I’m hoping to spend a portion of the long holiday weekend finishing up March pages. I feel as though I have a fairly efficient system down at this point and I don’t want to lose momentum. I finished these two pages last weekend.
The left side of this spread covers our final few days in Indianapolis for my father-in-law’s funeral. I’m grateful that I thought to take photos of the way Tom packed the car for our trip home because the ability to efficiently pack the cargo area of a vehicle is quite a huge point of pride for the Jones boys, and it served as a poignant end to the week to see him live up to his family legacy once again by fitting an impossible amount of items in the Jeep.
Also included is the QR code for the Billy Joel Doo-Wop session on The Tonight Show. Nick was completely enamored with it for several days because his acapella group was working on the same song for an upcoming school variety show.
I purchased a Kindle Paperwhite in March and had a chance to set it up and play with it once we returned home. I switched to eBooks back in 2008 with my first Sony Reader and the whole family has followed suit over the years. For the past two years I’ve been reading eBooks on my Android tablet and I’ve read less books as a result. I had too many options on my tablet and found myself constantly distracted by email and app notifications popping up as I read. I’d heard really great things about the Paperwhite, so I made the decision to “downgrade my tech” in this regard and now I’m reading more again as a result. The Husband’s Secret was the first book that I read – our Amazon Prime membership includes one free book from the Kindle Lender’s Library each month and that one grabbed my interest.
Materials on these two pages are from the May kits at Gossamer Blue, including the cards I designed for the May Life Pages Add-On No. 3. Plus a few old odds and ends from Dear Lizzy and Basic Grey on the right page.
|| WHAT I’M LOVING ||
- Working (almost) entirely with a monthly subscription kit allowed me to complete these pages really quickly – which is a big perk when I’m trying to catch up. It’s definitely a strategy I’ll continue to use when the kit colors and theme work for me. (I do so love to use printable cards, though – so I’ll always dabble between the two.)
- I’ve started using Excel to plan my pages – I’m such a nerd! I am obsessed with spreadsheets and working on entire months at the same time is a bit too much for my brain to handle. I’ve tried using a few other methods recommended by Project Life scrapbookers, including printable sheets, post it notes and software like Evernote. All roads tend to lead back to Excel for me, though.
- The “Lens Correction” panel in Lightroom for these photos I’ve been taking. My lens tends to distort at certain focal lengths so my pages are often slightly “off square” when I look at the final image and that makes my head want to explode. I’m completely aware that I don’t use Lightroom to its full potential, but when editing these photos I finally poked around in the panels and unearthed the Manual tab in the Lens Correction panel which allows me to quickly fix lens bulge and vertical or horizontal shearing (which happens a lot when I’m photographing a page that has flair or something bulky on the opposing side). Hooray for Lightroom!
I’ve made a goal to finish March and April this month, moving toward my ultimate goal of being all caught up at some point in June. I made my March divider page while I was out in San Diego, working off that “Life is Sweet” card that I designed for the April Life Pages Add-On No. 3 at Gossamer Blue. I’ve been wanting to use the giant Freckled Fawn veneer numbers as well, and they worked perfectly here.
I’d been consciously putting off March because my father-in-law passed away mid-month and I knew I wanted my feelings on his passing to be a part of my monthly record, but I also knew I needed a bit of time to pass before I felt up to tackling it.
The left side of the spread is normal monthly happenings. I subscribed to a new meal planning service in March called Cook Smarts and it’s been instrumental in helping me achieve our goal of more healthy home cooked meals, less eating out this year. Bottom pocket is all about Season 1 of True Detective, which I devoured in one weekend. Have you seen it? I was not expecting to like it as much as I did.
Materials: On The Menu card is from Prix Fixe, the 4×6 card is from Timeless - both available in my shop at The Lilypad. Veneer is from the Gossamer Blue April Life Pages No. 3 (designed by me), and the Evalicious flair and page label are from the upcoming June Scrapbooking kits. Leaf stamp was from Cuppa at Studio Calico.
I had originally planned to do a 6×8 layout for this page, but I discovered I was out of 6×8 page protectors. When I started working on these pages late one night I figured I would stop when I reached this page, but I felt inspired to finish it in the moment so I switched gears and used a 3 pocket page. The text is a modified version of what I posted on Instagram on the day of the funeral – I added a bit more since space allowed. The photo was one of my favorites from a collage we put together for the service. I let Tom choose which photo to use – this was one of his favorites as well.
Materials here include an expoxy sticker from Favorite Things by Heidi Swapp, enamel dots and die cuts from Market Street from MME (part of the June kits at Gossamer Blue, as well) and a digital card from the Daydreamer Project Life® Mini Kit by Dear Lizzy.
New in the shop this week is my Daytrippers Digital Kit. It’s been a little while since I’ve done a travel related product and this collection’s bright, cheerful colors and travel themed embellishments are perfect for documenting your getaways – big or small.
The coordinating Daytrippers Journal Cards include (8) 3 x 4″ journal cards and (2) 4 x 6″ cards that can be used on your digital scrapbook pages, as well as in your Project Life®/pocket page albums. The package contains individual PNG files, JPG files with bleed (for professional print shops – like Persnickety Prints) and printable PDF and PSD files.
Early Bird Savings
Purchase The Daytrippers by 5/18/14 and you’ll save 20% PLUS you’ll receive the Daytrippers Journal Cards free with your purchase. Hooray for free!
|| LAYOUTS BY THE FLOCK & THE POLLYS ||
When I’m choosing the featured products for each month I’m usually thinking about what’s in the forefront for me during each particular month – and for May I’ve chosen These Walls because I always become very focused on the house this time of year and mindful of areas that need rearranging, reorganizing or a total overhaul. This product – all about home life – seemed most fitting for this time of year, as I’m sure many of you are going through a similar thing.
Also available is the coordinating Moving Day add on which is equally awesome for the home you’re in – but it also includes items that are apropos if you’re changing your address entirely.
You’ll save 30% on both of these products all month long, and if you have any layouts of your own to share (new or old!) using these products please be sure to post them in my gallery at The Lilypad if you haven’t already, and then post a link to those layouts in the comments by 06/07/14 for a chance to win a $15 coupon to my store. I love seeing your creations!
|| INSPIRATION FROM THE FLOCK ||
A couple of new projects from the One Little Bird creative team using these two products.
▲ By Allie
▲ By Kat
▲ By margelz
▲ By Leontien
▲ By Sue
▲ By Sarah
So happy to have finished up my Project Life® 2014 pages for February – even if it’s now May. I think my favorite part of this year’s album is quickly becoming the monthly divider pages because they’re pure play – a chance for me to use cards and embellishments I’ve set aside for uses unknown. Top left is from Daily Grind (Simple Stories) and and bottom two are from a Daydreamer (Dear Lizzy) cut-apart sheet, they’re from the January and April Gossamer Blue kits respectively. Top right is from my set of Busy Week Journaling Cards – a gentle little reminder I need to hear over and over again. Breathe it all in, love it all out…
February began with me volunteering to drive my mom to the airport in St. Paul with my ultimate goal being a day of shopping in solitude. There were a couple of things I wanted to pick up at Blick Art and then – you know – West Elm is just right there. I used a mixture of Gossamer Blue items from the April kit again here, including one of the wood veneers I designed for an April Life Pages Add-On. April marked the debut of the Life Pages Add-on kit #3 with exclusive One Little Bird cards (and sometimes embellishments). It’s now available monthly.
I also found myself smitten with the gold glitter banners from Studio Calico’s Wanderlust collection. My dislike of glitter is still all-consuming for the most part, but I’ve come to appreciate products where the glitter is adhered with whatever sort of dwarven magic is required to keep it from shedding. Loose glitter is my enemy, and I always find myself holding my breath when I open packages of glittered embellishments. These banners don’t make me twitch. Non-shedding glitter is a cause I can really get behind.
I colored my hair a dark, all-over brown in February – something my stylist has been itching to do for a few months. The change was fun for me but eight weeks later I added blonde highlights again, mostly because I hadn’t anticipated how the dark color would turn into a whole discussion with so many people. Even Nick’s friends got all “Dude? Is your hair .. like … darker?” Eight weeks was all I could endure. A mixture of Gossamer Blue and Studio Calico kits here, plus a yellow floral card from my Lemon Drop Journaling Cards.
I took the time to pull out my typewriter for the left side of this spread. I need to use it more often so I’m storing it in a more obvious spot. The quote on the bottom right is a recent favorite (on another Daydreamer card). I’ve been pinning quotes and images on Pinterest that pertain to my One Little Word of focus and since my album is a personal diary of my day-to-day rather than a detailed record of the whole family, I’m trying to include a few of them when space permits throughout a month.
Right side of this spread documents the “winter that will never end” here in Wisconsin – a rare photo I took of one of the brutal snowfalls that seemed to arrive every week, like clockwork. The snow didn’t keep us from catching a matinee of the much-anticipated Lego Movie on opening weekend, though. If we let snow keep us from doing things we’d have gotten nothing done this winter. Blue card is from Busy Week, yellow is an exclusive I made for the April kits at Gossamer Blue. Adore the glittered “lovely” from Heidi Swapp – even if was more tongue-in-cheek than anything.
Next spread, left side was collected from social media status updates. Typically I jot down notes about my week in my planner and the middle of February was particularly void of notes. I was skimming my wall on Facebook to pinpoint a date for something else and I stumbled upon a note I had written to Nick’s Future Wife (something I do from time to time) and a conversation I had with Tom illustrating a standing joke here in our house – which is that I don’t do laundry as well as he does. I included both of them, along with recent photos of the ever-elusive teenage boy. The photos were actually from the end of March but it’s feast or famine around here as far as Nick photos go. Mostly famine.
“Here Comes Trouble” card is from my Troublemaker Journaling Cards, the Home Sweet Home card was one of my exclusives for the Gossamer Blue April Kits, and the Conversation Card is from Press Cards No. 7 by Paislee Press.
Right side, the debut of the Sochi Olympic Games. I live for the Olympics and I am locked in a two year cycle of “The summer games are my favorite” and then “No wait, the winter games …” The Olympics are the only sports I watch and I take them very seriously.
My mom and I spent Valentine’s Day weekend in St. Louis watching my oldest niece compete in a volleyball tournament. This was the first time I’ve ever seen her play and I was mesmerized by her talent – I have no fewer than 450 photos of her over the course of the 3-day tournament. At 15 years old she stands just over 6 feet tall and she’s a force on the court. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to see her play and also for the the 16 hour road trip (round trip) with my mom, who was a month into her latest campaign for office – it felt a bit surreal to have her undivided attention for so long.
I finished my last two pages of February while I was on in San Diego visiting Christine, which was a bit difficult for me because I’m indecisive on the best of days … on my home turf with my own supplies. I’m not accustomed to thinking ahead, and selecting photos and supplies ahead of time was a total shot in the dark for me. Plus Christine’s scrap room is a treasure trove of supplies and scrapbooking tools so most of my time there was spent going through all of her things and deciding that I needed them.
For instance, she had a special vellum adhesive that I used to make the vellum pocket on the lower left and I had no idea that such a thing existed – but I immediately decided I could not live without it. Supplies on this page are from the May and June Gossamer Blue kits, plus the card on the upper right from my So Major Journaling Cards.
My final page for February. Nick really wanted to see Monuments Men and I’m always game for a George Clooney movie, but this one was a bit of a let down for Tom and me. We powered through but decided as a group that Tom and I would get to make the next box office pick. The Studio Calico gold glitter banners appear here again, along with supplies from the April and May kits at Gossamer Blue. The “This brings me joy” card is from my Identity Journaling Card pack.
|| WHAT I’M LOVING ||
- QR codes for documenting “web things” like my favorite Tonight Show clips in the two pages above. I generate them on QRStuff.com in batches and then download them to a folder with filenames that include their air dates (i.e. 20140225-PaulRuddLipSyncBattle). That way I can easily find the ones that pertain to a particular month then drag them directly onto the digital cards in Photoshop, add my journaling and print them out.
- Typing on my journaling cards vs. hand writing them, which feels a bit odd to me since my handwriting is something I regularly use in my digital products. I wrote out a few of my journaling cards while in San Diego then wound up re-doing them once I got home because they felt too messy to me. This is where my digital side wins – I don’t find it tedious at all to type my journaling out in Photoshop and run the card through my printer. Especially considering most of my journaling cards are digital to begin with. Typing them on the typewriter, however, is very tedious – but I still prefer it to hand writing.
- 3-pocket or 4-pocket “layouts” like our trip to St. Louis. Honestly I still struggle a bit with the random and incohesive nature of the pocket format, some of which was mitigated by switching to this 6×8 format last year. At times it still feels a bit reminiscent of someone talking in sentence fragments. Dedicating a whole page of pockets to one particular event or theme feels more natural to me, and since I’m not worried about containing my year into a certain number of albums (I’m okay whether it’s two albums or six albums) I’m allowing myself as much room as I want. It’s also why I feel free to add bulk and dimension by way of things like badges (which I love), veneer and buttons. Even if it cuts down on how many months I can fit into an album, I don’t want to approach this project from a place of scarcity – worried about using too many page protectors or taking up too many albums. It will take as much space as it takes.