What do you get when you combine creative planning, journaling, scrapbooking, and travel? I'm not sure exactly what it looks like, but I do know that you'll have the trip of a lifetime and memories that will last forever. I know, because I used an early version of the Vacation Dream Book when I took a two week vacation to the UK in 2013 and it turned out to be the best guide book I could have had.
History of the Vacation Dream Book
In 2013, I was planning a two-week trip to the UK and Ireland. I'd been mentally planning this trip for almost 15 years, since I spent three months in Northern Ireland when I was in college. I have an English friend who could drive and take care of the logistics, and we both wanted to see everything, so we decided to make it a two week road trip through all five countries: England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland, and Wales.
Holy shit, we were excited! We started binging on planning, sending each other links to places to see and places to stay. It quickly became overwhelming. We'd both traveled enough, but never done anything like this. So I did what had become instinct by then - I picked up a journal. After several years of art journaling and bookbinding, it was just natural. The Vacation Dream Book was born!
Vacation Dream Book Project 2017
This year I'm going on a two week vacation to Scotland - another dream of mine. I only spent a couple days there in 2013, but my friend and I both fell in love. Once again we'll be building up a huge wishlist of things to do and places to go. I'm going to be creating a new Vacation Dream Book for this trip and I'm looking for other creative women who love travel to join along and create their own Vacation Dream Boks! This is all part of bringing creative expression into everything I do, even vacation planning, and I think it's going to be a ton of fun.
You can join in by signing up for the mailing list, following me on Instagram, and posting your own projects with the tag #VacationDreamBook.
Why I LOVE the Vacation Dream Book
1. Stress Free Travel
Believe it or not, filling a book with more than we could possibly do in two weeks kept stress levels down. We both had must-do items on the itinerary and having everything all figured out ahead of time meant we didn't have to worry about missing out on those. Every morning, we checked The Book and knew we could fit in everything we had our hearts set on. Whenever we had free time, we could fill it with the optional stuff or just relax and explore knowing that neither of us would leave with any regrets.
We also didn't have to worry that we'd miss something we'd seen one day online and forgotten to pin, bookmark, or save in Evernote. It was all in The Book!
2. Super fun planning
I had so much fun planning this trip, and that's all part of the experience for me now. The thrill of finding all kinds of restaurants and activities, historic sights, and all the amazing possibilities out there is something I'll always remember. And it was much less stressful knowing that I'd have all of that information at my fingertips once we were on the road.
3. Instant scrapbook
I tossed in all kinds of papers, brochures, and memorabilia along the way.
Improvements for Vacation Dream Book 2017
THe first book worked well, but I learned a lot from the experience and this year I'm going to make The Vacation Dream Book even better.
1. Journaling on the go
The first time around I took a separate journal for light art journaling and writing during the trip. But I soon learned that I didn't want to have it with me when we were out and about all day. I wanted to keep it as light as possible since I was already carrying a DSLR camera with an extra two lenses and tripod. That meant the only time to journal was at night, after a long, exhausting day and often, a couple hours at the pub. Not happening!
This year, I'm going to include grid paper for journaling right in the Vacation Dream Book so I can have it all in one place.
I tossed a lot of receipts and brochures into The Book, thinking that later I would put them into a proper memory book of some kind. That didn't happen either. I'm not sure how I'm going to deal with these in the new Vacation Dream Book, but I'll probably be adding more pockets and cool places to put all of this paper memorabilia. That way, when I get home I have one fabulous memory book full of all the planning and the fun stuff I collect along the way.
Sharing the Vacation Dream Book in 2017
I'm really excited about sharing this whole process this year. I'm going to be sharing my progress every step of the way, from creating unique worksheets, to planning the bookbinding, to putting it all together in the end. I'll share failures and successes, as this is all part of a messy creative project. I decided not to wait until it was all put together and looking perfect to package it up and share it, as if creating something is ever that easy. Instead, I'm sharing my entire creative process, mess and all, so that you can create your own Vacation Dream Book. Subscribers to the mailing list will get exclusive content I won't be sharing on the blog, as well as special offers when I post worksheets and future classes for sale.