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Documenting Your Year

Words by Dorothy Wang // Photography by Juliette Bélanger


It’s a new year. Cheers to making this the most memorable, exciting, adventurous year! There’s no need to worry. Let’s all try to live in the moment and take each day as they come.

It only makes sense to document each moment of the coming year. At the end, you’ll be able to look back and see all the progress you made, all the new people you met, all the new places you visited, all the new things you tried. Capturing all the moments, no matter how big or how small, will help you realize how much can happen in a span of a year, or even a month.

Everyone’s tried the typical journaling, and although it’s important and I still think you should keep trying to write in it regularly (one of my personal new year’s resolutions, actually!), sometimes it’s nice to change it up. Here are some ideas I came up with to help you document your year.

Photo journal

Take lots of pictures. The quote “pictures are worth a thousand words” isn’t far from the truth. With smartphones now, it’s so easy to take pictures. Make use of your phones and take pictures of every moment. You can create a photo journal—take a photo a day or more than one a day and post it on your Tumblr or blog. Just caption something short and sweet to help you remember the moment.

Using a disposable camera or instant camera

Although it’s nice to have an online version of your pictures, it’s even better to have it in physical form. With a disposable camera, it forces you to develop the photos and there is an element of surprise with each photo, because you don’t know how they’re going to turn out. There are waterproof disposables now too, so you can bring it on all your wild 2015 adventures. The Polaroid camera is also very popular. It would be helpful to write a short caption on the back of each photos to help jog your memory when you look back on them at the end of the year.

Creating a calendar with your photos

You can create a calendar on your wall with your photos by taking a picture of each day and using a photo to represent the day. With Polaroids, the pictures have a little space on the bottom for the caption. You can number the days on this part of the photo and post them on your wall. Posting on photo on your wall a day, you can create a calendar as the days go by. If you don’t want to use your wall, you can do it online with your photos or in a journal of some sort.

Flip calendar

A daily flip calendar is a little calendar that stands on it’s own and you simply flip the page for each day. You can set it on your desk or your nightstand and write a little note for each day. This is easier than a journal because it’s only a sentence or two, and it’s harder to forget about. At the end of the year, you can flip through the calendar and see what you did on each day of the year. Sometimes you can even include a little photo or something else as a little reminder!

Turning a planner into a journal

This is kind of strange and might seem a little unnecessary, but I like how it’s a little change in aesthetic. Instead of writing in a typical blank or lined journal, try writing in a planner. For each day you can write in the corresponding day what you did and any thoughts you have. It can double as a planner for you too, writing down your to-do list and maybe even filling in your schedule in the time tables they have. Believe it or not, just looking at past to-do lists can bring back so many memories and are fun keepsakes.

These are all just easier, fun ways to document your 2015 in a stress and hassle free way. It’s a fine balance between the laziness in us but the “I want to get things done” idea. I hope y’all have a wonderful 2015 filled with adventure and thrill.

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