Nature Observer – Nature Journal Project


September and October 2018 have been super busy months for me, but I’ve tried to make time for my nature journal. It isn’t always easy to squeeze in the time to create a page and that’s why I find the Nature Observer guided journal (shown below) so valuable. I can pull it out and jot a few thoughts and observations down in less than five minutes if necessary.

There was a comment last month on the simplicity of my nature journal. In my experience, a nature journal can be successful even if it isn’t full of beautifully drawn sketches or elaborate narrations.

I’ve always aimed for a simple sketch, date, and caption. I feel that getting something in my journal is better than nothing. If you’re struggling with getting started or finding inspiration for your nature journal, scroll down to the link below to my nature journal page on my website. On that page you will find my Once-a-Month Nature Journal project ideas. These specific ideas can help get you going with your own journal or help you to get your children started with simple but meaningful nature journal pages.

Here are my pages from the last two months for your inspiration.

clarks nutcracker nature journal

I was hoping to catch a glimpse of this interesting bird on a recent trip to Crater Lake National Park. I was not disappointed! I created this page after doing a bit of research and it was fun to note some basic facts about the Clark’s nutcracker.

gray squirrel nature journal page

Gray squirrels are an everyday visitor to our yard. We spotted some young squirrels and I captured a fantastic photo of one that I wanted to include in my journal. Not every page needs a sketch and if you feel like using a photo….I give you permission!

Little deschutes river nature journal page

At the change of the season, I wanted to record a few thoughts and a sketch of my view from our back window. Of course, the watercolor doesn’t capture the view exactly but it does remind me of the way the colors and light change with the season.

oak leaf nature journal

We spent time in California in September and I made sure to get out and enjoy the oaks. There are just a few things I really miss about living in California and the oaks are high up on that list. I created a page to remind myself of that trip, the hikes we took, and the variety of oaks there are to learn about.

meadowlark nature journal page

I really am a big bird nerd and the thrill of spotting a new bird in our backyard never goes away. I’m going to be alert next spring and summer to see if I can hear our meadowlark singing. I love the flute like sound of their song so hopefully I can experience that next year!

tahoe autumn nature journal page

My nature journal also functions as a travel journal. I love visiting Lake Tahoe because there are so many things to see and appreciate. On this particular trip, we went on the hunt for colorful aspens and were rewarded with a beautiful view. In addition, I made a few notes about other things we observed, including the orange sulphur butterfly.

Here’s a page from my Nature Observer journal showing how I record just a few thoughts each day to create a record of things I noted in nature. You might notice the letter H on some of the days which indicates that we had hummingbirds at our feeder. I’m trying to be better about noticing when the migratory birds come and go each year. I find it fascinating.

Nature Observer page

Do you want some more specific nature journal ideas? Click over to my nature journal page and scroll down for the Once-a-Month Nature Journal Project idea buttons. There’s a lot there to keep you busy!

Getting Started with Nature Journals

Don’t forget that I’m 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.



I just completed a new downloadable file that gathers all of the Drawing with Children – Nature Journal Style lesson plans into one place. This has been a much requested item in the past and I finally made time to get the file together.

Click over to see the first lesson and scroll down in the entry to find the place to download the complete series of drawing lessons to use with your family. Let me know what you think about the plan!


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