Monday, January 07, 2013

Project Life: 2012, OMG Finished!

I did it!! I completed our 2012 Project Life album. I honestly can't believe that I stuck with it an entire year, though it was so enjoyable that it really never became a *chore*.  Because really, if this kind of crafty thing is a chore, it really shouldn't be on the to-do list.

I say that to mama friends all the time who feel bad that they are not doing "enough" for their kids' baby books.  I think the baby book is more for the parents than the kid. And if you don't enjoy making one, then don't do it.  Really. Read a couple of extra books to your kids instead if you feel you need to do "penance" ;)

Last night I worked on the spreads, and the final page until 2am. It was already 11pm by the time I sat down with my printed photos and my December Studio Calico kits. This month, I received the main scrapbooking kit, the Murray Hill Add On Kit and the card kit, and put them all together in one Cropper Hopper paper file so I could use all the coordinating things together.  It's a great system to store my monthly kits.

Since I'm covering so much of the holiday stuff in my December-ish album, I didn't want to repeat a lot of the photos. But I also didn't want to pretend like Christmas didn't exist, so I put in a mix of photos from our trip to Leavenworth (WA, not the prison), Christmas gifts, and our post-Christmas Holiday Open House party.
(Click the photos to see a larger version).

2012 Project Life
Dec 10-31, 2012: Friends, Leavenworth, the Dentist

2012 Project Life
Dec 10-31: Holiday Open House, presents, school

Since every spread is 2 pages, at the end of the book there's one empty page on the left side. I made a closing page using some of the insert cards I had been saving from my Project Life Cobalt Kit. I also included some recent pictures of us (except for Spike, sorry little guy!) and wrote some thoughts on completing the album. I also added some bling, because what project is complete without it?

Project Life 2012 Closing Page
2012 Project Life Closing Page - hooray!


I was motivated to really and truly finish this album last night, which also meant affixing a book plate (thank you Martha Stewart Office for your wonderful adhesive ones!) and printing the inserts for it and the "window" on the front of the album.  I used Microsoft Publisher to design and print them - super easy.

the Creath Family Project Life 2012 title window text


While I was designing and printing the labels for Project Life 2012, I completed the ones for 2013, so that album is ready to go!  I also added a bookplate to Trillian's toddler album so everything looks uniform on our shelf.  Yes, I'm weird like that.

Creating order from (relative) chaos
I am SO happy and proud that I was able to complete this entire album. I got several weeks behind in March/April but caught up by mid-summer and stayed on track through the end of the year, even during those first few weeks with a newborn in the house!  

What made this possible was switching from 2 pages/week to 2 pages/2 weeks (or sometimes even 3!).  It took the pressure off, and I looked forward to getting to work on those spreads when the time came.  I also learned to be ruthless about our photos - I deleted everything that I didn't love so I had less to wade through when choosing what to include.

I'm definitely doing this again in 2013, and have my supplies ready! I've subscribed to the Studio Calico Project Life Kit.  For Christmas, TJ bought me some of the plain 4x6 grid cards and the dividers for the binder so I'm ready to go, and can't wait to start our first set of pages in a new album. I'm learning how to use Lightroom to catalog, edit and export our photos quickly so I'm hoping to streamline the process a bit.

Tell me about your PL experiences! Did you finish 2012?

34 comments:

  1. Congratulations on completing PL! I'm going for it this year, I have week one's pics ready to go, just waiting to get my kit.

    I agree on the baby album being mostly for the parents - I find my mom's old "scrapbooks" from her younger years way more interesting than my baby book!

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    1. Awesome! I have another local friend doing it for her P365 as well, so if you wanted to join us we could get together and work on them.

      My baby book is about 75% complete, and honestly, I don't care. Even though I'm into that sort of thing. I also love looking at my parents' 70s photo albums from before I was born!

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    2. That would be fun! Usually I don't get anything done at crops because I apparently lack the ability to talk and be creative at the same time, but with PL it would be much easier...where do you usually meet?

      I just signed up for this club at Ben Franklin in Redmond, by the way. I can't make it to the first one, but I plan to be there for as many as possible after that (I'm signed up for the Friday group): http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=465328396861595&set=a.134515333276238.22955.113033942091044&type=1&relevant_count=1

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    3. @Ingunn - that club looks awesome! I may be able to make it if I can sweet talk my hubby into taking the kids for that hour ;)

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  2. I love that you got this done with all that occurred through your year! I am a drop out. I got to the end of June and just was totally burnt out. I blame the 14 page spread of our 9 day trip to Japan... it should have been a mini album! I do intend to go back and do a monthly spread for the second half of the year and I am starting again this week as soon as we get some ink in the printer! Congratulations!

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    1. I hear you about the trips! I had a LOT of pages from our Ireland trip too and while I like having everything in one album, I was really tired of that section while working on it.

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  3. You got whole year done!? That must surely be an amazing album :)
    I love the way u added an arrow that says "new" on the last page of ur album. The cutest idea ever!!!

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  4. Congratulations! I dropped in and out but when I look back at the start of last year I really regret not sticking with it so I am going to try harder this year. I totally agree that it has to be something you want to do or then it's not a hobby, it's a chore.

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  5. Yay congrats on finishing it!! Your pages look wonderful!

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  6. Congrats! Great minds think alike - did you see what I posted yesterday?

    I love that you stuck with it the whole year and that you tweaked as you needed!

    I'm waiting for Seafoam.

    Are you getting another kit this year?

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  7. First of all Congrats on finishing an entire year and I am so inspired by the fact that you loved it and will be taking it on again in 2013!! This is my first year doing PL and I completed my first pages yesterday. SO excited about this project and I hope the excitement lasts for the entire year. Happy New Year!

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  8. Congrats on finishing!! You will love looking back at this!

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  9. Congrats on finishing, it looks awesome!

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  10. Wow...that's quite an accomplishment!

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  11. How exciting! The pages look great. Congratulations on completing it. :)

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  12. Congrats on finishing - that is awesome and your pages look great :) I got behind too and managed to catch up as well. Awesome idea to stay flexible even if you end up combining two or three weeks into one spread - at least you are still documenting your life.

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  13. GREAT JOB! Congrats finishing and good looking pages. :)

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  14. That is fantastic! You have inspired me and I am starting my own Project Life book for 2013. One layout down and 51 to go! :)

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  15. Looks great! I am not doing Project Life this year since 2011 is still on my desk begging to be finished. lol

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  16. This is so awesome that you finished it. I did December Daily and will do PL for the first time in 2013. I hope I can keep it up.

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  17. Congrats on finishing 2012! I love how organized you are.
    I've still got a lot of catching up to do on 2012, but have already started 2013. Hopefully I can stay caught up with the current year while catching up on 2012!

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  18. Wow!! This is fabulous! Congrats...I haven't ever made it to June!!

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  19. I am so ridiculously impressed! I would NEVER be able to keep up with something like this, but how fun will that be to be able to look through it years from now? Congratulations!

    And, btw, if I had the time (and gumption) I would LOVE to come to Seattle and take pictures of your beautiful family. It's a nice thought. :)

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  20. Woot! Congrats!

    No word on Sea Foam yet... should be ANY DAY. :)

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  21. I'm impressed! I'm still way behind on PL 2012, but it is largely mapped out in my head and I WILL FINISH IT! And I'm doing PL2013 as well... nearly done with the first week. I'm aiming for adding something every week, but no strict one or two page layouts per week. I found that I like just adding things as they happen or occur to me.... then adding more organized spreads for "events". It makes for a low-pressure and fun, but still "complete" record of life. Hopefully it won't be too chaotic!

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  22. Congrats! Still have to finish half a year!:$

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  23. Congrats on finishing - looks great. I love the bookplates you used on the outside of your album...may have to snag some for myself.

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    1. Easy to find if you have a Staples near you. They are super sticky, which is nice.

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  24. OMG...I'm so excited for you. Yay! And I can't wait to look at the entire book. I do need to get some of those other page protectors though. I think I may like the ones you used better. Time to get started on mine. ...

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  25. Way to go on finishing your album! I did not make it through 2012 but I'm trying again in 2013! Your album looks great!

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  26. Congrats on being done! That is awesome. I have like two more spreads to go, but I am so daunted by the thought of the back and then the new cover page I kinda got stuck. Plus I need to have finish my DD, gah! We need to chat again soon!

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    1. Somehow the back and the new cover page seem *easier* to me - I have certain things I need to include - photos of us, ages, a little journaling from me, and then the rest of the slots just need to match. I will say that I keep thinking of more things I want to include in this book, though, now that I say it's done. I may add in some extra page protectors with some of those things.

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