Looking Ahead to Project Life

by jessicaturner on January 3, 2010

This weekend I have spent A LOT of time on my Project 365 from 2009. While I think I did a good job taking photos (almost) daily (my average was six a week), I didn’t do so hot at getting my photos uploaded and printed weekly starting about on month four. I printed four months of photos this weekend! Month four is also when I got behind on my journaling. While I would love to finish the journaling in the album (I am in June right now), I don’t know that I will. I am just letting go of it. The album is still an incredible glimpse into our life the past year – especially the growth of Elias (he probably makes up 85-90% of the photos).

a glimpse at my album – September 2009

This year’s Project Life kit from Becky Higgins should be arriving Tuesday, so I have been thinking about how I plan to stay on top of things this year – all year! Here are my plans for 2010:

  1. Put the album together immediately. Last year, I put the pages in the albums and slipped the weekly cards in the pages, but that’s where I stopped. This year I plan to put all the weekly cards in, as well as the journaling cards. I think streamlining the process (right down to not having to pick out eight cards a week), while help keep me on top of things. 
  2. Upload photos every week. I think this is critical to staying on top of this album. Some people prefer to order their photos, or print larger quantities, but looking at the past year, waiting to develop photos was part of the reason why I got behind.
  3. Fill out journaling cards every week. I am going to commit to when I get my photos, writing on the journaling cards immediately. It only takes 10 minutes to complete a week of cards, so this is very doable. One of the great things that Becky created this year are small boxes so you can carry cards in your purse. (Since I will have my cards in my album, I will just slip them out if I am going to be traveling and will have time to work on my cards.)
  4. Organize photos by month and day: In 2009, I had a folder saved on my external drive labeled 365 2009 and then in it I had a folder for each month. In each month’s folder, I saved all my photos, labeled with the date. So, if I did get behind on my developing, it was easy to go back.  This system worked really well, and I plan to do it again. 
  5. Use days of the week brushes on my pictures: I used these Ali Edwards brushes on my photos to label the days right on my photos. I love how they look and plan to use them again. To edit the photos, I cropped them to 4×6 dpi in photoshop, then set the brush to 700 pixels to keep the size consistent.
  6. Diversify my photos: Like I said, 85-90% of my photos were of Elias this year. While he will still be the primary focus (I can’t resist taking his picture every day), I want to take more “everyday life” photos of things around our house, places we go, etc. In looking at my 2009 album, I think the every day photos are what really make the album a cool “time capsule.” 

To keep me on track, I am going to do Project Life Tuesdays here on The Mom Creative. Every Tuesday I will post my photos and journaling from the week before. (I will be doing Sunday-Saturday weeks and am starting my album today). If you are doing Project Life, I would love you to join me. I will post a MckLinky so you can link your blog posts and photos. I hope this will keep us motivated! The first Project Life Tuesday will be next week.

I am a HUGE advocate for this project. I think everyone can do it – even if you don’t have a scrapbooking bone in your body. If you have a camera, you can document your life in one photo a day. My friend Alyson is doing “project 52” where she is going to do one photo a week. If that feels more doable, then do that. Just do something to document your story. I promise you will not regret doing this project – even if you do get six months behind on the journaling cards. :) I think about how much my kids will enjoy looking at these albums in 50 years – seeing every day glimpses of our life, special vacations, favorite holiday photos, laundry, meals, etc. What an awesome legacy gift you can leave your loved ones. You certainly don’t need the Project Life kit to do this project, either, though I think it is an excellent value (I think I read on her blog that it is going to be available on Amazon soon.)

Are you doing Project Life or some variation this year? What additional tips do you have for staying on top of this project?

Update: Project Life is now available on Amazon!

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