Sunday, December 30, 2012

Why I Scrapbook

As 2012 is coming to an end, I've been reflecting on my year and my hopes and goals for the new year. I've thought about how I spend my time, what is important to me and what brings me and my loved ones joy.  This might seem silly to some, but scrapbooking is such an important part of who I am.

For as long as I can remember, I have enjoyed making little books, writing in a journal, and putting photos in an album. I love looking back at special memories and reminiscing with my family and friends.  I truly believe some of my strongest childhood memories are those that are documented with photos.  I honestly feel like it's my "job" to create scrapbooks for my boys and leave a legacy for them to pass along to their loved ones.

I love seeing my boys look through our family photo albums - seeing how they played when they were little, remembering their first trip to see Mickey, their funny Halloween costumes year after year, the first time they got stitches, baking with their great grandma......  And it's not just the photos, it's the journaling that goes along with them.  It means so much to me to remember the cute little things my kids say, their teachers' names, where they went on their field trip, their best friend in Kindergarten....  I could go on and on.

Scrapbooking can also be therapeutic.  It's not just documenting the good times but helping me get through the not-so-good times.  It's a wonderful creative outlet that just makes me happy.  It's a girls' weekend scrapbooking with friends.  And it's teaching a class where I get to share this amazing hobby with others.

My scrapbooking style has evolved over the years.  From the Hello Kitty journals when I was young, to the albums and paint pens when I was in high school, to the paper die cuts and decorative scissors, to detailed layouts and to my latest obsession of digital designs.

If you want a new hobby for 2013, obviously I will recommend scrapbooking.  I love to see others discover how much fun it can be!

Where to begin:

  1. Start small.  Don't think you have to begin scrapbooking the birth of your now-15 year old daughter.  It will completely overwhelm you!  Start with a recent vacation, your child's current school year, a Christmas album, your son's baseball season, etc.  Once you complete your first project, you'll get a better idea of how you want to scrapbook -   chronological, themes, seasons, etc.
  2. Organize your photos.  This part can be time consuming if you're like me, and have thousands of photos on your computer!  But, this is such an important step! It can save you so much time and frustration later if you do it ahead of time and then keep up with it!  My hubby bought me an expensive photo program when I got my new laptop.  But, I don't even use it - shhhhh.  My favorite program to use is Picasa.  I use this program to organize and edit my photos.  And, it's free! (Thanks to my Dad for telling me about this!)  I upload my photos by the date they were taken.  Later, I'll create folders for certain things like my boys' sports and school.  I also create a folder each year titled "Best of 2012", etc.  I will copy favorite photos throughout the year and place in that folder.  This REALLY comes in handy at the end of the year, when I'm making photo gifts - cards, photobooks and calendars.
  3. Traditional vs. Digital.  Decide if you want to try traditional (paper) scrapbooking or digital scrapbooking.  I will tell you that I've done both and love them both - but, digital is my new favorite.  I started out doing traditional.  I loved picking out coordinating papers, embellishments and "playing with paper" to put it all together. It's fun, it's creative and the layouts become a work of art.  I swore I would never do digital - it didn't seem as creative and as fun.  I didn't think I'd get the dimension that I love with traditional scrapbooking.  But, I was wrong.  The software that I use (My Digital Studio) is amazing.  I love not having to print my photos - that I can import them onto my page at whatever size I want.  I love that I can create a page with one photo or ten photos - and it still looks great!  I love that I can use a predesigned template to speed things up or that I can create my own from scratch.  I love that I can make individual sized pages, photobooks, calendars, cards, tags and cute little swatch books.  I love that when I spend time creating a photobook, I can have several copies printed (and change a few pages in a snap if needed) for gifts.  I love that I can do a page and email it to my Grandma across the country to see.  (Yes, I have a very hip, 92 yo grandma that emails!)  And, I LOVE how much I am getting done since I've gone digital.  (In the past 3 months, I've done 20 scrapbook pages, 4 photobooks and our family Christmas cards!)  Ok sorry.... Can you tell I get a little excited about this?!

Here's a scrapbook page I did last night, sitting in front of the tv, while hubby and I were getting caught up on The Voice.


This is kind of a crazy layout.  But I love the story it tells.  These are the little moments I probably wouldn't remember if it weren't for scrapbooking!!

I used My Digital Studio and several downloads to create this layout.  You can learn about this software in my Online Store Here.  You can also download a free 30-day trial of MDS here.  If you prefer traditional scrapbooking, you can check out the Stampin' Up! scrapbooking products HERE.

Click here for a detailed supply list of the above layout.

Well there you go.  There is my crazy Saturday morning musings on why I scrapbook. If I've convinced one person to try a new hobby of scrapbooking, then I'll be content.  I truly enjoy documenting a little piece of our family history with each scrapbook page I create.  And I know you will too!  If you need any help along the way or want to share your creations with me, let me know.  I'd love to hear from you!  :)

Reminders:

Signature - Tree
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