Trip Journals


Taking a trip? Add some photo-editing apps on your phone to build more than just a photo album of your travels. In this example, the photo was turned into a painted card with an added caption. The photo was edited using the Brushstroke app [iOS – $3.99] to get the painted effect, then sent to the Supermatic app [iOS – $1.99] to choose an appropriate card style and add the caption. You can share your finished creations individually via email and social media. You can also use the Blurb app [iOS – free] to build a print photo book using the “souped-up” photo graphics you created with Supermatic.

Email it in with a Posthaven blog.

The Posthaven blog platform is a great way to share your travel adventures just with family and friends. Posting is as simple as emailing your photo(s) along with any comments you want to include. Set up your family and friends as site subscribers and each new post will be delivered to their inbox. You can also make your travel blog private so that only those you’ve given access will see your posts and pics. Posthaven will cost you $5.00/month to use, but that gives you up to 10 blog sites.

journal entry

Don’t forget the Day One journal app [iOS – free] or [Mac – free]. The apps are free but you will need a premium subscription [$3.99/mo or $34.99/yr] to take advantage of the premium features – unlimited photo storage, unlimited journals, cloud sync to all your Day One apps, encrypted cloud storage and 25% discount for any books created using their printing service.

Other features include an impressive collection of sharing options including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, WordPress and Evernote along with the ability to save an entry as PDF to iBooks. Of course, you can easily email any journal entry to anyone.

Today we have a broad range of apps and services making it easy to document your travel adventures. Not only will you have your own memories but you will also be able to save them for future generations to enjoy. See which options suit you best.

Day One Premium

Have you noticed that a number of Mac/iOS apps are moving to a subscription service? There’s a reason for that. Many of these developers are individuals or small shops. Apple’s App Store rules require that an update is always free. The cost of creating new features cuts into their bottom line. Their only options are to forget updates and create a “new” app instead or to offer a subscription service.

Two of my favorite apps have gone to subscription. One is the Ulysses writing platform and the other is Day One. Day One recently announced a Day One Premium. People who are using the earlier versions of Day One can stay with it. Day One Basic will continue to receive maintenance updates but will be limited to one journal, one photo per entry and no cloud services.

Premium subscribers receive the following features:

  • unlimited journals
  • unlimited photo storage
  • up to 30 photos per journal entry
  • a 25% discount on book orders.

If you don’t already have it, premium subscribers can also get the Mac desktop app at no cost.

The Day One Premium subscription is $3.99/month or $34.99/year and is paid via an in-app purchase. If you bought Day One prior to this upgrade, you receive a lifetime discount of $2.99/month or $24.99/year also via in-app purchase.

An Android version of Day One is now available at Google Play.

Is it worth the price? It is to me. It has become an easy way to document my world for future generations and pass on what I know about our family’s past. The publishing feature is quite impressive and, since Markdown is the the technology used to save my entries, these stories will remain readable long after today’s technologies are forgotten.

The Diary of a Southern Lady

Like many of us, I’ve often found the hints pointing to other family trees more irritating than informative. It’s not unusual to find the exact same content duplicated from one tree to another. Fortunately, the occasional tidbit of information makes wading through these trees worth the effort. Over Easter weekend, one of those tidbits turned into quite a whopper! Following a hint to another Barrett family tree brought me face to face with a portrait of my second great-grandmother, Frances Georgina Scott.


It didn’t stop there. I used Ancestry’s messaging service to connect to the cousin who created this tree and posted the portrait. She responded quite quickly with another precious gift – the diary Frances’s daughter, Georgiana, kept. My cousin had transcribed Georgiana’s diary, adding footnotes using her research to further describe certain entries. She used Amazon to publish it as The Diary of a Southern Lady. I bought the Kindle edition for $4.99 and it is worth every penny. When reading on the Kindle, footnotes aren’t small print at the bottom of a page. Instead, the reader taps the footnote’s reference number and the text of the footnote appears in a popup window. Read it, then tap the screen and you are right back where you left off. Wow!

DiaryofaSouthernLadycoverInstead of documenting sources, Kay used the footnote feature to present her research notes describing more detail about the person, place or event mentioned in the diary. I am barely into it and already it has answered a number of questions about this family. Finishing the book and updating my research notes will keep me busy for quite some time!

Kay’s effort is also an inspiration. We all have treasures like this tucked away in our archives. Yes, they can often be posted in online trees – each of the major genealogy archives would like nothing better. However, when scanned, transcribed and annotated into a book, they can become a true family treasure. My grandfather’s letters could become even more interesting when given more context regarding place and time. Sounds like just the project for me!

The Diary of a Southern Lady was originally published at Moultrie Creek Gazette and reprinted here with permission.

A Grandparent’s Legacy

This grandparent’s memory journal takes you on a journey that will become a cherished family memoir. Designed in a 12-month format, each month features 12 intriguing questions with space to write a personal answer. Questions explore family history, childhood memories, lighthearted incidents, cherished traditions, and the dreams and spiritual adventures encountered in a lifetime of living. The written words become windows to a grandparent’s heart.
Print – $10.83
Kindle – $7.99