Getting back to what I consider “normal” blogging, I thought I’d share a bit about the travel journal experiment we did for our trip to Hawaii. I got one of those new Japan accordion book style Moleskine journals, the smaller size. I brought a little map of the island and collected bits of text and images as we traveled. I also brought a date stamp, ink pad and a few rolls of printed tape just for fun. So glad I put the ink pad in a ziploc bag since it leaked. For this trip, I wanted to try and make a journal while on the trip using only dry media (pen, pencil, colored pencil, scissors and a glue stick).

The title page spread is on the left. The photo in the center I took from our balcony. It was so beautiful! 

I thought it would be fun to make up Haiku poetry each day about our vacation. Keith was a really good sport about it, although there was some “making fun”, which only encouraged me more. When we saw Haiku Rd, I knew it was a “sign”. It had to be included, with a Haiku of course, 5-7-5 syllables.

“A wandering day
side roads & following signs
with no agenda.”

– Valerie Sjodin
Because Kauai is so beautiful, I couldn’t imagine it without some actual photos, so I packed my camera, took photos, used them as photo reference to draw from as well as to print on nice photo paper, when I got back home. I mixed it up though, using a few images from brochures we found on the trip.

There was hardly any criteria of what to include, except I wanted it to be chronological. The accordion style reminds me of the timelines I used to put up in my classroom. There is a bit of text in this journal. I did a lot of writing in another and we read a bunch of books. There were so many people reading books by the pool. I haven’t even seen that much literacy, even in a library. We fit right in.


  1. I have been a little scarce around blogland of late. Wanted to tell you how beautiful everything around here is…your art…you! Congratulations on your publication in Art Journaling, must get that copy! Also, I would love to purchase some of your meditation cards, do you have an online shop?

    Grace, peace and love to you dear Valerie!

  2. I'm so excited to see your journal!! I filled a small one of these several years ago o a trip, it was only with colored pencil drawings. I recently took it out, loving it, & also took out a blank accordion Moleskine, larger size that I'm about to start. Didn't think about adding photos, etc. I love seeing yours & the Whatever I wanted is such a great way to really focus on what's important…Thank you Thank you!! I just posted an entry about journaling…

  3. Wow it is so beautiful… love the different spread and that you included some photos. I never bought accordion Moleskine, but I'll probably look into that in a futur trip. Thanks for the share!

  4. I like seeing the way you worked in the accordion format, Val. I did a travel journal the last time we were on Kauai, too, but with the whole family around there wasn't a lot of time to draw or write so it was finished at home. We all love to flip through it to remember the vacation. There's no better way to remember than to keep a journal.

  5. Hi Valerie!
    I just think your travel journals are amazing and I sent you an email asking a few questions about it…Did you see it yet? šŸ˜‰

  6. Thank you Arianabellie. I don't think I received an email from you. It would need to sent directly to my email address. If I reply to the blog post directly, it bounces back from a no-reply-blogger address.

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