By Maggie Miller, Family Finds Fun
Summertime is upon us and that means lots of family time and lots of fun activities to do together. What does your family have planned this summer? I’ve never been one of those moms that can’t wait for the kids to get back in a school routine. I feel like summer is the time we get to play, have fun, and just be a family without having to rush here and there!
Will you take a few long weekends to get away or one long vacation? Maybe you will have a stay-cation and do local things around your town. Whatever way you choose to enjoy your family time this summer, a family vacation journal will help to preserve the memories of your time together (not to mention keep the kids writing and using their “school skills.”). Better yet, making your journal and filling it in will keep the kids busy and hopefully bring out their creative side. No more “I’m bored” from the peanut gallery the next time it’s 100 degrees in the shade. Tell those kids that you’ve got the perfect boredom buster that will make your next vacation even more special!
Making a family vacation journal is easy and you don’t have to leave your house to get started. You’ll need a cereal or cake mix box for the cardboard cover, some plain paper, a few sheets of decorative paper, a book binder’s awl or something sharp that will go through all the paper and a needle and thread.
Your family vacation journal will be your own personal scrapbook, filled with notes, pictures, ticket stubs and anything your family would like to add to act as a reminder of your special time together. Our family made a vacation journal recently in anticipation for our trip to River Expeditions Adventure Resort in Oak Hill, West Virginia. The kids had blast making their entries into their family vacation journals on this trip.
First, we tried out the water tubing option, relaxing as we floated down the river and letting our cares drift away with the breeze. Then, for more adventure, we hiked and went on the zip line. River Expeditions offers tours and other fun including a pool and activities for kids younger and older. They also have stand-up paddle boarding, which is all the rage just now, and even fishing.
If your family loves water adventures, mountains, and fun like mine does, you’ll know why we were so excited about this vacation. We also had the options of ATV tours, paintball, and horseback riding. There was something for everyone and lots of fun to be had by all — that’s the way I like my vacations!
Whatever type of vacation you take, you’ll surely make memories. So, before you head out this summer for that long weekend away, the local amusement park, or that week in the Outer Banks, why not work together with your children and make a personal family vacation journal? It’s a great rainy-day activity and you can pack your journals in the car right away so that they are ready for that first entry when the fun begins. Do I detect a road trip….?
- cardstock paper
- long-arm stapler
- cardboard box (like a cereal box or a box from a cake or brownie mix)
- magazines or brochures
- Mod Podge (craft glue)
- hot glue
- binder clips or clothes pins
- paper cutter or good sharp scissors
- wide paint brush
1. Open your box along the seams then cut it so that it comes out looking like a book with a front cover, binding and back cover.
2. Using your Mod Podge, cover the outside of your book with a very thin layer of glue then add your pictures being sure to leave anywhere from a 1/2″-1″ overlapping the edges of your book
3. Trim the corners of your book (as seen in the instructions) then add glue and fold them over to the inside of your book. Once you have them all folded over use your binder clips or clothes pin to keep secure while your book cover dries.
4. Now, for your inside covers and ribbon (for a page marker), cut some card-stock paper to go over each inside cover (2) on your book leaving about a 1/2/” of the on all sides (see picture). Then glue the paper in place, holding it secure with your clothes pins or binder clips until well dried. Now add your ribbon. Your ribbon should be 3/4th the way down your book binding. We like to use hot glue for this procedure. We added the glue, flipped it over, then smoothed out the glue quickly.
For pages, my daughter Samantha decided to make different colorful pages and used a long-arm stapler to secure in place one by one. I used the ribbon method to tie in each individual page into the binding. You can use a punch or ice pick, poke holes in two or three places in your paper and use yarn or ribbon to sew the pages into your binding. Either method works well.
Maggie Miller is a family blogger at Family Finds Fun. She guests posts about crafts and adventures from time to time. She lives in Maryland with her husband and kids and enjoys all things family.
Images by Maggie Miller and used with permission for this post.