Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

March 1, 2011

Project Life | Week Eight

Welcome to Project Life | Week Eight.

This week is mainly about the snow day. We’ve all been under the weather to one degree or another over the last seven days so it was actually nice to have one main day of photo-taking.

One of the things I’m really loving right now is using a Sharpie for the little titles and accent words on the journal cards. There’s something about that contrast between thick and thin that I really like.

Still loving those Instax images. In fact I ordered a new toy last week that takes horizontal images twice the size of my other one. It just came yesterday and it’s huge and super fun already.

I went back and forth about how I wanted to add in the journaling from our snow day.

At first I thought I would do all of it directly on the photos before printing, but ended up deciding to do a bit of both. I used a long journaler to include all the text that was included in that post and I added some of the text directly onto the photos.

Learn more about working with long journalers in both Elements and Word here.

On the back of the long journaler I adhered two overlapping photos: one of our house in the snow and one of the wisteria covered in snow.

For the photos from the snow day post I used a Journal Strips: Long from Katie Pertiet.

They were added to each photo in Elements before printing. Here’s a closer look:

And the other side:

Those six photos are inside a We Are Memory Keepers 6-up, 12×12 page protector that I cut in half.

This last page is full of images from Thursday. Again, it’s something I love about this format. I’ve got journaling including about things that happened on Friday and Sunday but the images are all from Thursday and it all works.

AND JUST A NOTE | I’m pretty sure that I’ve already printed more photos this year than my total for 2010. There’s definitely something to be said for that.

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.
    Linda Gore said…

    Oh…I have fallen off the Project Life wagon. I’m so disappointed, but just can’t find a way to get back on. Forget about it til next year or just pick up where I can? Any suggestions?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Linda – first thing I’d do is figure out what happened that you fell off (this will help you next time around). Was it the photos, the words, putting too much pressure on yourself, etc? I think it really depends on if you feel like you care about the project. There’s nothing wrong AT ALL with simply deciding it’s just not happening right now. But, if you’re feeling like this is something you want in your life right now then I’d just make a decision to start back up right now, today.

    • ….
      nathalie said…

      Linda – I totally get it – I quit my first go-around when it became Project Too Many Sticky Notes … and then waited a year. This year I am totally enjoying myself doing this project and am so glad I didn’t force myself to do it before. That being said, I agree with Ali’s advice – and if in your heart you still want to do it this year … just jump in now and if you don’t “keep up” whatever … maybe it’s a “practice project life” :)

    • ….
      Linda Gore said…

      I am definitely wanting to do it. Life has gotten in the way with sick parents and recently moving. I try to make notes in my planner so that I can remember what’s happening at the moment. I guess I’m not too far behind, so I’m going to jump right back in. If I have a few empty weeks……well, that’s just part of life. Thanks for the input

    • ….
      Natalee said…

      Linda I didn’t do very well last year with my Project Life. I decided that the pressure to do something EVERY DAY was just too overwhelming for me, so this year I am using my Project Life kit to do a month in review. I just put in pictures whenever I feel like it and I don’t worry if I don’t take a picture every day. I am doing alot better this year! Just an idea for you!

    • ….
      Erin said…

      I would pick up where you left off- that’s what I did. I am still working on my 2010 project life! A week ago I wasn’t even ‘done’ with June 2010 and after a burst of energy and inspiration I am up to September photos. In 2009 I did a photo a day and felt overwhelmed. So in 2010 I only took photos when I felt compelled. Sometimes it was was none, one or 5. This year I have taken waaaaaaay less photos but I think what I have done is more meaningful. No kids though, it I had kids I might take a zillion pictures a day. :) Good luck.

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      I’m using the formatting ideas for a “Mom Happy Book”, mainly of duplicats of left over pics i’ve printed for the kids albums and have had nowhere to store them, but don’t want to discard. I’m working at my own pace, and only using the elements that apply to me.

      I figure since some are from film cams, just sliding them into this album rather than gluing or taping will make them easier to pull out for year book submissions and such.

      I’m doing groupings of the kids together, pages of them just with Dad, just with Mom, or just with grandparents. Dates and ages are mixed. It’s just a book for me to look through, see how much they’ve grown, and smile. No titles, no deep design, just some journaling and lots of happiness.

  • 2.
    Allison said…

    I finally caved and bought the kit – it should be here this week! Very excited. Thanks as always for the inspiration. I always love your mix of stuff. I got a few of your photo overlays from Designer Digis… trying to decide if/how to incorporate them.

  • 3.

    Ali, what gorgeous pictures of your snow day! No snow where I live here in Australia, although it feels like it should sometimes. It makes for the most sublime photos. Absolutely cannot wait to get my PL kit. Reading your blog without a kit is driving me insane!! :)

    • ….
      Sharon said…

      Hi Michelle, had to reply when i read you are from Oz, me too…I love keeping track of what Ali’s doing with her PL.i just recieved mine on Monday..and am like WOW its here..hope yours arrives soon
      Sharon :)

    • ….

      Thanks Sharon,
      I’m a waiting another shipment to be available in NZ…. It’s so frustrating seeing such a beautiful concept and not be able to jump on the bandwagon straight away! I look forward to joining you in the PL movement very shortly :)

  • 4.
    Martha Thomas said…

    Yea Ali!! You are awesome for getting your pictures off the computer….that is really a challenge!! :) I look so forward to these posts each week; they keep me motivated to continue in my Project Life album. Such an amazing product! Thank you for sharing with us….YOU ROCK!!! :)

  • 5.
    dawn said…

    Hi Ali, Your week of pictures is just like mine, full of snowy days. We had a snow day too and not much else happening this week. I actually went back and looked at my PL 2010 and there is only 4 snow type pictures between Jan and March that’s it. So this winter has been a very snowy and cold one. I love that picture of your street looking onto your house,just beautiful.

    I had a thought from your post yesterday on ideas for entertaining kids on your flight. I didn’t have time to read thru the comments but last night remembered you writing about getting the kids cameras for fun. This is a great idea and wanted to pass the idea of maybe getting Simon a journal for the trip to go along with it and have him record his own thoughts/activities/pictures he took/etc. about the trip then when back home he can make a little vacation album with the photos and his journaling in it. I did this with my kids and they love having it come from them and what they experienced on our trip. Thanks for sharing and have a good week. Hope everyone is feeling healthy this week.

  • 6.
    Sue Bradley said…

    Ali, which of the pictures are taken with your new Instax 210. I am interested in possibly getting one and I know the smaller credit card ones are from the smaller camera, but are any of these from the bigger camera? Thanks!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Sue – none of these are from the bigger camera yet. I’ll include some next week or maybe do another post this week.

  • 7.
    Tiffany R. said…

    Random question, but after you cut your page protector in half, what do you do with the remaining half that is missing the holes?

    Just wondered…

    Thanks and I love how you are documenting this year! :)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I usually just put them in the garbage – I’m sure there’s a way to reuse them (stitch back up the side, make smaller pockets, etc).

    • ….
      Kathy said…

      I found 6×12 page protectors, which solved that problem for me. They’re one huge pocket, so there’s the flexibility of using it for large journaling, or stitching smaller pockets.

    • ….
      Heather D. said…

      Kathy – where did you find the 6 x 12 sheet protectors? Those sound like my speed -no sewing!

    • ….
      Carey Bridges said…

      Tiffany, I’m glad you asked – I was wondering the same thing.

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      I’ve seen them by American Crafts refills on Amazon, at Archiver’s, and at RitzCarmera, I’m sure other places probably carry them as well. The ones at Archiver’s cost as much as a pack of the bigger ones, so I’d recommend looking online. Hope this helps.

  • 8.
    Rosa said…

    I am also loving using the Project Life kit! I had purchased one when it first came out, but to be honest, didn’t do anything with it that first year. Not until I began the digital version did I begin to use the actual paper one. It helped me by putting in all the journaling cards and monthly cards in advance throughout the entire album… for some reason it seemed like less work… all I had to do was add in photos and journaling.

  • 9.
    Kim Howard said…

    I am so inspired by your creativity and looking forward to a weekend get away with friends so I can work on this album. I’ve been doing some here and there but bad about physically print out my pictures and resizing them.

  • 10.
    slmnontec said…

    This is my third year at PL. I kept it very “organized” filling each slot with a photo (going the “right” direction) and the appropriate journaling card to match. This year (he he) I’m branching out and putting some ephemera into a separate 9 slotted page protector and am so proud of myself. Now I will be adding some lengthy journaling inbetween. I love enlargements, but after doing a few I find I want to do all photos in 8×10 so have to limit myself. I also know from experience that if you continue for the whole year this way there will be two volumes….. It just gets thicker and thicker with the “stuff” of our amazing lives.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Love reading your feedback. I’m pretty much planning to have two volumes :) .

  • 11.
    Noelle said…

    I love seeing your Project Life pictures. This is the first year I’ve done it, and I’m keeping up. I’ve designated Sunday nights for printing out my pictures, and write the journalling up on Mondays while my baby is napping. Being laid off in January gave me the time to do this, but I hope my method will allow me to keep up once I find a new job.

    I was curious though…I really want to take photos of my PL pages, and of layouts in general, and post them online. I’ve put layouts on my blog before, but the photos on them were either of my cats or myself. I’m extremely hesitant to post any photos of my child online. How do you deal with that? You post so many photos of your kids. Doesn’t that make you at all nervous? I realize I’m a bit on the paranoid side anyways. But I’ve been doing this Mom gig for only 7 months, so I’m still trying to figure out what I’m comfortable with.

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      As far as posting photos of children online…I think you have to gauge that according to your own needs/tolerance levels. I felt comfortable developing aliases I used when posting things online. I think you also have to consider the traffic flow of your blog. If it’s just crafters, you are likely more safe, for example, than if you also post other things which may draw the general public. Just some thoughts to add for consideration.

  • 12.
    JillT said…

    If you do a post on your instant cameras, please include size information. I’m not finding specs with sizes of the final prints. Thanks!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      The instax mini is about 2 1/4 inch x almost 3 1/2 inch. The larger one is 4 1/4 by almost 3 1/2 inch.

  • 13.
    lindsey said…

    Love the photos together on the back of the long journaler, they are on my wish list ready to jump into my cart!

    Each week you post I get more and more interested in project life. 2011 has only produced 12 photos or so, your comment on how in 8 weeks you took more photos than all of last year has me with an itchy finger to click ‘buy now’ over at amazon.

    When you gather bits and pieces throughout the week how do you decide what stays and goes? Do you decide immediatly when you recieve the receipt/tea bag/art or do you simmer on it? Does every photo you capture that week become a part of your project life layout? Have you found a groove of what will fit in your pockets and what you will do before you already place them in? 20 questions done, over and out.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      My goal is to make it as uncomplicated as possible…that means when I come across something I just stick it in there and leave it. Not a lot of simmering. I’ve got a very, very small stash of things that I might add in an upcoming week (if they sit there for more than two weeks I recycle them/throw them away). Less thinking and more just sticking stuff in the pockets.

      Every photo I take does not go into this album – on an average week I take quite a few more. This is just an overview of each week.

      I fold things or cut them (using the journaling cards as a template) to make them the “right” size for the pockets.

  • 14.
    Jill said…

    Hey Ali – I love my Instax mini. It made summer so much fun last year, and autumn and the holidays :) A few questions for you. Where do you buy your film? Amazon? I finished the huge box that came with my camera (I purchased from ebay) and have been buying from Amazon, but I wonder if there’s another source you’ve found? Have you been crafting with your Instax photos in other ways? I scan most of mine and print enlargements for framing and other projects. But then I’m left with all the scans. I’m trying to get creative and use them in other projects – so far I’ve come up with a few ideas. Would love to know if you’ve thought of any, too ;)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I’m just using some now in my Greece scrapbook on the road. Other than that they’ve been going in my Project Life album. I also bought 2 of the hanging wall holders from PhotoJoJo:

      I’ve just been buying film from Amazon.

      I haven’t scanned many in yet – love the idea of enlarging them…cool.

    • ….
      Jill said…

      Thanks for sharing about the wall holders – love that huge mural featured on the site! They look great – how do you attach them to the wall?

    • .
      Ali said…

      It’s got a hole with a metal grommet at the top.

  • 15.
    Karen said…

    I’m a first time Project Life user this year and I really like it, though I am still figuring out how to make it work best for me. And I’m trying to remember to shoot more landscape, than portrait (orientation). I’ll get there though, I’m sure. ANd it’s so great seeing how other people interpret & use the same materials to fit their own life and family! :>

  • 16.
    Debbie S. said…

    Love it! Your photos are cool…so white with all the snow. Love the linens in there, the fact that Simon helps Anna with her hair, the cheese grin of Anna, and that you’re in there, too. Isn’t it a great format??!!!!! Oh, the shot of Lily is awesome, too. Thanks for all the great tips…I am really wanting to try one of those long journalers.

  • 17.
    Mrs. b said…

    I am a first time Project Life user, and I just love it! It feels quite easy to keep up (so far at least) – my process is to go through the pictures I have taken during the week+weekend each weekend and decide which will be printed and go into the album. Sometimes when I have more pictures I just add additional “pages” in between.

    I love your “Sharpie-titles” – I noticed it last week and thought it was a really nice and simple way to add something “extra” to the journaling!

  • 18.
    Kathy said…

    Hi there!

    Any idea if I could buy those page protectors with the 4 small sleeves in the middle separate from the kit? They are the bomb!

  • 19.
    Erin said…


    how do you like using the fuji camera? I have been thinking of getting one.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Love it. Totally fun.

    • ….
      Melissa C. said…

      Santa brought me one for Christmas, I LOVE LOVE LOVE mine.

  • 20.
    Barb said…

    I love the idea of adding the 4 x 6 page protectors for additional photos! Thanks.

  • 21.
    Melissa Darnall said…

    MINIBOOKS FROM MY PUBLISHER IN SMALL POCKETS … the new minibooks from My Publisher (for only 2.50!) will fit perfectly in one of the small middle slots. They are limited to 20 pages (which I like so I can’t go crazy). But right now shipping is FREE. Just sharing an idea that I can’t wait to incorporate into my album. I think snapfish or shutterfly make a minbook as well, which would also fit. Happy Project Lifing to All! :)

    • ….
      Lara said…

      Really good idea, thank you! I have bookmarked their site.

  • 22.
    Alicia said…

    LOVE the photos on the back of the long journaler!

  • 23.
    Patricia said…

    I’ve enjoyed following along with your Project Life! I have one of the kits, but decided to hold off starting it until late summer when my oldest daughter starts her senior year of high school. I thought it would be an organized way to capture her life and plan on giving it to her as a gift once it’s done. Thanks for all your inspiration!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I love that idea Patricia :) .

  • 24.
    Maegen Jenne said…

    do you add embellishments to your journal cards or are they as is?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I’m leaving them as-is. Simple and easy and it’s getting done :) .

    • ….
      Maegen Jenne said…

      hmmm…i think i picked the wrong kit! i like your journaling cards better. :o ( oh well, make it work right? simplify!

  • 25.
    Melissa said…

    Ali, have I told you this week how much I love you! You are freakin’ awesome! Thanks for the joy that you bring each and every week with your PL posts! I, too, finally caved and bought the kit, but it’s still sitting under my desk at work. We are waiting on orders to see where the Army is moving us next (or if we might be staying here), so I don’t want to open it just yet if we need to get ready to pack and move. I also treated myself to the cool Instax camera, and it still hasn’t made it out of the box either. Good lord, what am I waiting for? Oh right, the Army! Anyway, thanks. Again. You simply rock!

  • 26.
    Brooke said…

    Ali just a quick question for you. With the journaling cards that you have hand written how do you know that what you want to say will take up just the right amount of space to fill the card but not go over? Do you pre-write it first?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Brooke – I don’t pre-write. I usually just start writing and then stop when I get to the end. I try to stick to the point and if I feel like it really needs more I could go on the back or add another card. Most of the time I’m just writing short little things on these cards.

  • 27.
    Deonne said…

    Hey Ali-
    Maybe you’ve said this before, but what do you do with the extras you cut off your page protectors? Do you use them in other ways? Like the other half of the 6 up 4×6 protector pockets from this layout?
    Just curious!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      So far I’ve not kept the other side (since they are cut open). I should start saving them and stitching them/using them for different sizes.

  • 28.
    Stefanie said…

    I love the photo of your son brushing your daughters hair. So sweet!

  • 29.
    Leah said…

    Love to see the different size page protectors, Ali – makes the album look like a treasure trove waiting to be discovered! I may have missed this post, but what protectors do you use for the long journalers? I’m really loving those extra spaces to write, especially with the picture on back this week. Thanks again for sharing your ideas!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Leah – I use 8.5×11 from We Are Memory Keepers. I stitch them and cut off the excess to fit the long journalers.

  • 30.
    Kaly said…

    I’m looking into getting an instant camera and wondered which one you are preferring to use lately? The mini sounds maybe a bit too small?

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