Week In The Life™ 2017 | Monday Words + Photos

Thank you so much for joining me for this Week In The Life™ adventure. Whether this is your first time or your 12th, I hope you enjoy the process and learn a little something about your life along the way. 

MONDAY REFLECTIONS

A few thoughts as I went about my day and as I reflected while editing my photos: 

  1. Monday of this project is always a mix of emotions for me. Excitement (because I really do love this project), a little bit of dread due to the duration + commitment (meant in the best possible way), and patience with myself as I ease into the next seven days. 
  2. Generally I take most of my photos with my DSLR during this project. Today I reached for my phone instinctively and had to remind myself to pick up my big camera. At the end of the day when I uploaded my photos I was struck by how much I love the combination of the grainy phone photos mixed with the super crisp DSLR images. The grain in my phone photos comes most from challenging lighting situations - mainly low light. It obviously doesn't have to be either/or but it was a nice reminder to myself that photos from both can tell a unique story. 
  3. In reviewing my DSLR images I definitely felt a little out of practice because I haven't been shooting much with that camera besides work projects - people throughout the day are a whole different ball game. I'm setting an intention to slow down throughout the rest of the week in an effort to get my focusing right. 
  4. I didn't have a set story intention for today, I really just wanted to live the day and capture things as I went along. I started off some of my journaling in the morning using the phrase "I see" and ended up being able to use that for my photos throughout the day after editing them and brining them into this post. I like the bit of detachment that the words "I see" can bring to some of the stories - especially when I'm the main character in the photo - so I'm changing some of it up and referring to myself as "she." I also like how it goes along nicely with the "Lens" Story Theme this month. I can use both my photos and my words to tell what I both through the lens of my camera and what I see when I look at the resulting images. 
  5. I decided to go black and white for a lot of my images today - especially the ones that came from my phone. I did this for a couple reasons: (1) I like the photojournalistic quality of black and white images - especially ones that include a lot of visual content from the literal stuff of our life right now and (2) sometimes the colors are just so off because of the lighting challenges that they look significantly better when they are changed to black and white. I use RadLab (an add-on to Photoshop) to change my photos to black and white and make other color adjustments. If you are interested in learning more about my complete photo process - from looking through the lens + composing the shots (vision + voice) to uploading to editing to organization to printing - make sure to check out my Lens Of Joy workshop that is now available as a self-paced class. 
  6. I still love this project. I love the photos that come from the commitment to seeing my days through the lens of my camera. I didn't take a hundred or more photos (I actually didn't count this time but it didn't feel like too many) but I took enough to paint a picture of my life on this Monday in April of 2017. 

Here's a look at my Monday: 

6:20am // The alarm has gone off a few times (photo at the top of this post). Climbing/rolling out of my side of the bed (the right side), I see my bedside table holding stuff of my life: water and books and headphones and electronics and light and glasses and hair ties and cords.

After showering I walk downstairs and I see the gathering of backpacks + shoes + coats (and a random cooler that needs to be put away in the garage) + the three pets who are ready for their breakfast. 

6:53am // I see two of the five are at the table and I can hear the other three in various parts of the house going about their morning routines. I feed the two cats and one dog. Coffee next.

7am // I see two more joining the first two at the breakfast table. One, who always has his feet up on the chair, is finishing up some weekend homework. One is trying to figure out why in the world I'm taking photos at this time of the morning on a school day. One is holding out as long as possible before moving to the next things on her list. 

7:05am // I see the oldest finding his way to the table after heating up his daily breakfast sandwich. He gets dressed before he comes to the table while the others usually eat first and then get dressed. The others have moved on to their jobs that need to be done before heading to school. 

7:24am // I see kids packing their lunches/snacks. Goldfish continues to be in demand.

7:43am // I see a Mom driving two kids to their schools (Aaron drives the other three to their school). I see a boy watching the movie Aladdin on his phone (a current and former favorite) and and a girl in the backseat playing a game on her iPad on the way. Self-timer DSLR photo with camera on the dash. 

7:50am // I see a girl who had a pretty darn good morning getting a kiss on her check before she gets out of the car and walks into school by herself. I see a Mom that will drop off her son next and then by 8:15am it will be quiet again. She'll turn on NPR and head back towards home and the start of her working day.

8:46am // I see a working woman motivated by cup of coffee number two. And she's super excited because the carpet guy is here to do Simon's room = progress.

9am // I see someone who is so thankful for this space. For the light and the opportunity and the flexibility and the creativity. Self-timer DSLR photo. 

9:38am // I see two friends and working companions doing computer work. Monday mornings are for outlining the week ahead and catching up on weekend adventures and establishing a focus (this week my focus is on classes for our Story Camp event in June + designing the shop digital kit for May). 

11:15am // I see a super soft and fluffy cat who has come out of hiding for some hang out time now that the carpet guy is gone. Photo by Katie. 

12:01pm // I see leftover Costco pizza from a kid-filled weekend. I also see the local daily paper that has long been a lunch-time reading adventure. 

12:05pm // I see flowers from the yard that have been brought inside. I see an Easter basket still on the table, leftover from the festivities the day before by a child who was disappointed that there wasn't a large stash of cash in his eggs vs. the traditional chocolate. I see a cozy sweater. Self-timer DSLR photo.

Lunch was followed by a super quick nap (work-at-home occasional perk) followed by walking down the hallway back to my office. 

2:10pm // I see joy that only newly installed carpet and fresh white paint can elicit. We've been updating each room upstairs with white paint, new base trim, and new carpet now that the main construction is complete (we re-configured some space outside my office to make a bedroom for the girls). Simon's room got the new carpet today (all of his stuff is currently in the girl's old bedroom and now we will move him back into this room and re-carpet that other room next as a new room for Elliot). Photo by Katie. 

2:42pm // I see an awesome man in the backyard starting to take care of the tree that fell down a couple weeks ago. He wasn't bummed out about the opportunity to get a chain-saw.

2:43pm // I see a flowering cherry in my yard accompanied by an even larger flowering tree in my neighbors yard. This time of year goes so fast and this view is one of my most favorites all year. 

3:08pm // I see a Mom waiting to pick up her oldest child and who will then drive to pick up the other one from her after-school care program. The other three are staying with their Mom tonight. Self-timer phone photo. 

3:45pm // I see a girl who is full of stories and excitement from her day at school. She loves to read to me from her folder about things that are on the schedule at school. I love that she wants to share. 

4:51pm // I see a boy with a pretty awesome after school work ethic. He comes home and generally does his homework right away. Today he is working on geography + algebra. It has been so, so cool to watch him grow into himself even just over the past few months as he's become more comfortable with the routines of more traditional classes. He worked really hard last term to do well in his classes and seeing him be proud of himself is what we really love to celebrate. I love that he actually really likes to learn. 

4:53pm // I see a girl that came home from school and got right into her bed for some screen time. She does her homework at her after-care program and on days when the house is less full and she doesn't have other activities she can often be found just hanging out in her bedroom on the top bunk. 

5pm // I see a guy that makes me laugh a million times a day. He is such a gift. 

6pm // I see a family gathered around the kitchen island talking about dinner and evening plans while the other adult makes a quick trip to the store for a couple items for dinner. Tonight we made "Yumm" bowls which is modeled after a local restaurant that we love called Cafe Yumm. Simon made himself a quesadilla because he's not much of a fan of the beans + rice bowls. Self-timer on DSLR camera. 

6:45pm // I see a Dad picking up his son to take him to Boy Scouts. 

7:30pm // I see a woman reading her book in the bathtub and enjoying the hot water. Of course tonight was the night this book started to get really good and I've got a bunch of work to do before I can get back to it again. Photo by Anna. 

8pm // I see a woman tucking her child into the top bunk of her bed and giving her a kiss goodnight. 

Again, thank you for joining me on this storytelling adventure and for being part of this community. 

SHARE A LINK TO YOUR BLOG IN THE COMMENTS

In the past I've offered a linking widget here to collect links to people who wanted to share their Monday post of words + photos. For some reason I can't get it to work again so if you would like to share a link to your MONDAY words and photos please post in the comment section below. Please link directly to your post vs. a general blog link. Thank you!

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80 thoughts

  1. Peggydid says…
    04/18/2017

    I love this telling of your Monday!
    This is a great project. Thanks for cheering us on!

    Reply 0 Replies
  2. KProffitt says…
    04/18/2017

    LOVE your photos and words, Ali! Thank you for the reminder to pull out the big camera AND take more horizontal photos! Working on that today! Here's a link to my photos and words on my blog: http://www.one-happy-mama.com/2017/04/week-life-2017-monday-words-photos.html

    LOVING this project!

    Reply 0 Replies
  3. hprins says…
    04/18/2017

    you are just so inspiring Ali. Thank you!!

    Reply 0 Replies
  4. iscrapjohnson says…
    04/18/2017

    Thanks everyone for sharing their blogs. I love seeing all the different shots that are taken and the words that are being written.

    Reply 0 Replies
  5. theglor01 says…
    04/18/2017

    Thank you Ali.
    Here is my Monday Recap. Http//:http://perfectkindofbusy.blogspot.com

    Reply 0 Replies
  6. amyj924 says…
    04/18/2017

    So LOVE this project and seeing everyones story.

    Here's my Monday:
    http://lukejohnson710.blogspot.com/2017/04/monday-witl.html

    Reply 0 Replies
  7. Lynnek says…
    04/18/2017

    I am trying to get my words down with my photos this week so that I can move to putting the book together next week like you do. I am curious, as you are doing your blog post with the photos, do you crop them to the sizes you want them to be in your book? Do you know which size you need for each photo this week or is that something you will deal with next week. So this week you are just adding your photos as is (well, it looks like you do some basic editing as far as color, etc.) and then next week you deal with cropping?

    Reply 2 Replies
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/18/2017

      Hi! If I was really smart I would be editing/cropping them now to go into my album next week, but the reality is that all I have time for is basic editing for the web (sometimes these photos work just fine for printing + adding to my album + sometimes they need to be the higher quality versions). For me one of the main parts is just getting those words down now :). I will deal with sizing + cropping next week.

    2. Lynnek says…
      04/18/2017

      Thanks for the reply! I started trying to crop and then I was not sure because I don't know how I want to lay things out. So, that made me curious as to what you are doing.

  8. sparklingallison says…
    04/18/2017
    Reply 0 Replies
  9. stephanieadams says…
    04/18/2017

    Great photos and stories, Ali. I love the photo of Aaron and the chainsaw! And Anna... she is your little mini me! Thanks so much for this project. It always forces me to slow down and participate more in the lives of those around me. Yesterday, I actually got outside and played with the kids, just to take some photos, and I thought to myself... I miss this. I miss it to make dinner, to clean, to work. Not anymore!
    MY MONDAY-http://www.thehouseonhillbrook.com/2017/04/week-in-life-2017-mondays-photos-and.html

    Reply 2 Replies
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/18/2017

      Love your reflections.

    2. AnnaWK says…
      04/19/2017

      I love the photo with the chicken <3

  10. alaynac says…
    04/18/2017

    So great to be doing this project again! I love how often you get in the shots yourself - something I definitely need to work on. I felt like my Week in the Life started out a lot slower this time with Monday being very low on photos overall, but that's ok. I usually go overboard so maybe I'm learning to be a bit more selective.

    My Monday's Words and Photos http://www.alaynascreations.co/2017/04/17/week-in-the-life-2017-mondays-words-and-photos/

    Reply 0 Replies
  11. Carynleerhodes says…
    04/18/2017

    Thanks so much for sharing your Monday with us Ali - have loved watching your day on Instagram, totally kept me motivated and challenging me to try different shots :) Awesome!

    Reply 0 Replies
  12. jennie says…
    04/18/2017

    Chain saws always worry me. With my husband, I was certain he'd cut off an appendage. (He didn't.)

    Reply 0 Replies
  13. teri0604 says…
    04/18/2017

    http://www.prichardsix.com/2017/04/week-in-life-monday-417.html

    My link for Monday week in the life. Love looking at my life this way and documenting it.

    Reply 0 Replies
  14. JenHart says…
    04/18/2017

    Fabulous way to capture the day :-)

    Reply 0 Replies
  15. nicolemartel654 says…
    04/18/2017

    I love this post Ali... thank you for taking the time to share your day with me. :)

    Reply 0 Replies
  16. Ahna says…
    04/18/2017

    your dog....:-)

    Reply 0 Replies
  17. sa_scully says…
    04/18/2017

    I shamelessly copied Ali's use of the "I see" prompt. I struggle with the everyday sometimes and this seemed a unique way to get those stories across. https://nicholesadventures.com/2017/04/18/week-in-the-life-2017-monday-words-photos/

    Reply 0 Replies
  18. rosiechristine says…
    04/18/2017

    Oh Ali, this recap was amazing, as always!! Love following along with this project so much! Also, loved the part about how Aaron was not disappointed to have a reason to buy a chain saw...
    http://rosiechristine.com/2017-week-in-the-life-monday-417/

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AnnaWK says…
      04/19/2017

      Wow, that view from your car - stunning! And yay for Harry Potter, I'm a huge HP nerd ;)

  19. janinefitzpatrick says…
    04/18/2017

    My first attempt at a Week in the Life.
    http://shambolicliving.com/2017/04/17/week-life-monday/

    Reply 0 Replies
  20. Astinalexis says…
    04/18/2017

    Thank you for the blog post of your WITL 2017. This is my first year doing this and I'm already loving it. I can see myself doing this every year. Seeing all the things you write and pictures that you take inspires me to want to document more and write more. I can't thank you enough. So inspired by you!!

    Reply 0 Replies
  21. Diane2017 says…
    04/18/2017

    Thank you since this is my first time at this and I have looked at your prior albums, but I was still a little loss so I am holding off on keeping track of mine for next week. Just from the last 2 days you have given me so much inspiration.

    Reply 0 Replies
  22. ljr3kids says…
    04/18/2017

    I am always behind you on taking photos, I started today. I love the I see I am going to us that for tomorrow. I also really like the times you used on instagram. I think I might do that one day as well thanks ali

    Reply 0 Replies
  23. sparkle says…
    04/18/2017

    WITL is a gift that brings our day to an end with a new perspective of what our lives really look like, and informs us that it's better than we realize. Thanks Ali, Sharon

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/19/2017

      Yes, always :).

  24. mugsie says…
    04/19/2017

    I am determined to finish this year! I love this project. Even though I have yet to finish an actual tangible album I have several years of photos in the archives. That's something. So far I'm on Day 3. I chose to start on Easter Sunday because we had a big family dinner and I wanted to include all the family in the album. Today was super photo heavy, which is fine. I did choose to put all but my iPhone photos on my blog mostly for my own reference. I will choose 20 to include in my album and put the rest on a USB stick to tuck inside the album. For years down the road :)
    Here is my Day 3 Part 1: http://fourcloverdesign.blogspot.ca/2017/04/week-in-life-2017-day-3-part-1.html
    and Day 3 Part 2: http://fourcloverdesign.blogspot.ca/2017/04/week-in-life-2017-day-3-part-2.html
    I'm usually so type A and had hoped to run all my photos through lightroom but decided I'm not going to edit them other than turning some of my iPhone photos B&W which I'll probably do in PicTapGo.
    Thanks for inspiring so many to document our precious memories Ali :)

    Reply 0 Replies
  25. AnnaWK says…
    04/19/2017

    Here is my Monday in Sweden. So great doing this project and knowing documenters around the world are doing it at the same time. Makes us all connect in a way. Some of my favorite photos usually come from these sort of projects.
    https://theinkshow.wordpress.com/2017/04/17/week-in-the-life-2017-monday/#respond

    Reply 0 Replies

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