When I taught school each kid had a "draft book" that they wrote their stories in all year long. It's was fabulous to look at it along the way and watch their learning unfold in their stories. I intend on having the boys write at least twice a week, but if opportunity knocks then we will do it more. James was so excited about his journal and new markers when we were at Walmart. I kept telling him he could open them when we got home. So the moment we walked in the door he got started. I let him draw and when he was done I asked him what he drew. He thought about it for a while and said, "I just got new markers!" So that's what I wrote.
Also, he still does his name the same way. You can see some of it at the bottom of the page. He writes one scribble for each letter. I can't wait to see what his name looks like in a year.
We will use this journal through the "school year" and I'll keep you posted on other entries in case you are working on one too. Don't be intimidated by writing. Just let them do the work and you translate the "story".