting Lunches)
19. Jenn @ Casa de Castro (Guest\’s Hospitality Basket)
20. Alexandra(Signs That Your Cloth Diapers Need Stripping)
21. HeresTheDiehl (Dining out with kids)
22. Kat (Master Your Menu Plan)
23. Cindy (a stand-in for medicine)
24. Mother Hen (Walkin\’ th\’ Dog)
25. I\’d Rather Be Writing (Create Video Tutorials)
26. The Apron Queen (Hurricane Ike- Guardian Angels)
27. Thrifty Jinxy (Easy Homemade Dishwasher Detergent)
28. Alissa@Life Soup (kids junk mail)
29. Penny Raine cooking improv
30. Bring on the Lloyds… (Better Mac & Cheese)
31. Kirsty @ Momedy-Bread Making for the Domestically Challenged
32. Shane (blog design and giveaway)
33. Melanie (cheap dress-up skirt)
34. mzzterry (tips for using LEMONs)
35. Buzzings of a Queen Bee! (Unique Wedding Gift Idea)
36. Kristin (Yard Sales Picture coming)
37. The Happy Housewife (Calendar Tips)
38. Shanda (passing notes in church)
39. Homeschool Classroom (Teaching Life Skills)
40. Domestic Spaz (BACON SMELLS BAD!)
41. Raise Them Up (No More Tipped Umbrellas!)
42. Callapidder Days (Texting for Grown-ups)
43. Lori ~ Simple Life at Home (Kitchen Step Saver)
44. Crayl, (Safe leftovers)
45. This Girl\’s Life (Simplified Laundry)
46. Joanna @ One Krusty Mama (dry erase board for organization)
47. Peanut (Cutting Onions)
48. Muses of Megret (Book Basket)
49. MamaMay @ Christ, Coffeem and Knitting Needles (finding good coupons)
50. Elbows On Our Table (Money Arguments)
51. The Gluten-Free Homemaker (easy dinner)
52. margalit (Almond maple granola recipe)
53. Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolates (Avon Jewelry)
54. Barbara H. (Leftover rice)
55. Munchkinheads (Liter Pan)
56. Shades of Shannon (Peppermint Bark Recipe)
57. GROCERY CART CHALLENGE (stretch the life of your groceries)
58. Kristin – The Goat (Excellent Battery Vacuum)
59. Runningamuck (Rid your thighs of bumpy skin)
60. Deb (method for managing snacks)
61. Lee (glow sticks revisited)
62. Amy @ Finer Things (Crowd Pleasing Cavatini)
63. momsfrugal(Herbs and Eggs, kombucha)
64. Mishmash Maggie (Home school Desk)
65. Organising Queen (dealing with paper clutter)
66. Catherine (free barter blog advertising)
67. Miche@Coordinated Chaos -rainy day kid activity
68. Sarah (apple heads)
69. 2nd Cup (Fun egg “trick”)
70. Leanne – Yarn Stash
71. John Deere Mom (sticker art)
72. Mary Ann\’s House(selling books)
73. Robin@Heart of Wisdom (Assumptions review)
74. BusyMom (Child Resistant to Change)
75. Mandi (Internet-Wide Gift Registry)
76. Kim (countdown to Christmas)
77. Renee @ Count It Pure Joy
78. flexible dreams (5 great blog tips)
79. Sherry @ Lamp Unto My Feet (Yellow Cake from Scratch, Funny)
80. JessieLeigh (Closely-Spaced Siblings)
81. Slacker Mom (Record Keeping)
82. Jen (Best Booster Seat EVER)
83. chocolatechic (fun heathy snack)
84. Mrs. Sprinkles (Organizing Books–LibraryThing)
85. Judy (getting my kids to clean)
86. Summer (Benadryl could save your life)
87. Chel\’s Legacy (Brush your Teeth!)
88. Chelsey @ Brown Eyed Basics (Running and why it\’s good for you)
89. Andrea (Braun Family Circus)
90. calina (watercolor markers)
91. Braun Family Circus (pigs in a blanket)
92. Amy (Cinnamon Syrup)
93. Miss Mommy (Clean Toddler Teeth)
94. 100 Acre Wood (TV rules)
95. Michelle (Toilet Paper)
96. Lynn (Kitchen To Do List)
97. Free 2 Be Frugal
98. Camian Academy (Five Outfits)
99. MG (Have iPod, Get This!)
100. Sheila ~ To Love, Honor and Vacuum (Privileges Chart to Help Kids\’ Attitudes!)
101. Patrice @ Blessings Amid Chaos (fixin\’ attitudes, saving gas)
102. Sonshine (easy testmaker)
103. jodi @ bpr (to-do list that works!)
104. Tami (Election Bible Verse)
105. nottryingforaboy
106. Amy @ By His Grace (Easy, Breezy Pie)
107. nottryingforaboy (plastic bag storage)
108. cool dad (Midday meals for misers)
109. Amy W (freezing juice dribbles)
110. Quiet Quandaries (Teaching Spelling)
111. Carrie (Housework Organization)
112. Brooke (High Heels)
113. The Not Quite Crunchy Parent(Getting Kids To Tell You About Their Day)
114. Herb of Grace (cheap dates!)
115. Conversion Diary (Simple Display for Dinner Menus)
116. TX Poppet (Seed Harvest)
117. Kris @ Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers (Freezer Meals)
118. twomoms and a little lady (organizing the week without flying)
119. Emily @ Little Home (money managing software)
120. Gina (Chicken Tenders at Target)
121. Christine (how to be the perfect parent!)
122. Kate@AmbroseHome (Thank You Notes)
123. Olivia (eating at a wedding)
124. Petersonclan (Owning a Horse)
125. Terri @ Funny Farm – May I Help You (painting tip)
126. Ames (toasty toes)
127. April(reusing pet food bags)
128. Halfway To A Dozen (Organize Homeschool Books)
129. Lines (cooking spices)
130. Candace (yummy & easy pie)
131. Jeni (smooth & silky)
132. ohhollyf-hair & rockin
133. slawebb (journaling w/ kids)
134. Elisa (yogurt or milk?)
135. Superpaige (bargain shopping
136. Cindy (cleaning tile floors)
137. Growing Great Kids – Fun Activity!
138. Saving Sisters (Soft baked cookies!)
139. Gina (storing sheets)
140. Full of Boys (starting to go green)
141. Michelle (potty training)
142. MamaHenClucks(Quiet Backseat)
143. A Frugal Housewife (Wishspot)
144. T with Honey (limit interruptions)
145. Milehimama (Emergency Cooking)
146. mom2my9 (wood-burning stove)
147. Jen M (vacuum efficiently)
148. Tami @ Muddlin Thru Motherhood (iced coffee recipe)
149. Catherine at Frugal Homemaker Plus (taming my e-mail, thanks to Simple Mom)
150. Tamara (Greeting Card Usage)
151. Superchikk (Teething)
152. Nichole (free stuff!)
153. KLee (must haves for baby)
154. Amy (BeyondJEMS) Blog Action Day 2008 – Poverty
155. Sandra (preschool fall wreath)
156. Jenn (The End of Nagging)
157. just another day in paradise
158. Abbi (aprons and yummy cinnamon rolls)
159. Ann (surfing efficiently)
160. Katie (Drinking More Water)
161. Maren – homemade dog food
162. Nichole @ A Call to Higher Places (Help with ANTS!!!!!)
163. butler5 (Teething, Travel and Balancing the Checkbook)
164. Kathy~Bona Vita
165. Amy (What works for me on Wednesday)
166. Lorrie (homemade pear juice)
167. New Diva–Good for What Ails Ya
168. Betty Beguiles (Lovely Homecomings for your Husband)
169. Kaye (Ooey Gooey Chocolatey Goodness)
170. Maria – Freezing Basil
171. Tari at Grass Widow\’s Diary (hurricane advice)
172. $5 Dinners (Power Outage Edition)
173. Melinda (moving tip)
174. Amyswandering (Select Comfort Bed)
175. Tonya (Planning your own Disney Trip)
176. Amy
177. Hope@Pinkadoodledoo (Weight Loss Accountability)
178. Wani (cheap craft s

179. Fuschia (S*x Ed at Home)
180. Tara@Not So Perfect(Shampoo Bar)
181. Ranee @ Arabian Knits (Easy Hot Breakfasts)
182. Having Fun at Home (run-and-jump couch)
183. Nicole @ Motherhood Musings (Homemade Lunchables)
184. Hadias (Homemade Dried Herbs)
185. Kris (cheap dates with your mate)
186. Hadias (Homemade Granola w/pics)
187. Jenna (Easy beading craft for kids!)
188. Amy (calendar stickies)
189. Suzanne :: Adventures in Daily Living :: (recent comments widget)
190. Ann\’Re @ Home (Math & Dice)
191. Lizzie(homemade pumpkin latte)
192. Kim (Veet hair removal)
193. Tanya (teacher appreciation)
194. Ryann (breakfast muffins w/ recipes)
195. The Frugal Mom Blog (Make Your Own Play Dough)
196. SH (Elder Care Ideas Needed)
197. Heather L. (Free Up Closet Space)
198. The Fat Bottomed Girl (Creamier Salads)
199. EmilyV (Teaching Home Schooled Students)
200. Sandi (walks without strollers)
201. Lori (Meal Planning)
202. Lisa (Making Faces! Fun, easy craft game)
203. Annie {Cucumber Sandwich}
204. Fishbowl Sense – Re-using a Tissue Box
205. Laney (Halloween Pottery)
206. Thia (receiving blankets)
207. Leslie (Kids Schedule)
208. CarolinaMama (Great Music & a Music Giveaway!
209. Kimi@ The Nourishing Gourmet (Incorporating Coconut oil into your daily cooking)
210. Sarah @ Short Stop (online grocery shopping)
211. Stacy (Roasting Tomatoes)
212. Mandy (Spaghetti and a New Glass)
213. Herrmann Family Homemaker
214. Polly (Cure all cleaner)
215. Rachel (Giving through Compassion)
216. Jennifer (Planning for Christmas)
217. Rhen @ YESTHEYAREALLMINE- (dryer sheets)
218. “Cents”able Momma – Magic Eraser
219. Boysmum2 (Love)
220. Veggiemomof2 (sanitizing toothbrushes)
221. Ang (in hindsight)
222. Jacquelyn: Because I Said So! (my brain hurts! how to stretch hairbands!)
223. Everything Mom (Saving space in a nursery)
224. Hadias (FREE STUFF)
225. Stacy (Stretching Frosting)
226. Kristine (sharpies and toddlers)
227. Laane (make files in agenda)
228. Amber (Easy Schedule)
229. Katie @ Perfectly Cloudy (Soft, Smooth Skin)
230. Kristine (personalized gifts)
231. Mozi Esme\’s Mommy (Kid Crafts)
232. Mel @ A Box of Chocolates
233. Ramblings Of Casey (Laundry)
Totallyscrappy (5 minutes of peace)

235. Leigh @ Bright Shining Moments
236. Julie Stiles Mills (veggie box)
237. Weighing In (Organizing on a budget)
238. a suburban housewife (Scrubbing Bubbles Gel Stamp Toilet Cleaner)
239. Kerry (applesauce)
240. Sunshine (Remembering Birthdays)
241. Learning By Living (After Thanksgiving Day Sale Tips)
242. Mary@notbefore7 (displaying kids work)

Powered by… Mister Linky’s Magical Widgets.

Links are now closed. Join us next week!

83 thoughts on “Works For Me: Mother’s Notebook

  1. Amy @ MomsToolbox says:

    Sounds like something to add to my wish list for Christmas…
    And I agree with your takeaway tip… Keeping a private journal for writing just for myself and God is a great tool for me, as well. There are just some things I need to get out, but not share.

  2. Kirsty says:

    Thanks for the reminder. I keep meaning to do this more consistently. That amazingly funny/touching/exasperating moment that you just know you will never forget is often gone just hours later 😦 I will get that notebook more handy! Thanks 🙂

  3. Buzzings of a Queen Bee says:

    I really like the idea of a mother’s notebook. I recently bought cute little notebook to record my daughter’s sayings and quirks (she’s two), but maybe will expand it to record a bit more. I do think that frequently I am inhibited to write my heart because I am busy thinking about what other people will say when they read it. A mother’s notebook would maybe be the remedy for that. Thank you! 🙂

  4. Rachel says:

    A mother’s notebook is a great idea. I tried to record little details early in my son’s life, and I did pretty well until he became a toddler and I found myself running more than writing. It would be great to get back in the habit!

  5. Peanut says:

    I really like that idea. And I’m definitely going to take a look at that book. I find I am full of feelings about this motherhood thing, but have difficulty trying to figure out how to get them out into words that others will understand. I have been keeping a notebook handy just to write stuff down, but didn’t think to use it also as a private journal. That is a very good idea. And I like that it doesn’t have to be organized.

  6. Stretch Mark Mama says:

    I am totally cracking up at the “election posts” line, imagining all sorts of snarky sneaky WFMW tips. Course, none so funny that I’d type them here. But in my own strange world? I had a nice chuckle. (Don’t mind me. Just goin’ to my Happy Place.)

  7. Sarah says:

    Great book. I will definitely have to check it out. I used to be a prayer journaler before blogging. Time to get back on track and remember who wants to hear my thoughts the most – God!
    Tune into Martha Stewart today to see celebrity bloggers Perez Hilton and others. I’ll be live blogging from the audience.
    Take care and have a great day!

  8. BusyMom says:

    I keep a personal journal. Not only is it therapeutic when I am trying to work through something in my head, it is a great resource to go back to when I am trying to do scrapbooking (although time limits me here) so that I can put more information into the journaling and remember those funny little stories that might have slipt my mind otherwise.

  9. J says:

    I keep a personal journal along with my blog and it is nice – I don’t always get around to writing as much as I do with my blog but it definitely is nice to have someplace to put my most personal thoughts.
    Sounds like a great book – can’t wait to check it out!

  10. Donna says:

    I have the best of intentions when it comes to journaling, but with two preschoolers at home, I haven’t yet found the balance of time and energy. The book sounds great…maybe it’s what I need to get motivated! I love to write!

  11. rachel says:

    I really like the mother journal. I’m doing a variation on this. I (occasionally–I’m not very good at it!) write my kids a note in “their” book. I include things I want them to know when they grow up that I might forget (or not be here) to tell them. I just use cheapy composition books. It works for me.

  12. Donna @ The Frugal Mom Blog says:

    This sounds like a great idea. After cleaning out our storage area for an upcoming tag sale, I discovered scraps of paper in my scrapbooking totes filled with little snippets of what the kids were doing and saying a few years ago. I wish I had recorded them better. A journal might be the way to go!

  13. Kristin says:

    my husband and i keep a journal together for each of our kids – we record funny sayings and events that the kids say or do. we also write our “thoughts” to them to read on their own someday. it’s amazing how quickly we can forget!

  14. Brooke says:

    I have many notebooks. I have one for each of my 4 children that I have kept since birth with stories about them.
    I have a “happy” notebook with an ongoing list of things that make me happy for those days when I forget I am happy. (motherhood can do that sometimes.)
    I have a quote notebook.
    I have a notebook from when I was a missionary in Guatemala for 18 months in which I wrote something I learned every day.
    These are in addition to my journal and my blog. Obviously I am committed to keep memories written down since my memory is like swiss cheese.

  15. Kathy C. says:

    That’s a great idea, even if you’re not a “writer” or aspiring one, to write down thoughts, experiences, etc… throughout your mothering years. I wish I had thought of that 19 years ago!!! 🙂
    Have a blessed day!

  16. Chel - An Abiding Branch says:

    I am a day late and a dollar short. I am sharing on Hair Care! lol. I should have had this one last week.
    Anyway, that book sounds wonderful! Do you charge to edit? Is that your profession, forgive me for not know if that is so. I am a writing, reading, teaching, speaking, ministry co-founding, full time working and going back to school mom! I need HELP!

  17. Kim says:

    I love the idea of keeping a journal. My grandmother did this daily, and wrote prayer requests (and answers to prayer) in it as well. After she passed, we grandkids each got one of the notebooks she kept. It was such an encouragement and inspiration to me even years later. It does our faith well to chronicle God’s work in our lives!

  18. Taryn says:

    Has there ever been a Pregnancy and Childbirth Works for Me Wednesday? One where people can share their pregnancy and labor tips? I would LOVE that, as a new mom at 7 mos. pregnant. Just a suggestion.

  19. Mandy says:

    Oh I just started this with the girls. We started at the beginning of summer but it quickly got put to the wayside. Now we fit it in right after homework while we are still in the groove. Can’t wait to read them 10 years from now. I mean I can wait, but you know what I mean….

  20. Anissa@Hope4Peyton says:

    Holy cow, I’m using her tip and I didn’t even know it! I always carry a little pink journal with me, to capture the feel of a moment or a turn of phrase that thrills me. Plus, if I do have a must-blog moment early in the day you can bet your butt that I’ll forget what was so darn funny by the time I sit down to the computer.

  21. Boysmum2 says:

    Family are always important and even though they are there all the time, we still need to be reminded everynow and then.
    Thanks for the reminder, even though I am lucky enough to be reminded everyday this week with my wedding on Saturday

  22. ann henley says:

    On Sept. 11th I posted about my notebooks that I keep on each child! You will be so happy if you do this because it’s hard to remember all of the little things our sweet ones do!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s