The Journaling Bible {How to Get Started on Your Journey…}

I’ve always been a note taker.  NERD ALERT – but I actually loved ‘note day’ in school when we had to write down what the teacher would put up on the transparency (if you’re younger, you may not know the awesomeness that was a transparency…bless your heart).  I’d see the words and write them out and doodle all around them.  For some reason, if I made something ‘pretty’, I remembered it better.  Same with church – I’m the great-granddaughter of a Southern Baptist minister and have spent the majority of every Sunday of my life in church taking sermon notes.  I would watch my Momma write in her Bible since before I could spell – so I’d illustrate what I thought the preacher was preaching about on my bulletin with stick people and flowers.

I actually owe this Blog post and this entire thought process to my Momma.  She’s such a Godly woman – the exact kind of Godly woman that I hope I’m on my way to being.  Constantly praying for her family and friends – constantly encouraging others – constantly inspiring me.  In her Bible are pictures of my brother and I, newspaper clippings of special events that have happened in her life, drawings that my brother and I made for her when we were little.  Her Bible is also full of fun colors – highlights of verses and phrases that spoke to her.  Words from a sermon or quiet time written down that she wanted to never forget.  A few years ago she even had to have her Bible re-binded.  THIS is the kind of Bible I want.

I first read of the Journaling Bible in my ‘Suggested for You’ newsfeed on Instagram (God shows up in the most amazing places, doesn’t He??)  It immediately reminded me of the Bible I wanted to create for myself like my Momma has, but with space to write and draw and doodle and really have fun with it.  Since my life is so involved with hand lettering, I figured this would be the perfect medium to cross that with my love of God.

I received my Journaling Bible yesterday – and this morning was my first in using it for my quiet time.  My idea for this is to write, draw, doodle, etc every day with verses, quotes, etc from either my quiet time or a sermon for an entire year, which will give me at least 365 entries.  When this year is over, I’ll ‘gift’ this Bible to someone special…then I’ll begin on another one.  I can’t think of a more intimate and special gift.

After posting my first entry on Instagram this morning, I was flooded with questions, so I decided to post this Blog entry on how to get started with a Journaling Bible and where you can get the supplies I’m using.  I’ll be posting randomly on Instagram, but for daily entry updates, follow the board I’ve designated on Pinterest.


I researched a bit before purchasing my Bible.  I wanted something hardback so it would be sturdy to write on even if I was sitting in the pew at church.  I also wanted something that had room for me to doodle in.  Thirdly, I wanted one that wouldn’t break the bank.  I decided on the black, hardbacked version of the new ESV (which, to me is the easiest version to understand) – and after a bit of online retail therapy, I found it at Amazon for only $28!!  You can one just like mine HERE!

journaling bible 1

Next, you’ll need a few fun things to really put your mark on the Bible and make it yours!

I know from experience that Crayola Twistable colored pencils are 1) awesome quality and 2) won’t bleed.

Also – use a basic, old school ball point pen.  It’s not my favorite pen to use, but again, you want something that’s not going to bleed through the pages.

The washi tape is just a fun, colorful addition here and there.  Use it for borders, for tabs, or just because it’s pretty (who doesn’t love washi tape!?)   You can literally find this stuff everywhere now – but I always seem to score some fun ones at the Target Dollar Spot.

journaling bible 5

For the daily entries, I decided to go with my favorite devotional, “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young.  This is one of the most popular devotionals and I love it because it’s short enough to fit into any time you have available and it ALWAYS seems to speak to me and say exactly what I need to hear, when I need to hear it!  Mine was a gift, but you can get yours at any book store, Walmart, Target, or HERE (my copy is in the teal leather, but this pink one is super fun too!).

journaling bible 4


The Jesus Calling devotional is nice because it’s assigned to each day of the year.  So, I simply found today’s entry (2/25) and started there.  I read the devotional for today, and highlighted what I wanted to illustrate in my Bible.  I decided on “a grateful heart protects you from negative thinking”.  Each day’s devotional also has scripture to reference.  Today’s was Colossians 4:2, so I flipped to it in my Bible and that’s where I illustrated today’s quote in the margins.

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The book of Colossians is short, and there happened to be some empty space on the opposite page at the end of the book, so I took advantage and also drew out another quote that went along with the devotion.

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I wrote everything out in pen first, then went back in with my colored pencils and accented the important stuff.  Then I added washi tape and embellishments to make it really pretty.  I also dated everything.  Dating things is SO important – especially when you look back and think of what you were going through at that time and what you drew out meant to you right then and there.  It’s a great way to remind yourself to thank Him for your blessings when you can reflect on situations and see how they worked in your favor, eventhough you may have doubted it at the time.

My final piece of advice in starting to journal in a Bible is to have a space just for you to draw in.  For me, it’s the space in the loft upstairs that has ‘my’ couch in it, but there’s really no reason for anyone to sit and hang out in.  It’s quiet, I know that no one will bother me, and it’s my special place to focus and really soak in everything.

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So, there are the basics to starting in your Journal Bible.  I can’t wait to see how God blesses me through this daily time alone with Him, and in turn how it will bless the person I give these to when I’m finished with them.

Let me know if you have any questions or input and any tips you have on journaling through your faith!



Easy, Inexpensive, Fast and FAB CrockPot Pork Chops

Seriously – the title of this blog post says it all (although I betcha can’t say it five times fast!)

Whenever I ask the Hubs what he wants for supper, this is his response 99.9% of the time.  It’s so inexpensive (I got all of my ingredients at Aldi and spent less than $15 – and that included the box of ((highly recommended!)) CrockPot liners).  It’s so easy (hello, CrockPot…and with 0the liners, the cleanup is super easy too!) and its INSANELY good (even better the next day for leftovers!)  This is sure to a favorite in your family’s dinner rotation!


  • 1 package boneless pork chops
  • 1 package mushrooms
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1) 8oz container light sour cream
  • 1 can Cream of Chicken (or Cream of Mushroom) soup
  • 1 packet dry Onion Soup mix
  • Egg noodles (or mashed potatoes) for serving

CrockPot Pork Chops 1


Slice mushrooms and onions.

CrockPot Pork Chops 3


Mix sour cream, soup and soup mix in small bowl.

CrockPot Pork Chops 4


Lay pork chops on bottom of CrockPot.

CrockPot Pork Chops 2


Put onions and mushrooms over pork chops & pour soup // sour cream mix on top.

Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8.

CrockPot Pork Chops 5


We like ours over egg noodles or mashed potatoes.  I always add a bit of poppy seed on top – it just seems to set the bar just a bit higher.

CrockPot Pork Chops 6

You and your family are going to L O V E this (and if you’re lucky enough to have leftovers, make sure to hide them in the back of the fridge so they’re all yours the next day!)

Make sure to leave feedback if you make it at home!!  🙂


F R E E LJDCo. Valentines Downloadable Print!

vday printable promo

It’s the second day of my favorite week of the year!!  Not only is it VaLeNTiNeS DaY on Saturday, but my birthday is Thursday, so I’m feeling extra celebratory!!

Along with the free printable tag in yesterday’s Valentine’s Day DIY Heart-Shaped Crayons post, this one is a true LJDCo. print!  There are 2 sizes available in this high-quality PDF download – the 4×6 is perfect for your Valentine’s Day Dinner place-settings or a special something to drop in the mail or in a lunchbox, just to remind the special people in your life how much you love them.  The larger 8×10 is great for around-the-house décor or a tablescape!  The color looks a bit brighter in the promo pic above – the actual background color is more of a coral, which I figured would be more appropriate to fit in with your décor than bright red.  So download, print and HAVE FUN with these – and Happy Valentine’s Day from me to you and your love!!


LJDCo. VDay Printable – 4×6  //  LJDCo. VDay Printable – 8×10


Valentine’s Day DIY Heart-Shaped Crayons {and a FREE Printable!}

When we were little, I remember my momma making homemade crayons for my brother and I.  She would put them in regular cupcake tins (which were still SUPER cool), but as I was trying to brainstorm a fun and unique Valentine that my 2yr old could hand out during his VDay party on Thursday, this crazy idea popped into my mind!  And it turned out AWESOME!  Be prepared to be the coolest momma ever (with incredibly minimal and inexpensive effort!  DOUBLE SCORE!!) when you make these custom crayons for your kiddos.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED (seriously, there are only 2 things on the list!)


  • Crayons (I used new box of 64 Crayola crayons, but this is a GREAT way to use those millions of bits and pieces from broken crayons that you can’t figure out what to do with).
  • Silicone baking molds (I used heart-shaped molds that were on special at Michael’s because of the VDay holiday, but you can use any shape mold, custom for any event – just make sure it’s a silicone so it’ll be easy to pop them out once they’re melted).


  • Peel the paper off the crayons.  This took the longest time (for 64 crayons, approximately from the beginning of Frozen until Elsa finished singing “Let It Go”).  The blue ones seemed to give me the most trouble…not sure why, I mean blue is my favorite color.  Oh, and MAJOR DISCLAIMER: don’t peel crayons after recently getting a new mani.  I’ve completely ruined the polish on my thumbnail.  Better yet, just let your kids peel them.  Done and done.


  • Break each crayon into 4-5 pieces.  I found this to be a great stress-reliever.  Also, something my 2yr old could do to help ‘contribute’.
  • Fill the molds halfway with broken pieces.  You can be totally anal like me and pick and choose color schemes and fill each mold individually, or you can realize that kids don’t care one bit about the time you took to perfectly coordinate each crayon, and just fill them at random.


  • Put the mold(s) on a baking sheet and bake at 400* until they’re melted (with my oven, it took about 10 minutes).
  • Take out and let cool COMPLETELY.

VDAY 5{{Don’t worry if they come out looking a little less than pretty.  This is what mine looked like and trust me – once you pop them out and turn them over they’ll be beautiful!}}

  • Once cool, pop out of the mold, and that’s it – YOU’RE DONE!

VDAY 6{{See…pretty!  I told you.}}

Now if you’re making this for Valentine’s Day, like I am, you’ll also need small baggies to package them in.  And what’s a Valentine without a cutesy saying to go along with it?  Click here for the FREE PRINTABLE VALENTINE TAG (hand lettered by yours truly!)

I used a small decorative clothespin to attach my tag to the bag, but ribbon would be super cute too!


That’s it!  There are tons of silicon molds in various shapes and sizes, so keep this idea in mind when it comes to favors for birthday parties, homemade gifts or just for a rainy day activity with your little ones!