mom + me journals

i am so incredibly happy to be guest posting at this most fun and darling blog today!

i would do anything for my sweet friend mandi, and i have never met the girl in real life!

(i also have a love for exclamation marks.)

i would have to say that i am pretty well versed in all things girl, i do have three of my own, and have a strong desire that our mother + daughter relationship be pretty incredible.  i saw an idea similar to this on pinterest, where the creator took a regular composition book, and added a tag on the cover that read: “mama and me” (source here).  now that idea was great, i just wanted to make it a little more exciting, a little more enticing to my sweet girls.  i would love to share with you how i created these fun mom + me journals for my oldest two.  they are already proving to be a lot of fun, and i am hoping that one day, they will make awesome keepsakes.

what you’ll need:

– a black and white composition notebook

– darling paper

– sweet embellishments

– glue of your choice (we’ll address those choices later.)

– distressing tools; i.e. inks, sandpaper or nail files, mists, chalks, etc.  (if you would like to.)

– ribbon

– fabric

– hot glue gun

– paper trimmer, scissors, 1/2 inch corner rounder

1. design.  i like to design all my hybrid projects in elements first, that way i can see how things lay out and even have a blueprint for later if needed.  it is easier to manipulate digital elements on a screen, then physical ones, after you have gone to the trouble of printing and cutting.  i also add any text, unless i have rub-ons or stamps i really want to use and am feeling particularly confident in my skills that day.

2.  print.  presentation paper is key here, and the best quality at that.  make sure your printer settings are set to “presentation”, so it comes out beautifully.

3. cut and round.  cut your papers just a bit wider than your cover (you will want it to cover that black binding just a bit), and cut it as close as you can length wise.  round the two right side corners (top and bottom).

*now, don’t freak out when you see that black & white peeking out just a bit there.  distressing later on will buff it away.*

4. cut + glue cover pieces.  don’t grab a drink, don’t grab a snack even.  grab some tunes, something nice and relaxing, and cut out all of your pretty little embellishments.  be patient.

(i used my cricut on the scalloped circles, i did not have a punch that big, and i was also short on the sanity it would take to cut those out.)

in this step, you want to glue down the cover pieces only.

now as for the glue part of this equation, what kind of glue to use?  i have done these with a good old glue stick, i have used tombow mono liquid glue, but by far, may favorite is my xyron.  you have to be pretty precise, but you get a nice edge to edge bond that is permanent.  just remember, i doesn’t work to put a wet adhesive over a dry adhesive.  it will bubble your bottom layer.

5. distress.  i prefer a grungier look.  it helps to hide the wear and tear these babies will get in the days to come.  i prefer using a nail file on the edges.

you can add chalk, paint, ink, mists after that.

i love my “tattered angels” chalkboard mist (and i am not paid to say that).  this guy, in “sprout” matched my color scheme.  it gives the slightest bit of color+glimmer.  gorgeous.

i placed paper towels between the covers and the pages to protect the pages from over-spray.

6. glam.  while the books are drying, i glam up my pieces that need a little glam.  i used “tattered angels” again, this time their “glimmer glam – glitter paint”  in the color “chandelier”.

7. glue more stuff!  now is when you get to glue down all the stuff that you have painstakingly cut out.

**make sure you are gluing to the front cover so you won’t have upside down paper though on the inside.**

glue down only the embellishments that you want to stay flat.  i did not glue down my butterflies yet, i wanted their wings to have a little movement, so they came later.

8. mark it and bind it.  this is where the ribbon comes in.  i cut a piece about 4 inches longer than the length of my book.  i took a lighter and slightly melted the end that would be dangling out from the bottom of my book to ensure that the ribbon wouldn’t fray or unravel.  a little dab of hot glue at the top of the binding does the trick to attach this.

as for the binding..

cut a piece of fabric about 6 inches wide (enough to fold in half and cover both sides of the binding on your book) and an inch longer than the length of your book.  fold that in half lengthwise and then fold in your edges a half of an inch or so.

sew the edge.  or glue it.

fold the other end just enough so this piece will neatly cover your black binding.

9. now attach any other sweet embellishments you desire!  get ready to enjoy some of the fun and darling questions your kiddos will have to ask you, and be ready to fire some pretty creative ones back.  i have already been asked,  “what is your favorite type of carpet?”  that one took me a while to ponder.  i finally answered, “shag.”

pretty fun, right?

but it gets funner.

there is a give away too!!

mandi made some for her kiddos..  seriously, makes me want a little boy!

we have one girly journal and one little guy journal to give away:

To be entered:

leave us a comment: what questions do you hope your kiddos will ask you, or what would you like to ask them?

we’ll pick two winners.

(specify if you would like the little guy or the little girl one please!)

thanks for having me!! xox

products used:

cosmo cricket- clementine papers and clementine candy candy (girl’s journal) and mr. campy paper

echo park- charming full kit

kitschy digitals- monotone fresh feathers (desaturated)

14 thoughts on “mom + me journals

  1. Pingback: Mommy and Me Journals

  2. Thank you, Thank you!! I started a Mommy and Me journal on Saturday with my 7-year-old daughter and it has been so good for us! We have already filled 6 pages of fun, serious and whimsical questions and answers. She’s a talker and this is just perfect for her. Plus I would never have known that the person she would most like to meet is a poor man so that she could give him money (so sweet!) or that her favorite thing to do at dance class is dance. 😉 She has learned all about my BFF from high school and I now know that she prefers a different color of nail polish on her fingers than her toes. I accidentally messed up on one of my questions and just ran with it: If you were on a desserted island, what three desserts would you search for first? 😉 I too am excited to see how the conversation changes over time. My daughter recently discovered the “English Roses” book series. This one has tons of questions that the girls answer and then blank ones to answer in the back. She is using those ideas to ask me questions. I also found some fun questions in our Cranium game: What would we talk about at the beach? How many feet could I fling a spoonful of mashed potatoes? If you were packing a picnic basket, you’d be sure to put ________ in it. Inspiration is everywhere when it comes to questions. I like the idea of just asking back and forth with whatever comes. My three-year-old daughter saw us having so much fun and wanted a journal of her own. She started today by drawing a picture. We’re going to draw pictures back and forth and leave them on the pillows too. The first picture is of a mommy with her hands over her head. I was told she was saying “What are you two doing not in bed?” This is guaranteed to be interesting…

    Both journal styles are wonderful! Thank you for the tutorial Mindy!! I love the ribbon idea. I’d be thrilled to have either one at my house full of both genders. 🙂

  3. I’d love to have my kids ask me questions about money. I just heard the cutest story about a little girl who didn’t know houses were bought—she thought everyone just built themselves one! I can’t wait to help my kids interact with the way the world works.

    • Whoops! In my excitement, I forgot to answer the question. My daughter is very curious and is constantly asking me questions-what I did, what I was like, what would I do in various situations…that I’d like to ask her what she thinks she and I would be like in several years. Or what she aspires to be.

      • Congratulations to Melt003 (girl book) and Maria (boy book)! E-mail Mandi with your info and we’ll get your books out to you! Yay! I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

  4. Id want my kids to ask about me when I was young, or things about life when they get older The giri book would be good.

  5. I Love how you did these books. They are beautiful! I think I need to do these too. My questions would be What do you feel is the most special thing about you? What don’t people understand about you? What do you feel you are the best at? What do you love Mom to do for you?

  6. Pingback: Questionable + A Giveaway | purdueavenue

  7. Love the idea, and love more what you did with it! These are adorable! It would be so neat to have a conversation with my kids recorded in a book for just that purpose through the years. I think I would ask some serious questions like “what makes you the happiest?” mixed in with easy questions like “what’s your favorite food?” and thoughtful questions like “what is truth?” and silly questions like “If I were faced with two boys who looked just like you, how would I know which one is really you and which one is an imposter?” It would be fun to see how their answers change over time. Since I have three boys, I would love to have the boy version 🙂

  8. My little man asked me when I was born and I decided it would be fun to give him all the facts. I told him the date/ time/ place/ day of the week/ and how big I was. Then I told him the same things about himself. Next I secretly watched him while he read it and even though it seems like no big deal his jaw dropped open and he giggled with this incredulous look on his face. I got the biggest kick out of it. I’m so glad I decided to do this. Thanks Mindy for dressing it up and making a great idea so much better!

    ps. Because I was lacking in the adhesive department, I used Mod Podge on my first go round. Not recommended. I mean it’s holding fabulously, but it warped the boards of the books a bit. Not enough that I kick myself every time I see them, but enough that I notice and try to straighten them out. I have used double stick scotch tape [the one with the yellow/black paper insert/cover] and it works really well too if you use a lot, really cover the insides [I used a star like pattern], and get it right up to the edges.

  9. What a wonderful project!!! (I also have a love for exclamation marks :0/) Your instructions and pictures were WONDERFUL!! I love the silly questions, like:
    “What is the funniest dream you’ve had?” I’ve gotten some hilarious answers to that one. Because I’m pretty sure they make it up right then, and it never was a dream. It really shows what crazy imaginations they have. ;0)
    I think it would be fun to ask them to write what they think their life will be like at different ages – and then it would be fun to write what MY life was like below them. Then go back on that birthday and compare – and write what their life is ACTUALLY like at that age. :0)
    Come back to post any time!! I’m totally going to make these with my kiddos!!

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