While traveling, you are moving to new places and experiencing life at a rapid rate. Everyday is full of new things to see and do. It is easy for me to forget some of the amazing things that I’ve done without a memory jogger. Journaling is often the last thing on my to-do list, easily pushed off and then never done. If I wait until I am home to do my scrapbook, I have trouble remembering where I was when something happened, and the timeline and memories are often smushed together. On our current six-week adventure in our 1961 Airstream. I have found a couple of easy ways to help keep our memories in order.
Send a postcard - Take a picture!
In 1996 I was 22 years old and tackling my first year of teaching. My brother, Steve, was driving from Nikiski, AK to Florida with a buddy. I asked him to send a postcard to my class everyday to show my students different parts of the United States. He graciously agreed and sent the postcards. I compiled those postcards into a picture album. I was looking through that album before we left on our Golden Caravan road trip and it was great to reread what my 20-year-old brother felt was note-worthy. Fun memories that would have been lost without those postcards.
23 years later, my brother and his wife have five kids and I am the one traveling across the country. After rereading Steve’s postcards, I decided I would do for his kids, what he had done for my class. Most days I have bought and sent a postcard. A few tips that have helped me with stay on track with sending postcards:
- Buy a couple sheets of postcard stamps before you leave home
- If you will be traveling through the same state for a couple of days, buy extra postcards when they are available.
- Date your postcard with month, day and year
- Snap a picture of what you wrote before sending the postcard. (You may reference these photos later to establish your scrap book and save the memories of what you wrote.)
- Use a small box that can hold your postcards, stamps and pens
- Most truck stops and campgrounds have a mail drop. Just ask!
Keep a Scrapbook – The Travel Way
I am a big believer in making more memories rather than collecting more stuff. I prefer to spend my free time and money with people I love, trying new things and living life. Living life and making memories often comes with its own bag of stuff. This stuff: receipts, placemats, maps, ticket stubs, photo booth pictures, roller coaster pictures, travel brochures, seem to add up quickly and can become a huge nuisance when you are living in a tiny space. On this trip, I found a way to not throw memories away but also keep my stack of memorabilia in a manageable pile. I bought a cheap notebook and tiny bottle of tacky glue. I packed my scissors and I have been pretty good about cutting up these memories and gluing them in my notebook. I add my funny memories in the margins as well. Here are my tips on how to keep a memory notebook while traveling.
- Use a cheap notebook or journal
- Bring a small bottle of tacky glue
- Pack scissors
- Have a designated location to put all your memory items (I used a brown bag in my computer case)
- Start with what you did first and cut out and glue those items into a notebook
- Tear out a sheet of paper to use as a blotter behind the sheet you are writing and gluing on
- Leave an empty page between each entry. Glue it to the page you have put all your memories on (Makes the page stronger)
- If you know you have special pictures to go with your memory page, leave a space for them. Those are easy to add later
- Throw away the parts you didn’t find important enough to glue into your notebook. You don’t need them. (I’m preaching to myself)
Enjoy your time. Make memories. Keep Memories. Live your Best Life.