I fell in love with the black and gold me & my BIG ideas Christmas paper pad the minute I saw it. Glittery accents, gorgeous fonts, gold foil…swoon. And then I came across this kraft colored blank calendar sheet at Hobby Lobby. Done. Having never completed my keepsaking of December 2013, I finally got it done:
Moment 11: Not sure what I’ll put here, but it will go inside or on top of the bag…loving the blue/gold/wood veneer combination.
Moment 12: will likely put cards/notes from my students in the bag or possibly a photo/journal card for a separate moment…lots of flexibility within the album.
Moment 19: will likely use for the boys’ schoolwork and/or Santa Letter. You can also see the backside of the confetti pocket. I found it a lot easier to use an Exacto knife, slice along the top border, place the goodies inside, and use washi tape to close. Half the time it takes to hand stitch a pocket closed and almost the same final look.
I thought I would take some time to share my December Daily foundation pages. For the most part, beyond the placement of the numbers and pocket pages, I have no real plan set in stone. Instead of daily moments, I will focus on overall moments throughout the month: if one day produces three moments, awesome, if another produces zero, that is okay as well.
My opening pages focus on my WHY of the project:
As you will see throughout the album, I am using a mixture of pre-made journal cards, the ones that came with the Ali Edwards December Daily Kit and handwritten, list/journal type pages. For the opening WHY page, I loosely made lines with a pencil. Journaled my why, erased the pencil lines, and added embellishments. Simple but love the outcome.
I started to list all of the items/photos/moments I hope to capture in December. As I was doing so, I decided to turn the list into a filler page. A fun, colorful, alphabet page followed…
Moment 1: will focus on our tree. Ty’s drawing will serve as a reminder to take a black and white photo of our set up. I will use the drawing in the album elsewhere in the end.
Moment 2: will focus on the boys’ multiple lists and letters to Santa. I will place them in the bag…
Moment 3: undecided. Will be receipts or tags maybe? They will go in the bag with possible journaling outside…
Moment 4: love how the boys’ wrap each other’s gifts. I plan to incorporate photos of their wrap jobs here.
Moment 6: undecided, but this year’s December Daily inspired me to finally use up some of my washi tape stash…
Moments 8 and 9 will focus on the boys’ basketball. The 9 is adhered to a clear Project Life page divider. Loved the hint of green it offered to keep with the blue/green/red color scheme of the double page layout.
Moment 10: another list, this time our favorite family holiday books.
In the past, the boys and I have done Thankful Turkeys and Grateful Trees for the month of November. This year, I wanted to do something different and something with the whole family. I LOVED the me & my BIG ideas leaves the second I saw them. I also knew I wanted to something where each of us could write down a daily gratitude. We have used popsicle sticks and mason jar before with our Boredom Buster Jar, but I wanted to incorporate them into this project as well. I decided to use mini bags as the focal point, with the intention of trimming them down and transferring to my project life or making them into a gratitude mini album. One bag per person:
And a jar of popsicle sticks and Sharpie waiting for November 1. I love capturing the boys’ handwriting and look forward to having various pieces of their daily moments to keepsake…it can be one sentence, one word, one doodle. Ultimately, I am looking for one memory or gratitude a day from all of us.
Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays, even more so since I have had the boys. Seeing the magic of Halloween through their eyes inspires me each year to come up with something fun and new. This year, I was inspired the second I saw the me & my BIG ideas Haunted Mambi Sheets paper pad. I have had this black tray sitting around the garage for months waiting for such an occasion:
This was such a fun way to use up old embellishments and pieces I have had lying around the house. All the paper in the background came from the me & my BIG ideas paper pad. Little jewels helped snazzy up the owl. I have had the spider jewel for years, with no idea what to do with him…until now. The little files each house black glitter. Pop dots were used on nearly all sticker elements to add extra depth. This project was so much fun.
Ribbon + stickers = a pumpkin that will likely last us until the Christmas decor goes up. I used foam pop dot stickers under each sticker to add a little extra dimension.
A layout about growth and courage. A story that has been in the making all my life: chapters have been written and rewritten, some harder to express than others. Ultimately, the journey has led me to who I am today: happy, healthy, and strong. I have tae-bo’d, Zumba’d, bootcamp’d, run 13.1 miles, swam-biked-run, but nothing has been able to strengthen my soul like Crossfit. Initially, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. The images rendered upon a Google search were intimidating to say the least. However, the reality, as I would come to learn, has been a priceless, life changing experience. One that has surrounded me with inspiring, strong women who focus on the numbers on the bar instead of a piece of clothing. A gym full of encouragement, support, and stories. I have long been moved by the thought that each of us carries a burden, a challenge, a unique tell that is part of our story. Crossfit has been no different: one workout, a myriad of individuals, multiple scales if necessary, but everyone is essentially doing the same thing, together, as one. There are good days, and bad days, and absolute soul crushing days; however, just as in life, I have the power of choice. Giving up has been and will never be one of those choices.
Running taught me to think of the bigger picture. How to train for something months away, yet keep the finish line in sight. The triathlon took me out of my comfort zone and forced me to do something scary: run, in a tri-suit in public and swim in a seaweed filled lake. I learned that biking is not my jam. The tri-suit still gives me nightmares. My thighs were not meant to be contained in such a way. Crossfit, however, has taught me about limits, and how our true limits lie far beyond that which we think is possible. Sometimes it takes many failures for us to finally see a glimpse of what others see. That glimpse alone is enough to keep going. I am doing things I never thought possible. My shirts fit funny, my booty struggles to fit within the confines of most pants, but my heart is where it should be. It is full, and happy, and strong. And I am perfectly okay being perfectly imperfect. A true work in progress. Here’s to the beginning of a new chapter in my story: one in which happiness and self acceptance prevails.
me & my BIG ideas has joined forces with Epiphany Crafts for two weeks of crafty heaven. Their epoxy sticker maker + mambi paper and stickers = magic. Click HERE to enter a contest to win the chevron epoxy sticker maker and SO MUCH more on the Ephiphany Crafts blog.