Weekly Nature Journal Project 2017
Month of February
I know that I set the bar rather high when I decided to create a nature journal page every week as part of my nature goals for 2017. I have never attempted anything like this before except for my monthly nature journal project and that was a stretch. Imagine how surprised I am that carving out the time and energy to make a weekly entry has so far, not been too much!
I find that I am thinking about what kind of page I want to create as I go about my outdoor time…looking for meaningful ideas that bring joy not only to the process but in the finished product. I am still journaling inside and not in the fresh air because of the weather, but I am hoping soon to be able to pack up my supplies and hit the trail for some en plein air journaling.
I hope that my pages inspire and encourage you this month.
February is always a month of counting birds not only for Project Feederwatch but for the Great Backyard Bird Count. I always love a good list so it is no surprise that one of my pages is a list of February birds. I also included a comparison of the crow and raven for my own self education. I many times see one or the other flying in my neighborhood and this research will help cement the field marks to look for in identifying one or the other.
My backyard has a violet patch of every increasing size. They seem to pop up in the funniest places, even in the back lawn. When the air is warm, their scent is heavy and sweet. I was reading online about violets and came across an interesting tidbit that explains something fascinating about the violet’s fragrance. I thought it was worthy of a journal page.
I created another backyard inspired page that features our sequoia tree. It really started with finding a sequoia cone on my back deck that prompted me to do a little research about the cones and seeds. Taking time to carefully observe something like the cone, led me to learn so much more about something that I see every day and can become commonplace. A sequoia should be anything but commonplace with its amazing size and resilience.
I have a fondness for monthly recap sorts of pages in my journal where I can note little items of interest that come up during the month. It gives me a place to practice my doodling as well.
Don’t forget that I am sharing a nature journal page each week on my Instagram account if you want to see the pages as they unfold. Follow me here: Instagram – outdoorhourchallenge. And, if you want to create a page and share it on your Instagram for me to see, use the hashtag #OHCnaturejournal
Need some help getting started with your own journal?
I shared awhile back some tips for moms who wanted to get started with their own nature journals, but felt they didn’t have the necessary skills. Listed below are three points I wanted to share again in the hope that they will encourage you to get started this month with your nature journal.
1. Keep it simple and don’t be afraid to get started.
A blank page can intimidate even the most seasoned journal-keeper. Work through your fear of failure by starting small and keeping it simple. Be a good role model. If you have children and you are encouraging them to keep a nature journal, you can empathize with their feelings of inadequacy. Be brave and your children will look to your example and be more confident about their own journals.
2. Use a variety of ideas…find something that works for you.
You are not required to sketch. Try something else. Keep a list, include a photo, copy a poem or some facts…just get started. Don’t wait. You may someday feel like sketching or water coloring in your journal but it’s not a requirement. There are no rules for nature journals. Use color and a few well-placed decorations to make your journal more personalized if you feel inclined.
3. A journal can be a private place of joy.
Remind yourself that your journal is a personal keepsake and a record of your thoughts and experiences. You do not need to share it with anyone…in real life or on the internet. If it makes you happy, that is all that counts.