my project life begins

i had heard about becky higgins’ project life before. here and there on some blogs that i follow. a way to journal you life with words, photos and some craftiness. in an album. but it was a scrapbooking project. so i put it in the “too scrapbookish” column and didn’t look at it any further. i’m not a scrapbooker. i don’t like lots of colors and patterns and visual clutter. i like to focus on basic things like the photos and the stories. that’s me. plain and simple.

and i almost missed out on it.

almost. but not quite. project life just kept coming up in december as people were wrapping up their 2011 albums and getting ready for to start their 2012 journey. i would often see posts from Liz’s blog and i loved her minimalist take on project life. but i just wasn’t convinced about doing it myself. so i would just skim over anything to do with project life on my google reader feed. until a few weeks ago. i signed up for Ali Edwards’ one little word workshop from big picture classes. so i decided to click over to Ali’s blog. i’d been on it a few months ago when she did her week in the life project. i was intrigued by this project and wanted to do it, but i was too overwhelmed with life at the time. i went on her blog again recently and i started reading more about project life. and that information combined with my one little word for this year (simplify) made me realize that i could create my own unique version of project life! who says i have to use all the traditional scrapbooking supplies like patterned paper, embellishments and a rainbow of color? at its core, project life really is just a simple way to keep a journal of my family and our life in photos + words. my photos. my words. my way.

so i ordered a simple grey binder and started gathering ideas. i am waiting on the page protector inserts and the blank journaling cards to become available again in early february. but my lack of having all the pieces of this project are not going to keep me from starting it now.

so the 52 week journey begins. and as becky higgins says, cultivate a good life and record it…
cultivate a good life by Becky Higgins

here are some of my own thoughts that i want to remember as i go through this year long project. i want to write it all out so that i can re-read these words when i get behind or start to feel overwhelmed.

why i want to keep a project life journal?

because it is a way to keep a photo journal and expand on the happenings behind the photos. to really tell our stories. our little, everyday stories. about the moments that make up our lives. and to keep it all in one place. to be able to hold it all in my hands. and flip through the pages. so many of our stories have been told in the many photos that i have taken. but these little snippets of our life have not been kept in a way that tells our story. they are kept in chronological photo files on my computer. which takes many clicks of the computer mouse to find them. that system just does not tell a story. too many things are forgotten. details. dates. places. times. feelings. thoughts. the important little pieces of our lives that i want to remember for always.

so my project life journal is going to be our family journal. this is going to be our story.

things to remember about making this project life journal MY OWN…

  • keep it SIMPLE – that is what i love and is most like me + my style.
  • don’t get caught up in recording every.single.detail. just keep this as a weekly round-up of what was happening in our lives.
  • have my photos reflect pieces of our daily life – and not just photos of the kids. include me + mark in this journal. take photos of things too.
  • gather ideas from others, but use only what i really love.
  • keep my journaling cards simple and clean. easy to read. don’t get caught up in all the embellishments and patterned papers. that is pretty, but just not “me”.
  • don’t be afraid to add small pages to include more stories if needed.
  • get out of my box. stop worrying so much about “how” to do it and just do it. make it my own. do it my way. include what i want and don’t worry about what anyone else will think. my style might be to plain and boring for some people. but that is okay. that is what i love. and i will be the one who will enjoy this journal the most. i want to smile when i open this journal and look at the pages. gather ideas but don’t feel like i have to do it that exact way. tweak it. change it. take what i like and use that part. allow my mind to be open and see the unique in our everyday. tell the little stories that i’m going to want to remember in 10 years from now.

ideas on starting out + getting prepared + keeping on track:

  • gather supplies in one place (drawer or carrying caddy). and keep these items there all the time.
  • have a notebook just for project life to keep lists of ideas that i want to include, journaling card inspiration, quotes, etc.
  • keep track of more ideas + inspiration on pinterest (you can follow my pinterest boards here.)
  • use the notepad feature on my iphone to keep daily notes to remember what is happening (idea from deb’s blog) or buy a 2012 weekly planner to write it all down it. i might start with both and see what works best for me.
  • email myself iphone photos that i want to include and save them in a  weekly project life photos folder on my computer
  • print out these project life templates or these templates to sketch out my weekly page layouts.
  • organize and save all printable project life documents to one central file on my computer.
  • create actions in photoshop to save  photos i want to use in project life to a print file.
  • designate a box to keep all of the little papers, objects and items i want to put in my journal. things like ticket stubs, drawings by the boys, labels, etc.

are you creating a project life journal too? share a link to your pages. i’d love to see them. or tell my why you are doing project life. ready? go..

show hide 3 comments

Wendy T. - I’m excited to see your progress! I decided to do it, too (just wrote about in on my blg). One thing I’m long is the Mimento app for my phone. It gathers all your fb statuses, instagram images, tweets, Flickr images and blog posts on a calendar. Yo can then also add notes to it daily. It’s perfect for jogging my memory r for jotting down things I want to remember.

Jeanne - I’m still waiting for my kits to arrive and same as you are, this is my first year of doing the Project Life too.
I love scrapbooking, although I just started about a year ago and started to make some for about half a year now, still learning though.

I’m thinking of Project Life because I want to make it simple, printing our photos, slid them into the page protectors, add notes on the journal and maybe add a bit of this and that.
I’m expecting a baby that’s going to be due next month, that’s why I thought I need something way simpler than the usual scrapbook to journal our days.. I don’t want to miss all the fun and memories of having our first baby. And having baby means I’m not going to have much time scrapbooking for a while, you know what I mean? That’s why I’m starting Project Life.

I can’t wait to see your progress & I can’t wait to start on mine too :)
Have a great time project life-ing!!!

Jeanne - oh yea.. I hope you don’t mind if I re-post your “things to remember about making this project life journal MY OWN” and “ideas on starting out + getting prepared + keeping on track” on my post..

of course I will put your name on credits. :)
just let me know if you don’t feel comfortable with it, I haven’t post anything so, let me know.
thank you

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