I want to share with you a very easy to make and simple gratitude journal. Now, what IS crazy exciting about this easy gratitude journal DIY is that ANYONE can do it! Seriously, anyone!
As the ministry-minded person that I am, I immediately envisioned how you could turn this into a group activity with a gratitude journal station and thought, “What an amazing idea that would be for Thanksgiving.”
Think about it…just get a stack of paper, having some staplers or other binding materials, and some instructions to allow your guests to make a gratitude journal while everyone waits for dinner to start, or as an after dinner activity.
What a way to make Thanksgiving more meaningful and an intentional activity that goes beyond sharing what you’re thankful for around the dinner table.
This project is something that every guest can make and take home with them as a wonderful way to start journaling about all they are thankful for. What an unbelievable party favor!
Or if you are guest at Thanksgiving, you could speak with the host of Thanksgiving and inquire if you could create a gratitude journal station for Thanksgiving. I’m sure most host’s would be happy for you to bring this activity to enhance and deepen Thanksgiving.
Before we start, here’s a little shopping list I put together for you.
I put together a shopping list for to help you. If you buy from my link I get a tiny percentage of the sale.
Journal Stencils and Journal Pens packaged deal:
Dotted paper for bullet journals:
28 Weight Paper for journal sheets:
Kraft Paper for covers:
Cardstock double sided paper for covers:
Long Reach Stapler:
First things first, in order to make a gratitude journal, you need to think about the paper, cover and binding for your journal.
Questions to consider:
Do you want a blank cover, or one that has a pattern?
What type of paper do you want the journal sheets to be? Consider pen/marker bleed through. The heavier the weight of the paper, the less bleed through will occur.
The binding is very important. I have two relatively easy binding methods that would be really easy to replicate. More sophisticated binding requires different machines and supplies.
What do you want to embellish your sheets with? Washi tape? Bullet Journal (dotted) sheets? Stencils?
So here’s what I did to make easy Gratitude journals
I made a variety of different sizes and styles to show you just a glimpse of all the possibilities you could do to make your own journal. If you decide to do this for Thanksgiving, people could see differing variations that will help them make their very own!
Here’s a variety of supplies I used for my project. You will not need to have all of these everything, but it should give you an idea for crafting your own or to create a gratitude journal station.
I cut the paper to the size I wanted. There are no size requirements or specifications-make the journal any size you’d like. For some of the journals, I didn’t cut them at all-I just used the 8.5 x 11 and folded the paper in half and used a bone folder to flatten the fold.
Then I took some paper and did the same thing to make the journal sheets before finally binding them with a stapler.
Now, the stapler is the easiest binding method, BUT you must beware of the depth of your stapler because the stapler can only reach to certain depth. Depending on your stapler, you may be able to open it up and staple freely. Mine happened to be 3.5″ so I made little journals with the stapler. I recommend, especially if you are planning on creating a gratitude journal station for Thanksgiving or for a ministry event, then you will want to get a long reach stapler like this one on Amazon: Sparco Long Reach Stapler, 20 Sheet Capacity, Standard Staples, Putty/Black (SPR01316)
Another binding method is the use a sewing machine to make the binding
I used a Microtex (sharp) needle and regular universal thread. I elongated my stitch length to 3.5 and stitched right down the center.
If you want to add a lot of pages to your journal, you may need to create signatures. A signature is a section of pages folded together, usually 4-7 pages. By creating signatures, you can add a lot more sheets to you journal with them fitting within the cover. If you add too many pages without signatures, your journal sheets will not properly fit within the cover.
Contents of your gratitude journal
Now here is where creativity and design come into full force. You can create your gratitude journal any way you like. A standard format is to list three thing you are thankful each day, but why be that basic? If this is a gratitude journal, let’s fill it up with praise and thanksgiving!
Maybe add Scripture to your journal! I have this amazing list of 30 Scripture for Gratitude and Thanksgiving. Pick some of these to add to your journal.
In addition, I also have 30 prayers of gratitude that you can feel free to add to your journal.
The focus of your gratitude journal should be gratitude! I hope you enjoy making these and I truly hope you do this for Thanksgiving, what a wonderful, amazing and meaningful thing to do this holiday!
Don’t forget to check out the supply list above for anything you might need for this project!
Like crafting? Join my crafting with a purpose Facebook group!