Hi friends and welcome back! Welcome back to Project Life! This particular album project is one that I have been a part of since 2012, but over the last two years I sort of put it on the back burner, so to speak. Some of it was burnout, some of it was just life circumstances, I’m sure you can relate! But recently I have been inspired so much by the class content in our In My Pocket Collab Life Stories classroom, and it has really brought me back into the project with renewed enthusiasm! I am really excited to jump back in, and so happy to share my layout for Week 01 with you today. Have a look at my process below.
I think coming back to this project, and feeling like picking the camera back up again, feeling like life has something positive to document again, is possibly a sign of healing. The pandemic threw us for a big loop. If you’re like me and you struggle already with anxiety and depression, the pandemic put me in the basement mood-wise. I feel proud of how I coped, and I am super proud that I was still taking *some photos*, and I truly believe that when you take a break from something, you will come back to it when the time is right. We talk about this a whole lot in our community, don’t we? When to set a project aside and when to pick it back up? How long do we slog through something we aren’t excited about before we give it up altogether? How do we come back to a project that we aren’t sure about still? I have a few ideas for you, and wanted to share some of the factors that made this comeback possible for me:
- Simply taking a break from something that doesn’t bring you joy. I know, this sounds very Marie Kondo, right? But accepting that I didn’t feel excited about the project and giving myself permission to set this down, allowed me to work on things that did make me happy.
- Picking it back up again during your downtime, just to see if your feelings about it had changed. Even while I was on my Project Life hiatus, I still took a few random opportunities here and there to make a layout and see how it felt. I approached the random layouts with a really casual attitude, meaning that if I still didn’t enjoy it, I wasn’t going to get upset about it. You will just know it’s still not the time for you.
- Connecting with a community of people that inspire you, excite you, show you ways to think about it that are different than what is in your own head. This is a big one, especially for folks who tend to be introverted or who are used to doing things the same way year after year. Staying involved in Project Life requires a bit of flexibility. Not the yoga kind, but the kind where you are willing and able to change things up when you need to. Burnout is a great reason to change things up, and seeing how other scrapbookers approach their album projects can help spark that idea that works great for you too!
- Identifying what needs to change, and moving forward with the changes, even if you don’t quite have it all figured out just yet. I decided to jump back in to Project Life and that making the change to 9 x 12 might be what I needed. I made the first couple of layouts without even ordering my album just yet! And with Week 01 I already know this is exactly how I want to document this year. This was just the break – and the change – that I needed!
One of the things I really like about this album size is the layout! Three 4×6 photos and a few 3×4 photos feels very freeing, compared to the 12×12’s I was doing before. This feels like a manageable quantity of photos, and I was delighted to look back into my January photo folders and find that I have enough January photos for four weekly layouts! I began this layout with the rainbow card from Elle’s Studio and paired it with some of the snow-themed cards I’ve had in my stash. We had some snow this week, which is a major part of the stories of this week, so I was happy to pull those cards! Grey is a nice neutral that pairs with any color palette, and you can see how I pulled a lot of blue into this spread. The tile alphabet stickers especially made the blue a prominent color!
A few things I’ve repeated around the layout as well are the circle days of the week chipboard pieces. This may be a first for me! I don’t often have photos for every day of the week, and I really didn’t have them for this week either, but I had enough that it seemed to flow well with the photos, so I made sure to incorporate them. It was fun! I also used the asterisk puffy stickers (caution: they are addictive!) around the page for fun pops of color, and to repeat colors found in the rainbow card. Notice how I’ve stamped those asterisks as well for layering on different cards. The wooden bits as well are repeated several times. Those houses are especially timely in an era when we are mostly staying home, and it reinforces Zoe (our cat) and the story I am telling about her this week.
Are you returning to Project Life this year? Do you have albums from previous years that aren’t completed? I hope this post has been helpful to you! We would love to have you join us in the classroom to gather more inspiration and ideas. Check out In My Pocket Collab Life Stories! See you there!