Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

October 1, 2008

Week in the Life : Tuesday Photos + Words (and a workshop giveaway)

Just a note that Stacy Julian organized a really cool project encouraging everyone to give ourselves the gift of the present moment. This is precisely what we are doing with this week in the life journey. Check out her blog today.


From Tuesday:

week in the life : tuesday morning by you.

week in the life : tuesday morning before school by you.

week in the life : morning work by you.

week in the life : chris at work by you.

week in the life : driving to the farmer's market by you.

week in the life : farmer's market by you.

week in the life : capturing me by you.

week in the life : coming home by you.

week in the life : hello darth by you.

week in the life : pumpkins on the porch by you.

week in the life : simon's day by you.

week in the life : farmer's market bounty by you.

week in the life : fresh flowers by you.

week in the life : simon + chris fixing tostadas by you.

week in the life : german apple cake by you.

week in the life : reading homework by you.

Went with the simple list idea again – not as detailed as day one, but still much more than I would ever do without this project.

1. Super happy Simon wake-up this morning. He came into our room around 2am. I stayed for a bit and then went to his bed (which happens to be a bit more comfortable because of a firmer mattress). He joined me at about 5:45am just before the alarm went off at 6am.
2. Breakfast routine same as Monday: bagel + cream cheese for Simon, cereal for Chris, and me, I have to wait a bit for my thyroid medication. I usually eat after Simon leaves for school.
3. Every morning that Simon is cheerful I am so very thankful.
4. Working on a project for Australian Creating Keepsakes.
5. Listening to OPB.
6. Head out to the Farmer’s Market. Pick up spinach, carrots, celery, red onion, raspberries, and flowers. Grab a toasted bagel from Bagel Sphere.
7. Ship package to Australia.
8. Look up some recipes at Do a bit of meal planning for the week.
9. Text Chris to pick up a couple things at the grocery store.
10. Make German Apple Cake + eat hummus and pita chips for lunch.
11. Clean up kitchen.
12. Move laundry around.
13. Back to work. Internet. Emails.
14. Talk to Mom on the phone. Ask her about how to get the cake out of the bundt pan.
15. Totally bummed that message board has been down today.
16. Simon comes home on the bus.
17. We check out his Communication Notebook. Looks good. He brought home the same library book he brought home almost every trip last year.
18. On comes the Darth Vader costume and Star Wars video.
19. Chris talks on the phone. Mom reads about cloth diapers.
20. I take a little nap.
21. Dinner is tostadas (Chris cooks). Dessert is the German Apple Cake.
22. Simon does his math homework (no complaints tonight) at the table and then puts on his PJ’s.
23. Reading homework on the couch.
24. Family light saber battle.
25. Simon in bed. Read Green Eggs + Ham.
26. Back to work for a bit.
27. Watch Tivo’d John Stewart.


This week I am excited to give away a spot in Kolette Hall’s Giving Well (In 2-hours or Less) online workshop at Big Picture Scrapbooking.

Kolette is one of my favorite people and happens to be having a baby right around the same time as me next year. She is a fabulous product designer and instructor who really keeps the emphasis on things being meaningful and coming from the heart.

Here’s the basics of Giving Well:

Gift-giving is an art. From the gift tag and wrapping paper to what’s inside the package, you are saying something when you give a gift. Back by popular demand, Kolette Hall has designed a fresh round of fabulous, manageable gift ideas for the holiday season and all year long. This class is literally packed with everything you need to give well for the holidays or any special event all year long – and Kolette has designed every idea you will see in this class!

Every other day, you will receive a new idea for “Giving Well (still in 2-hours or less!).” True to form, Kolette has also included her exclusive downloadable artwork to help you create the perfect gifts, holiday cards and gift tags. As those of you who joined us last year for Giving Well know, you will be amazed with what you get in just four weeks of class time.

You asked for it, so we’re starting class a month earlier than last year to make sure you have plenty of time to get those projects done for the holidays! Whether you are mass producing one gift idea or choosing to craft a different gift for each person on your list, you’ll get tons of ideas for creating personalized gifts in less than two hours. Come join Kolette as she guides you in your new art form: the art of Giving Well.

You can read all the details about this online workshop here. It runs October 9 through November 5th. While you are there you can also check out her year long workshop for 2009: A Life Well Crafted.

To be entered leave a comment below and let us know if you have started planning for the upcoming holiday season yet. Comment section will be closed at 5pm today (Wednesday) and the winner announced shortly after.


A complete list of posts related to the week in the life project can be found here.


  • 1.
    malaryush said…

    Wow- first comment! That’s never happened before :D
    I always start planning for the holidays in September as soon as my kids go back to school. Not because I’m that organised but because it’s the easiet way to budget for all the present buying (we have a HUGE family). Only problem is if I’m not careful I put gifts away in ‘safe places’ and forget where they are until January :(

  • 2.
    Tanya Gilmartin said…

    I have started to think about our christmas cards… got some ideas and I HOPE to get going on them this month! Too ambitious? maybe….
    Ontario, Canada

  • 3.
    Nicky Anderson said…

    Good Morning Ali – this project is becoming so much fun – lots of different pictures perspectives of life. Really enjoying it.
    Holiday plans are coming together for us, the oldest and her hubby are coming home for xmas this year and it looks like his family from the States will be all coming to our place. We are hoping that Brody will adjust with a houseful for over a week. We are excited.
    Happy day

  • 4.
    kim said…

    I enjoy making gifts for friends and family and Wrapping them is one of my favorite things! This class sounds very cool!

  • 5.
    kim m said…

    Just love the holidays and really try to start focusing more this time of year. In the past I’ve had my shopping done by early Nov. How relaxing! Most of December is spent going to plays/shows/events with the family, and I can do that stress-free when I’m not worrying about gift-giving. Of course, we shall see what this year brings with the financial burdens for everyone.

  • 6.
    Amy said…

    I’ve started working on my Christmas list. This year I am really trying to stick to a budget–and will be trying to make it a “crafty Christmas.” We’ll see if I have any luck . . .

  • 7.
    beth said…

    looks like a great day!
    so cool that so many people are taking the extra step and capture their lives right now.
    enjoy your wednesday!

  • 8.
    Amanda Susan said…

    I bought some wood blocks over the weekend to make a decoration with. I just need to set aside some time to do it now.

  • 9.
    Kristin said…

    I have done more than start planning! I am about 90% done shopping for my kids and have a good start on some other gifts as well (including teachers, bus drivers, crossing guards!). I definitely like to pick gifts up when I see something and it strikes me as being “perfect” for someone on my list rather than combing the mall the week before Christmas in search of something to wrap up. I have several friends who are very jealous (and a little mad) that I have so much done already! I am figuring with so much of this part out of the way, I will have time to do a few decorative holiday projects for our house as well as make a few meaningful gifts for some special people. That is what I always seem to run out of time for. I hope this huge head start helps me enjoy a more stress free holiday season this year! We will see how it goes.

  • 10.
    Amy J said…

    This sounds just like what I need to get my gift giving started for the holiday season. While, I have starting thinking about some ideas, I have yet to actually get anything started.

  • 11.
    CIndy Trimble said…

    I’ve already started buying gifts and looking into the cards I want to make. I would really love to have a homemade Christmas, just don’t think I could get my teenagers (21,18 & 16) on board. But maybe with friends and family. I love sentimental gifts!

  • 12.
    jeanne33 said…

    I have already made my Christmas cards and I am working on my gift list. I want to give meaningful, thoughtful gifts. Have already selected some gifts from the world vision catalog!

  • 13.
    Brandi Z. said…

    I am definitely going with homemade gifts this year. We are keeping the holidays low key this year. I would love to take this class to help me get started!

  • 14.
    Jess said…

    Hey Ali :) I’m enjoying participating and watching the week in the life entries – what a meaningful project! As for planning for the holidays…I do tend to buy gifts here and there ahead of time and might have a couple in the closet. The only other thing I’ve done is look for plane tickets to visit my family over the holidays. Thanks for the chance to win a spot in Kolette’s class :)

  • 15.
    kris said…

    I have started! I keep a “master list” in my computer that I can tweek & edit as needed. . everything from my christmas card addresses (I even have some of my cards!)
    to sizes. . they’re put into a folder w/ holiday recipes, traditions, etc. . ironically, I’d like to “scrapbook” or journal it to make it a “family holiday book” that can be passed down.
    LOVE LOVE LOVE homemade gifts & it’s so true though. . even the most simple gift is quite special if “given well”. . it’s in the details.

  • 16.
    Susi from Germany said…

    I haven’t made up my mind about the holiday season yet. Oh wait, I do have a little bit: my 3-year-old claimed that he’s in need for a “children’s violin” yesterday. Told him we have to wait for Christmas, since his birthday was on September 26th. I checked out ebay to get an idea how much such an artifact costs. Oh my, Christmas is here faster than you think!

  • 17.
    Wendy said…

    Have not started…except 50 gift baskets from The Dollar Tree…a family tradition is to make goodies to put in the baskets for everyone we work with, we hand them out the Monday after Thanksgiving. :-)

  • 18.
    Jamie said…

    With a new baby coming the second week of February….I’m feeling a little overwhelmed about the holidays and “getting it all done” this year. This class sounds awesome! Jamie

  • 19.
    Kristin A. said…

    I have lots of ideas running through my head but unfortunately have not begun executing. (Need to get going soon!) I love the entire fall/winter season!! Thanks for the info on the Giving Well class. This sounds like something I would love to participate in! Loving your “week in the life” project too. Thanks for all the inspiration. Have a wonderful day Ali!

  • 20.
    Heather said…

    I have started gift lists at Amazon to keep track of the gift ideas I have all year long, then I can go and look through them and pick the best for birthdays and Christmas. I already have half of my list done!

  • 21.
    Cindy said…

    Yes I have!! I have my whole house decorated for Halloween right now! Just love all the pumpkins & mums!! Starting to figure out how I want my tree! This year I want to have one tree with hand made ornaments. I love decorating with lights and greenery! Started to make my cookie list!! Love the house when it smells like fresh baked goodies!!
    So much fun!

  • 22.
    Michelle B said…

    I started with a list and a budget… and surfing on the web getting ideas. I would love a spot in Kolette’s class!

  • 23.
    Sue said…

    I have trouble planning for the holidays until the leaves fall. Autumn is my favorite time of year, so I don’t want to miss a second. I would love to win a class.

  • 24.
    SueM said…

    Hi Ali- Such good timing! I “officially” started my Christmas shopping yesterday! I would love more ideas for handmade, meaningful gifts for family and friends. With all that is going on in the economy I think it would be good for us all to get back to the basics and focus on what really matters – people. I, for one, would like to see more of a focus on giving versus consuming. Thanks and have a great day!

  • 25.
    tracy said…

    this sounds fabulous! i am kicking around some of my homemade gift ideas, for b’days and the holidays and I know one gift santa is buying for sure: a Nintendo DS for my youngest.

  • 26.
    kreativekate said…

    I am excited about this! I wanted to take it, but I am also taking Cathy’s BPS class, and they weren’t both in the budget.

  • 27.
    Susan E in VA said…

    Hi Ali! I’m using Photoshop Elements to make a family recipe book, 18 favorites, to give to family. I’m also making little 2009 calendars as gifts. I’m still looking for ideas for the men!

  • 28.
    Shaquanna said…

    Hi Ali,
    I have NOT really started getting ready for Christmas, or the holidays (thinking about it). I DID buy some Halloween pencils for the goodie bags I put together for my students. Not the candy yet though.

  • 29.
    Sue said…

    I’m just happy that I am keeping up with the kids school work! I have gotten Halloween costumes, but for Christmas its too far away for me to even think about it!

  • 30.
    Brookie J said…

    I haven’t started yet. I am trying to decide whether to make the gifts or just procrastinate & do everything last minute. Okay, just kidding…(maybe!!)

  • 31.
    Pam said…

    I haven’t started just yet, but so funny because I was thinking about it just this morning. Simple Mom has an article about it on her blog today that got my juices flowing. And I am planning on taking the other Christmas planning class over at BPS.

  • 32.
    Megan said…

    I’ve started to buy some presents here and there and am dreaming of snow, hot chocolate, scarfs, and christmas music!! :) Thank you!

  • 33.
    Gale said…

    I have started to plan for Thanksgiving. Making a list of grocery items & the craft project for the place name settings. Once this is well under way I’ll start thinking about Christmas.

  • 34.
    Sandra Collins said…

    Usually, once October begins I somehow seem to remember how busy this season is for our family. Then I frantically begin making plans and lists. Every year I vow that I am going to make plans earlier and every year I don’t. Somehow though, our holidays are always wonderful!!

  • 35.
    gina said…

    As a custom holiday card designer, I have to get my Santa hat on in April and wear it straight through till Christmas. (After 16 years, I’ve pretty much adjusted to that.) I have been reading Kolette’s blog for the last month or so and would LOVE a spot in her class. Pretty please pick me!

  • 36.
    Lisa S. said…

    I have actually started thinking about the holidays–which for use start with a vengence next Monday with one of 5 October birthdays in my family!!
    I love BPS classes and I’m sure this one will be terrific.
    Lisa S. in Texas

  • 37.
    Tina J. said…

    As I knew I would, I’m having so much fun with this whole process! Thanks so much for letting us joing along, Ali.
    Tina J.

  • 38.
    Nicole said…

    I have to plan early with all the handmade gifts prepare from baked goods for the neighbors, family calendars for both sides, greeting cards for my grandmother. I’ve started working on the calendars scrapping the monthly toppers and customized b-days & anniversaries. My family comes in every year from out of the country so we have an extra long celebration through the New Year.

  • 39.
    angie said…

    This year on my hubby’s side, we are making all homemade gifts, mamas, kids and dads included. We did this 6 yrs ago and it was so much nicer to see the gifts that came from their own hearts and hands. I have a few of those completed. Trying to get it all done early though, so I can decorate at Thanksgiving time and sit back and relax and enjoy it all.

  • 40.
    Jennifer McNeely said…

    Yup, have a few gifts bought already – not usually this far ahead, but kinda like it. I am off on maternity leave (I return to work in middle of November) so have more time now than I will then with a one year old around.

  • 41.
    Jaime-Lynn said…

    I have started planning for the holidays, have a few gifts stashed away and plans to make some as well!

  • 42.
    Robyn said…

    I’m starting my Christmas cards at a workshop on Saturday. Earliest I’ve ever been off the mark. But I did see Advent calendars at Target three weeks ago, so clearly I’ll have to schedule it for August next year if I’m to get ahead of the game.

  • 43.
    Hannah said…

    ali, i just love your photos from yesterday! I’ve been doing pretty good at keeping up myself, and trying to keep things posted on my blog (holding me accountable). The large photo of Chris and Simon, above his computer…I love it! What a cool idea!
    This is my favorite time of year. I had great plans to have both of our families up for Thanksgiving this year. I think we will be moving now though, and we are not sure when, so plans are on hold…maybe next year! But, I just love decorating for fall, and the smells in the air…my favorite time of the year!

  • 44.

    i haven’t started planning yet. . .but i noticed that as of tomorrow there are only 12 weeks. . .thanks to for the alert!

  • 45.
    CindyML said…

    I have actually started my Christmas list of gifts to buy and have purchased about one third of them. I don’t really do mnuch for Halloween – buy the candy last minute so it won’t get eaten here! I have made 18 jars of jalepeno jelly for teacher gifts and have 12 more jars ready to go. Thanks for blogging and keep creating! CindyML

  • 46.
    Julie said…

    My immediate family started a new tradition (even though it is only one year old) of giving each other handmade gifts. I haven’t started but now that summer is over and fall is here I think I better get started.

  • 47.
    Candace said…

    I started making Christmas cards in July! Now, I’m only half-finished, but at least I have the ideas down and started, along with ideas for all the handmade gifts I plan on doing. This weekend will start the great holiday blitz!

  • 48.
    Vicki Arnold said…

    I would love some help to get through the holidays this year!!!

  • 49.
    Peggy said…

    I have been planning so far, thanks to this blog.
    I’m pretty much up to date with their plan.
    I had fun last night trying to remember to take pictures. This morning so far too.

  • 50.
    Pnutsmum said…

    I have Halloween costumes and party goodies. That’s it so far! Got a B’day party to plan before I can move on to the next big thing!