Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

March 16, 2007

Did you document?

Reminded once again last night how it's pretty essential to have your camera on hand to capture those good-old regular life moments.

Did you enjoy the exercise?

You will see in some of the shots below that Simon is definitely getting to the point where he is not too keen on having the camera pointed at him all the time.

Here are some of the photos I took – notice lots of blurred images and imperfect shots. Love them. Great reflection of real life for us. My layout will become a part of the book I am working on – planning on printing out the photos and the journaling (directly from here) and putting something together today.

Step One: Play something together as a family
Last night Simon was doing really great at sharing (something he has been working on a lot at school and here at home). He divided up all the marbles – some for me and some for Chris and some for him. We each took turns placing the marbles on the slides. Notice he has his jammie shirt on already – he has been big into his jammies lately.


Step Two: Bath Time
Most nights you take a bath. It is great simply as a part of the routine in moving towards bed (besides the fact that it gets you clean). You have pretty much always liked the bath. Now you are even washing your own hair – dumping water on your head and everything. Some nights we brush your teeth in the bath and other times you stand on a stool so you can reach the sink. Right now we are working on teaching you how to spit out the toothpaste.





Step Three: Dry Off + Jammies + Pick a book
I think I love the jammies just as much as you.  One of my favorite things to get for you. Lately you have been going in to your room and picking out your own. Still working on getting you to put them on yourself.

Books come from inside your closet – known as the "library."



Step Four: Read the book & say the prayer
This is an essential part of the routine. You love this part.  One or two books (sometimes more). We read to you or you
"read" to us. Right now you are really into identifying the letters in words – spelling and then saying the words on the page. You are also using your finger to underline sentences as I read.

After books is the prayer. We say the same one every night. If you end up having to get up to go to the bathroom then you usually ask for the prayer again. Lights go out when we say the prayer.



Step Five: Relax, Clean Up, Check Email, Head to bed
Sometimes you turn your light back on and look at a book for a bit, but for the most part it is lights out for you.

Some nights Chris and I watch TV – The Daily Show is a favorite that we Tevo and watch the episode from the night before.




That's us. Our nightly routine. Sometimes there's a bit of drama, but for the most part if we keep it consistent it is all good.


  • 1.
    Kimberly L.C. said…

    I didn’t document my routine last night, but I’m planning to later this week. Thank you for sharing with us though… I love to see the photos and the story, and see that your house looks happy, homey and lived in.

  • 2.
    Karbee said…

    Had a little giggle about how i’ts funny when you have a snapshot of someone else’s home and see a scene that could be your own. Those foldaway tables you have are exactly the same as ours, used in the same way – even down to the beer bottle perched on it – but we are here in England.

  • 3.
    Carolyn said…

    This is awesome!
    i did a scraplift from your “the story 10 AM” LO in April 06 studio A article, except i did a PM one. Love that idea of recording more of our everyday routines, need to do more. Right now we don’t have a routine, my DH is on sea duty, so we live by his schedule that changes day-to-day. I may have to make a LO our our non-routines!
    Thank you for inspiring me to do more of the everyday stuff. Your “Today you” class i took in Tampa was awesome, just reenforces that i need to do more of the everyday!
    Thank you for sharing!

  • 4.
    Noell said…

    So much fun! Thanks for the challenge. Can’t wait to see your page.
    Here is mine:

  • 5.
    Kyra said…

    I love reading and seeing your life through photos. Have a great weekend Ali, and family…¥

  • 6.
    Heidi said…

    I did mine, and I loved it. Such a fun page to make, thanks for the inspiration:

  • 7.
    kristin said…

    this is such a great idea. i was thinking i’d like to give it since we have a pretty structured rhythm to our nights – and it turns out ours would look pretty much like yours – the bath, the sudden switch to an independent child dressing themselves into pjs, then the book from the closet, a story and the attempt to have an easy lights out. :) (the last plea for that extra glass of water)
    so thanks for this prompt. hope to give it a go. your nights look so full of family and warmth. love it.

  • 8.
    Melissa said…

    What a great idea to document. Can you tell me what the toy with the marbles is called? My son played with it at someone’s house and loved it. I would like to get one for him. Thank you! P.S. I am constantly inspired by your work and the way you have of finding the meaning in everyday life!

  • 9.
    Brandiw-mom4samcar said…

    I haven’t done mine yet, but I am working on it! I can’t wait to share when I do! I love this idea!!
    I take lots of blurried pictures and I always feel like I can’t use them because they are not perfect. Help me understand why they are good pictures!!!
    I want to think that way too!

  • 10.
    heather said…

    I love this idea. Didn’t document last night, because everyone was sick, but will do it when we get back to the usual routine.
    I love that Simon’s bed is full of pillows and blankets and plushies. He reminds me in a lot of ways of my son.
    Here is a book that my son has fallen in love with. Simon might enjoy it too:

  • 11.
    Shawna said…

    k, maybe I’m a little more shallow. I loved the idea of the documented night routine and totally plan on it tonight! however, the first thing that really caught my eye was your cool coffee sign! LOVE IT! may i ask where you picked it up? i’m sure it’s easy to make as well with a font and some good ole wood and paint, but still curious as to its original home. thanks for everything you do ali!!!

  • 12.
    Carole said…

    Love your photos – a real house filled with people , warmth and love !!! I am doing mine this weekend , should have last night but the relaxing quiet and Greys Anatomy was on – I did the old couch potato Mom !!!

  • 13.
    Jenny A. said…

    I just love you way you document your everyday! It has completely changed my way of scrapbooking. I will work on mine over the next few days. Have a great weekend!

  • 14.
    Marty said…

    thanks for inviting us in! just love it! I especially like the part about teaching Simon to ‘spit’ when brushing teeth as we are working on that with John ewwww he just loves toothpaste… :) God bless
    have a terrific weekend with your family! good luck working on the book! as usual, can’t wait to see it!

  • 15.
    Abby said…

    Ali you rock! Mine isn’t the greatest…but I want to get into a routine of doing pages and challenges!So….my pic’s are posted.

  • 16.

    I LOVE this idea!!! I will be doing this for sure. What a great way to capture daily life and you could even make this into a social story to help Simon talk about bedtimes or help him if he has any difficulties with the routine. I have used social stories with my son a lot of the years and they are fun and easy to do if you are a scrapbooker!
    Carol Gray is THE expert on social stories for kids with autism.
    Thanks for all the inspiration you always give me Ali :)

  • 17.
    Elsie Flannigan said…

    super cute! i so want to do this… :)

  • 18.
    LauraP said…

    You know, I recently decided to take a picture everyday for the month of March. Nothing fancy – just wanted to document a month in my life – the little things. Some of my other scrapping friends thought I was crazy! They couldn’t believe I’d want to document the fact that I washed dishes by hand, or the snow on my black lab’s back after a snow storm. I think these are all very important things, and I’m glad I’m documenting them. They also can’t believe I haven’t scrapped my wedding yet (happened about 2 years ago). It just isn’t as interesting to me than the little stuff right now!
    Thanks for encouraging me to document the little things, and not just the big events!!

  • 19.
    Laura said…

    LOVE this idea. I think I will be doing this tonight. Not sure when I’ll get the layout done, but I at least want to document the nightly routine.
    Love that coffee sign, by the way! :)

  • 20.
    Suzer68 said…

    What a great challenge! Looking forward to doing it over the weekend.
    Just an idea (you may have already thought of this)but make sure your prayer goes into your journaling somewhere-since it’s such an important and daily part of your evening routine with Simon! HTH
    Susan :)

  • 21.
    Laura Reaux said…

    No, I didn’t. I really want to in the next few days though. I loved seeing yours though. It seems so PEACEFUL. I NEED peace around here right now.

  • 22.

    that’s so neat! i forgot to document this last night…hapefully i’ll get to it soon. weird, though…my first thought was…what am i supposed to document…i don’t HAVE a routine. but, sure enough, i took note of little things last night and realized that i AM a habitual creature and i DO have my own routine. wow…

  • 23.
    ashlie&marirosa said…

    Are those the Pottery Barn couches that we helped to buy??????? LOL … Miss you!

  • 24.
    Alisa Noble said…

    Took all my pics last night. Hope to get it all put together in the next couple of days. Have a great weekend.

  • 25.
    kristen said…

    love seeing the pics of your home. it’s so clean-line designed.

  • 26.
    Karen C said…

    This is a wonderful idea. Will definitely do it.
    As always, Ali, thank you for sharing your family and life with us.

  • 27.
    froggywinks said…

    Ali, just love it! Made me want to really (((((HUG))))) my family. It’s just so important to make every moment with your family documented. Thanks for bieng such an inspiration!!

  • 28.
    Lanne said…

    i am in the process of documenting my work life for my son. He is 3.5 and obsessed with ‘work’ – and where people work. We both work in IT, plus have a photography and digital art business. It is good in that it offers some flexiblity but we also work odd times and work hard to work around him. I thought it might be nice for him to see what my work is like when he is older.

  • 29.
    maryjo said…

    thanks for always sharing so much of yourelf & family. awesome. maryjo

  • 30.
    PJ said…

    Hi Ali,
    Had some fun playing time, with a lovely lay-out as the result:
    Thanks for the invitation!
    I only captured our son’s routine, but after seeing your post tonight, I think I could easily come up with another great page about our routine as well!

  • 31.
    Linda Beeson said…

    One thing I can say is that not having little kids anymore to have all of these responsibilities for makes life a bit different!!! I remember all of those tasks having raised four kids, but now with it just being DH and I and he is often traveling, the routines aren’t so much in place. Kind of nice too!

  • 32.
    Ania said…

    To answer your q first; yes I DID! :D Well, I documented the “brush-teeth” part and the “play-a-little-wee-more” part but then my little one didn’t wanna cooperate – no siree – no bedtime for her yet!(which have become a little habit for our soon-to-be-two-year-old lately…sigh..she knows it’s time for bed, yet she wants to stay awake and cries if we’re strict at that….kids :p Will try and make a layout outta that soon – thanks for the incentive and thanks for sharing your pictures and thoughts! :)

  • 33.
    Leah said…

    I got a kick out of the fold away trays. That is our living room. One by my hubby’s chair and one next to my place on the couch. And then when I came to comment, I see another gal that says the same thing.. that’s too funny.
    Love the documenting of the nightly routine. Sweet and simple. Those things are always the best!

  • 34.
    Shannon said…

    I had SO much fun with this. I haven’t created my page yet but I did post my pictures and journaling. Thanks you for such great everyday inspiration!

  • 35.
    Sarah said…

    I absolutely *love* that blurry pic of the three of you! I guess it was probably a happy accident that it turned out so cool :-)

  • 36.
    Tammy said…

    Ali, love the whole concept, photos and journaling. Thanks for opening up and sharing your life with us. It was very beautiful and a wonderful idea to pass along to us.

  • 37.

    began to put mine, Ali!!!
    cool idea!!!
    {ThE fReNcH tOuCh}

  • 38.
    Stacey - Australia said…

    WOW Ali, you inspire me!!
    I hadn’t caught up on your blog for a few days & popped on & after reading realised that I had joined in without even knowing. This morning we were doing our usual Saturday morning things & I thought “Hey I want to scrap this EVERYDAY MOMENT” so I took some great shots.
    Thanks for instilling the EVERYDAY MOMENT in me.
    Love ya!

  • 39.
    Paul-ene said…

    Thanks for the challenge and for sharing your routines.
    I didn’t have time to do a Layout. Instead I journaled and documented our evening routine on my blog. Hopefully someday soon I can make a LO of it all. I think I would need a mini book for all my pixs. I always have way too many photos.
    Here is our evening routine on my blog:
    WARNING: Some images contain pamper yourself routines, overindulge in ME TIME, and relaxation.~hee~oh and new scrap tools!

  • 40.
    Sue said…

    I really need to journal and photograph my day. It’s a great challenge and maybe someday, someone will wonder what I did each day. Hmmmmm.

  • 41.
    Jessica said…

    I documented our night time rountine last night. Now I need to do a layout. Thanks for the assignment.Jess

  • 42.
    Lisa Cohen said…

    We watch the Daily Show too. Love it! Hubby also watches PTI as part of his nighttime ritual (usually first)… Daily Show comes later when both of us are in bed but before I read before going to sleep! LOL! I posted a link of my daughter’s bedtime ritual in your last post. I love seeing everyone’s everyday rituals. :-)
    Have a great weekend!

  • 43.

    Salut Ali!!!
    is just posted :
    {ThE fReNcH tOuCh}

  • 44.
    Jo said…

    Ali, thanks for the challenge. Here’s my layout of our bedtime routine. Jo (England)

  • 45.
    kymmie said…


  • 46.
    Christi said…

    Unfortunately I didn’t see this yesterday….but i couldn’t help but respond to Simon still learning to put on his clothes. My ds(Noah) ASD diagnosis is just now learning to put on his shirt….wow to see the day that my 5 year old would learn to put on his shirt. we still work on the Potty Training. I just thought that you might want to hear from someone who understands what your house looks like what you feel like and what The TIVO is!! I’m still behind about6 weeks on GREYS’Anantomy!

  • 47.
    photocat said…
    is mine Ali… My rituals!

  • 48.
    Deborah said…

    Great challenge Ali.
    Here’s my photos and journalling, haven’t created my layout yet. Really need to do some more of this documenting life’s little moments. It also makes me really wish my grandparents or even parents had done this type of thing- how interesting would that have been.

  • 49.
    Katie Jones said…

    sounds like a good ritual. I’ve been traveling a lot so mine is all sorts of out of whack. But I might document it sometime.

  • 50.
    Erin said…

    I love seeing others finding “routines” just as important as our family does. Thanks for the reminder of scrapping these precious part of our everyday life!

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