Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

February 15, 2011

Project Life | Week Six

Welcome to Project Life | Week Six.

One of the big things on my mind as I bring these elements together this week is how much I love that I’m looking at it as a “week” vs. making sure I get a photo on each and every day. Most of the time I am, but it’s not because I feel like I need to for this project, it’s because I love to take photos. I’ve printed more photos over the past six weeks that I have in a very long time.

There’s something about thinking about it as a week-at-a-glance vs. a daily record of our life this year that is really working for me.

Left side:

In between pages:

I added a long journaler again this week.

The story came from this post. It’s long enough that it needed two journalers.

I formatted the journaling over two pages, printed both, and glued back to back. I printed the small photo of Simon sitting on the floor and adhered it to the top of the first journaler. The long journaler was slipped into a 8.5 inch x 11 inch page protector and I stitched along the side of the journaler to create a pocket. I then laid the page protector on my paper trimmer and cut off the excess.

If you’d like more information on working with the long journalers or other digital overlays, including how to add your text, go here for video tutorials using both Elements and Word.

Spread two:

Along with Simon’s self-report card (the yellow sheet) I included his third grade photos. I blurred it on purpose to protect the privacy of the other kids in his class.

Right side:

This 6×4  journal card came from my Evidence Overlay Collection.

Are you doing Project Life this year? How’s it going?

Project Life is a product created by Becky Higgins. It can be anything you want it to be. The album kit is available for purchase through Amazon. If you live outside the US check Becky’s site for more information on sources. View all my posts about Project Life here.


  • 1.
    dawn said…

    This week looks fun and filled with an adorable little girl. Love seeing her joy. As always all your little add-ons and special touches look great. I am also doing it as a weekly theme and loving it more this way. My daughter had her bday the day before Anna’s so I let her do this week (still finishing it) and it’s filled with her photos and thoughts and add-ons. Thank you so much for sharing this with us each week.

  • 2.
    MonicaB said…

    I love the dum-dum wrapper! I’m really enjoying seeing your project life. Thanks for sharing.

  • 3.
    Debbie said…

    I too am loving the week concept…I think of it as “the story of the week” and it is so much easier to journal in that format. There is more of a beginning middle and end (or to be continued) with this style.

    And I am loving all the digital elements extras that really help tell the story AND keep the album looking like whole ….to me they work like the quilt stitiching that pulls together the crazy quilt pieces of photos and ephmera.

    This year I used what I have learned from the December Daily project to plan out the foundation of the album…I gathered the digital stuff, the black and white pens, the corner punch, the colored embellishments from my stash, etc and put it one basket…I am enjoying the process much more this year than when I just used what came in the PL box. This is more creative. (OLW!)

  • 4.
    Brendaj said…

    Ali, I agree completely with you. I have always loved scrap booking, but taking the time to do it just hasn’t materialized like I would have liked over the years. So I’ve read and watched others, like yourself, and lived vicariously with the occasional burst of energy. Then I started seeing all the Project Life information and got hooked. Bought it, started it and love it. Love, love, love it. I look at it with a week in mind vs making sure I have one picture for each day. It has been more rewarding than my previous scrap booking. I think it’s the snapshot, the stories I’m telling and flipping back through the past few weeks to see our life. Thanks for posting your weeks they’re very inspiring.

    • ….
      Gayle said…

      Loving doing PL this year and appreciate your ideas and inspiration. Keep it up, it encourages the rest of us.

  • 5.
    georgeinci said…

    I love your project life. I’m a UK scrapper and find it so difficult to get stash and ideas over here – of course, I couldn’t get my hands on the Project Life box by Beck Higgins either BUT I have downloaded lots of your fabulous overlays from Designer Digitals and am busy making my own (I’m using WRMK album and inserts). I adore the idea of the long journalling cards, so cute, and am really enjoying the whole process so very much! I just want to say a big THANKYOU as you inspired me to start (and complete!!) a December daily album and now this new venture too.
    On another note, what corner punch do you use? I love the rounded corner look.
    MANY, MANY, MANY thanks from (grey, dull and wet) England! xxx

    • ….
      Ali said…

      The corner rounder is a little blue one from Marvy Uchida – it might not be available anymore but it’s the perfect size.

  • 6.
    cherie cawdron said…

    Love your stories. (the photos TOO!!)… AND… I REALLY appreciate your dedication to sharing your scrapbooking and your life via a blog.

    Thanks heaps.
    Cherie NZ

  • 7.
    Mrs. b said…

    I totally agree – the week-at-a-glance certainly feels like the key for me too. This is so much fun, I almost can’t believe that I have started this album – it is the first family album for us, ever, and I am so happy for this! Finally all the pictures I take can have a home outside the computer :-)
    Thanks for the inspiration!

  • 8.
    Nicole said…

    Love seeing your PL week every week. I bought the kit last year with plans to split up the parts and use them separately, and bought this year’s kit with the same idea but decided to play along after seeing your first week. I’m inspired to keep this up all year! Thanks Ali!

  • 9.
    Carrie O said…

    Love all your special touches this week. It sure did look like Anna enjoyed her birthday. I can’t believe that I am still keeping up with my Album. Maybe it’s because I’m still trying to learn how to use my camera. I wish I could get pictures like yours. I love that you said that you are looking at this as a weekly and not so much as a daily thing.

  • 10.
    Helen said…

    Am finding I’m ‘collecting’ lots of little bits of our lives and that, when I come to sort out my spread for the week, I don’t know what bits to include/exclude – there’s so much of it! Drawings, photos, funny/touching things people have said, snippets from the news, things people have sent us etc etc. How do you decide what to include and, perhaps more importantly (!), what to exclude? I know it’s obviously a very personal choice, but perhaps you can shed some ‘Ali light’ on this?! I did promise myself I’d stick to one 12×12 page protector per week with, perhaps, the additional 8.5×11 one added in here and there but, six weeks in, the album is already about a quarter full (and that wasn’t the idea!)…..

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      I just did this format for the last 10 years and just used the things I’d felt significant enough to save over time. I put them all in a large pocket in the front of the album (didn’t have the Higgins pages for small items). With some time separation, it becomes easier to throw things away, and choose which photos are truly FAVS. With three kids, paring down is helpful to me. With this in mind, I wonder if a time delay is better for me than a LIVE Project Life. Contemplating.

  • 11.
    Sarah said…

    I, too, am LOVING Project Life! I have been a fan (and follower) of yours for years and have always been inspired by your projects to capture pieces/glimpses of LIFE. Once my (back-ordered) PL kit arrived, I scurried to get caught up on it and am proud to say that I am keeping up with this week-by-week concept. I’ve now gone from a dry spell (not scrapping since before my son was born 20 months ago) to getting photos printed and inserted weekly and feeling GREAT about having something tangible to show for our lives.

  • 12.
    Cynthia said…

    Thanks so much for the ongoing inspirations….I too have been using my Project Life as a week at a glance rather than a day by day journal.

    It is so nice to get an overview of our life with extra documentation (I have been using the long journalers and the smaller 4×6 cards – thank you! I LOVE THEM as well as news stories and lists that the three of us fill out – current likes, etc.) which I am really liking because it has become so much more than the documentation of each day (I did the 365 days and while I loved it this overview style is so lovely).

    I too have printed off a TON of photos and it has been nice to decide which ones I like the best or which best represent us rather than using a photo because it is from a particular day.

    I also want to thank you for your willingness to share each week with us; it is invaluable.

  • 13.
    Elizabeth H. said…

    Hi Ali, Looks great! I am fairly new to digital SB’ing and am taking the Y&T and OLW classes to learn more, and I had a quick question. I was buying a couple elements at DD today and some of them specify 12×12, 6×8 (mainly frames, etc.). Can these be resized in PS? i.e. can I use a 12×12 frame for a 3×3 picture? I assume I would have to maintain the ratio whatever it may be, but I wasn’t sure if the overall size can be sized down?


    • ….
      Heather H said…

      Short answer: Yes. :)

  • 14.
    Celeste said…

    I just purchased several of your digitals yesterday at DD. I so appreciate the tutorials you offer so I know how to use them. Excited to dive into them in the coming weeks!

  • 15.
    Barbie said…

    I am embarking on PL for the first time this year. I’m so inspired by you, Ali, as well as all the others out there making this project their own! I am doing *about* a week per 2-page layout, but am giving myself permission to stray from that format as well. I chose to purchase the Becky Higgins 12X12 divided page protectors in 2 styles (A and B) and am mixing them in along with some 8.5X11 pages when I need that size. I am making my own journaling cards and am using my own 12X12 album. I love this!

  • 16.
    Christie said…

    Seeing your weekly overview, was as OPrah would say, “an a-ha moment”! I have switched my PL to be a weekly overview, but it just makes sense for our family. I am so exhilarating to be more creative with it. I bought a ton of your overlays and stuff at the DD sale this weekend, and this all-digi girl is going to do some hybrid scrapping with PL. I am excited! Thanks for the fabulous inspiration, yet again :)

  • 17.
    amy said…

    I love seeing your PL album each week. I’m also doing PL as more of a weekly spread than limiting myself to daily pictures since most days are the same: work, dinner, bath and bed. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • 18.
    ShellyJ said…

    i am so glad that you are loving this! … I know you did it last year too, but didn’t really update your status on your blog very often… i love that you are sharing with all of us! This is my third year doing this. This year, I have been the most excited/motivated about this project. I think it is really helping my motivation seeing others push forward with this! Excitement is contagious.

  • 19.
    Dori said…

    I absolutely adore the ‘formula’ you created for WITL and the way my WITL album flows so beautifully from beginning to end. In fact, it’s my favorite album ever! But for PL, and this is my first one, I was afraid I might get bored with the process if Ipurchased the kit and all 52 weeks looked essentially the same, so I’m creating my own PL album (American Crafts 12×12) using several different “We R Memory Keepers Ring Albums Made Easy Photo Sleeves”.

    They have so many sleeve variations to choose from, including some with spaces for large photos, which I love. I also have some 8.5 x 11, 8 x 8, and 6 x 6 page protectors from my stash at the ready so I can change things up a bit along the way or include larger memorabilia, like programs or newspaper clippings.

    I just added a bunch more of your brushes (which I absolutely LOVE btw) and your long journalers – yay quarterly sale! – so I’m going to try sewing on page protectors for the first time! :o

    Every week I start out with a 2-page spread but not necessarily a photo for each day. I like to add in bits of patterned paper and ephemera (like your Dum Dum wrapper, how cute!) and I like the fact that I’m the one choosing the paper colors to coordinate with my photos.

    I add journaling for every week but not necessarily for each day. Sometimes, per your inspiration, I add the journaling right on my photos. (I’m in a Chicago suburb and snowy backgrounds lately have become awesome spots for journaling, ha ha!) Other times, one of your sweet sentiment brushes on a photo is all I need to say.

    My enthusiasm for this project keeps growing as I choose new page protectors and patterned paper each week.

    I love your PL posts and, as usual, I get so many ideas from your beautiful pages. Thanks, Ali, for the constant inspiration! :-)

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      Just did an album from the last 10 years of stray photos using this very approach. Love it. And am continuing to work on it.

      I did miss not having the little spots for tidbits though with the Becky Higgins protectors, and by the time I added all the protectors and a few tags…I figured i may as well go on and buy a couple!

  • 20.
    Jennifer P said…

    I’ve had a hard time moving along with Project Life. This is my first year and after seeing so many great posts/blogs I decided to go for it. So I ordered my kits (late) and I’ve had a hard time catching up. I seem to be having a hard time letting go of the “a photo a day” concept. My mindset is that is what this kit is for then I see yours and I can’t figure out why I think this. I love your approach and today I will be digging through my recycle pile to get the wrappers to my children’s candy wrappers (thank you dum dum wrapper). That giant candy bar wrapper will take up one of those vacant spaces I struggle to fill. Appreciate your posts, keep them comin’!

  • 21.
    Stacy Milford said…

    Ali, I’m totally following your lead on the idea of thinking of Project Life in terms of a week…that way I don’t get stressed out about missing a day here or there! I have my kit, I have taken photos, I have collected daily type STUFF, I am just struggling to find the time to put it all together :( Could be because I have 2 sons in high school in the middle of basketball season! ha, ha! I do have a quick question: What corner rounder do you use??? I’m pretty sure you have told us already…but I just can’t find that info! Thanks for sharing your Project Life!

    • ….
      Amy Wathen said…

      See #5 reply on this post.

      February 15, 2011
      Ali said…
      The corner rounder is a little blue one from Marvy Uchida – it might not be available anymore but it’s the perfect size.

    • ….
      Amy Wathen said…

      Forgot to add: I just got the exact one from Michaels at the end of December so you should be able to find it hopefully.

  • 22.
    Michelle M said…

    I love the idea of this, and have been able to keep up (though I did fall behind for two weeks) :O) I take random shots and then pick out the ones that I think best represent our week over the weekend or when, like the moment, I can make some time. I am loving it, and Ali, thank you for the inspiration in letting us catch a glimpse as to how yours is going!!

    Also, thanks for the DD. I just finished mine yesterday (still have to do the back cover, but it is all assembled). You are right, my creativity was not as nearly as good when Christmas passed, but I am so thrilled with the book. It is huge, and I hope you/we can find some big rings for next year! So happy :o )

    Thanks for your creativity, inspiration and dedication.

  • 23.
    Sue Bradley said…

    Thank you for sharing this with us every week. I have done this project for 2 years prior to this year and seeing yours has helped me “relax into” it. I have started grabbing other pieces of the week and finding a way to get them incorporated somehow. It’s so fun to see it all come together.
    Also, I love seeing all the Hanna Andersson Pajamas in your shots! We love those too! Unfortunately my tall ten-year-old girl is soon to be too big for them. So sad! :-)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Sue – did you know they have them in adult sizes? Not sure how that translates between kids + adult, but I’ll be checking into it as Simon LOVES those PJ’s.

    • ….
      Sue Bradley said…

      Yes! I have eyed those, but the price jumps up a bunch. But they are so great, I may have to do it anyway! I wish they had an in between clothing line.

  • 24.
    lisa said…

    I too am keeping my album and cards out for everyone, and taking pictures often. I am always mindful of this project, even if I am not actively working on it. I love being able to grab a card to jot a quick note, or saving bits of stuff that I will slip into the pockets. I have a bunch of photos to print, but I know they have a home, and I love that. So far no one else has decided to add anything to the book, but they can if they want. =)

  • 25.
    HeatherC said…

    Love your PL — love that you encourage me by example to save the little things (gum wrappers) and include the big things (like report cards) I am doing a similar approach — not addting to much and useing the kit — usually work on the week all at once on the Sun or Mon of the following week — working so far! I LOVE LOVE LOVE my PL!

    • ….
      HeatherC said…

      Forgot to add that I too am not gettin hung up ton the photo a Day — mostly it happens, but if it doesn’t, oh well. It is a look at the week — some have LOTS of photos, some not as many. Also, I LOVE doing something with my current photos rather than scrapping the distant past.

  • 26.
    Nadine B. said…

    Ali, thanks so much for onging inspiration and making available awesome tools. Just perfect to adjust the system from Becky to our own ones – and at least at time of sale from DD *ha ha*.
    Love to see, how your project is going on and see stories from you and your lovely family. I’m working hard on mine also, hoping to get the first weeks done. Only the journaling is to accomplish. :-) )
    Will blog a special pic from our life with a digital title you did the next days. :-) ))

  • 27.
    Angie said…

    Love your album, Ali. I also enjoy not having the daily pressure of making sure to take a picture. Looking at this project from a weekly perspective makes it a journey for me rather than a daily “to do”.

  • 28.
    Barb C said…

    I’m loving my Project Life too! I look for something each day that I photograph – the “little” things that typically wouldn’t have a scrapbook page made for them. It’s also helped me work on my journaling skills, since I’m writing a little tidbit about each day. Photo a day hasn’t been a problem … I love to take pictures.

  • 29.
    Dee Cummins said…

    I am doing my first Project Life even though my 3 sons are grown. I so wish I had this when they were young and still at home with me. From this prospective of looking back, I greatly encourage anyone who has little ones to capture the weeks in this way.

    Mine is more a “What I see; Where I be” project that reminds me to pick up my camera at least for a few minutes each day. I am also hoping that by the end of the year, I will have learned much more about my camera and settings!

    Thanks Ali for bringing PL to my attention and for sharing your PL with all of us. I also made my first December Daily in 2010 for my granddaughter’s first Christmas. It was a wonderful experience and again, thanks Ali!

  • 30.
    Sandi said…

    I love looking at you PL every week! I’m also doing more of a weekly spread and not focusing on taking a picture every single day. so much more relaxing and enjoyable if you don’t feel pressured.

  • 31.

    I think the link to the tutorials is broken? I’d love to check them out since I’m a newbie at all this.

  • 32.
    Angela W said…

    I know what you mean about how you’re looking at it as a weekly look at life rather than worrying about taking a photo each day. The first couple of weeks I raced around taking photos of SOMETHING just to fill in the spots. Now that I’ve gotten into more of a rhythm with it, I’m just making it a look back at what happened during the week. Whether I have 7 photos using the Style A pages or a bunch others using the Style B pages or less than that, I am including business cards, 4×6 journaling boxes, etc and showing what our lives are all about. I haven’t jumped into the extra pages yet, but I think as the year progresses and important events happen, I will look at doing that. Again, love, love, LOVE this project!! Thanks for sharing all your work with us!!

  • 33.
    Jessica D. said…

    Hey Ali, I just wanted to let you know that the link to the report card day post isn’t working. I think you have an extra 2011 in the actual link.

    I love your approach on PL!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Thank you! Looks like I have some issues with my linking today :) .

  • 34.
    Myriam said…

    Hi Ali,
    I have just splurged at the Designer Digital sale! The “10 Reasons I love You” books got me hooked! However, I am new at all this and was disappointed to see that I could not open up and change the date on the “Week in the life” templates… I did not realize that it was ONLY 2010. I thought that it was something you could add as part of your journaling. How can I change that???
    THANKS!!!! i REALLY LOVE THE TEMPLATES! Maybe you can say how to just delete the “2010″ text…?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Myriam – I’ll send you an email.

  • 35.
    Tara LeClaire said…

    I’m doing it, but on a daily basis. I’m crazy. But I’m keeping up with it well, and know I’ll be thrilled to have it always.

  • 36.
    Sharon Manning said…

    I’m doing Project Life my way – and loving it. I love that I can spend 10 mins here and there on it and achieve something. I need to do an update though because I have done some more since then. :-)

  • 37.
    julie k said…

    I love to see your weekly PL updates, Ali! It spurs me on to get mine completed. Thanks for all you do!

  • 38.
    Ellen McKinley said…

    I got my first Project Life album in late January and am love, love, loving it! I am not doing the daily or the weekly, but have been going crazy pulling together profiles of each person in our family, and themes (hands, we are readers, shoes to fill,finding and updating our home). At some point I’ll probably start doing weekly layouts, but right now I’m having too much fun getting ideas that have been percolating for years into albums where they can be enjoyed. I still do some traditional scrapbooking as well, and will probably switch to 3-ring binder albums so I can mix the PL pages up with traditionally scrapped pages. Hoping to start learning the digital stuff, too! Thanks for all you inspiration.

  • 39.
    Sue TR said…

    Hey Ali and everyone…I am LOVING working on PL, I’m loosely doing it by the week and am trying mightily not to stress out if I don’t take pix for a day…I am leaving the book and cards on my writing desk in the dining room so I can sit down and jot a note or tuck a piece of paper in the book to attach later. My girls (9yo twins) are having fun writing some of the cards and taking pix for the book as well. I just printed out pix for the last 4 weeks and tucked them in the album and we’re writing and adding ephemera as we find it. I love that the girls are working on it with me and am hoping hubby will get involved once tax season is over(!)

    I am trying to break out of the stress of “keeping up” with chronological scrapbooking the way I’ve been doing it. Spent the last 2 years freaked out because I was “only” on 2006. PL is allowing me to kind of scratch the “chronological itch” and getting everyday things documented leaving me free(er) to exapnd on other themes as I see fit and have time.

    Thanks Ali for sharing your layouts and your stories, it’s fun to see the things we (all) have in common and the places where we’re different.

    Is there a flickr group to share PL like you started with DD?

  • 40.
    Sue TR said…

    PL & WITL

    Hey Ali…a question I’m sure someone else is thinking about…since you’ve been keeping up on PL, are you going to still do WITL? How do you see them differing?


    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Sue – definitely still going to do it and planning on a summer version this year (the others have been in the spring and fall). It will be it’s own separate album as it is much more detailed daily than PL.

  • 41.
    Cindy Welch said…

    I too am doing project life this year. I am loving all the journaling, which is a big step for me and I am not crazy if i do not take a pic everyday, and there are days I do not take one. instead I document something from that day. I am really loving it all. Its making me step back and look at the chaos in my life and how I need to become more balanced. Thus breath and ahhhhhh

  • 42.
    Gypsy Chaos said…

    I am astounded that I haven’t struggled often to find something to write each day! I started in September; so far there are a small handful of Sundays that didn’t have any particular tale to tell! Anticipating plenty of ‘what to say’ days, I have a list of things to capture: collections, books on shelves – things that remain constant. I’ve even taken some photos! But each day, something lingers and insists on being captured.

    I often take pictures after the fact. For example, I didn’t get a photo of my sons’ backpacks and supplies the night before school started. So I plopped the packs in front of the supply cabinet and snapped — about three weeks later!

  • 43.

    I love doing Project Life because it gives a great glimpse into the every day life not just the ‘main’ events. I still do traditional layouts but PL gives me an opportunity to scrap about things that I wouldn’t necessarily do an entire layout about. The small stuff…the great stuff!

    I just have one question – what kind of cardstock do you use? I noticed on your love journaling card the cardstock looked a bit textured (but not overly textured) if that makes sense! Would love to know what you are using!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      It’s the orange peel cardstock from Bazzill.

  • 44.
    Dawn said…

    Ali…how is your system of leaving your album out (away from your upstairs design space) working out? I am struggling with this. I love having my album out where we “live”, but things are starting to get cluttered and messy. It wouldn’t be so bad if I only used the kit items and wasn’t continually bringing “extra” stuff out.

    Thanks for the updates to your album, they are such an inspiration.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I really think that having it out is a big motivator for me to continue. I’m not adding in much additional scrapbook-stuff – when I do I bring the finished piece downstairs and put it into the album.

  • 45.
    Stephanie said…

    Ali, What fonts do you use when you do the “Long Journaler” pages? Your long journal pages look so fresh, and neat. I have tons of fonts, but find that I’m not happy with them on long journalers because some can be difficult to read, and when printed, they do not look nice. Thanks for any info.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      For journaling I usually use Garamond. The other one I use from time to time is Avenir. I like very basic, classic fonts.

  • 46.
    Linda said…

    I am participating in “Project Life” this year.

    Some of the things I have discovered are:
    - I often have friends and neighbors comment on how much our family has going on. The comment has always left me mildly bewildered. From the inside…i feel we are successfully “in the moment” and find time to celebrate the small moments that create the jigsaw of our lives. Looking at the first six weeks of “project life” I discovered what others see…. When viewed collectively as a group it is a complicated puzzle. It has made me appreciate that a family is so much more than just the sum of it’s parts.

    - I have included both calculus homework and first grade addition papers. The calculus problems of our older daughters remind me- both how far they have come and how quickly this magical time will pass for our youngest.

    - when I began the project I did not expect to include news stories. Six weeks later….the story would be incomplete without the Packers Superbowl win, Madison teachers flu out to protest budget cuts, and Auburn’s Toomer Corners trees poisoned.

    - finally, e-mail…. Exchanges with our children in college and my brother in Afghanistan.

    I love that looking at the project thus far I am left with the feeling….We are doing somethings right. Love that!

  • 47.
    Molly said…

    love the dum dum wrapper!

  • 48.
    Tracy H said…

    Hi Ali, thank you for your continued inspiration. I finally was able to order Project Life, and it will be here tomorrow… very excited!!! I’ve been planning the last 6 weeks out, so that I can simply and quickly catch up… I am hoping to continue to do this every year. Thank You!!!

  • 49.
    paula s said…


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