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Archive for the ‘memory keeping’ Category

One of my goals for this year is to finish my son’s Project 365 album.  I’d really like to finish it by his birthday (near the end of June), so I decided to get started.  In April, I finally submitted a HUGE order of photos to Persnickety Prints– I’d spent quite a bit of time over the previous months (and months…almost a year?!) planning inserts and determining where I was missing photos in my daily pockets (I also printed photos for other projects).  I’m still not finished with that process, but I was getting antsy and wanted/needed to start actually putting things together.

After my order came in, I spent an hour or two cutting smaller photos apart and slipping photos into their appropriate pockets.

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My approach for finishing the inserts will be to just pick whatever one strikes my fancy at the moment!

This past weekend was iNSD, and even though I was slammed with a cold and allergies on Saturday, I mustered my strength on Sunday to get started on one of the inserts: the one for Thanksgiving 2014.

When I was planning out the page, I’d pulled a few older products (some paper lace, chipboard, and some felt embellishments) from my stash and stuck them into the album to remind me to use them.  It was a good starting point when I feel so out of practice with pockets!

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I added in some scraps of patterned paper and some Project Life cards (Jade edition).

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For the journaling, I used some navy print-and-cut labels I’ve made (and keep making!) with my Silhouette.  I think I need these in every color in multiple sizes.  I’m loving labels for adding little bits of story onto my photos.

On the back of this insert, I highlighted one of the days from this weekend when we celebrated my daughter’s birthday.  Since it’s my son’s album, I focused on his part of that story.

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This time, I used some old Project Life patterned paper (remember the Cherry Edition, before it was called the Cherry edition??) and more of those labels, this time in black.  The one Project Life card (middle right) is from the Baby Edition (the old yellow one).

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In honor of iNSD this past Saturday, I have some scrapbook layouts to share!

First up, this “traditional” layout that I made with BasicGrey’s gorgeous Highline collection.

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I love how this layout turned out.  It is one of my favorite memories from this past summer, and the inspiration for the design came from a layout that I saw on the Citrus Twist blog a while ago.  As soon as I saw the layout, I could envision these photos used in a similar way– I especially love the top third drawing the main focus.

I used a lot of old stash for this project.  First, I finally opened the collection pack of BasicGrey Highline that I’ve had for a while– I have no idea why I’ve never used it!!  It’s so pretty.  I used several papers for layering as well as a few of the stickers from the included sticker sheet.  I also added in some doilies for softness, and some pink patterned vellum that I inherited.

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I used some Maya Road grey acrylic letters for the “Goose” part of the title, and did a print-and-cut of the script words to pop up on top with foam adhesive.

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I added droplets of Tattered Angels (Vivia Pink) and Heidi Swapp (Gold) mists and a few black enamel dots to finish everything off.

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So, this wasn’t even the next layout that I intended to make!

I’d just finished my family movie night layout, and I still had the stack of “Mind the Gap” scraps on my desk.  As I was about to clean them up later that afternoon, I started thinking, “Well, maybe I can use up some more and finally kill this kit!”  (In all honesty, I’m was tired of the kit by this point). I pulled out my short stack of printed photos and saw these two 4″x6″ group shots from our Halloween party in 2016.  Instantly my mind when to the video that the kids and I watched during lunch (it was an inclement-weather day today, so V was home, too)–a Glitter Girl episode on Shimelle’s channel in which she gives a bit of a formula for jumping back into scrapbooking.  Between the scraps and the photos, I could definitely use her formula.

And a couple hours later (amid kid art projects and other chaos), I had a layout.

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I pulled together as many of the scraps of the “Mind the Gap” kit as I could, and began filling in the gaps (pun intended) with even older Halloween product from Little Yellow Bicycle.  (Fun fact: almost exactly 8 years ago, I used those same products to make another Halloween party layout!  They’re pretty much the entirety of my Halloween-themed stash.).  And I finally used one of the tiny kraft envelopes that was included in that Studio Calico kit– it holds a tag I made upon which I wrote the names and costumes of all of the people at the party.

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Looking at the final layout, it doesn’t actually use that much of the kit–mainly some strips and punched circles from the patterned papers, as well as the polka-dot Thickers… but this is the end of the large pieces.  I think that I might call this kit killed.  Yay!

 

 

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First layout of 2018!  Wooo hoooooooo!!  It’s been kind of a while since my last layout, and I was feeling rusty.  I was happy to see the sketch from SCT’s January Sketch Challenge pop up in my blog reader, since it gave me a little bit of structure to start with.  I looked through my printed photos and found some that would work perfectly with the sketch.

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I’ve been watching a lot of Inkie Quill on Youtube while I run on the treadmill, and in her archives, she has a lot of “Kit Crasher” videos– she takes a kit and tries to use it all up.  I definitely have a small collection of kits to use, so I decided to use that as another “rail” to get me back on track with scrapbooking.

I pulled out one of the couple kits that is almost used up– it’s Studio Calico “Mind the Gap” from years ago (in fact, in looking through my blog archive, I found this post that sounds like I used some very similar techniques to get back to scrapbooking after a long break!– if it works, use it!).  Maybe I’ll finally kill it–it’s certainly on its last legs, with almost no embellishments remaining, and only patterned paper scraps and one full sheet of cream-colored cardstock!

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To start, I just played around with fitting the patterned paper scraps and photos together on the sheet of cream cardstock.  It looked okay, but it felt kind of depressed, so I switched out the background for white textured cardstock from my stash, and used the tan as a narrow border.  I ended up gutting the cream so that I could print my journaling onto it (strips a la Jen Schow), which ties it all together.  The journaling is straight out of my photos’ metadata (yay!) and the font is Remington Noiseless.  I added lots of little bits and pieces (tiny hearts like Adele), and machine stitching to hold everything in place– some of the adhesives are failing in their old age 😉

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I was pleased that this came together fairly quickly.  Perhaps I’m not so out of touch as I thought (after all, I’ve been watching a LOT of scrapbooking videos and reading blog posts…)?  Or maybe it was re-beginner’s luck? We shall see.  I have more layouts in my brain now!

P.S. Thanks, SCT, for choosing my layout (randomly) as this month’s winner!!

 

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Two weeks ago, I was able to take time with my daughter on two different days so that she could make some scrapbook layouts to add to her 8″x8″ album.

I’ve learned that it’s best for me to create a mini page kit for her (out of her own stash of supplies!  She has her own box.  I don’t ever use any of her items, even though some of her embellishments are so tempting! 😉 but I do add to her stash from mine on occasion.) Using page kits means that she has a coordinating set of products that are appropriate for the photos (which she also helps me to choose), and not an overwhelming mish-mash of everything in her scrapbook box.  I think it makes the final product look cohesive, and it also reduces my control-freak-stress because it’s not a free-for-all when she starts creating :).  It also minimizes the sticker-sneeze effect, haha!

I set up two page kits for her to scrapbook photos from our beach vacation last year.  We were preparing to go on this year’s annual trip to Myrtle Beach, and I wanted her to tell me her memories from last year before they got mixed up with this year’s memories!

This first page is about being on the beach.

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I asked her to tell me what she liked about being on the beach, and I printed out the words for her to copy in her own handwriting.  She is just starting to read a little bit on her own, and she loves writing things herself.  I love the idea of having her own words in her own handwriting in her own album!

This second page is about the fun she had in the pools at the building where we stayed.  Again, the words and handwriting are her own.

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We added lots of sparkle to this one– glittery circle and wavy strip stickers, prismatic hearts punched from the excess from a sticker sheet, rhinestones, and shiny studded tropical flower stickers.

Of course, anything sparkly delights my 5-year-old, but I also made sure to include the sparkly elements so that she could enter this page into the Simon Says Stamp “Anything Goes With Sparkle” summer vacation kids’ challenge.

Aside from my choosing the set of supplies for each page and applying adhesive using the ATG or liquid glue (PPA), she did the placement and final product selection for each of her pages.  I did remind her of things like layering, having embellishments and titles touch something to keep the page cohesive, and I tried to teach her about clustering in a visual triangle!  I am so glad that we got to spend this time together!

 

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I love memory-keeping.

This is not a surprise to anyone who knows me even a little bit.  I like to say that photos are my love-language!  I take so many photos, and I have a detailed system in place to make sure that all of my photos have some sort of caption attached to them.

The form of memory-keeping I like best is paper scrapbooking.  “Traditional” scrapbook pages are at the top of that list: I love adding pretty paper and embellishments to my photos and stories to enhance them and turn them into creative works.  I love the layers, the colors, the feel of the paper and chipboard and veneer and…and…

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Recently, though, I have had to prioritize other things, and so I have been doing very little actual scrapbooking with paper.  Add to that the fact that my craft room had to be involved in some plumbing replacement during our bathroom renovation, and you find a girl who is desperate for a creative outlet without a place to make stuff.

And so, I decided to take advantage of the forced time away from my physical supplies to do some digital work.  I had photos to catch up with, and I also had some photo books that I’ve wanted to make.

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monorail and Dry Gulch Railroad, 2013

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Ladybugs and Sack Slide, 2013

 

I have mixed feelings about photo books.  Anyone else?  Sometimes I feel like it’s cheating.  It feels like instead of actually making a scrapbook, I’m just throwing some photos onto pages and printing them into a book, and calling it good.  I choose and edit my photos, I upload them to Shutterfly and make the books right in their software.  For these most recent photo books, I just used the standard styles (not even the premium ones) to construct my books.  I didn’t even use my own digital supplies in PSE to make my own pages!  Cheating?

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Starship and Ladybugs, 2016

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Flying Falcons, 2016

When I really stop to think about it though, I realize that it’s not cheating.  Yes, I used the website’s software and basic templates and supplies.  But I spent hours on them– adding embellishments in just the right places, tweaking the photo placements so that they were just right, and adding text to tell the stories of our annual trips to Hersheypark.  These are scrapbooks, too.  They might not have the tactile end result of layers of paper and embellishments, shadows and textures, but they are lovingly made– and they are completely personalized to our family’s story.  And best of all: they are done!  They are available on our bookshelf — the kids browse through these photo books, reminiscing from the photos, and asking their Daddy and me to read the words to them.  I am so glad that I have taken the time to write so much about each photo.  The metadata in the photo files helped me to construct the narrative that runs through each book.  It’s not cheating: it’s another form of memory-keeping.

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Cocoa Cruiser and Livery Stables, 2017

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Trailblazer and Convoy, 2017

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Ladybugs and Swing Thing, 2017

I still love paper scrapbooks, and I hope that I am always able to keep making them.  But I will also be making more photo books, too.  Sometimes those books will be done on the Shutterfly website, and sometimes I will completely design them myself in PSE.  I’m making my peace with photo books, and I’m glad.

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photo with Mr. Hershey, 2013

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photo with Mr. Hershey, 2016

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photo with Mr. Hershey, 2017

In this post, I’ve shared photos of the three most recent photo books I made in June and July of this year.  I am trying to keep a series of photo books of our annual day trips to Hersheypark.  We went for the first time in 2013, and we’ve gone every year since– I’d like to have a book for each year.  I have not yet made my book for 2015 (there are so many photos from that year!), but I have made all of the others so far!  (I made the book for 2014 way back in that same year, so I’m not showing it in this blog post.)  It’s so fun to see our kids grow up– which rides are new for them each year, and which ones are perennial favorites.  

 

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In the background this summer, behind and amongst all the other projects I’ve been working on, whether shared on the blog or not, I’ve been attempting to finish up my son’s photo-a-day baby album.  The last time I posted on my blog about this was when he was about seven months old!  You can see all the posts related to this album by clicking HERE.

I have to say, I’m proud of myself for how well I kept up with the daily documentation in this album.  By the time he turned one year old, I had a card written for almost every single day, and I had photos chosen, if not printed, for each of those days.  However, I wanted to do more with the album than that.  There were a lot of huge, big, and smaller events, celebrations, and moments that I wanted to highlight with extra inserts, and that’s what I’ve been working on this summer.

I thought that after the thrill of success with my China album in Finish-it-February, I would be able to hit the deadline of my son’s third birthday in late June, but this project is quite a bit bigger…

in progress: B's photo-a-day baby album

Throughout June and July, the two binders that compose this album project have been out on my craft island, surrounded by extra cards, embellishments, and notes.  I had some of my extra photos printed already, but the vast majority of these extra inserts needed to have photos chosen and their configurations planned.

I’ve been going through the album page by page, methodically noting where I need additional “stuff”.  You can see in the photo above that I’m making notes on tiny scraps of paper and slotting them into page protector spots, or even sketching out whole inserts and attaching them to one of the rings as a placeholder until I have the photos printed…and I even need to get my hands on some more page protectors.

I am about 3/4 of the way through the album with this process, and I have prepared over 100 4″x6″ prints so far– and many of them are a collage of more than one photo!  Once I’ve gone through the entire album, I will place my order with Persnickety Prints, and then I’ll go back through the album again to finish all of the pages.

The other bit thing I need to do to finish the album is to add title cards for each week (with the date) and in the case of most weeks, I also need to add a filler 3″x4″ card.

Maybe I’ll have it finished by my son’s fourth birthday!  Let’s hope!!

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