I'm an Aunt!
On April 22, 2015, my sister and her husband welcomed little Jason into the world.
I got to visit them in the hospital, but everyone was exhausted I didn't stay long and I didn't get many photos. I did get a photo of me holding Jason for the first time! This little man has made me an aunt, and I am so excited!
A few weeks later, I went over to my sister's place to take some newborn photos. They were mostly for me, as I am not a professional photographer and I didn't want my sister to rely solely on my photos for announcements, portraits for their walls, etc. However, these photos came out soooo much better than I had even hoped! Once we got him asleep, we could put him in any number of positions, so I had a blast posing and snapping away. Here are a few of my favorites:
My sister loves Radio Flyer wagons, so of course we needed a photo of Jason in a wagon.
Dad loves golf, so we got a photo of his future caddy.
And no newborn photo shoot would be complete without the detail shots of all the teeny-tiny baby parts!
I can't wait to see what kind of a person my little nephew grows up into! I have a feeling he's going to be pretty awesome, though I may be slightly biased...
Sometimes, life moves too fast for us to pull out a camera and capture it. Today, I'm going to share some ways I incorporate journaling instead of (or in addition to) photos in Project Life.
Every once in a while, Caribou Coffee has a BOGO promotion. I usually go alone, so there's no one to share the BOGO with. Lately, I've been passing on the free drink to the person behind me in line. I obviously don't take pictures of random people in coffee shops, so there's no photos for this story, But it is a story that I wanted to document. I saved the receipt, wrote the story, and put it onto a decorated 4x6 card.
I love trying new food. I try to get a photo of any new creations I make, and of course they end up in my PL book (and in my recipe book), but it's so boring to keep writing "I tried a new recipe, it was good" every time I make something new. So I started printing out a miniature recipe card to put in my book. I rate the dish with stars so when I look back, I know if I liked it or not, but I don't have to write anything else.
Sometimes I just have so much fun doing something, I forget to document it. That, or my friends get really tired of me snapping photos all the time. Or both...
So when I go out to eat at a new or fun place, I grab their business card. It makes a nice supplement to my journaling about the event.
Sometimes, there are stories that need to be told but don't need to be remembered or read every time you look through your book. Or maybe you don't want to share this information with everyone who ever opens your book. I had a very difficult day and wanted to write about it, but I didn't want to have to re-read it every time I looked back, so I made a folded journal card, decorated the front, and wrote on the inside. The story is told, and I can choose when to read it again.
So there you have it - some of the ways I use or supplement journaling in my Project Life book. I hope this inspires you to tell your story.
Just because you don't have a photo, doesn't mean life didn't happen.
Did you survive that last post? And you're back for more? Awesome!
So, last time I talked about some fun things I do with Project Life photos. But what happens when you don't have any photos?
That happens a lot to me, so I've learned to improvise!
Every once in a while (thankfully not that often!), I have one of those weeks that is just so busy I don't have a lot of time for anything else. Which means no photos! So I sometimes take a screenshot of my calendar and include that.
The same thing goes with weather. I'm not one to go out and take photos of poor weather (I tend to hide inside and obsessively watch the news), and really, how does one take a photo of oppressive heat or frigid cold? Anyway; screenshot!
Go to many movies? I do! I save my tickets and print out a small movie poster. Instant 4x6 pocket insert!
Does anyone else binge-watch TV shows on Netflix? No? Just me? Ok then...
When I get into a new show, I print out a photo I find online, and journal about it! Same goes for new games or music I find.
My friends and I like to play games, but they don't like it when I take photos of them. So I take the game cards and put those in my book instead!
And sometimes I find things on Facebook or Pinterest that I just love. And so, print!
And that's about all for today. What about you? How do you scrap without photos? What kids of things do you print out and include in your books?
Come back next week for more of my tips about Project Life including journaling and what to do with all those non-photo or non-paper extras!
Project Life Tips &Tricks; Photos
I, like a large portion of the scrapbooking world, have jumped on the Project Life train. And I am loving it! I have written a little about my 2012 Project Life once before, but today I wanted to share some tips and tricks I picked up along my journey. This post is going to be photo heavy and likely end up being more than one post. So lets jump right in!
I'll start with photos. Seems logical to me. After all, PL is all about our photos, right?
I use Picasa to upload and edit all of my photos. It's free, it's easy, and it seems intuitive to me. It's (obviously) not as sophisticated or tool-heavy as Photoshop, but I'm not a huge fan of editing photos, I just want it to be quick and easy and I don't really feel like putting in all the work of learning Photoshop. Though I do Own Elements and I have played a bit with templates, but that's another story...
Back to photos!
One of the big roadblocks I ran into when I first started Project Life was that not all of my photos were landscape. I took a lot of portrait photos and I didn't know how to include them. I quickly figured out that two 3x4 photos would fit into a 4x6 pocket, so all I needed to do was shrink them down. In Picasa, you just select the photos you want to combine (click one, then hold down the Ctrl key and click the other - they will both be highlighted), then click the Collage button on the bottom. You can mess with the settings as much as you want. I choose Mosaic layout, 4x6 size, landscape orientation, and sometimes I put some spacing in, if the photos are going in the same pocket. If I'm going to be cutting them apart, I don't put any spacing in.
So what if you have multiple photos you want to include in one pocket (like the foods my mom and I ate at the State Fair)? You simply select more than two photos, and make a collage out of all of them! Same steps apply, just select all the photos you want, instead of just two. When I make a multi-picture collage, I always put in some spacing between the photos. You can see in this collage, I made the spacing the nacho cheese color. I like pulling colors from the photos with the eyedropper tool. Also, while you cannot change the size or ratio of the photos in the collage, you can change which photo is where by simply clicking and dragging it to where you want it. So if I prominent photo is stick in a tiny spot (like the photo of my mom eating the corn was way up in the upper right corner and I could barely see it), you can just move it!
Here are some other collages I have made:
When my friend have babies, I pull photos from their Facebook pages and make a mini collage celebrating their birth. Because I likely won't see the child till they are older and less scrunchy-new.
The Olympics was a big part of my summer, but I obviously wasn't there, so I got pics online and made collages of my favorite events and athletes.
I went to the zoo and was lucky enough to see the bears playing with each other and wrestling in the water. I loved the sequence of photos I got, but obviously didn't want to fill 9 full pockets with them, so I made another collage!
Here's a whole page I dedicated to my in-laws' annual Broomball party. You can see I included full 4x6 photos, half-sized 3x4 photos, and multiple collages in both the 4x6 and 3x4 pockets. It's fun to see so many photos together on one page!
Another fun thing to do in Picasa is adding text to your photos. I don't do it that often, I usually put a label on after it's printed, but sometimes I like to get fancy. :-)
To add text in Picasa, open the photo you want to add text to, and click the text button to the left. Then type. Seriously, it's that easy. You can move the text around and change the size, font, and color, but it's seriously easy to figure out. Everything's right there for you.
Just make sure when you're done and you've hit the 'Apply' button, that you 'Export' the photo to your computer (button on the bottom that looks like a file folder with an arrow on it) so you can print it with the text, otherwise, it's just a change within Picasa.
I often put my newly created 3x4 photos on a 4x6 card by themselves or with a bit or journaling and decoration. I like how they stand out more than they would being put alone into a 3x4 pocket.
Alright, enough for today. I have more tips and tricks to share with you, including journaling tips, what to do with ticket stubs and other ephemera, and some misc tricks that I like, but those will have to wait for another day. I'm tired of typing, and I bet you're tired of reading by now.
If you have any questions about the tips and tricks you saw here, please feel free to comment or contact me. And if you have some photo/Picasa/PL tips and tricks of your own, please share!!
Till next time!
Project Life Intro
I love to scrapbook. I love to take photos and stories and turn them into works of art. And believe me - some of my pages were truly works of art. However, the last 2-3 years has seen a decidedly steep drop in the number of scrapbook pages.
As in, almost none at all.
I think the reason for this is because I was an event scrapper. I would go to an event (Christmas, birthday party, broomball party), take photos, then make a page about it. But there are only so many ways you can scrap Christmas. Or a birthday party. Or anything that happens every year. It gets monotonous. And monotony is anything but creative. So I stopped.
Until last fall when I discovered Project Life.
Project Life is scrapbooking made easy. Gone are the mountain of supplies and the need for elaborate works of art. Gone are the monotonous subjects that remain stagnant each year. And gone is the guilt of not being 'caught up'! (That's my favorite part!) Project Life is the brain-child of Beck Higgins and is all about recording your life as you live it. In all it's messy, day-to-day glory. All you need is a binder, some of her photo pocket pages, and some 3x4 cards (or one of her core kits - which are very beautiful!). Each week, just slide your photos into the 4x6 slots, jot down some info (yes! In your own handwriting!) on 3x4 cards and slide them into their slots, and turn the page - you're done!
So, ok, enough explaining - it's easier to show anyway. Here are some of my favorite pages.
This is one of my first pages (Week 2 to be exact) and I like it because I think it tells a complete story. There's minimal journaling but you get what's going on. (This is a friend's baby shower, BTW - not me!) I also like that I could get a little creative and add in one of the cards I made for her and even make a 3x4 card to include that matches the theme! The rest of the week was pretty uneventful, so I was able to fit it all onto the right-hand page.
This page I like because of the colors! They fit together so nicely and look like it took so much time to coordinate, but it's easily my simplest page. All I did was print off photos, jot down a quick story from the day, and slide everything into place.
This isn't a regular weekly page, it's an insert. Some weeks have a lot going of and there's just no way you can fit it all into 16 little pockets. This week, a friend of mine got married so I knew I had to do a little something more. So I made a mini scrapbook page. Nothing fancy - just some journaling and a photo booth strip and her invite. On the back is a collage of more photo booth strips. And the page underneath has more photos from the wedding. I got to showcase 10 photos plus a bunch of photo booth photos! Plus my whole week surround these pages (it really was a busy week!).
I just realized that these 3 are not my typical pages. My typical pages are very boring-looking. And full of my own handwriting. And much less... coordinated. Which is the point. I love that most weeks are just a collection of random stories, but every once in a while, I get to be creative and put together a page that is more reminiscent of my scrapbook pages of yore. Or even throw one of those pages into the middle of the book!
So, in the weeks to come, I will be sharing more of my Project Life pages with you. Including some tricks I use and some tips for getting the most out of your photos.
Do any of you use Project Life? Would you? You don't need to start in January - you can start with the school year, or a birthday, or a wedding, or a birth, or... whenever!
Just before Christmas this year, I asked a simple question: How many kinds of Hershey's Kisses are there? At least I though it was a simple question. I knew of the original flavors, almonds, caramel, some minty ones, and my favorite; Candy Cane. But I knew there had to be others. So I set out to find a comprehensive list. Easier said than done! The Hershey's website only lists current, USA flavors (and not all of them, at that!). Other lists are years old or filled with gaps. Then I found this site: Zoe's Hershey Kiss Collection. Zoe has made it her mission (at only 11 years old!) to taste and collect all the chocolate kisses that Hershey's comes out with. She keeps her site up to date with family and reader tips. So her list is the one I'm going to trust right now.
So how many varieties are there? 57. Yes, that's right. Fifty-seven varieties of Hershey's Kisses! I, like Zoe, want to taste and photograph each and every one of them (because if you truly love chocolate, you should document it, of course!).
I have made a page on this site devoted to my Quest for Kisses! You'll find it in the menu on the upper right.
If you have any suggestions, corrections, or tips on where (and when) to find certain kisses, please let me know! email@example.com or leave a comment!
Happy Birthday Mom!
My Mom's birthday is today! I won't give away her age, I know she would not like that. But I will say that she definitely looks younger than she is. I think it's all the playing she did in her preschool classes for all those years of teaching!
As I have mentioned before, Mom has always encouraged my creativity and is pretty crafty herself (in the art way, not the fox way)!
Today, I thought I would showcase a few things she has made for me.
My Mom started scrapbooking after I did, but she jumped in with both feet and loved it! She was inspired to look back at all her years of photos and sort them out into groups of inspiration.
She collected photos of me from all 12 years of school and put together a traditional 'school days' album for me. You only get to see some of the photos - my middle school photos shall never see the light of day!
Once she got the 'traditional' out of her system, she started making mini books.
After I graduated college, I was a substitute teacher for a few months while I looked for a permanent position. And my Mom was inspired...
And here is what happened when Mom came across a group of photos my Dad had taken when I was little:
Apparently a 2-year-old and a red chair is pretty entertaining. This book has 9 pictures in it! Of me playing on my chair! :-)
I wish I had more of my Mom's creations to share, but this is all I have at my house. I know there is a hook-loop wall hanging that used to be in my Dad's office and a macrame wall hanging that used to be in our stairway. I wonder what happened to those...?
Happy Birthday, Mom!
I love the 4th of July for one simple reason: FIREWORKS!
I don't like to light them (MN ones are dumb anyway - the only legal ones are the ones that don't leave the ground) and I only kinda like to just sit and watch them. But I LOVE taking pictures of them!
I've been experimenting with firework photography since 2006 and I think I'm getting better every year. Granted, there's only one chance to practice every year, but still! I do a lot a research before the 4th every year and I study my photos to find what I like, what worked well and what didn't. I also familiarize myself with my camera's settings (again!) because I don't use these settings very often and I need to be able to change them quickly and mostly in the dark. This year, I felt like I was able to better anticipate the fireworks and get good photos of them right from the explosion.
Here are a few silly fireworks - I love it when they do shape ones!
There were also several fireworks that featured unique, new colors. Including teal, purple, and orange. I have not seen many fireworks in those colors before. They were beautiful and added good variety to the regular red, white, blue, and gold.
I will leave you with my favorite photo of the night; the finale!
I find that on days I don't have to work, it's hard to get up the momentum to start working on anything. Most of the time I get some little thing cleaned, or I create something, if I'm in the mood. But it's very hard to post here for some reason. I don't know why - I like creating things, I like taking photos of my creations, I like sharing myself and my creations with the world.
That being said, I am in the middle of a 4-day weekend, so we'll see how my writing goes. I'm hoping I can keep the momentum going because I'm posting today, and it's going to be a triple-day post.
#30DaysofCreativity Day 10:
I did post about this, but my 10th day of creativity was spent planning out some photos for the June Photo Challenge over at Photohuntchallenges.com.
I spent some time thinking about all the 20 items and where I could possibly go to take photos of all these things. I don't have anything tangible for this day, but I feel I did some good creative groundwork for a large creative endeavor.
#30DaysofCreativity Day 11:
Because I was so inspired by my previous day of photo planning, I took out my camera again and took some more photos. I set up my tripod and took photos of my beautiful cat, held captive by sleep in his spot next to my desk.
Isn't he cute?
#30DaysofCreativity Day 12:
I went back to my scrapbook desk today and made a mini book from old photos and paper. I used one of those fold-out wallet inserts that people use for photos of their kids. I filled it with people (and animals) I love.
Here's a gallery of the whole thing:
So there we are. All caught up. I have some exciting news coming soon, but I will share that next week. You'll just have to come back to see what it is!!!
As if I wasn't busy enough!
I've decided to add another project for the month of June.
A fellow scrapbooker and blogger, Kristi, has a monthly photo challenge and I decided to join the June 2010 one!
Here's the list of items for June:
1. Hilarious Out-Takes
2. Creative Crop
3. Sun Flare
4. Sweet Dreams
10. A Fountain
11. A Night Scene
12. B&W with Selective Coloring
13. Something Old
14. Something New
15. Something Borrowed
16. Something Blue
17. Something Musical
18. Something Purple
19. Something Yellow
20. Something Scenic
Interested in joining the challenge for yourself? Visit Photohuntchallenges.com for complete details and a chance to see and vote on the photos once the month is over.
I will be posting my photos here at the end of the month, so come back then to see them! I'm excited and nervous and inspired!
Blogs I read:
Bits & Pieces
Jennifer McGuire Ink
I Could Make That