Project Life- the cover

This is my second Project Life album cover. I did something similar last year and decided to keep the basic concept the same which is that everyday is an adventure. We don’t have grand plans to travel this year, but we do have a new greenhouse and plenty of renovating to do around the house, so I tried to capture ‘adventure at home’ as a theme.

2015cover

I created the cover as a 12×12 in Photoshop, ran a script to divide it into four 6×4’s, then printed at home. The photo is taken in our front yard and if you look closely you’ll see Cinders the cat even made it in.

I have finally put 2014 to bed. I only blogged up to around week 36, but you can see all the layouts here if you wish.

Credits:

Background paper, hello flag, and something wonderful card are freebies from Kristin Cronin-Barrow at Sweet Shop Designs.

Script to divide up a 12×12 is from here however I cannot find the actual post.

Project Life 2015

2014 was my first full year of Project Life, and I must admit it was overwhelming at times. I’m not very relaxed when it comes to being behind. Seeing photos piling up in the PC waiting to be edited and printed, as well as knowing precious memories are fading because I’m not good a writing things down at the time, is stressful.

I thought about how I can simplify 2015 to avoid some of the backlog. I haven’t really come up with many good ideas as I don’t want to restrict myself creatively too much, but here’s what I plan to do;

  • Stick with mainly design A pockets. I ventured into Design E Design K for the latter part of 2014 and while I liked them, the majority of my favourite layouts from last year were using Design A, so A it is.
  • Keep embracing my handwriting… but I also now have a working typewriter! Hooray! I expect my layouts will contain both handwritten and typed journaling and labels this year.
  • Uniform title and weekly cards. I spent a few days looking around for inspiration and kept coming back to having pre-printed title cards ready to go. I couldn’t find one perfect for me, so I made my own. I’ve intentionally left a lot of white space should I like to embellish or type a quote each week. My weekly card is very basic too, with no pre-defined days as I felt silly last year writing ‘Tuesday – we visited Spotlight’, for example, as a weekly highlight because the day wasn’t very exciting.

Photo 2-01-2015 21 04 49

  • Avoiding buying too much product. I often find I love the look of new kits and embellishments, but once I go to use them they just don’t work for me. I have piles of cards sitting here that just won’t get used because they don’t match either my style, or the types of photos I take.
  • Write things done so I remember if I get behind. I’ve bought an A4 journal to sit on my desk this year and plan to keep notes of what we did in it. I can also jot things down in my handbag diary, or utilise apps on my phone such as Collect and Heyday. The latter is really quite useful as it uses locations and times to group your photos making it really quite easy to see what you were doing on any given day. You can also add notes, create and edit collages, and apply filters.
  • Put aside time each week to complete the layout. I use Mon-Sun as my week, so Monday would be an ideal day to complete the previous week.

Do you have any tips and tricks you’re using to help you keep up this year? Do you like to be up to date or are you happy to take a relaxed approach?

 

One Little Word – wrap up and 2015

This year I participated in Ali Edwards ‘One Little Word‘ class. You can read my initial blog post about it here. My chosen word was LESS, and to be honest, it fell by the wayside by the end of the year. Each month you receive prompts to complete, the idea is that you really incorporate your word into your life. The main issue for me was that it became apparent a few months in, that while I had chosen a word that encompassed a lot of what I wanted to change, it also allowed a lot of room for excuses. ‘Oh I want to be less stressed, so I just won’t do x, y and z.’ As a result I didn’t stick with it as well as I could have. It wasn’t all for nothing though, I certainly experienced less self inflicted stress and anxiety this year, and the house has much less stuff in it after several clean outs. In short, choosing a word and following the prompts won’t magically change everything, like everything you still need to put in some effort.

That brings us to my 2015 word. A month ago I was seriously considering not taking the class this year and just doing my own thing, but it felt a bit defeatist. I want to challenge myself to get out of my bad habit routines and letting things fall by the wayside is one of the big ones. So instead I started to ponder on a good word for 2015. I reconsidered ‘confident’ which was my initial choice last year, but it didn’t feel right. I then thought I’d settle on ‘create’ but create still didn’t feel like the kick up the backside I need. Believe, accept, and challenge were all contenders and the more I thought about it, the more I realised challenge is my word.

If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.

Interestingly challenge encompasses all of the things I was hoping to achieve with less, but it feels like a much stronger word and a word that’s easier to think. You can challenge, for example, your;

  • thoughts
  • beliefs
  • actions
  • expectations
  • perceived limitations
  • perception
  • habits
  • ideas
  • ideals

I feel confident that I have chosen the right word and look forward to bringing it into my life this year, and being part of the OLW 2015 community.

 

Some Christmas Printables

The weeks are just flying by here, and all my plans of keeping my blog up to date have just flown out the window. As mentioned in previous posts, I am working on a December Daily album this year, but as yet I haven’t completed any pages to post about. I’m only a couple of days behind with printing photos, but the journaling and embellishment isn’t done for any entire day yet. Stay tuned; I may have something to show tomorrow!

As far as freebies go, I had been working on quite a few in the background going back as far as October last year. The plan was to offer a new freebie for each week of December, but as that hasn’t happened I’ve decided to do a big post today and just give you what I’ve got. I can’t really see myself finding time to create anymore this year, so I hope there’s something you like in this mix. As always, the freebies are for personal use. I’ve credited graphic sources where required.

abitofeverything

Calendars:

I feel I need to acknowledge Marie from Stitch in Time here. She creates beautiful December calendars each year. I wasn’t sure if she would this year, so I whipped up a few which you can download below, but she did, and it’s beautiful. I’m using hers in my December Daily and my two page calendar in my planner. So credit goes to her for the idea.

Graphics credit: Julie from Old Design Shop

All calendars are 6×8. The first one goes over two pages. It’s a bit awkward to use, but it’s useful in my planner. Click on each picture to get the full size, then save for printing.

6x8 calendar cottage page1 6x8 calendar cottage page2 6x8 calendar cottage 6x8 calendar holly

 

Filler Cards

There’s an assortment of cards in this zip file, some in PNG format and some in JPG. Just place the ones you want to print in a word, publisher, etc document and print.

 

There are 5 6×4’s with various ‘favourites’ (only with the Australian spelling).

decorations

Assorted 3×4 fillers (some more are shown the the preview picture)

merryandbright merry whitechristmas

A set of lyric cards with variations on pictures/lyrics

lotlikexmasgreen

>>> DOWNLOAD ZIP FILE<<<

Christmas To-do lists

I’m frantically trying to get quite a few craft related things done over the next week; be completely up to date on Project Life, make two Christmas picnic quilts before the first of the Christmas parties, and prepare my Christmas Planner and foundation pages for my December Daily. In order to stay on track, particularly with the Christmas stuff, I’ve whipped up some Christmas to do lists for my planner. If you can use a Christmas list or two, feel free to print them out.

The Red Wren to do lists

I’m using a 6×8 Stampin’ Up planner that I bought on clearance mid-year. I’m treating it as a Christmas planner/journal in conjunction with my December Daily album. Once Christmas is over, this will not only have Christmas planning type stuff in it, but it will be a record of this years decorations, entertaining, sewing etc. The stuff I like to take photos of that took up too much room in last year’s December Daily album. This will free my DD up for daily photos and they’ll be room for more; especially when we’ve been to an event.

I will need more than just a couple of lists, so I’ve cut a slit in some kraft cardstock to allow a paper clip to pass through and will print new lists as I need them. The lists are 5×7 inches, but you can always resize them smaller if that works better for you. To download them, click on the individual pictures below so they open full size, then save.

christmastodoreindeertodo

Edited to Add:

I had some interest in 3×4 inch versions. I’ve had to reduce the number of boxes, but I hope they are useful for someone! I’ve also included a third style. Click the images below so they open full size, then save them.

smallchristmastodo smallreindeeertodo smallsantatodo

 

I hope you like them!