Skip to main content

Scrapbooking on the Road

One of my very first scrapbooks ever was created when I was 11 years old and our family embarked on a trip to the US and UK. My mother (wise woman that she is) gave each of us kids a binder with plastic sheets and paper, and a pencil case with glue sticks, markers, scissors etc for the journey. As we were missing a few weeks of school, our ‘assignment’ (as decided by our mother) was to keep a journal/scrapbook of our trip.

Discuss this article

One of my very first scrapbooks ever was created when I was 11 years old and our family embarked on a trip to the US and UK. My mother (wise woman that she is) gave each of us kids a binder with plastic sheets and paper, and a pencil case with glue sticks, markers, scissors etc for the journey. As we were missing a few weeks of school, our ‘assignment’ (as decided by our mother) was to keep a journal/scrapbook of our trip. This bright yellow binder still exists to this day and provides much amusement when looked upon by all who know me. I took the word ‘scrap’ in scrapbook quite literally and kept absolutely every piece of ephemera from the plane ride over there (it was my first time on a plane, of course I was excited!) including napkins, candy wrappers and even a used toothpick! I drew pictures of where we were all sitting on the plane, gave detailed accounts of meals eaten on the trips, a blow by blow description of all my favorite rides at Disneyland, and even a declaration that I would never speak to my ‘annoying’ younger brother again. I absolutely LOVE looking through this book and seeing the trip through my 11 year old eyes, the things that were important to me at the time, the details I wouldn’t let go unnoticed, the way I felt and the ‘souvenirs’ I stuck in there (luckily border control didn’t find the dried stinging nettles I taped in there from England). This type of book to me is a ‘real scrapbook’ – memories, scraps, little bits and pieces that help create a time capsule from a certain part of your life.

Scrapbooking ‘on the road’ is newly becoming my favorite way to create an album from a trip or vacation. The memories are fresh, journaling is real, found objects work their way into the pages and it may even SMELL like the place you visited!

While preparing for a big trip I just went on to New Zealand and Australia, I knew I had to create as I went or I might not ever get around to making a travel album! Of course I will also scrapbook pages from the trip and have them in a regular album, but this small, junky book that traveled with me is what will mean the most…remembering the hotel rooms, car rides and airports I sat in writing in the pages, being more aware of things around me so that I could stick them in my book later.

Discuss this article

Discuss this article

I wanted to travel light and have a few basic supplies that would help me create fun pages that were more than just handwriting in a plain old notebook. For the actual album I decided to use a bundle of vintage rolodex cards I had bought from a thrift store for 50c some months ago (I KNEW they would come in handy for something!) bound with 2 metal book rings. I put some basic tools and a few fun things in an old cigar box, and held it closed with my blank book using a giant rubber band.

Discuss this article

Discuss this article

The watercolor pencils were perfect for adding some color, doodles and fun to my pages – after drawing with the pencil I would simply lick my finger and ‘blend’ in the watercolor – no brushes and pots of water necessary! ;)

The most valuable item I took with me (apart from the glue stick that is) were these little ‘days of the week journaling spots’ by Even after a long busy day I could just spend a minute journaling the highlights from the day onto one and stick it in – then later add ephemera or photos.

Discuss this article

Discuss this article

Tape, staples or the trusty glue-stick were used to hold cards, maps, tickets and other fun memorabilia from along the way.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended for You

Discuss this article

Discuss this article

Many pages I completed on the day using brochure pictures or simply journaling, while others I left spaces for photos that I could add when I got time to print some, or wait for my return home.

As I was on a teaching trip I got to meet lots of talented women who had made little tags, cards and other fun things to give me – the journal was perfect for adding these in and painting an even more complete picture of my trip and the experience I had. You could get friends or family that you may be visiting to write messages straight into your book, keep drawings your kids create on the trip or even get the whole family involved in journaling and drawing into the traveling album.

Discuss this article

Discuss this article

I normally throw receipts and tags away, but seeing as I did, ahem, a LOT of shopping on this trip I thought it would be fun to make a page with a collage of these items – surely in 10 years time it will be quite a laugh to see how much things cost and remember what I bought and thought was so cool in 2007!

Now that I am home (sniff!) I can print and add photos to the spots I left open in my book, and create extra pages with the blank cards at the end of my book – an easy way to do this is to print off a bunch of smaller pictures from your home computer (I simply printed these onto regular printer paper) and collage them in with glue, tape etc – add a few doodles and stickers and you have a fantastic colorful peek into your trip in no time!

With summer coming up I hope you have somewhere fun planned to go…I have even been known to scrapbook laying in a hammock while camping at the beach! If you are off on some travels, find a blank book or create one of your own to take with you and create as you go! If you are staying home this summer – have a ‘holiday at home’ and create an album documenting the fun things you and the kids get up to, save receipts, tags, tickets and candy wrappers to make a memorable album showing a slice of your life this year.

I’m off to recover from the jetlag!


Discuss this article


Collaborative Scrapbooks

Whether it be a birthday, a graduation, a thank you, a baby blessing, a bridal shower…any celebration or rite of passage is a great time to gather messages and memories and bind them together for the perfect gift.

A Deck of You

Do you keep a journal? If you do – congratulations! I fell out of the habit of writing in a journal after my daughter was born – time for myself? Time to reflect? Not anymore! I did journal in my scrapbooks - but mainly about her babyhood, achievements, activities etc, I was too busy trying to preserve my daughters story than my own.

Not Your Mom's Album

Drop the word scrapbooking into a conversation and you may frighten those around you with images of teddy-bear die cuts, decorative scissors and kindergarten paste.

Sew Easy

I'll let you in on a little secret. While I love to be crafty, make books and go nuts with my sewing machine on my scrapbooks/journals - I'm not much of a sewer.

Share your beliefs!

Weekend homework: Comfy up on the couch and have a flick through your scrapbooks/journals. Ah - those smiling faces, birthday memories - it's all there, isn't it? A whole, complete package showcasing all the aspects of your life? Oh, it's not?

Mini Love - Mega Impact

Ah, the mini book. Don't underestimate it's power. A small album made from, well, pretty much anything you like is fast becoming my favorite way to scrapbook and create.

Family History Fun & Simple

Last year when I went back home to visit my family in Australia, my mother pulled out the coolest thing I have seen in my entire life – a handmade, hand-bound, hand-drawn, hand-written (you know I love the ‘hand’ stuff) giant comic book documenting the 3 month trip her and my dad took as newlyweds.

Hand-Made Mother's Day

If there was ever a holiday to make something with your own two hands, it's Mother's Day! Remember keeping that macaroni necklace and glitter-laden card a top secret as you squished it into your backpack and headed home on the friday before mother's day? I still have that bursting-with-pride-oh-I-hope-they-like-it feeling as I give a handmade gift! This year I'm giving my mother several framed pictures of my daughters and I, along with a little mini-book she can keep close-by with special pictures and space for her to write her memories in.