The Days Are Long, But the Years Are Short: Why I Keep 3 Five-Year Journals

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"The Days Are Long, But The Years Are Short: Why I Keep 3 Five-Year Journals" 3 journals stacked on wooden bench

When I realized I was pregnant with Pippa in 2019, it was a few days before Mother's Day. As my first Mother's Day gift, my husband got me a One-Line-A-Day Five-Year Journal

Floral One Line a Day: A Five-Year Memory Book - Cheng, Yao

When Pippa turned 1, I had the idea to start keeping a separate One-Line-A-Day Five-Year Journal for her.

Celestial One Line a Day - Cheng, Yao

Then, naturally, when Jack was born, I began his separate journal immediately.

Canvas One Line a Day: A Five-Year Memory Book - Chronicle Books

So, I’ve found myself now keeping 3 separate journals every day…or, let’s just be real, these days, I tend to “catch up” every few days, or so. The journals have even migrated from my bedside table to the living room where I jot down a few thoughts whenever I find the time. My husband says we might need to stop having kids or else I might be journaling all day every day! Haha!

How do these things work? Every day of the year, there is a page with five sections, one for each of the five years. You can start these journals on any day of the year. It is NOT necessary to start on January 1st. 

Let’s say you start on July 20th, 2023. You’d be writing each day in the top section until July 20th, 2024, when you’d move down to the second section for each day, and you’d be able to easily read above what happened on the same calendar day, one year ago. Each year that you add, you can see one year further in the past on that page. By the fifth year, you can read about the four past July 20ths as you record your last July 20th in the final section. 

Open five-year journal, blank. Showing 5 years worth of one-line-a-day journal entry spaces for July 4 and 5.

I just began my fifth year. I am filling in the last section of each page and trying to take the time to read about the four years before each day, too. It can be a crazy experience! There are things I’ve just forgotten that turn up in the journal and make me say, “Oh, yeah!” And there are many times when it’s just hard to believe that something happened four years ago already. I mean, the main theme of my first year of writing was being pregnant with Pippa. It’s so hard to believe that was four years ago! 

It’s really cool to read some of the finer details. My memory is a bit of a blur since having kids. The beginning of the pandemic in 2020 seems like a series of identical days in my memory, but I read about it in my journal and remember that we actually did quite a bit during that time, it just wasn’t our normal activities. More long drives and parks, fewer get-togethers and dinners. 

We are coming up on the anniversary of Sew Worthy Mama very soon! July 21st! On this topic, I actually can’t believe it’s only been a year! It feels like a lot longer. It’ll be interesting to read what I wrote about as I launched this website and shop last year.

My Favorite Five-Year Journal Features

The best thing about these journals to me is the whole five years on one page thing! I never go back to read my longer notebook-style journals because they’re just never in front of me. But I read several years back every day with the five-year journals. I’m motivated to keep up with it so that I’m not facing blank sections in the future.

The next best thing is the limited space for each day. When I’ve kept regular journals with more of an open-ended notebook feel, I’ve felt a lot of pressure to fill entire pages which leads to not actually journaling at all. Ever. But with these five-year journals, it’s easy to fill the short sections. Actually, sometimes the challenge is being brief enough to fit it all in! The limitations of these short journaling sections actually make it feel doable. 

Five-Year Journals Are For Everyone!

If you’ve ever been intimidated by journaling, I highly recommend trying out these five-year journals. There are lots of different styles to fit your tastes. A little bit of effort each day really creates a treasure. And if you’re like me, they’re a sweet way to keep a record for your children, too.

I hope the kids can even help to reflect on their day and decide what to jot down as they get a bit older. A journaling habit is a healthy practice to begin to cultivate early!

Find your own Five-Year Journal here!

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