Hi friends and welcome back to my 2020 Project Life album! Today I am tackling one of possibly the most dreaded layout in my entire history of this project – documenting the beginning of pandemic lockdown for us in March of 2020. This was a challenging layout not necessarily because anything bad happened, but precisely because we didn’t know what was going to happen. So I have waited to do this page, almost two years, and I’m really happy with my decision to wait. You can see other layouts from this album project here: 2020 Project Life Album. Follow along with my process video below.
We have been so fortunate throughout this experience in that we have been safe and healthy. The pandemic has still impacted us in the way of lockdown, precautions, helping our children cope, and the isolation and anxiety. I am the type of person who likes to take her time before jumping in to document these kinds of situations, and especially situations that I’ve never been through before. I’m so happy to share with you how this has worked out. To begin with, my photos for the month of March were….ummm….few and sparse. There were about 15 photos total! So a monthly layout seemed appropriate.
Once I was ok with it being a monthly layout, then I had to decide on product choices, and this is what took me the two years to decide on! There were quite a few really amazing kits created for documenting the pandemic, and you can find a great resource that highlights them from my friend Traci Reed’s blog here: The Best Covid-19 Free Scrapbooking Printables. These are really wonderful, but I have to admit that I really wanted to create layouts that wouldn’t cause me anxiety or make me fall apart years down the road! I know many folks love a good themed layout, but it’s not my thing and I decided just to use my normal, everyday kits for this season of life.
I haven’t worked with my Studio Calico kits in a while, and so I went through looking for a soft color palette. The floral card on the right was my starting point, and I mostly pulled the mint and blush from that card. The numbered 4×6 card gave me a great idea for some journaling, and I also pulled in the other floral 4×6 card to echo the florals. As always, I began with my title card. I layered an Ali Edwards label on top to create a space for my title, and created the March word using Studio Calico mint alphas. The chipboard piece creates a dividing line and I stamped just a few sentiments above that to fill in the spots of the label.
I alternated mint and blush cards across the 3×4 section and then also layered embellishments in contrasting colors on top, So you’ll see the red chipboard on top of mint card, and mint alphas on top of blush card. There were several of those labels, which meant I could repeat those across the layout. Those labels created a great home base for journaling, an embellishment, and a word sticker!
Something that has become super important to me over the years is figuring out the role that this project plays into my life. Why am I doing this project? What do I want to hold in my hands later on down the road to remember these years by? And for 2020 particularly, what do I want to remember in particular within our family and our personal experiences? For many, I know the statistics and the news papers are an important part of documentation, and I definitely understand and appreciate those who have painstakingly included those details in their pages. For me, however, I feel like we can always research those statistics. We can always look back at the news stories but this album is our life and our perspective. What were we doing? How were we living? How were we coping?
And that is exactly what I wanted to document. Our experiences. I used the entire page, all the photos, cards and products to help me tell this story about how we dealt with the first few weeks of lockdown. There were several things: We ate giant muffins, we petted the cat, we “ate out” in the driveway where we could wave at our neighbors. My friend Pam made funny Instagram Stories. And each of these micro stories gets a photo, a label, a number, and a place in our album this year.
One thing I did specifically for the pandemic is I began to talk about masking and sanitizing and how they became such a major part of our lives. The 1-2-3 card was perfect for that. I stamped Mask Up, Wash Up, and Sanitize using grey ink and then added my journaling beside. This is a great beginning to document this years-long journey.
I hope this is inspiring for you today, especially if you are unsure about how you want to document this time in our lives. It’s never easy to tell hard stories, but it is possible to when you think a little about what you want to see in the future. If you’re looking for more ideas for everyday documentation, join us in the IMP Collab Life Stories Class!
Looking for new ways to document your family life? Are you picking up older album projects and need a little push to get started? We have just the class for you. Our first week launches January 27, but pre-ordering will guarantee your spot. Click the image below to find out how!