Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

August 29, 2013

Planning For Week In The Life 2013


Week In The Life is coming soon!

Monday, September 9th through Sunday, September 15th to be exact and you are invited to document your week right along with me.

This will be year 7 of this project for me.

I do Week In The Life for a variety of reasons. One of the main reasons is to answer the question: what in the heck do I do really do in my daily life (and maybe even what in the heck am I doing with my life)? How am I spending these precious hours here on earth?

Here’s something I know to be true: every single time I do this project I am inspired to make changes to the way in which I’m living my life. I do it not only for the awesome documentation opportunity and the supportive community, but I also do it as a way to examine the life I’m living right now.

There’s something very powerful in reflecting the life we are living back to ourselves via photos and words.


Before I get into more details I want to say a big, huge thanks to our title sponsors this year who will be appearing at the end of each of my posts during the week of documentation:

We’ll also have giveaways all week long. Big thanks to the following companies who are sponsoring giveaways this year:

There are a couple spaces left if your company is interested in partnering as a sponsor. Send Katie an email for more information


When I first started this project back in 2006 (originally it was a class I taught at Creating Keepsakes University) I used a 12 x 12 album with divided pockets (originally a Scrapworks product if I remember right). Each spread represented one day and each pocket documented a particular topic: food, gratitude, work, observations and then stuff (collect bits of paper pieces from your life to add to collages that were then slipped into the pockets).

Here’s a look at that first Week In The Life album:


The idea was to document all these specific topics (with photos and words using Daily Sheets) over the course of seven days and then come together in class to create the album.

We worked in what I call “production-style” where we created all the cards for food, then all the cards for work and so on.


It was a lot of work but it was such an awesome project.


And man is it fun to look back on today.

Over the last few years I’ve changed things up and simplified things – especially as digital and hybrid (printing out digital elements to use in paper scrapbooking) have gained momentum.


2007 | Created for Creating Keepsakes University event. This one also had two inserts that included gratitude images + a collage of “stuff” on the opposite side.


2008 | See completed album here.




2010 | See completed album here.


2011 | View completed album here.



2012 | View completed album here.


For the last few years I’ve been using a Vanilla 8.5 inch x 11 inch 3-ring album from We R Memory Keepers. Inside you’ll usually find 9-pocket divided page protectors sandwiched in-between regular sized page protectors. For this project you also need an extra set of 8.5×11 page protectors to have enough pages for a spread each day of the week.


I’ll be sticking with this same basic plan this year and got my album and page protectors in the mail from this week.


I’ll also be using the same set of Daily Pages to document my words for the seven days. You can download those for free here: Daily Pages.

For the last few years I have designed layered templates to use as the foundation of my album (these are available as either 8.5×11 or 12×12). The new set can be seen below and is available at Designer Digitals now. 


One thing to note is that I did include both “my” and “our” life options in these layered template sets (simply turn off either layer in Photoshop/Elements to remove the one you don’t want). I’ll have more details on just how to do that with a video tutorial coming soon.

These layered template sets include 15 layered templates: one title page, seven daily intro pages, and seven photo collage pages for mixing & matching. Here’s a peek at the additional preview images (all are included with the one package):

AEdwards_WeekInTheLifeAlbum8x11vol5_PREV2 AEdwards_WeekInTheLifeAlbum8x11vol5_PREV3

In addition to these digital pages I usually include more traditional products inside the 9-pocket divided page protectors. I don’t have a specific plan for exactly how I’m going to use those just yet, but I’m pretty sure it will include some journaling, some see-through elements, and some other embellishments. I’ll share more about that as I create my own plan.


I know many of you out there are loving the process of Project Life® and might have an interest in simply playing along in that album during this same week. I’ve designed two sets of 4×6 cards – one that includes “my life” and one that includes “our life.” These sets include PSD (for editing), PNG, and a printable PDF for easy printing.

These will be available at Designer Digitals on Friday:


I’m starting to get really excited about this project once again. These albums are some of my favorites because they really do detail our daily lives during each of the specific weeks. Such an amazing thing to look back on over the years.

For even more information and specific links to all my previous posts go here: Week In The Life.

I hope you’ll consider joining me!


  • 1.
    dawn said…

    I can’t wait to join again this year!! So cool seeing all your past albums here. The new things you have here look GREAT!!

    Thanks so for inspiring and sharing this wonderful idea with us. Looking forward to seeing what everyone does.

  • 2.

    I have to say that originally, I was not going to do WITL this year, I’ve done it in ’11 and ’12 and it was awesome, but it’s a lot. Feeling overwhelmed…but then when you talked about evaluating how you spend your time and using it as a tool to make changes, you got me. I’m in, and I’m going to make it simple simple simple and not stress about it.

    And then make those changes!
    Thanks Ali!

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      I’m right there with you about keeping it simple! I got so overwhelmed with my grand plans last year that I didn’t finish. Taking a “keep it simple” pledge this year. :)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Keep it simple – it’s totally possible!

  • 3.
    Alida said…

    So awesome! I’ve seen most of those albums at the time you were doing them. Looking forward to another great round of WITL.

  • 4.
    Terri Torrez said…

    Question – the 2010 template used a lot of pattern paper. In 2011 and 2012 you used transparencies. The picture you showed of 2013 looks like its just on white. Are you planning to use pattern paper/transparencies with the templates or just keep them simple.

    I used the 2010 template several times but I’m thinking about something new.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      For the templates I’ll likely be keeping them white, but for an insert in-between I’ll likely be including some transparencies and/or pattern paper and embellishments. Just haven’t decided on those yet.

  • 5.
    Shannon said…

    Thanks so much for making a PL option! You consistently go above and beyond when it comes to thinking about what different people need.

  • 6.
    Renee said…

    Hi, are the old templates still available for purchase?

  • 7.
    Susie Leggett said…

    Hey Ali, love this Week in the Life project that you do. It is an amazing look at everyday life, and each year that I do it, I am overwhelmed with gratitude for all that we have to be thankful for in our lives. Capturing the details always makes me stop and notice all the little blessings that normally get lost in the hustle.

    I love this year’s WITL templates. Will you be offering those “stamped” stack captions, “Hello Today,” “This is real life” etc. that are part of your templates as a digital design? Would love to print those on vellum or clear printable overlay and use in the 9 pocket protectors. They’d make great see through elements.

    Thanks for sharing your life and offering so much inspiration.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Yes – they are available in a separate package as well.

  • 8.
    Sue FitzGerald said…

    It all looks gorgeous. Wish the templates came in A4 for those of us OS, they look great and such a time saver.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Sue – I checked into the A4 size (looks like it’s 8.3 x 11.7). With the design I did this year (lots of white on the top and/or bottom on the photo collages) you could totally use the 8.5×11 templates and just adjust the size a bit to make them work for your paper size.

    • ….
      Lisa B said…

      I also use A4 but like Ali said this years is easy to resize to A4 because of the space.
      In 2011 I used Ali’s template, resized the width to the same as A4 then added a border strip to the top and bottom to account for the difference in length. I was quite happy with how it turned out and I ended up doing each day a sightly different colour.
      You can read it here:
      if you are interested just to see how I worked around the letter/ a4 issue.

    • .
      Ali said…

      Thanks for that feedback Lisa!

  • 9.
    Susan Bowers said…

    OH MY! I’m over-the-top excited. I’ll be visiting Designer Digitals this Friday for sure!!!! I’ve been planning to participate but just never creative enough to begin from scratch – thanks so much for your creative genius who is doing it for me. I just love your work – so inspiring.

  • 10.
    iHanna said…


    I’ve marked my calendar already, and will be brining my camera with me the entire week. Looking forward to see what this year looks like vs. last year when I did this too.

  • 11.
    Maggie said…

    I can’t wait, and am pledging to keep it simple enough so that it will get done (unlike last year!). Thank you for sharing this project with us!!!

    Will there be a WITL board over at BPC this year?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Good question! Let me check on that.

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      Thanks Ali! I love the BPC community & got so many ideas from the forum last year.

  • 12.
    shelly k said…

    Goodness! Can’t believe I’ve been following you for so long! :)
    Time flys when you’re having fun!

  • 13.
    Keianna said…

    One of my fave projects for the past four years. I didn’t see them, are you planning to make journal cards for the baseball card slots this year?

    • ….
      Ali said…

      I’m thinking about it – I might also just use what I have here and cut things down to fit.

  • 14.
    Mye said…

    I’m joining this year! A little different though as i planned to do a smaller album and I won’t be using pockets but I’ll play along with you for sure. The kits I am using are already in transit :)

  • 15.
    Jenny B. said…

    Ooh! I LOVE the new template designs!! So fresh and fun! Looks like you could pop a 3×4 PL card in some of those spots, and of course, Instagrams in the squares. Perfect! Thank you again for continuing with this project. This will be my fourth year to do WITL with you! :)

  • 16.
    stacyk said…

    I did it for the first time last year, and I absolutely love going back and looking at it. Such a treasure. I look forward to this year’s WIL.

    THanks Ali!

  • 17.
    amberca said…

    just printed out my observation sheets for WITL. I haven’t done it in a few years, but I am feeling really excited about it this year….can’t wait!

  • 18.
    Jeanne M said…

    Looking forward to joining in again. Always a great experience!

  • 19.
    Jessica said…

    I plan on playing along!

  • 20.
    kris said…

    Oh I keep saying that each time you do the week in the life, that I’m going to play along, and I think that this year I will play along. I have Mon-Wed off, and only work Thurday, Friday and Sunday. But we have a horse play day that is on Saturday, so it’ll be cool to have that in there too.

  • 21.
    Fanny said…

    I love the design this year! I can’t wait to join you!

  • 22.
    pam said…

    I’ve not done this although I’ve enjoyed seeing what you have done. This year I am planning on joining in. At a point in my life where I’m doing a lot of introspection about how I want to live the life I have left, and this will be a very useful tool in addition to a great glimpse into my days for all to look back on. Thank you for all the cool things you do to inspire others.

  • 23.
    Heather said…

    I’m curious, what happened in 2009? Did you not do WITL, or is it just not up on your blog?

    Thanks for all the work you put into this to make it so easy for all of us to play along… you’re the best! :)

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Anna was born that year and I just had too much on my plate.

  • 24.
    Keathe S said…

    I was in one of those album classes the first year at CKU, and it is one of my favorite albums to date!

    Thanks for the great concept, Ali!

  • 25.
    Patti L said…

    I like seeing your old layouts. It’s cool to see how things have grown and morphed into other ideas. While I am not really up for week in the life myself, I will enjoy seeing the ideas I can incorporate into project life.

  • 26.
    Mary R said…

    from the first time I did this with you at CKU (Cicago and Detroit) I have been hooked. My favorite “everday life” project.

    Can’t wait!!

    • ….
      Mary R said…


  • 27.
    J3SS1C4 said…

    I’m excited about this as well! It’s my goal for this weekend to have last years printed and get it in the album once and for all! I’m hoping to get it done before starting this years album. And I’m loving your templates this year :)

  • 28.
    Amanda S. said…

    I’m so excited to participate again. Hoping to incorporate into my PL album this time around and I love the PL template I see above!! :D

  • 29.
    Robyn :) said…

    I am going to participate, but haven’t decided yet how I am going to do it. I want to put it in my PL, but it might take up too much room. I will probably do 8×11 pages and move them to their own album if need be

  • 30.
    ARC said…

    I’m in, for the first time ever. It reminds me of the 168 hours time logging exercise that Laura Vanderkam suggests doing in her book, only this is visual. Very cool.

    • ….
      Maggie said…

      I had to look up the 168 hrs exercise after you mentioned it. Thanks for sharing!

  • 31.
    Kathy said…

    I am so excited….I so look forward to this project and it is a lot of work to be photographing everything in your life for 7 days but I know how much it’s worth documenting it. In saying that it’s up to each person as to how much or how little time is spent doing this.

    I just sent in my WITL to my 7 year old daughters teacher last week to have a look at our project and she thought it was wonderful. I always include a picture of my kids with their teacher in WITL because the last day of school at the end of the year when most mothers decide to take a photo of their child with the teacher it’s just so busy and crazy so I take my photo of my child with their teacher during WITL when I have the teacher to myself for a few minutes to take a really nice shot.

    Here’s a link to my 2012 WITL book.

    And some pages from my 2010 book below.

    I just love looking back on these precious moments.

    Regards, Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia

  • 32.
    Missus Wookie said…

    This is one of my favourite projects – was just talking to someone and pulling out my 2006 albums – did Cathy’s “Did you Know” over at BPC and your Week in the Life when it was available after the CKC. Amazing to see how life has changed in those years (as has my style and the stuff/techniques we use too!)

  • 33.
    Debra Lois said…

    Ali, thanks so much for including products that work for single people, i.e. This is MY Life. It’s frustrating sometimes that most scrapbooking products are about “us” and “our.” I bought a bunch of your new products for my week in the life and will be documenting right along with you next week!

  • 34.
    hannahk said…

    oh my gosh ~ thank you for posting all the previous editions ~ it brought back memories of what I did for each year. I love this project so much ~ a wonderful snapshot of life, and so cute to see your kids growing up.
    Loving the new title too ~ ‘This is our life’ resonates well this year. excited to be getting going soon.

  • 35.
    wendy said…

    I got so excited when I read this post yesterday that last night I finally sat down and finished my shutterfly book from last year’s WITL project. I didn’t have that much more to do – upload a couple of pictures and finish some journaling. It’s neat to see how life is already different for us. Maybe today I’ll get the last two pages finished from the year before that done. Queen of unfinished projects here ;)

  • 36.
    Maggie said…

    I just downloaded the templates and wanted to thank you, once again, for your incredible attention to detail. I SO appreciate you mentioning the font right within the layer!

    I also got an older set of your WITL journaling cards (, and loved that you had that font listed in the layer, too.

    Seriously, thank you for making it so easy for us to record our memories beautifully.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Awesome! Thanks for that great feedback!

  • 37.
    Melinda said…

    Hi Ali – I took your WITL class at CKU way back when. LOVED that class! While it’s been a while since I’ve actually scrapbooked, your post has inspired me to do this again. My question is this: I think I want to go digital, as traditional scrapbooking is just too much in my life with work & kids. Would it be difficult to try the digital templates if I have limited experience doing digital scrapbooking. I have Elements 8. Also, would I print out pages individually or can I make a photo book out of it? Also, are there galleries to check out past years’ completed digital pages? Sorry to bombard you with all these questions, I’m just eager to do this project!

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Melinda – I will be doing a video tutorial (as I have in past years that you can check out in the archives that will walk you through the steps of using these templates. The steps are pretty much the same as I’ve done in years past. I also have a whole free series on Getting Started With Digital Scrapbooking that you might want to check out – includes a free tutorial and layered template to try it out: There’s definitely a learning curve but it’s a set of skills you can use again and again for memory keeping. And yes, you can print these pages individually or make a book out of them – people do a variety of different things (I will be printing the pages individually). I don’t have a specific gallery set up but you could check out the gallery at a site like and search for Week In The Life to see what comes up.

  • 38.
    Julia said…

    I love your handwriting, but I love mine, too. I would like to use these templates but have NO IDEA how to add my own handwriting digitally for the day names. I’m thinking I could just delete that layer and hand write directly on the print , but I would greatly appreciate a tutorial on how to do the handwriting digitally. I hope this is not too far out of a request – I realize that your handwriting is part of the AE brand and your style.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Julia – I used a pen & tablet by Wacom for those words (they are great for adding handwriting). You can also write and then scan in your words with a scanner and trace them with Illustrator (the program I use) before adding them to Photoshop. There are likely other ways to do that – such as just scanning in and then removing the white background in Photoshop to be able to use it on it’s own layer.

  • 39.
    Erin Taylor said…

    Hey Ali,
    I love the 8.5×11 digital templates, but I’m not sure where to have a book printed. Shutterfly offers 8×8, 10×10, 12×12, and 11×8, but not a vertical 8.5×11. Any suggestions?

    • ….
      Ali said…


  • 40.
    Marcia said…

    I’ve never done Week in the Life. I’d love to try. Don’t know where to start or what to do.

  • 41.
    Jessica S said…

    Ive been using those We R Memory Keepers albums for a couple of years and just noticed that mine are rusting! The rings and the little corner protectors.

  • 42.
    jenn said…

    I love seeing your previous albums. I just downloaded the 8.5×11 designer digital templates. I did a hybrid a couple of years ago and I’m itching to try something different this year. Not sure how I’m gonna put it all together, but I loved those templates, and I especially loved that you included the “my” life option… nice for the “single”/”kid-free” people ;)

  • 43.
    Nicole said…

    This is my first time doing WITL. Will you be using all of your new WITL releases (i.e., Handdrawn Days, WITL Circles, WITL Labels & What Life Looks Like)? I would like to follow exactly what you will be doing since this is my first time and I want to learn how to do the digital overlays without having to worry about deciding on the creativity part.

    • ….
      Ali said…

      Hi Nicole – I’m not sure yet. I know I will be using the 8.5×11 templates. The other products were mainly created for people who might want to use bits and pieces vs. the entire template.

  • 44.
    Dawn said…

    I wasn’t going to do this. Not even sure why I started reading through all of this. But Ali has once again managed to get me all caught up in her excitement. I’m on board – ready to go! Bring it, baby!! LOL

  • 45.

    I am very excited to join this project! It is you g to be my first time this year :) thank you for the tips :)

  • 46.
    Rhonda O said…

    hi Ali – did provide any discount codes/free shipping/etc to use if we want the same album and page protectors as you got to use for our WITL?

  • 47.
    Amy said…

    I emailed my son’s Kindergarten teacher to see if I could come into his class to snap a few pics of him one day. I wasn’t sure since it’s still so early in the school year. She said “no” but offered to bring in her DSLR and snap photos of him in action for me. SUPER SWEET! Just wanted to share the idea with other moms who might want to capture their kids during the school day. Ask your teacher!

  • 48.
    Jaun keter said…

    You have share really useful information’s.My kids start going to school from this week. Last month I have purchased name labels from for my kids.Name labels are the best option for kid’s school items, since the tendency of kids to misplace things in schools increases manifold. The labels are durable, waterproof and have diverse designs and colors.

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