I tried to break myself out of that mode by making it easy to journal when I did have time. In this I found a new way to unwind by preparing things for eventual journal entries. The added benefit to all of this was time spent with my husband. I would gather all of my supplies and place them on the kids old plastic table sit on the couch and work. He enjoys the fact that I am sitting with him and not whining about what he's watching (sport, blech)and I get to spend time with him and not have to whine about what he's watching (sports, double blech).
I bought a pallet of tube watercolors from Ocean State Job Lot (If you have one in your area, check it out, they have a decent small art section.) They are not the "best" quality but they come in a lovely array of colors and are suitable for working in a journal. I love running two colors together in big drips. Most of the time I do analogous colors as they appeal to me more (more about that can be found here).
I also found myself printing out a lot of my photography. I'm an amateur shutterbug with more pictures on my hard drive than I know what to do with, so why not use them as journal fodder?
I bought a package of 4x6 photo paper from the Dollar Tree. While the paper isn't the actual best quality (obviously, it cost $1) I find that it actually works with what I am doing. I don't do things glossy and perfect, I'm rather messy and matter-of-fact about things. So having pictures that look a little worn around the edges melds in with the rest of the page instead of sticking out like a sore thumb.
The left page by the by was done with Crayola crayons. They're colorful, cheap and you can buy yourself every single color you can imagine (and some that you can't). Everyone and I mean Everyone should have a box handy.
Another way i created backgrounds was with the Portfolio brand water-soluble oil pastels. I would place the color on where I wanted it and then take a finger to smudge it into the page. To avoid the sticky nature of the pastel, I would lightly brush over it with water and then wipe some of it away with a paper towel. Between the finger smudging and paper towel I was able to rid myself of a lot of that problem.
And can I say how much I love the Luminere paints? I bought this blue/green/gold color at Joann's Fabric and fell in love. They give this gorgeous sheen to the pages.
Anyway, that's it for now. Hopefully I will be back to my creative self in no time. ;D