Monday, November 5, 2012

Project Life | Week Thirty-Five through Forty-Four

I haven't been posting, but I have been working on getting caught up on Project Life. Instead of posting every week separately, I'm going to do this one mammoth post with all the pages. I'm linking up at The Mom Creative for Project Life Tuesday, so welcome if you are a Project Lifer. I hope in this block of pages you find a little inspiration for your pages.

Project Life | Week Thirty-Five
August 26-September 1

I actually put off doing these pages because I was overwhelmed by the amount of photos I had to choose from. It was a week where Eric and I had a date night, Mercy had her sixth birthday and we spent the holiday weekend at the Toutle. I could have easily had multiple inserts, but I'm trying hard not to do that. I don't want to make any week particularly large, simply because I have a ton of photos. I can always do additional layouts that aren't in Project Life, but I want Project Life to be about the two pages that summarizes our week, not gives every detail of the week. So once I got past the hurdle of narrowing down the photos I wanted to use it came together quite quickly because I really did have wonderful photos to work with.

The photos I'm in my sweet husband took. He bought a camera this past year and it has helped to get me in a few more photos. That and giving my seven year old my camera. He's actually gotten some pretty good shots too.

My favorite photo this week is the one with the sun on the tree house. It just makes it look magical, which the kids think it is.

Project Life | Week Thirty-Six
September 2-8

This week I've intentionally blurred the journaling and some faces for privacy reasons. I always find it difficult to share things that are very fresh right away. This was the week that my friend's dad passed away, but I didn't include it. I was still very much processing it all. There were calls to my friend, but with her family coming in I didn't visit until later. So I decided when laying out these pages to focus on the first few days of school for my kids. It feels very strange when the every day stuff of life continues on when someone you love is in so much grief. School. Housework. Preparing for MOPS to start up again. This week I cried a lot (but in private).

Project Life | Week Thirty-Seven
September 9-15

I really didn't think about carrying my camera around much this week. My mind was elsewhere. And even when I had it, it felt wrong to take photos. One of my lifelong friends lost her daddy and my thoughts were on the weighty things of living this life well, as we wait for the glory of the next--the now and the not yet as I have often heard it described.

The text is heavy this week, as I really wanted to record my heart this week, since I avoided it last week.

Project Life | Week Thirty-Eight
September 16-22

Busy. Second week teaching Sunday School. Eric having a Tru Meeting. Having to cancel an appointment when Gracie got sick. Helping to decorate for a baby shower. Visiting Momma Rusk. A visit from an old friend. And a 50th Wedding Anniversary Celebration. My body finished the week exhausted. And my emotions were raw from being less than my best self. But we got thru it. I've relied heavily on photos telling the stories this week, realizing that photos, even without words, can send a rush of emotions that were tangled up in the moments they were taken.

Project Life | Week Thirty-Nine
September 23-29

This week was another big one. A milestone for me, deciding to take a month of blog silence. My sweet friend who lost her daddy just weeks ago lost her mom this week too. And still life plodded along and everything felt off-kilter. I felt as if in a fog much of the week. But it was also a week of more time in the Bible, early mornings in God's Word and fatigue earlier in the evening, falling asleep while watching season premiers of some of our favorite shows. Deep sleep and odd dreams.

Project Life | Week Forty
September 30-October 6

This week I finally started sketching out my plan before I started. I've always scoffed at the idea, but when I sat down to do several weeks at once I realized that especially when working digitally there are some shortcuts that can help. I sketched where I wanted my photos, then I went back to my printed pages and found a previous layout that was most similar and opened that one. then I tweaked and played around with the stories and embellishments. Either I was merely more "in the groove" than usual, or I truly saved time with this method. Granted in the initial month or two of Project Life I wouldn't have the volume of layouts to choose from that I have now. But I kicked out three weeks in just a few hours, which for me is fast.

Project Life | Week Forty-One
October 7-13

This week Gracie had a cousin over to play. She wanted to show L a picture of what Little, the kitten looked like when she was a few weeks old. I love that she asked me to get out the pictures and I could pull out Project Life and flip right to the week Little was born and she could flip through the pages. L's mom happened to be standing there and mentioned the incredible gift I was giving my kids by doing this. Truth is I do it mostly for myself. But I know that the girls, especially Mercy, will likely really, really appreciate it some day. I am so thankful that I'm doing it digitally so that I can print copies for each of the kids when the time comes.

Project Life | Week Forty-Two
October 14-20

I knew to hit Gymboree when I was at the outlet mall this week because I am doing Project Life and have been following The Creative Mom. Thank you, Jessica! I never shop at Gymboree because I can't swallow their prices, but their clearance prices rocked! I scored on the cutest outfit I think I've ever bought Mercy. You can totally tell that I adore the orange-pink combo and stripes give me a thrill.She loves it too, which these days her strong fashion opinions include more glitz and glam than I've ever been drawn to. So to find a win like this one gave me warm fuzzies. I heart Art too.

Project Life | Week Forty-Three
October 21-27

This week the biggest milestone was Mercy's loosing her first tooth. At six, it seemed late. By first grade Daniel had already lost several. So this was a big deal!

Project Life | Week Forty-Four
October 28-November 3

Can hardly believe that I am caught up! It feels so good. Spent about an hour with the kids and my parents looking through the pages I have printed out already (through week 34). I'm due for another big printing. I simply love how easy it is to flip through the year's pictures. My mom has wanted to go through my photos and pick some out of the kids and this is so easy to flag the ones she wants me to get  printed for her. Love it. I am already starting to think about next year's project life.

The other thing that I have noticed about staying caught up is that it is so much easier to have significant journaling when it's fresh in my mind. The longer I wait to actually put together the pages, the more vague the journaling, which of course really affects the quality. I love reading what I wrote months later.



  1. I'm incredibly impressed with your pages. You should feel so good about documenting your family's life so well. I love that you were so honest and forthcoming about your emotions. What great role modeling for your kids.

    How did you do the blurring on the faces and journaling that you wanted to keep private? I can't figure out how to do that, and I sometimes want to as well.

    1. Thanks for your sweet comment.

      I use Illustrator CS3 to layout my pages. So to blur, first I save my pages in their final form (for when I print them for myself). Then I draw a shape, completely covering the area I want to blur. I generally color it either white and leave it somewhat transparent for text OR flesh colored, if it's faces. Then I apply a Gaussin Blur (under Effects) to the shape. Then I export to the JPG file at 72dpi for the blog version. I don't generally save my blurred version. I imaginee the process is very similar in Photoshop.

    2. Thank you so much for taking the time to reply, I really appreciate it. I am going to give this a try! Thanks again.

  2. Wow, that's amazing! Well done for getting caught up. That pumpkin carving is awesome! I'm sorry to read about your friend's Dad.

  3. Beautiful layouts. I really love them all and congrats for getting caught up. Love the 50th anniversary layout. Such a wonderful milestone.
    I'm sorry for your friend's loss.

  4. Beautiful pages,I love how you have done them. Im sorry for your friends loss.

  5. Wow, you have been busy! Love all of your spreads. You do such a wonderful job of telling stories and sharing different pictures :)