One of my all-time-favorite things to do at home or elsewhere, is filling notebooks. If you are looking for something to do, together with your kids or on your own, may I suggest this; grab a journal / notebook / random stack of folded papers / old unused calendar / old text book to alter / paper pad and fill it. Putt it to good use right now. Make it your diary, glue book, art journal, scrapbook, and fill it with what ever. I’ve got a few suggestions that you could try…

Stay at Home Activity: Fill a Notebook

In last week’s blog post from the creative bubble I linked to texts both informative and comforting (and since then I’ve added in a few more) about the corona-virus outbreak and pandemic, but also mentioned people I myself follow and admire that are trying to help out in this difficult situation. Today I thought I’d gather myself for a few miniatures to share this idea that you can do without going to the store.

Start a journal

Start a journal, fill a notebook. Right? Ingenious simple to do – and fun for all ages!

It’s the perfect single girl activity that can also be done together with a spouse, the family, your kids (any age works), with a cat or dog as company, or in any other constellation you find yourself in right now.

I myself have several books that I’m working in right now, but one of them is a journal that I call Randomosity journal. In it I document what’s going on right now. It doesn’t have to be big things like a Disneyland visit (I’ve never been) or holiday abroad (we can’t go right now), but it can be going on a walk, or simply getting happy mail, noticing a trend I’m into right now or gluing in things seen on the internet. It can be (and often is) about how I’m feeling at the moment (full of angst right now), documented in both my own journaling and cut and paste images from various sources.

Randomosity notebook created by iHanna 2020 #travelersnotebook
Current Randomosity Notebook bound by iHanna herself (filled in January to March 2020), in the size of a regular sized traveler’s notebook; 21 x 11 cm (8,2 x 4.3 inches).

Filling a notebook could be a lot of things, bring out a pack of crayons or a glue stick and see what happens…

Most recently I’ve printed out and colored in the Coronavirus Reward Stickers that I link to in my previous blog post. They’re drawn by my favorite cartoonist and illustrator Gemma Correll. She often talk about issues that is close to my own heart in her drawings, and last week she shared a printable of these reward stickers for free for everyone to download and color.

Coronavirus Sticker Rewards drawn by Gemma Correll and colored in neon pencils by iHanna aka Hanna Andersson

I colored mine with colored (neon) pencils and glued them all into my pre-decorated notebook. I filmed the process if you want to take a peek, it’s on instagram tv – IGTV.

Coronavirus Sticker Rewards drawn by Gemma Correll and colored in neon pencils by iHanna aka Hanna Andersson
Coronavirus Sticker Rewards drawn by Gemma Correll and colored in neon pencils by iHanna aka Hanna Andersson

I think printing? coloring pages to play with is perfect right now. It is something to keep your hands “busy” for a bit, taking you away from endless scrolling through your phones feeds… Yes, I am guilty of doing that way, way too much all through last week. It’s not at all easy to be original and creative when the world is doing a fast-forward 360-flip around us.

So this blog post is a reminder for myself, as well as you, that filling a notebook is a much much better way to spend our time than scrolling… It won’t change the world, it wont’t save any lives – but it might just give your brain a short respite from all things virus related. It might calm you a lot more than surveilling the news, and let’s not even take a peek at twitter right now… It’s a mess!

Randomosity Muschrooms drawn by iHanna

So, if you can, when you can:

Open up your notebook and write it out instead. Journal for a bit. Cut and paste. Collage it out. Color it in. Paint along. Draw something. Do mixed media. Create, just for yourself (and your family/kids if you have any). It is not wasted time – it is time well spent if you ask me.

Take a deep breath in, I’m hoping this inspiration will find its way to your house today. Then breath out; let some of that anxiety out. Repeat.

Fill a Notebook

I actually have a tag on this blog that is called “Fill a Notebook” (!) – check it out to get a lot of suggestions on ways to fill a notebook from my many years of blogging… Feel free to add your own favorite way in the comments below. Or do you have another way to fill your eons of time staying at home right now?

PS: If you don’t have a notebook at home you can always alter a book or use an unused planner and fill it with magazine image collage. Let me know how it goes!