Hello! My name is Laura Wonsik (@laura_wonsik on Instagram) and I'm excited to be here as a guest on the blog today to share with you my completed 2023 Week in the Life Album.
This is my 7th year doing Week in the Life and I looked through my very first album with my husband in the middle of my documenting week. It was interesting to notice the things that have changed, and not changed, about my approach to this project. Here are five tips for completing this project, based on my reflections in looking back at how my process has evolved.
*As always, please know that this is just the way I approach this project. My tips might not resonate with you or your style. Take what works, and leave the rest.
Use this opportunity to stash bust!
I have always found Week in the Life to be a great stash busting project. There are so many cards, embellishments and stamps that work perfectly with the themes of the week. You will see throughout my album that I use products from past story kits and stories by the month kits.
It's OK not to plan.
Some people are planners. Some people aren't. I'm in the "aren't" category. I started this week with absolutely no plan other than taking photos. Other than taking "stock photos," which I'll get to in a minute, I never plan. Personally, I want to spend all of the time I have memory keeping, not planning how to memory keep. Again, lots of people find planning helpful and that's wonderful. But it's OK if you're like me and you just want to get right to it.
Find a flow that works for you.
I am a finisher. I always finish my projects. I don't say that with a hair flip, I say it as a fact. It's just my personality. As a finisher, I like to stay on top of my projects, documenting them as I go. For me, Week in the Life is a sprint. The album is usually done a couple of days after the week ends. I choose weeks where I know I will have time each evening to pull everything together. Part of my flow is journaling on my phone or computer throughout the day. That way, when I sit down to print photos, format journaling, etc, my work is minimal.
Embrace what's real.
The opening photo in my album is me holding my daughter while she's crying because she doesn't want me to leave for work. You can see us through our bathroom mirror, covered in spots and dirt. My bathroom has hideous 1990s blue wallpaper that I hate. This is what's real for me right now, and someday I will miss it.
Take "stock" photos to fill in the gaps.
Most years I have a list of things I want to include in the album that aren't specific to a day. This could be projects I'm working on at work, photos of my office or my house, the medications I'm currently taking, etc. These photos can be taken before or after the documenting week. They are helpful to include on days where you need an extra photo or where the flow of the album has a gap.
If you're a planner who wants to use only the WITL '23 kit and finish the album next year with only professional photos taken of you in full makeup- that's fine! This is just what works for me.
Here's a recap of my 5 tips! 1. Use this opportunity to stash bust! 2. It's OK not to plan. 3. Find a flow that works for you. 4. Embrace what's real. 5. Take stock photos to fill in the gaps.
I hope you have a fun and meaningful Week in the Life experience. Remember, in 10 years when you and your loved ones look back at the album, no one will be judging how finished it is, what the design choices were or whether your bathroom mirror is covered in toothpaste spit.
All that matters is that you took time to document and celebrate your life.