Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

December 6, 2010

December Daily 2010 | Day Five

First off I wanted to take a minute to welcome anyone who may be new to my site. I’ve got a welcome page with a video walk-through that introduces you to some of the different areas I have here and lists popular posts you might be interested in checking out. You can read all about the December Daily project happening right now here. Thanks so much for visiting.

Welcome to Day Five!

Day Five features a grocery bag from Trader Joe’s and a little photo and story about sharing. On top of the grocery bag I added a bit of metallic trim (I’m pretty sure that came from Papier Valise), a mini flash card from CariKraft, and a Tim Holtz game spinner. To adhere the thin red metallic trim I used red line tapeLOVE this stuff.

Here’s a little close-up:

And a look at the second page:

Today’s photo for the second page wouldn’t fit in a 5.5 x 6.25 crop without losing some of the things I wanted to include (like the side of the tree).

Here’s what I did to get around this issue: (1) Re-sized my photo to 5.5 inches wide and let Photoshop resize the height (about 4.5 inches). (2) Changed the canvas size to 5.5 x 6.25 and moved my photo up to the top leaving an area along the bottom for journaling.

Here’s a look at my 5.5 inch x 6.25 inch canvas in Photoshop with the title and journaling added:

I knew I wanted the journaling to be on cardstock and the photo on photo paper (rather than printing the whole thing on photo paper – which would have been just fine too).

For printing the photo here at home on photo paper I de-selected all the layers except the photo. For printing the journaling on cardstock I de-selected all the layers except the text. For a more in depth look at turning off layers to print parts of a canvas, including a video tutorial go here.

Here’s what the two pages looked like after printing:

I cut the photo out with my trimmer and then laid it on top of the cardstock journaling. I used the photo as a guide for the width and then cut it out with my trimmer.

The photo and the journaling were adhered to the background dated 6×8 overlay.

Along the bottom I added Hambly pattern paper and an oval accent from a K&Company chipbox (2009). I trimmed the top and bottom of the oval off to keep it within the box.

Here’s a closer look:

JOURNALING : Ah, sharing. Something we all have to learn in our lives. Today it seemed to be an especially big issue around here between Simon and Anna. First it was a small peg-board game in my office and then it was the Playmobil Nativity people. Simon’s fairly protective of his things – even those that are really meant to be shared – and even those which are being played with very nicely while he plays with other things. I heard lots of “mine” being thrown around from both the almost two-year-old and the almost nine-year-old. To make it even more of a challenge, I was having a hard time today too. I think we’re all a bit off and in need of rest. In the case of the nativity Simon ended up taking the kings and shepherd to the table while Anna played with the animals and the baby in the window. They both seemed happy and content and went on their merry way in their own little worlds. Peace at last, for the moment at least.

SUPPLIES : Every Jot & Tittle Red Number Tags; Hambly Chic Circles Transparent Overlay; Ormolu Christmas Tag (circle-punched); Hambly Red Hearts on Kraft pattern paper; Ali Edwards 2010 December Daily 6×8 overlay; Fonts: Lucia BT and Sentinel; CariKraft Mini Signs of Christmas Flash Cards; Tim Holtz game spinner; red line tape


This feels like a good time to remind everyone not to make any judgments about your album (boring, plain, too simple, too complex, etc) at this stage in the process. Remember that the beauty of it is the whole album, not any single page or layout. If there’s something you don’t love about a particular page than make a change on tomorrow’s page (learn from what you feel about the pages you make) rather than spending a bunch of time trying to re-work this one.

6×8 PRINTING UPDATE : I also wanted you to know that Persnickety Prints prints 6×8 images. I’ve used them before for printing my 12×12 digital pages and they printed my Christmas cards this year. Great service.

FABER-CASTELL METALLIC PEN UPDATE : Come to find out, the metallic pens I’ve been using on my photos the last couple of days are actually new and will be debuting at CHA. Ask your local retailer to order some or look for them online after the show in January.

QUESTIONS IN THE COMMENTS : I’m trying to keep up with questions I find in the comments. If I happen to miss yours please ask it again.

All posts related to December Daily can be found here.

TODAY’S POST SPONSORED BY : Blog Design Basics for Bloggers
Our video tutorials will teach you how to create & install a custom banner, background, photo frame, signature, post divider, & happy art when you take our {BLOG DESIGN BASICS} class!  When you purchase the class you’ll get these 6 READY-MADE BLOG KITS & our 5 brand new HOLIDAY BLOG KITS for free, as well as the option to purchase our ADD-ON BLOG KIT for only $20! Also, be sure to check out my BLOG & my SHOP for digital scrapbooking supplies & Kristina’s BLOG for lots of inspiration!


I’d love to have you include a link to your DAY FIVE page here. Please link directly to your post or image on Flickr vs. your general blog link. Thank you! Also – don’t feel like you need to leave a comment!


  • 1.
    Laci M. said…

    In your previous DD’s I noticed you used some kind of eyelets for your paper to make sure they didnt just rip through the binding. I bought some at JoAnn’s that were for belts and material items but they are really thick and take up LOTS of room on my binder rings, but the scrapbooking eyelets dont have a big enough opening to fit on the rings. So my question is what kind of eyelets are you using and where did you get them, or what other precautions are you taking to make sure your thin papers dont rip through the rings? Thanks so much! I LOVE my album, its just REALLY thick!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Laci – I used some eyelets and grommets in my book last year but am not using them this year (at least I don’t think so right now). Last year’s book felt much less stable. I think there are a variety of different sizes available for eyelets – from mini ones to larger ones. I’ve got a collection of different sizes collected over the years – I would check Michaels.In past year’s books – when I haven’t used any eyelets/grommets (all year’s except 2009) – the books have held up really well.

  • 2.
    diane said…

    What colour/brand cardstock are you using? Thanks Ali

    • ….
      Kim said…

      Hi! Not Ali, but I am pretty sure she is using Bazzill cardstock in cream puff (not sure of the exact name). I think she mentions it in one of her December Daily blog posts. ;-)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Kim’s right (thanks Kim) – Bazzill Cream Puff (has a really nice criss-cross texture).

  • 3.
    dawn said…

    I love that window seat and the glimpse of them playing/sharing together. Sounds like my day 4 page which left my day 5 page to be a very merry and happy page/day with my kids. Sometimes they do surprise us don’t they. The little heart pattern paper you chose is perfect since they are showing love by sharing and hanging out together. Wonderful job Ali!!

  • 4.
    Cele Schaffer said…

    Your album is coming along beautifully! I had a question you may have addressed but I can’t find it. Do you print most of your own pictures? Even the whole page pictures? What photo paper do you use and what printer? Do you then attach the 6X9 pictures to cardstock or the photo paper just becomes the page by itself? I am sorry for asking so much-this is my first year and I need HELP! Thank you so much Ali-you give us all so much inspiration.

  • 5.
    Beke said…

    awww I wish we had cool little paper bags like that over here!
    Just stunning Ali…….I don’t wanna sound like a stalker or anything (lol) but you are my crafty idol! I’ve been dropping your name to everyone. :P I’ve been trying to get some of your books over here, and its been hard, so i might need to order online from the states

    I like how you have added today the issues of family life….kids not sharing and not feeling too great etc. I good reminder that these things are important to record along with the good days, if you know what I mean.

    • ….
      Paula in Australia said…

      Hey Beke I got into your blog and notice that you live not too far from me and we go up to your neck of the woods all the time (family) – I am in Brisbane and I got some of Ali’s books from Scrapbook City in Indooroopilly – here is a link to their website. They might be able to help you find them. I have all 4 books and look at them all the time. Ali is the bomb!

      Hope this helps – Regards Paula

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Thanks Paula – I think I need to write a new book :) .

    • ….
      Heather said…

      Ali I’d LOVE for you to write a new book! I have all of yours and they still inspire me more than any others! :)

  • 6.
    Amy B said…

    Thank you for sharing this story, Ali. I love it. I am reminded that no one’s life is perfect, no one’s kids are perfect, and we all have struggles and bad days. Instead of trying to pretend everything is magical and perfect at our house during the holidays, I am inspired to tell the real stories – even though they can be a little ugly sometimes! Thanks again :)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Cool! It just happened that my first four days were full of holiday goodness…real life is always a part of everyday :) .

  • 7.
    Amy said…

    Your new house looks like it has such wonderful light!! Lovely pages

  • 8.
    Maica said…

    Everyday is different from last day, so special, so unique, and everyday I enjoy with those wonderful photos and the way you describe your december life. Thanks for share and thanks for encourage us to do it.
    Best Regards from Catalonia

  • 9.
    Nicole Jannink said…

    Ali i get inspired by your daily pages and it’s your posts that keep me going on to cpmplete my page daily. I am so glad i used your 6×8 overlays, because that makes my DD a whole album instead of lose pages.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Thanks Nicole – glad you are enjoying the process!

  • 10.
    Jennie said…

    Thanks for reminder…totally got crazed yesterday …broken canon so using a point and shoot and got very disappointed with the pictures…had to remind myself it’s about the memories! When I let it go…I really saw the beauty of the album! Thanks so much for gentle reminders and nudges to keep going!

  • 11.
    Judy Webb said…

    I should have made a December book, NOT for children, but for our new dog. We are OLD and grandkids live far away. We lost our beloved Happy just before Thanksgiving. Our son gave us one of his grown dogs to be a friend to our Bichon. It would have been fun to record the two dogs and one cat becoming friends and how Abby has become our friend. [the cat has accepted Abby better than the Bichon. LOL]

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Oh Judy – I’m sorrry to read about the loss of your dog!

    • ….
      Paula in Australia said…

      Oh Judy my thoughts are with you in losing your darling Dog. I too lost one of mine 2 weeks ago and it feels like a part of my day just isn’t there anymore. Our other dog is coping quite well, probably because the other passed at home in her sleep and he would have known before we did that she had gone. A big shock and very sad as she wasn’t sick at all but she was nearly 11 so we had some really good times with her being part of our family. I hope your new old doggie goes well and you are not too sad. Have a Happy Festive Season.

  • 12.
    Bonnie said…

    You always take the best pictures. Sometimes I just don’t capture those moments of the kids just being kids togehter.

  • 13.
    Sylvia said…

    Hee, I just added the TJ’s bag to my December Daily too!

  • 14.
    Sara said…

    Totally loving seeing your pages! I finished pages 1-5 this weekend. Fun, fun! Love the links to other people’s albums too. Great idea!

  • 15.
    Terri Porter said…

    Ali, thanks so much for this description on how you adapt your photo to fit within the space. I mentioned in a comment to an earlier post that at times I was having a problem resizing my photo to fit in that space without trimming off vital stuff. I haven’t had a chance to go back to that post to see if you answered, but this is exactly what I needed. Much easier than trying to figure out how to frame the photo when I’m taking it so that I can crop it to a certain size and not lose anything. You are a genius!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I did respond to your question on the other post…I said something about how most of my photos were horizontal and taking photos both up close + far away to give you the most options when you go to tell the story. I thought of you as I put this one together – hoping it would be helpful!

  • 16.
    Linn said…

    Ali, thanks for sharing this page. I was a at a loss for what to do with my template when my photo just can’t be cropped to the squarish size. I really like how you put the journaling below the photo and still made the page look balanced. Looks great.

  • 17.
    Marsaille said…

    I love the way yours is coming together. I have to admit, at first I was skeptical since this years version looks so different. I was afraid it would be cold. You did say to wait until the pics and stories start filling it though! Your details make a difference too. Lovely.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Thanks Marsaille – it’s always hard to really “see” the album when it’s just the foundation. I’m enjoying this format…I did just look through my book from 2008 with more variety of page size. I love that one too. I figure I’ll be doing this for quite a few more years to come (a good thing) and I’ll have the chance to do that format again and probably lots of others as well. You can see that 2008 book here:

  • 18.
    Heather said…

    Ali I just picked up your Holiday Word Art Vol. 2 at Designer Digitals. Thank you, I love them! Especially the “25 moments, stories, days” art, I think that one’s going to have to go on my title page!!

  • 19.
    Michelle M said…

    I am loving everyone’s links to their blogs! I especially like finding DD from people in other countries and in foreign languages! This is such a COOL project and I am so glad to be doing it! I started out with a little “scappbooker envy” and wished that my album looked like yours, but I have gotten over that and am glad I am doing things my own way! Thanks again, Ali!!

  • 20.
    Wilna said…

    lovely page! and i love the font you use in the title. : )

  • 21.

    This linking to the blog thing is super cool Ali, thanks for including it this year. I love looking at all of the pages, and getting inspired. We are all such creative storytellers–I love it!

  • 22.
    SandraL said…

    Just purchased the printable 6×8 overlays and am trying to change color in Word but its not working. Followed your tutorial example but only the outer line changes color. Help…using Microsoft Word 2007. Thanks

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi SandraL – are these the instructions you are following:

      To recolor the lines of the overlay, go to View and select the Formatting Palette (I’m working in Word for Mac 2008). Click the Recolor icon near the top and select More Options at the bottom of the menu to choose a color. Click the color and the overlay should automatically change to that color.

      Do you have a formatting palette?

      Make sure you are using the “recolor” option rather than the “line fill” option. If you select line fill it will only change the outside color of the entire picture – not the element itself.

  • 23.
    Christy Miller said…

    I feel like I’m spending a LOT of time deciding what picture, what story and where and how I want it placed on my page. I probably spend more time doing this than I did making the album in the first place. Anyone else feel this way? It’s not for every page but maybe it’s just because I’m trying hybrid and I’m a little new at it???

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Christy – I think “choosing” is one of the easiest places people get stuck. This project is a great opportunity to work on making quick choices and trusting your initial instinct and not worrying that it’s the “perfect photo” or the “perfect story” for that day. Just pick one and move forward – you can do it!

  • 24.
    Jennifer said…

    Bahahahaha!! The “santa is watching” oval is perfect for this gem of a story!

  • 25.
    Cynthia H said…

    The grocery bag looks so great as part of this layout.

  • 26.
    Alexandra said…

    Thanks for showing us that an ‘ordinary life’ day can still fit into the December Daily so nicely. We don’t do something Christmas/winter related everyday and that has been a bit of a concern for me – gonna let that one go and just document the day – whether Christmasy or not. Thank you!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      You’re welcome – it just happened for us that we did a bunch of holiday related-stuff over those first four days ;) .

  • 27.
    Anne M said…

    How funny that we both used a shopping bag on yesterday’s page!

  • 28.
    Estellita said…

    love your layout ;-)

  • 29.
    Shelley said…

    They have a great role model for sharing–thank you for always being so generous with your time and talent.

    Question–what photo printer and paper do you use at home? Your prints always look so much better than what I get out of mine.

  • 30.
    Holly S said…

    Ali-loving keeping up with my DD and seeing yours. Quick question…are you planning on using a photo everyday? I love that you have little ones that give you tons of chances to photograph them…it’s just me and my husband so no ‘kiddish’ things to photo or story tell about. OH and I LOVE that you are giving us permission to let go of perfection…sometimes we need to hear that:)

  • 31.
    kathryn said…

    Oh man, I thought I was being so creative using the Trader Joe’s bag. When I saw it I thought it would be so perfect and immediately cut it out and added it to my stack of dd pages!! For some reason had the feeling you would be including it in your book at some point. =} Gotta Love TJ’s!!!

  • 32.
    Erika said…

    I simply adore that photo!
    I think I need to go for a long drive to Trader Joe’s for a shopping bag :)
    Thank you for the inspiration & nudge to keep going!

  • 33.
    Rebekah Pontow said…

    Great story about siblings! I will have to see if I can get a story like this with my daughter and her cousin who are usually at odds over the toys at Grandma’s house. I was wondering if there are any items at Designer Ditgital’s for 30 days, instead of 25 and 31? Thanks Ali!

  • 34.
    Jenn V said…

    That is so awesome that you cut out the grocery bag! I did the exact same thing and when I did, I thought “I bet Ali would love to add this to her December daily, its the perfect size.” Aren’t they awesome bags this year? I also cut out all those cute snowflakes to use as embellishments.

  • 35.
    Tiffany said…

    Loving watching this book develop! As I work on my pages each day, my biggest challenge is how to limit the number of photos to include. How do you feel about the photos and stories that aren’t told every day? Do you have plans to use the other photos you take every day in any other way in the future? I’m just getting back into memory-keeping and I can see how getting more experience with story-telling and mini-books will help shift my focus. But right now…it’s hard to let them go.

  • 36.
    Tere (Marie) said…

    Ali….I’m always in awe.
    I’m lagging a bit in my “assembly”. I’m 100% successful in picture taking…count 385 this weekend. That’s where I struggle. Too many options and how do I narrow it down…which ones tell the “story”. I’m trying not to get frustrated. And I’ve watched your videos many times, but seem to spend too much time playing in PSE. I know by the 25th I’ll be better, but right now in the assembly part.

    • ….
      Tere (Marie) said…

      Also…your twitter link to the DD Vol. 1, can they be adjusted ti 6×8?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I sent you a tweet back on this one but I’ll answer it here too. It can be done, but it would be a lot more work that it’s worth I think!

    • ….
      Tere (Marie) said…

      Thanks, sorry about the double ask.

  • 37.
    Jenny Alfonso said…

    Thanks for the gentle reminder Ali! I think you read my mind last night :) I was just thinking that I really didn’t like the way my DD day 5 turned out. After staring at it and wishing I could change it, I just let it go. I know I will love it. Your pages are awesome as always!

  • 38.
    mandee mattioli said…

    Just an FYI… you can find the Metallic Pens (FABER-CASTELL)in gold and silver at Michael’s in the fine arts section. No other colors though. I think you can get them on-line there too.
    They also have a huge selection of the Sharpie Paint Pens now too. They are up by the register when you leave. They are new at my Michael’s. I know that you like them too. Just thought I would share for those who are looking for some good pens to use on the photos.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Good to know Mandee – must just be the colored metallic set that is not yet available (at least that’s what the marketing rep says :) ). And also good to know about the poster paint pens – love those!

  • 39.
    gscrapbooks said…

    I am loving everything about this process! Thank you for sharing everything about the process. :-)

  • 40.
    Heather M. said…

    I absolutely love the moments that you capture, so dear. Thank you for all that you are sharing with us!

  • 41.
    Lacey said…

    HI Ali-
    I am having a difficult time trying to figure out how to use your overlays, etc in PS. I don’t use elements (I have PS CS3)…and I was wondering if you could point me to a direction where there was a tutorial on using these products with the program I have. I thought I saw somewhere you said CZ had one, but I’m not finding it (and in her class @ BPC, she uses Elements) Help! :)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Lacey – I left you a comment over on the Flickr message board too :) . If you can give me some more information on what you’re having trouble with (more specifics) I’m happy to help. I use CS4 as my regular program (just use Elements for tutorials). You can email me if that’s easier. There’s just a few little differences between the two programs (at least in working with these products).

  • 42.
    Sue TR said…

    Hi Ali
    Thanks for the post, your album looks great! I’m glad you included the “regular every-day” in your book…not just the super-happy kodak moments … I just need to find time to work on everything! I am finding that as my kids get older (i have 9 yo twins) they are staying up later and so I have less crafty time in the eves!

    Thanks for the link to your paper cutter…my birthday is wednesday and I might just take my coupon down to Michaels and treat myself to a little present!

    This project is really helping me get past some creative issues so I can move on to other things so I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU for that!!

  • 43.
    Lori said…

    i so look forward to seeing you decdaily page for each day! thank you for the inspiration. i am loving the templates, twill, christmas blocks and wordart that you created. I am so glad i bought the items (on sale!). these items are saving me a lot of time and i can focus on photos+words!

  • 44.
    Jenni Hufford said…

    hi ali!

    I LOVE how you used the trader joe’s grocery bag. i remember you did this a few years ago in your DD and i saved one and am using it again this year too :)

    Today i went christmas shopping and bought a gift a fossil– the shopping bag is WOODGRAIN!!! I came home, cut it up, and i am using it in my DD for the page about our christmas tree. :)

    i am loving your posts!!!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Total score on the woodgrain Jenni :)

  • 45.
    Margaret C said…

    Ooh – I agree with the no judging. I have actually stopped looking at other people’s because they so much more together/better photographed/artsier/sweeter etc. They are what they are and I am LOVIN documenting my December. Thanks to you and Shimelle for the inspiration ( and resources ! )

  • 46.
    Shelley D. said…

    Ali – I have used your layered templates before with no problem. I am trying to use the 6×8 templates (in PS Elements 6) and it won’t let me mask the photos. The photo layer has a + sign on it that says it “indicates a frame layer” whatever that means. I’ve watched your video twice. So frustrated…any suggestions?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Shelley – is that happening on one particular template or all of them? I opened them in my Elements 6 and don’t see any + signs.

    • ….
      Shelley D. said…

      All of them. I went back to another template (your calendar template) to see if it happened in that, but it didn’t. I also went to PSE “help” and can’t really even figure out what “indicates a frame layer” (shows up on the photo in the photo layer) means or how to turn it off. THANKS!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hmmmm – let me see if I can find someone who knows more and see what they suggest.

    • ….
      Shelley D. said…


    • ….
      Ali said…

      Shelley – here’s the feedback I received:

      “It sounds to me like she is dragging the photo UP from the bin onto her document.

      When you do this in PSE6, it makes the item into a Smart Object and makes it difficult to work with.

      Remind her that in that version of Elements, she will need to double click the photo in the bin to select it and to make it active (large in the editing window.) Then she can use the Move tool to drag it down onto the template (or document) in the Project Bin.”

      If that’s not it let me know and we’ll try something else.

    • ….
      Shelley D. said…

      Good morning Ali! Wow…so simple. That was totally it. I haven’t worked with templates in a few months, so I knew it must be something stupid I was doing. THANK YOU SO MUCH (and also to whoever figured it out)! I am so excited to work on some of my pages with these templates today.


    • .
      Ali said…

      Awesome!!!! It was Sara who runs the help email at Designer Digitals – I’ll let her know!

  • 47.
    Deborah said…

    In love with your book thus far. Question: Was it you who had a link to a list of great Christmas books for children? Or maybe it was in an older blog somewhere? I swear I just read it on someone’s blog, and I can’t recall whose. Thanks!

  • 48.
    Amy said…

    The linking gadget/widget is very, very cool =0). I am having a blast so far – definitely much more laid back than last year. I really like the “planned ahead” 6 x 8 pages, it takes some stress off of finding the perfect page/element-to-use-as-a-page for that day. I love the transparency/acrylic middle page a lot – this is definitely a winner.

  • 49.
    Sarah Stegall said…

    Love what stories and images you are capturing! How do you get your children to cooperate? Evertyime my son sees that I am even close to the camera he wants to take a picture rather than be in one. We are having some SUPER moments at our house but I am having a hard time getting everyone to stay put!
    Any suggestions?
    Thank you, ALI!!!

  • 50.
    amy tangerine said…

    that grocery bag from trader joe’s is perfection! need to go grocery shopping just for that and the sea salted caramels i just heard about.

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