Spare Room Make-over: Scrapbooking Storage Bench

When planning out the space, we decided that the spare room would become my dressing room as well as my new scrapbooking room. I already had a scrapbooking room located off the back of the spare room. I loved the room as it was banked with a wall of windows and offered great light. However, it wasn’t very functional and I found most of my projects were done in the evening and I rarely got to enjoy the windows anyway. After years of contemplation, I finally relented and we both decided that the benefits of main floor laundry far out weighed my reasons for keeping it as my scrapbooking room. So I needed to create a space that was visually appealing, functional and could be kept neat and tidy.

Once again, I decided that in order to make this really work, I had to go through the painstaking task of sorting through all of my scrapbooking and project supplies. Although I still had Marie Kondo fresh on my mind, it was impossible to follow the same steps I used for sorting my clothes only two days before. This job involved literally hundreds of small items that needed to be sorted, organized and in some cases tossed or donated. I literally went through every piece of paper and brad I had in my possession. Purging my clothes was a big job, but this was a monster. It took me two very long days to get through everything, but in the end, every item would have a proper home.

As I cleaned and sorted, I tried to think about how I was going organize everything neatly into the new space. The scrapbooking albums were a bit of a challenge to figure out. They are large and needed a shelf that would be about 14″ deep and approximately 3 feet long. They are very heavy and the books themselves are several different colours. I really wanted the colour scheme to be very neutral with white accessories. After pondering for a few days, I stumbled upon a bench seat that had been given to me by a colleague. She thought I might be able to use it for a project some day. Although the bench was rather plain and needed some work, it was sturdy. I was so excited when I tried an album and discovered that it held my whole collection perfectly. I decided to give it a fresh coat of white paint and upholster the top to create a comfortable seat to use while dressing. Here is what the bench looked like before I started.

Upholstering the top what quite easy. I just removed it and added foam and padding from an old leather chair Tim had just dismantled. It was really just a matter of using a staple gun to secure the padding and fabric. I then added a piece of white material to give it more of a finished look when you lift the lid. The fabric was discounted and I managed to pick it up for around $7.  After adding the extra piece of wood along the front and upholstering the top, the bench boasts a whole new look. Simple, but lovely.

I couldn’t be more pleased with the finished bench. I am so glad I figured out how to make the albums accessible and yet out of site. The thought of having all of the different coloured albums up on a shelf was just not the look I was going for. Can’t wait until the whole room is pulled together. Just a few more projects and it will be done.  Stay tuned for the next project I have to share from our spare room make-over.

Upcycled Homework Caddy

Ever since Eden started grade 7 and homework became a daily event in our life, it seems like she is constantly “borrowing” my supplies and not returning them and leaving scads of tools around the house. I decided to build her a homework caddy stocked with everything she’d need to complete her assignments. The caddy can easily be transported, so she can choose to do her homework in her room or at the table ~ whatever suits her best. This project was all about the 4 R’s ~ Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and of course, Repurpose.

Here’s What I Used:

The basis for this design came from these items that I had in my project bin. (Remember to click on the images to enlarge them.)

Of course, as I began to brainstorm and pull my ideas together, I needed additional items such as burlap, string, saw, drill and screws, wood glue, magnets and paint.

Here’s What I Did:

1. I removed the cord from the broken lamp and cut the shaft to create a nice pedestal-like base.

2. I attached the pedestal, circular “lazy susan” wooden base and the center post from the mug stand together with a long screw. homework caddy

3. I spray primed and painted the structure.

4. I then took the clean cans (of varying sizes) and wrapped burlap or string around them to give them a bit of a finished look.

5. I then wrapped some string around the center post as well.

6. I used a nail to punch holes in the bottom of each can near the center. I then screwed each to the wooden base.

7. Finally, I glued on a couple of strong magnets to hold paper clips and a mini-stapler.

8. The top pegs from the mug stand act as handles for the caddy.

Eden’s homework caddy contains an assortment of pencils, pens, markers, pencil crayons, scissors, a pencil sharpener, an eraser, a ruler, a stapler and a few paper clips ~ everything she needs, all in one place! Generally, my daughter prefers to do her homework in her own room, but when she needs help, she likes to work at the kitchen or dining room table. The caddy allows her to bring everything she needs with her.

If making something like this seems like too much work, don’t sweat it….pick-up a plastic caddy or something made out of wood or metal with dividers already in it….maybe something like a cutlery storage caddy. You can find many different styles and at a wide range of prices depending on the look you are going for.  The important thing is to have everything in one place and make it easy to transport.  Here are some of the options I found available:

Sleepover Birthday Party Invitations

When planning any kind of theme party, I love to try to make a really cool invitation. Eden has had two different sleepover parties that really didn’t have a more specific theme. I thought I would share two completely different ideas for how to make a fun and unique party invitation.

Sleepover Party Invitation #1:

For this invitation, I made a postcard style card. When making this style of a card, I create a full-page document and then duplicate the page four times. When I go to print the invitation I select “print 4 pages per page” so that all four postcards will print on a quarter of a sheet of card stock. To see a full tutorial on how to do this, check-out my Snowflake Birthday Invitation.  The computer portion of the invitation just contained the standard information: date, time, location, what to wear, what to bring, etc.

On the back of the postcard, I began by adding a layer of black that was slightly smaller than the white card stock and then followed that by a slightly smaller piece of patterned paper. Because this party theme was really just a “sleepover”, I chose to stick to a specific colour scheme for the party. I decided on pink and orange. Once the printed invitation and base were created, the invitation really began to come together with the embellishments. For this invitation, I googled clip art of both pillows and slippers.  From those ideas, I actually drew my own version of both. For the slippers, I made one, then scanned the image and copied it to get multiple copies of the slippers on one page. I printed the image on orange card stock and then used markers to colour it in and add the details. The pillow was a very simple drawing, so I made a tracer and simply traced and cut out enough for each invitation. I inked the edges of the pillow and drew a little “slit” at the end of the pillow case. For the font on the pillow, I used a combination of stamps and Cricut cut-out letters. The P, J and R were made on my Cricut, but the other letters were stamped on the pillow. I adhered the slippers to the bottom corner of the invitation, so that they overlapped the pillow slightly. The final step was to attach the pillow/slippers to the base. I wanted to create a three-dimensional effect, so I only attached the pillow at the ends, so that I could easily slide stretched out cotton balls beneath the pillow to add dimension. I actually found that I didn’t even need to glue or tape the cotton, as the pressure from the pillow seemed to hold it in place. The photo really doesn’t show the 3D aspect of the invitation, but the pillow does have some dimension in real life.

Sleepover party invitation

The P in the top corner is actually part of my scrapbook layout from the party, not party of the invitation. I always make an extra invitation that is added to their birthday scrapbook layout.

Sleepover Party Invitation #2:

For her second (9th) sleepover party invitation, I wanted to do something completely different. This invitation consisted of many components and was a bit complex and time-consuming to make, but the finished project was pretty cool.

The back of the invitation contained a timeline of the events we had planned and a checklist of what they should bring. Here is the pdf for the Sleepover Party BrochureSleepover Party Brochure

On the opposite side, I used various printed papers to build a sleeping bag and pillow. The slipping bag was basically made with a layer of polka dot paper and a scalloped edge border for the top of the “bag”. I ran my sewing machine all the way around the outside edge of the invitation using white thread and a large zig zag stitch to hold the paper layers in place. This left both the top and bottom of the sleeping bag open.sleepover party invitation

I used white cotton fabric scraps to sew and stuff an actual pillow for each invitation. I basically made a rectangle by placing right sides of the fabric together and sewing all the way around. I cut a small slit in the middle of the back of the pillow and turned the little pillow right side out. I then ran my machine down both ends and made a zig zag top-stitch down each side. I used the slit in the back for stuffing the pillow with cotton batting as well. I didn’t even close the slit as I would be gluing the pillow onto the invitation and it wouldn’t be seen.

I made the actual invitation portion of the card on the computer (date, time, location, etc.). I printed it on white card stock and then mounted it on orange. I added a short tab made from ribbon and secured with an orange brad. This slid under the “foot” end of the sleeping bag, with the tab sticking out so it could be seen and pulled out.

Finally, I made paper dolls for each of the girls. I honestly can’t exactly remember how I did this, but I think I found one (or maybe a few different ones on-line??) and printed them onto card stock. I then used watercolour pencil crayons to colour their skin, hair and features. Finally, I made each one a “nighty” out of patterned paper. I stamped a little white fringe at the bottom of the nighty and added a few button brads on the front. The nighties were secured in traditional paper doll style by folding the tabs over the back of the dolls. The paper dolls slid inside the top of the sleeping bag.

The brochure indicated they should bring their dolls to the party. One of the activities the girls did at the party was design and make clothes for their dolls. I had some templates, writing/colouring tools, scissors, patterned paper and other embellishments for them to use.sleepover party invitation

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Want S’more Valentine Ideas?

If you’ve been following my blog for any length of time, then you already know how I love those quirky little word plays that offer double meanings. Well, this cute Valentine’s idea is no exception. Eden and Shay are in the same classroom this year as they are enrolled in an alternative program/multi-aged classroom. This will be Eden’s last year in the 4/5/6 Alternative Program and for the second time in their elementary schooling, both kids are in the same classroom. We are so fortunate to get to experience this for the second time as they were also together when Shay was in grade one and Eden grade three. The kids get along very well (especially at school) and it is so nice to have one set of notes, field trips and even curriculum.

I am not even sure if their class is having a Valentine’s party, but regardless, I have prepared treat bags for their classmates ~ one class, one set….Yay!!!  I really loved the idea of putting together a little s’more treat bag and found lots of cute ideas on-line for “catch phrases”. In the end, I found one that said “I love you forever and then s’more.”  I liked this, but thought the “I love you” part was inappropriate at my kids’ ages, so I made up my own version of the slogan.

Homemade S’more Valentines Cards:

I made the little “s’more” tags and microwave directions on the computer. I was able to fit 12 “s’more” tags on one 8 1/2″ X 11″ sheet of paper, so I just made two copies of the document. I copied the tags on to a very dark pinkish/coral polka dot paper. I fit all 24 tags with the microwave directions onto one page.  I then used my paper trimmer to cut all of the tags out. Once cut-out, I tore the edges of the polka dot paper to reveal the white edge below the surface of the paper. I like the contrast of the white edge against the black card stock background. Finally, I used my Cricut to cut-out a plain white heart for each tag. I then ran the hearts through my crimper to jazz them up just a bit. I mounted both of the tags on a piece of black card stock (with the bottoms sitting along the edges and the tops of the tags sitting towards the middle where the eventual fold would end up. I ran a marker around the edge of the microwave instruction tags in a line/dot pattern. This simple addition just helped to finish off the look.

Homemade S’more Valentine Treat Bags:

  • small zipper seal bags (dollar store)
  • 4 graham crackers
  • 2 individually packaged chocolates
  • 2 marshmallows

Finally, I folded the black card stock in half and slipped it over top of the zipper seal. I then stapled the tags to the top of each bag.

*Normally, I would have made the cards so that the kids could at least sign them, but I had originally planned to print the tags using white ink on black paper and wasn’t sure I could trust my white pen for them to write their names on all of the tags. In the end, my printer wasn’t working properly, so I ended up using the polka dot paper and black ink.

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Personalized Valentine Bookmarks

We have never been in the habit of giving our kids gifts on Valentine’s Day, but a few years ago, I made Eden and Shay personalized bookmarks in lieu of a card and they were a big hit!

Personalized Valentine Bookmark:

I set my document on “columns” in order to create a narrow document. This allowed me to make both Eden and Shay’s on the same sheet of card stock. Mine are a bit wider than a standard bookmark at approximately 2 1/2″ in width. You could easily adjust your column width if you prefer a narrow bookmark.

I used a large font to print their name across the top and just below, I inserted the meaning of their name. I was surprised to learn how important this was to them. I must confess that the meaning behind their names did not weigh heavily in our selection of names when we had our kids. We certainly looked at the meanings, but it was not a deciding factor.  Despite this, the kids really like knowing what their name means.

Below this, I created an acrostic poem with their name. I printed the first letter in their name vertically down the bookmark and beside each letter, I wrote a brief description of their character using the letter from their name as a starting point. You will notice in Shay’s that I used a little “play on words” with “sonshine” because that was one of our bedtime ritual songs for many years.

I left space to add a little embellishment and sign the card/bookmark and then at the very bottom, added a scripture. Shay is a bit of a worrier, so this scripture was chosen for him.

I followed the exact same process for Eden and then printed out the document with both bookmarks on it.

Finishing Touches:

I then used my scrapbooking materials and tools to dress-up the reverse side of the bookmark.  I made a simple border on my Cricut and added double layered lettering for his name. These were not difficult to make, but I wanted them to last so I laminated them. They have been very durable and the kids continue to use them on a regular basis. Here are some photos of Shay’s, but Eden is still in bed and I don’t know where hers is. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find the original document from when I made them, so photos will have to do.

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Scrapbooking Organization

I am fortunate to have a designated scrapbook/project room in our house. I love that this room is all MINE! Although it is small (about 6′ and 9′) and there are still some things I would like to incorporate to organize it even better, it is one of my favourite rooms in the house. The west wall is banked with windows, so there is beautiful natural light and a very cozy feel to the room.  I have not done anything to really “decorate” this room, but it is functional. Someday, I hope to have a perfect spot for everything and a more appealing decor, but for now there are a few things that have worked well for me at very little cost, and so, I thought I would share some of the ideas. (It is always difficult to keep this work space tidy as I nearly always have a project on the go.  This is pretty much as tidy as it gets and it never stays like this for long!)

Organizing Your Scrapbooking Supplies:

  1. PAPER: One of the things that used to drive me crazy was all of the scraps of paper. The bits and pieces that were left over from a project. You know the pieces that are too small for most things and yet too big to recycle. I tried several organizing systems, but this is by far the best. I basically created a bag  for each of the main colours. The bags are ziplock type bags, but were not bought in a store. They were passed onto me and were originally the packaging for computer parts (I think). The bags are about 8 3/4″ wide by about 12″ tall and the plastic is actually a little heavier and thus more sturdy than the store bought bags. The size is perfect, but I am sure store bought bags would be fine as well. (I also wonder if clear page protectors might work as you can purchase some that are a bit thicker.) I punched a small hole in the corner of each bag and then set an eyelet in so that the plastic wouldn’t tear. I then tied a ribbon to each bag, indicating the colour of paper it would contain and lined my wall with those little screw in hooks. Each bag hangs on its own hook and all of my scrap paper is organized by colour. I still have to sort through the bag to find the exact shade I am looking for, but it is so much more manageable and the system is really easy to stick to. If you don’t have a room, you could always keep the bags/page protectors in a binder.
  2. EMBELLISHMENTS: What do you do with all of the little knick-knacky items like brads, buttons, tape, eyelets, rhinestones, etc.? Well, what works for me is this screw/nail chest that I picked up at Canadian Tire for under $20. I think I got it for 60 or 70% off and it seems to do the trick. I don’t love the navy colour and could easily spray paint the cabinet, but thought I would wait until I actually have a colour pallet to work with and then paint it to coordinate with the other elements in the room. The little drawers work perfectly to hold all of the little odds and ends that I use to dress-up a page.

    embellishment storage

    Screw/nail cabinet used to store my knick-knacks. (You can also see a few jars of ribbon on the white shelf.)

  3. RIBBON: I have quite a bit of ribbon and have not yet got the perfect system for organizing it. I have some of it in jars which works well, but I would need way to many jars to store all that I have. I have some in ziplock bags, similar to the paper, but I don’t find this works very well and the balance is in a drawer. I think that if I had the space (or set-up) the jars would be ideal. You can easily see what you have at a glance and organize the jars according to colour. Maybe some day!

    scrapbooking room

    You can see a few of the ribbon jars and the bags hanging on the bottom hook of the little white shelf.

  4. SECRETARY STYLE DESK: The white secretary style desk in this room was a cheap Kijiji find. You can check-out the before and after shots by following the link. I love that this desk provides additional storage inside and an extra work surface when open. It works great for a small space because it can be closed-up when not in use.Secretary Style cabinet
  5. CRICUT DRAWER: I repurposed a drawer from an old desk and incorporated into my existing scrapbooking room because I loved this feature in my old desk. (Actually my new desk is older than my old desk which might be a bit confusing). This drawer allows me to tuck my Cricut away, without the hassle of having to haul it in and out every time I go to use it. The drawer feature allows me to keep it plugged in and ready to go at all times, but also allows me to put it away so that it is not in my way. Love this!

    scrapbooking room

    The drawer is the big beadboard unit below the desk.

Overall, this little space works really well and I know I am very fortunate to have it. I will continue to make this space all that it can be in both function and visual appeal. It is a work in progress, but it is all MINE and I love that!

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Scrapbooking Christmas

I started scrapbooking when the kids were small and absolutely love it. However, I knew that my personality is such that all enjoyment would be squashed if I tried to scrapbook everything. I devised a plan that would help me to keep my scrapbooking hobby fun and not an overwhelming project on my list of things to do. You can check-out how I manage my scrapbooking in this previous post: Creative Memories: Scrapbooking for the Busy Mom.  One of the books that I created is a Family Christmas Album.

Scrapbooking Christmas:

This scrapbooking album is strictly Christmas layouts. I love that you can flip through the pages of this album and see the growth and changes in family members through the years with the simple flip of a page. Of course, what makes this so easy, is that I only do one double page layout per year. I use a 12″ X 12″ album and with the book open, both pages capture that particular year. The very first page in the album is a single page (of course), so I decided to make it a title page for the album. I find it really funny to look back through the album as it not only reflects how we looked so many years ago, but also what a novice scrapbooker I was. You can see how I have progressively gotten somewhat better over the years.

Here are a few shots of our album.

My advice to anyone taking up scrapbooking is to keep it manageable. For me this meant, letting go of the desire to scrapbook every event and sticking to more of a general focus. Picking the 5 to 10 best shots from that year and capturing it in a layout. Here are some simple guidelines that I use:

  • keep it more general than specific (ie highlights from 2013 to create a layout for each child)
  • make one album for each child
  • make event scrapbooking something you do for fun, not a “must do”
  • create a Christmas album or even a Halloween album if you are big on Halloween (I love having all of the memories in one book)
  • stay on top of it
  • purchase the online photo books to capture the memories from a trip and do it as soon as you get home. (Within about 3 to 4 hours, you can choose your layout, pictures and even journal the whole trip. Well worth the time and money.)

Happy scrapbooking!

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Repurposing Christmas Crackers

Christmas crackersChristmas crackers

I am not sure if your family purchases Christmas Crackers for the holiday season or not, but my sister in-law always has a cracker for everyone at our family Christmas dinner. It is a tradition. I am not sure where she purchases them, but I think she might get them at Costco. They are always quite elegant looking and the prizes are pretty good. This year we got a key chain, an egg timer, a set of mini dominos and a heart pendant necklace. Aside from the fun and the prizes, I also have a tradition of my own. For me the prize is much more about the packaging than the actual contents of the cracker. I always collect all of the little embellishments and take them home for use in other projects. I thought I would share a couple of repurposing ideas for those cute little cracker decorations.

Repurposing Christmas Crackers:

Here are a few shots of some of my salvaged loot from the past three years. You can see that some of the piles are already quite depleted.

Each end of the cracker is usually tied with one or two pieces of ribbon. A wire with little balls on it is twisted around to make a pretty little decoration. The ribbon pieces are quite small and their uses are definitely limited, but I absolutely love those fancy little wires.

  1. I have used the small ribbons and wires to add a bit of extra charm to small gifts in much the same way as they are used on the original crackers.
  2. The wires and bows can also be used to add some pizzaz to a scrapbooking layout.Christmas cracker upcycle

It may be too late, but if you have some crackers hanging around that still haven’t been used or maybe you are saving them for New Year’s, don’t forget to gather all those odds and ends and add them to your stash for future use.

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Creative Memories: Scrapbooking for the Busy Mom

Our Kodak Camera When I was a child, there was very little extra money and although we had a camera similar to the one in the photo, we often didn’t have film on hand or money to process the pictures that were taken. As I grew up, I found that I had a very poor memory of my childhood.  There were (and still are) countless times when we are engaged in conversation about the past and I literally have no recollection of the event.  I really don’t know why this is or if perhaps it is even normal, but I have always felt that my long-term memory was not as good as my peers.  As a young adult, my parents moved from our family home in the “country” to the city. Of course this meant doing a lot of sorting and purging.  My mom was by know means a hoarder, but we always had one room that was stacked with boxes of “stuff”.  We lived in a heritage home and the basement was not suitable for storage and so for us, one of the bedrooms became the “dumping” ground.  I hated that room and perhaps that is what shaped me into the organized person that I am today.  Sometimes, I think we grow-up reflecting on our parents and upbringing and making specific decisions about how we are going to do certain things different or “better”.  Such was the case for me when it came to organization and specifically family photos.  When my parents were preparing to move, I found a bag full of old “film” in one of the boxes. I took the film in to a processing lab, but all of the film was damaged and we were unable to have it processed and printed.  I am not sure if my lack of childhood memories is due to the absence of pictures or not, but I certainly feel that a photo captures a moment and provides an anchor that helps to engrave that memory in our hearts and minds.  My parents loved me very much, of that I am certain, but I can honestly say that my memories are random and vague at best.  I remember only one birthday.  I don’t know how old I was (maybe 12 or 14?) and my only memory is of the cake because it looked so pretty with strawberries carefully sliced on the top of it.  I remember coming downstairs late at night one December evening and catching my mom with fabric spread out on the floor making what would later become the quilt I got for Christmas that year.  I remember the one doll I got when I was quite small and a clock radio cassette player I received as a young teen.  I am grateful for the few photos that I do have, but regret the absence of “proof” from my childhood.  I can’t imagine that I didn’t have a birthday party, and yet remember none.

So, you can see why for me scrapbooking is more than a hobby, it is something that I deem essential and am passionate about.  I want to take those memories and create anchors on which my own children can track the milestones of their lives.

Setting Up a Manageable System for Scrapbooking Your Family Memories

I am not perfect, but definitely have the attitude that if you are going to do something, do it with excellence or why bother.  So, when I was embarking on this new hobby  a few years after Eden was born, I knew that I would need to have a plan in order for me to stay on top of my “scrapbooking” projects.  Here is what I do, to keep it fun and less overwhelming.

1. I have one 12″ X 12″ scrapbook for each of my children and both follow the exact same format:

  • A title page consisting of  the birth announcement
  • One two page NEWBORN lay-out (both pages when the book is open) This highlights their birth and our time in the hospital, really just the first few days of life.  It also includes a few pregnancy photos.
  • One two page layout of 0 to 6 months.
  • One two page layout of 7 to 12 months.
  • One two page layout of their FIRST BIRTHDAY party.
  • One two page layout of them as a ONE year old.
  • One two page layout of their SECOND BIRTHDAY party.
  • One two page layout of them as a TWO year old.

This process will continue until they are 18.  There are no “events” captured in these books.  I reserve it for single snapshots of the milestones, people who are important to them (pictures of them with mom, dad, brother/sister, cousins, aunts, grandparents, special friends, etc.) as well as important events and FIRSTS.  So for example, it may contain only one photo of Christmas from that specific year or one photo from a piano recital.  The concept of the ONE year lay-outs is to highlight what was important to them at that time in their lives.  What I love about this set-up is that I really only have two lay-outs to do per child per year.  Four lay-outs that I must commit to in order to stay on top of their books. This helps me to stay motivated and creative without it becoming a daunting task on my “to do” list.

Side note: Make sure you journal.  Journaling may seem like it is not important, but in order to truly capture the moment it is important to write a little about it.  When I look through my older layouts, I can see that I kept journaling to a minimum. I often just included titles and dates on my photos, but over time, I saw the value and began to write more.  I sometimes type my journal entries, but often print them myself.  Having lost my mom, I know how much a sample of her writing on an old recipe means to me.  Including your own writing is like signing it “made with love, by my own hands just for you”. I just really feel that journaling is important and needs to be included.

2. I have created one 12″ X 12″ album that is solely for Christmas.  I have a title page at the front of the book and then do one two page lay-out per year.  I love this book because it captures the people most important in our lives and shows how everyone has grown and changed over the course of a year.  Again, one lay-out per year is very manageable for me.

3. When the kids started school, I also began a school album.  I actually have both kids in the same album.  Basically, I do a two page lay-out for every grade they are in.  The photos include field trips, their teachers, concerts, assembly performances, awards, etc.  I am not sure if I will continue this after grade 6 or not.  I may just restrict it to memories from their elementary school days.  This adds two more lay-outs to the list, making it a total of SEVEN lay-outs that I am absolutely committed to staying on top of.  Luckily, the kids’ birthdays are six months apart, so it isn’t too difficult for me to pull this off.

Sample School Album Layout

This is a sample layout from the kid’s School Album.

4. In addition to the above, I do have a few other albums that I putter at. I consider them “extras” and do them just for fun.

  • Special Events album – I have only one album that I use to capture entire events.  For me, this is just too much to commit to. I have a list of lay-outs that I think would be fun to do ~ some day.  I don’t worry about these and only do them when I feel inspired.
  • School Album – I think I figured out that I have now taught well over 700 children in my years as a teacher.  A few years ago, I pulled together a very simple album with my staff and class pictures from over the years.  This is pretty easy to keep current as there are very few photos to add and the embellishments are kept very simple.
Sample Event Layout

This is a sample from my special events album. This layout features Eden’s First Lemonade Stand!

I know so many scrapbookers that try to do it all!  They try to scrapbook every thing. This just doesn’t work for me. I am too busy and too much of a perfectionist.  I would constantly feel like I was behind and this would totally block my creativity and remove the fun.  I really enjoy scrapbooking, but never want it to become so overwhelming that I resent it or the time that it requires.  My best advice is keep it simple and manageable.  One more tip ~ don’t scrapbook family vacations.  We are so fortunately that we can drag our photos into photo books and order very professional looking photo books with a few clicks of the mouse.  For family vacations or big events, go with the online photo book option.  I love that I can journal right in the book and have the whole trip captured within a few hours.  The books are generally well made and you can even order multiple copies, if so desired.

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