December Daily™ 2011 | Day Twelve

Welcome to December Daily™ 2011 | Day Twelve.

I wanted to reach out to those of you who are having any sort of frustration with this project (such as not enough time, lacking motivation, supply issues, printing issues, camera issues, family issues, work issues, guilt, pressure, etc.) and remind you that there are no rules. There are no rules that it has to be done in a certain amount of time. There are no rules that it needs to look a certain way. That you need to tell certain stories. That you're supposed to keep up and post and be merry all the time.

This project is supposed to be fun. It is supposed to be uplifting and encourage you focus on the things that are good this time of year.

It's not a race.

But there is a goal - the goal of documenting your own personal stories from December 2011.

I'll take a collective deep breath with you if you don't mind.

Okay, onward.

Here's a look at our Day Twelve:

My story today is about the kids writing letters to Santa. A personal favorite tradition because I love to see what they write/create.

6 x 4 photo on the right. 5.5 x 3.5 photo on the left.

I did a little misting (pretty sure I need to practice that technique a bit more) on the Teresa Collins Christmas Home Notes pattern paper. Hero Arts Basic Uppercase are the stamps used in the title. The arrows are from Studio Calico's Scrap Pads - wrapped around the edge and stapled with the Tiny Attacher.

I did a zig zag stitch on the seams between the pattern papers and the photo.

The "e" circle was cut from Jillibean Soup Raisins pattern paper.

Simon's letter made my heart happy. In the jouranling I talk about how much I loved that he started his letter with a thank you all on his own.

Stamping out some of the journaling always takes a bit of time but I can't think of a time I didn't like the result. Totally worth it.

I repeated the pattern paper from the first page on the second with a couple thin strips (also repeated the zig zag stitching). The big poinsettia along the bottom is from the Echo Park Seasons Greetings Chipboard set.

Here's a look at both pages in my album with the daily transparency insert:

Happy half-way point for those of you who are creating an album up to the 25th.


Click on the images to link to the products.

Holiday Gift Wrap


Paper Source is one of my personal favorite places for gift wrap supplies. A couple things I picked up this year include the Candy Cane Duct Tape, the Red/White Twill, the Merry Christmas Twill (which would be great in a December Daily album), and the Muslin Bags (great for small treats).


You’re invited to include a link to your DAY TWELVE page here. Please link directly to your post vs. your general blog link.

50 thoughts

  1. borcherding

    2011-12-13 11:45:25 -0500

    Dear Ali, I wanted to thank you for this message today. This year I am finally DOING it and keeping up with the December daily. In fact, I made each of my kids one (age 9 and 14) and they are journaling the month of December as well. I have been feeling MAJORLY depressed and anxious about the fact that our albums right now are NOT picture heavy. I could give you a zillion reasons why I haven't had the TIME to take pictures and another zillion as to why we haven't had tons of "christmasy" things lately..however, I've made sure that all of our December dailys include or not. I'm trying not to feel so stressed out about seeing all of your great pics (and everyone else's) when our books are containing hardly any pics right now but lots of words. And oh those words I treasure!! :-) Thanks for the reminder that things are just OK with how they are right now...peace and blessings!!

  2. christen

    2011-12-13 11:50:42 -0500

    i love this page! the stamping adds a lot on it (i need to remember that!) - my kids are too old to write letters to santa :( but they do make me lists...

  3. Claire

    2011-12-13 12:04:41 -0500

    Thank you Ali for your helpful and kind words and reminders. It is sometimes a struggle - there aren't enough hours in the day! But it is so worth the effort. So thank you again for your constant inspiration. And a happy Christmas to you and yours.

  4. Tere (Marie)

    2011-12-13 12:08:34 -0500

    Beautiful page.
    And I know, in my head, this is supposed to be fun, encouraging, story telling and memorable. I know this. But there is this nagging voice in my head that is constantly saying, "what's today's story? What's today's story? Is this the story? Wait, maybe this is my story (click, click of the camera)...." I know I'm too critical of myself. Also, just like last year, during the week my pictures are taken after work/school, and they all seem so dark. And Ali, I want mine to look as beautiful as yours. And that's where I get stuck. I'm working on it...thanks for your continued support as I am working to become a better story teller.

  5. Michelle

    2011-12-13 12:08:58 -0500

    Fell way the heck behind, so started doing my journaling in an email draft for ease. Have pics that need printing and will get to those. Keep telling myself "I'll get there" and it's all good. I know I want to have this finished product at the end of it all, so that keeps me going.

  6. Kim in Vacaville

    2011-12-13 12:22:35 -0500

    Love watching the process of your project. I have a question for anyone who sews in their scrapbooking - do you backstitch at the beginning and end of each line of stitches? Do you have a problem with the sewing coming undone if you don't backstitch? Hope that makes sense!!

  7. Jill

    2011-12-13 12:28:59 -0500

    Hi Ali - *thank you* for your reminders about looking at this project as a source of fun and time to play during the holidays. Life is taking me on a surprise journey right now in the midst of all things holiday, end of year and new year. Just working to go with it and be kind to myself. I'm setting aside time to work on my book tonight and slip some things into pockets in project life. Little steps can add up to make something beautiful :) Love how your book is coming together. Actually, I'm using many of your pages as templates b/c I'm having trouble coming up with my own ideas right now - but yearn to put something lovely together :) Don't want lack of ideas to stop my actual doing.

  8. Abbey

    2011-12-13 12:53:40 -0500

    I'm not quite through day 12 yet, but think this may be my favorite of the pages you've made so far. I like that there is some pattern paper with the photo on the left and that it is added in an interesting way as well as the stamp + journaling, which I have yet to try, but will. Great job!

  9. Karen H

    2011-12-13 13:12:57 -0500

    It is so inspiring to come here each day, your pages are wonderful. Thanks for sharing with us:)

  10. Michelle Whitlow

    2011-12-13 13:38:35 -0500

    I think this is my favorite of your pages so far!!

  11. Christine

    2011-12-13 14:06:29 -0500

    I love seeing your ideas and pages! My season is always so busy, and I can't print great quality at home, so I can't make detailed pages each day. But I did find a simple formula to use. I put one full-page photo on the left side that I order when I can, and I make a list on the right of things we did that day. If there are other photos to include, I can print wallets or add extra pages like you do. On days I know we will have lots of activities, I use a baseball card holder for more space. I can also staple in receipts or other bits in empty spaces. I go back later and add strips of journaling to the full page photos if I want. It is easy to make pages ahead, note the photo placement in pencil, and journal out my list each evening or even a day or two later. And one year when I am not so busy, I may try different pages.

  12. Debbie P

    2011-12-13 14:36:43 -0500

    Fantastic photo of your children!!! I love your pages for this day. Just so darn cute and inspiring!

  13. Erica Hettwer

    2011-12-13 14:51:40 -0500

    As I'm ordering my pics, I only have through day 5 completed. But, I'm not too worried about it. I've been blogging the details of the day in case I need more info when I do get my pics and I'm really, really happy with how it's turning out so far. My kids love it already and that's the most important thing for me! <3

  14. susan w

    2011-12-13 19:27:55 -0500

    That is sweet :) Love the jammies that Simon is wearing too.

  15. Barb King

    2011-12-13 19:50:58 -0500

    I've got to compliment you on that photo, I love the reflection on the table. Thanks for sharing this. I just came across your blog a few days ago, and am enjoying seeing your process. I've admired your stamp designs for a long time, and just bought a few that I plan to use on Valentine projects.

  16. Claire

    2011-12-13 20:40:34 -0500

    Hi Ali -
    It's funny you started today's post this way. I was thinking about sending you a thank you email. I am your typical mom. I suffer from Depression, too much to do & not enough time. I'm frequently guilty of dreading kid events that have to be "squeezed in." Some how, the December Daily has changed my perspective. I'm been looking forward to each event, thinking "I know I"ll get a great picture out of this!" My pages are very, very simple. Typically, your digital template, one picture & some journaling. But it's completely changed my perspective on this usually hectic season. Thank you for that. Thank you for the bottom of my heart.

  17. cinback

    2011-12-13 21:34:45 -0500

    Thank you for your reminder to keep going. I love this project and have been able to mostly keep up. This is my fourth DD album and I still look back on the others and treasure them dearly.

  18. Stephanie

    2011-12-13 23:19:35 -0500

    What kind of typewriter do you use for your journaling?

  19. Mary Sara P.

    2011-12-13 23:35:17 -0500

    Good intentions page the road, right? Thank you for this reminder to take a deep breath. I ended up writing some journaling so I wouldn't forget. My friend suggested I take a picture of my desk at work since that seems to be where I am most of the time lately. I am a bit frustrated since I don't seem to have time or good opportunities to take pictures. I am hoping to get caught up or at least get some pages done this weekend.

    You truly are an inspiration. Thank you and wishing you a wonderful night.

  20. Kim Thomas

    2011-12-14 12:28:36 -0500

    Thank you for the encouragement Ali. I think this DD is really worth the time just to get a slice of life right now. Stories are so important to remember. Thank you for the reminder to breathe. On the days I don't have time, I'm trying to at least journal, or come up with an idea of a story I want to tell. I love the photo of your kids writing their letters to Santa. You will have that precious memory forever, and like so many of us who think we'll never forget, we do. That's the problem. I think that's why it's so important to journal. Thank you Ali.

  21. Holly

    2011-12-14 17:00:19 -0500

    Oh, Ali, thank you so much for this reminder! Between working 50 hours per week, Christmas upon us, drum lessons/practice, housework, there's never enough time. I am 4 weeks behind on Project Life and have completed up to Day 10 in my DD. Due to my schedule and the fact I have to cram quite a few things into one day, I have decided to keep taking pics (which I already have a ton to include in DD) and although the pages won't be a day by day play, it will capture December. Thank you for reminding me that this is okay. You are truly an inspiration. I LOVE your pages. I LOVE your creativity. I hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday season!

  22. Anne

    2011-12-15 12:16:54 -0500

    Thank you for pointing out that we’re not supposed to keep up and post and be merry all the time. Even If I often do not feel merry (daily life with 2 kids is not always easy), I'm going on with my DD. I'm not following your templates and do not have the kit,so as you said, this is not so easy to have to create a full new page each day. But you keep me motivated for going on with my own daily december. And this is the first time, I really document what happened (not just telling the facts). Thank you for your enthusiasm !!!

  23. December Daily &#8211; Days #10 &#8211; #16 | Learn With Jenny

    2011-12-17 13:18:02 -0500

    [...] took some inspiration from Ali, and got out my letter stamps to include in my journaling. Boy, I hadn’t stamped in a while [...]

  24. tascha

    2011-12-20 15:01:04 -0500

    I am also kind of struggling this year to keep up with my december daily. First we moved into a new home at 11/12/01, since then we do not have any internet or telephone at home ( thanks to the telephone company) and then my husband, my little daughter and I got a bad virus infection. I am stucked now with day 8 but that´s okay for my. I will finish the december daily when we are 100% back on track and when I have the time to enjoy it - as you said it´s supposed to be fun. Very merry christmas wishes from Germany!!

  25. Loretta artful yogi

    2011-12-21 00:10:48 -0500

    Such a sweet story. You are raising some fabulous kids to be such polite and great individuals. Thank you, Ali.

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