Project Life 2015 Catch-Up: Weeks 47 – 49

Just stopping in to share a few weeks of my Project Life layouts from the end of 2015. I’ve got the year finished and my Blurb book ordered (40% off on sale last week!). Now I just need to start on 2016…only about 15 weeks behind! 🙂

Week 47

Week 47 BLOG

Cass took our family pictures in a coffee shop and it snowed.

Week 47 Left BLOG

Week 47 Right BLOG

Supply List: 

Project Life Project 52 core kit

One Little Bird’s Around Here journaling cards

One Little Bird’s At Week’s End journaling cards

Ali‘s “With Gratitude” set – no longer available.

Week 48

Ryan went duck hunting. I ran a Turkey Trot 5k on Thanksgiving morning. That 6″ wide page on the right is like an insert. I actually filled the rest of the 12″ page with black in the file I uploaded to Blurb, and I’ll cut it off when my book comes!

Week 48 1 BLOG

Thanksgiving, taking Ellie to see Santa, putting up our tree.

Week 48 2 BLOG

Supply List: 

Project Life Project 52 core kit

Kelly Purkey Thanksgiving freebie


Week 49

A double page spread for week 49.

Week 49 1 BLOG

I signed up for the Indianapolis Mini Marathon (13.1 miles – in 18 days from now! EEK!), we were surprised by the porch horseshoe art fairy again, Ryan worked at Purdue, and I went to the eye doctor (again!).

Week 49 1 Left BLOG

Ellie got a video message from Santa, we opened daily Christmas countdown books, the Amazon packages started coming hot and heavy.

Week 49 1 Right BLOG

And the second spread.

Week 49 2 BLOG

Ellie’s second trip to Christmas at the Zoo. She was much more interested this year. 😉

Week 49 2 Left BLOG

Mailing Christmas cards, another (!) eye doctor appointment, and a little photo session in front of our Christmas tree.

Week 49 2 Right BLOG

Supply List: 

Project Life Project 52 core kit

Check back soon to see my pages for the rest of the 2015!

Project Life 2015 Catch-Up: Weeks 43 – 46

I’m making big progress on my 2015 Project Life album. Just a few weeks left to finish up, and I have a goal to have it ordered by the end of the month! I’m working on week 50 now, so I’ll have a few more layouts to share soon.

Week 43

A doctor’s appointment, a work trip, a new checking account, and a little Halloween photo shoot.

Week 43 BLOG

Week 43 BLOG Left

Week 43 BLOG Right

Supply List: 

Project Life Project 52 Core Kit

Ali Edwards‘ Wordart (not currently available)


Week 44

The end of harvest, trick-or-treating, and the stomach flu.

Week 44 BLOG

Week 44 Left BLOG

Week 44 Right BLOG

Supply List: 

Project Life Project 52 Core Kit

Ali Edwards‘ What Today Looked Like Word art (not currently available)

Kristin Cronin Barrow’s Halloween Sweetie cards


Week 45

Daycare fun, our first Santa sighting, and a lazy weekend at home.

Week 45 BLOG

Week 45 Left BLOG

Week 45 Right BLOG

Supply List: 

Project Life Project 52 Core Kit

One Little Bird’s At Week’s End journaling cards


Week 46

Scrapbooking, a doctor’s appointment, reading, Red Cups, and a breakfast date.

Week 46 BLOG

Week 46 Left BLOG

Week 46 Right BLOG

Supply List: 

Project Life Project 52 Core Kit

One Little Bird’s Around Here journaling cards


Check back soon for week 47 – 52!

Overheard Lately #1

2016-02-07 18.28.14 (2)

I put Ellie to bed one night, then about an hour later she was awake and crying while I was asleep on the couch. Daddy rocked her for a while and told her I was asleep on the couch (“No Mommy, wake!”). I finally went in to put them both out of their misery and told her Daddy was being so good and rocking her and she needed to be nice to him:

(Pointing to the rocking chair) “No, Mommy rock!”

(Pointing to the door of her room) “Daddy get out room!”

5:24am, everyone in the house is sound asleep:

“No way Jose, Mommy. No way Jose, Mommy.”

Right back to sleep.

At daycare, Ellie asked Marianne to put on Mickey Mouse and Marianne told her she’d do it as soon as she finished what she was doing:

“May-anne, TV DAT way!”, while turning Marianne’s chin with her hands.

Ellie knocked her sippy cup off the coffee table, after she’d just knocked my cup over (with a lid on it):

“Gosh darn it! Water. Fell over. Speeled. Clean it up.”

When Ryan accidentally dropped a roll of aluminum foil on the floor and had to roll it back up:

“Oh Mommy yookie! Happened Daddy?”

Goals: January and February

I’m not a huge fan of year-long resolutions for a lot of reasons, but I love setting goals each month. The first of each month is like a new beginning, a fresh start. I posted about my January goals on Instagram, but I never shared them here. I’ve got new goals for February, but here’s how January’s goals shook out.

January’s Goals:

Bed by 10:00pm: Miserable fail for the most part. Something I will continue to shoot for all year because I have GOT to get more sleep. Getting up at 4:45 and going to bed at 11:30 is just brutal, and the fact that I’ve been doing that consistently for 9 months or so is probably why I’ve been sick for almost 4 weeks and can’t shake it.

Drink 100 ounces of water a day: I did pretty well on this one. I have my 24 oz Starbucks cold cups (that I LOVE) and I make a mark in my planner every time I finish one of my big cups (nerdy, I know, but if I don’t track it I drink hardly anything). I do well keeping up with it at work, but I’m not keeping up with my water in the evenings or on the weekends. I need to do better about that.

NO SPEND JANUARY: November and December were out of control, and not just with gifts for others. So I set a goal to make no purchases for me or the house, or anything unnecessary for Ellie in January, with a few exceptions (some major). I did really well on that goal, only purchasing those exceptions (including things for Ellie’s birthday party at the beginning of February). I added things I wanted to my wishlist board on Pinterest, and some of those things I’ve already purchased this month. But it is a habit that is continuing into February, being more mindful of what I’m buying, not buying things immediately when I see/think of them (which often means I lose interest and don’t buy them at all). I’m calling this one a win.

Do all of the TIU workouts during the TIU Challenge and try new TIU recipes: I don’t think I did EVERY workout, but I did almost all of them and I made new TIU recipes, so this one is a win too.

And now for February’s Goals:

NO FACEBOOK FEBRUARY: I had been spending entirely too long every day scrolling Instagram and Facebook. For a long time, I felt like I had to be “caught up” on both. I didn’t want to miss anything anyone posted. That’s just crazy. Add into that the fact that Facebook is now almost entirely junk, ads, memes, or re-shares of stuff that I mostly don’t care about and there’s so much of that that I barely see the photos or posts from people I actually know…it was time to get off of it. I don’t think I’ll ever give up Instagram, although I pared back the number of people I was following so I spend less time there also, and I’ve given up being “caught up” on it. I miss things people post and that’s totally fine. But it was time for Facebook to go, at least for now. I posted on January 31 that I was taking a break from it for a month, and then I moved the app into a folder on my second page of apps, and I haven’t looked at it since. The first day or two I’d catch myself thinking ‘I’ll just see if anyone has commented on anything I’ve posted’, or at bedtime thinking ‘huh, I’m caught up on Instgram, I looked at Timehop, I’ll pop into Facebook for a few minutes’. Nope. Okay, so now I have a few minutes for reading before I turn off the light. Win-win.

February Goals BLOG

Move Blog to WordPress: This is something I’ve been thinking about that’s been hanging over my head for over a year. I just had no idea what I was doing. I even procrastinated all fall when the company I had my domain registered with was sold/changed hands and I thought ‘I should just get everything switched over before all that happens’. I had months of warning, and never made it happen. I decided last month that once Ellie’s birthday party was done, this was becoming a priority. For at least a year or more, no one’s been able to get to my blog if they leave off the ‘www’ and just type in ‘’. I have no idea what I did to make it do that, but that’s another reason I wanted to get things switched over, fixed, cleaned up, etc. So last week, I just started with what I thought was the first step. It was hard and confusing and I had to read a bunch of tutorials, but it’s pretty much done. I need to do a lot of tweaking, customizing, figuring out why my pictures aren’t showing up, etc., but it’s moved.

Catch Up on Project Life: I won’t be able to get totally caught up on Project Life this month, but I want to make progress on it. I took a couple weeks off of working on it to work on stuff for Ellie’s birthday party, but now that that’s done (post coming soon), I’m back into Project Life catch-up and I’ve got two weeks done in the last week. I’m trying to get faster about choosing the pictures I want to include and moving on. I want to get that 2015 book ordered! And I’m excited to work on 2016 with new products.

So there you go. January and February’s goals. What goals are you working on? Maybe I’ll be able to share my March goals before the month is half over…

Ellie’s 2nd Birthday Video

Like last year, I made a little video with pictures and video clips for Ellie’s 2nd birthday. You guys, time is a BULLET TRAIN. These videos are a huge labor of love for me every year (mainly because I have to relearn the software every year) but I know I’ll be SO glad I made them. I already love them so much.

I know it’s a long one, but if you watch nothing else, fast forward to 14:15 or so (“nice to meet you!” – I am still LOLing at that one) and 15:24. Oh my Lordy, the girl absolutely kills me. I could watch those short clips over and over. Anyway, enjoy.

Project Life 2015 Catch-Up: Weeks 38 – 42

I’ve been chugging along, working as quickly as I can to finish up Project Life 2015. I wanted to have the pages done and the book ordered and in hands the first week of February. Yeah, not happening. But I’ll just keep chugging as fast as I can, while I continue to upload current photos and journaling so I don’t lose anything from my current memory keeping while I catch up on these past weeks. If you missed it, you can see more about how I do that here.

Week 38
Lots of exercise, LOTS of vehicle repairs (UGH), the dentist, a baby shower, and a big girl at daycare (my baby is growing up!).

2015 Project Life - Week 38 2015 Project Life - Week 38 Left 2015 Project Life - Week 38 Right
Supply List:
Project Life Project 52 kit
One Little Bird’s Cabana journaling cards
Digital Design Essentials Daily Notes cards
Ali Edwards Say Hello No. 2 Word Art

Week 39
A 19-month checkup and shots, new Thursday night TV, a bald eagle in our backyard, lots of working out, scrapbooking, farming, and a birthday party!

2015 Project Life - Week 39 2015 Project Life - Week 39 Left 2015 Project Life - Week 39 Right
Supply List:
Project Life Project 52 kit
Project Life Happy Edition
The Starbucks card is an image saved from the Starbucks emails (love them!).
The “You are my favorite” card is a freebie from Christine Herrin’s email newsletter.

Week 40 
Farming, family, scrapbooking at work, a full moon in the crib, and more farming.

Project Life 2015: Week 40 Project Life 2015: Week 40 Project Life 2015: Week 40
Supply List:
Project Life Project 52 kit
Project Life Perfectly Imperfect cards (recolored to match)
In a Creative Bubble’s Real Life cards (no longer available – but check out the awesome designs now in her shoppe!).

Week 41
Lots of farming, horseshoe art left on our porch, running, Mama-and-Ellie day at the Bridge Festival (and a lost [and found] cell phone – UGH), and Daddy cutting his first beans.

Project Life 2015 Week 41 Project Life 2015 Week 41 Project Life 2015 Week 41
Supply List:
Project Life Project 52 cards

Week 42
A new planner, a sign painting party, plenty of Ellie gems, farming, fall colors, and Bridge Festival-ing.

Project Life 2015: Week 42 Project Life 2015: Week 42 Project Life 2015: Week 42
Supply List:
Project Life Project 52 kit
Everyday Edition kit
Ali Edwards Fall Boxes from Designer Digitals (no longer available).

Staying Organized for (Digital) Project Life

As I recently shared, I am currently 16 weeks 13 weeks (progress!) behind on Project Life. I’m not really stressing about it because I have a system (do you know me? Obviously I have a system.). As promised, today I’m going to share a little peek into that system which helps me keep my photos, journaling, etc. organized so I don’t have to worry when I get behind.

I take a ridiculous number of photos every week, mostly on my iPhone. I like to get the photos off my phone once a week so they’re getting backed up and so I don’t lose track of where I am. So on Mondays I upload the previous week’s photos to Dropbox. (I just recently turned the Camera Upload feature back on in Dropbox so this part may be changing soon.) In Dropbox, I have a folder called _PHOTOS (the _ is so it shows up at the top of my list of folders alphabetically), and inside that folder I put a folder for each week.

How I upload/organize photos and journaling for Project Life.
Here’s how that looks on my phone:

How I upload/organize photos and journaling for Project Life.

Sidenote: There are two Week 52 folders because I’d already uploaded all of the photos from December 21 – 27 before I decided to include 12/28 – 12/31 in that last week of the year, so I made a second folder to keep things straight while uploading, then lumped them all into one folder on my computer called ‘Week 51 12-21 to 12-31’.

While those photos are uploading, I look back over my planner and my photos from the previous week and type up a short list of what we did that week, along with anything Ellie said or did that I want to remember, etc. Anything I might want in a Project Life layout for that week gets typed into a plain text file (so it opens easily on PC or Mac) and saved right in that same week’s folder of photos in Dropbox. Every couple of weeks I copy the photos and text file to a corresponding folder on my laptop and my desktop. On my desktop, in my Photos folder, I have a 2015 folder that has a folder for each month (01 January, 02 February, etc.), and then inside each of those folders is a folder for each week that falls into that month.

>01 January
>>Week 1 1-5 to 1-11
>>Week 2 1-12 to 1-18

My laptop is just for scrapbooking, web surfing, etc. – not for long-term storage – so I just have a Project Life folder that has a folder for each week with the week number and dates. Once I scrapbook that week, I drag that week’s folder into a “DONE” folder and I’ll eventually just delete those since the photos, layouts, etc. are stored on my desktop (and backed up from there to the cloud).

Usually on Sunday evenings, I upload any photos I took on my dSLR that week into the corresponding week’s folder on my laptop (and into the folder in Dropbox so I can easily copy them over to my desktop for long-term storage) so those are ready to go with the iPhone photos. I keep a list in Evernote of all of the weeks of of the year with the week number and the date that looks like this:

How I upload/organize photos and journaling for Project Life.
The check boxes are:

  • to make sure I’ve uploaded the pictures to Dropbox
  • to make sure I’ve put the photos on both my laptop and my desktop
  • to make sure I’ve tagged and renamed them on my desktop in Bridge (I tag with the names of the people in the photos, the location or subject of the photo, etc. then rename with Year_Month_Day_’Original Filename from camera’ so they’ll show up in chronological order no matter if they’re iPhone photos or dSLR photos.
  • to be sure I’ve scrapbooked the layout on my MacBook
  • to be sure I’ve copied the layout to my iMac for long-term storage/backup

Once I’ve done all of those things, I will delete most of the checkboxes so it just looks like this:

How I upload/organize photos and journaling for Project Life.
So, WOW. That looks really time intensive and confusing. I promise it’s not, not at all. And now, looking at 13 weeks to catch up on, I’ve got 13 folders labeled with the week number and the dates stored on my laptop. Each folder contains all of the photos and information about that week ready to go, along with any digi supplies I want to be sure to use. I can access my list in Evernote from any computer, so I can always see where I’m at and what I need to work on next. When I’m done with a layout, I save the finished Photoshop file, full-size 12” x 12” JPGs of both sides of the layout (for printing), and any files resized to share on Instagram or my blog into Dropbox so I can get the full-size files onto my desktop and the small files onto my phone to share.

Clear as mud? Any questions? Fire away!

Project Life 2015 Catch-Up: Week 37

If you’ve been following along here for a while, you know that I used to share my Project Life layouts. And…that stopped in April 2014, a few weeks before I went back to work from maternity leave. Near the end of 2014 it was becoming clear to me that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with Project Life if I tried to continue doing it in paper. And I had a baby who would soon be mobile enough to get into my supplies if I had them spread around. So I switched to digital layouts that I just had printed at Persnickety Prints and slipped into 12″ x 12″ page protectors at the back of 2014’s album.

Sidenote: I am not using the Project Life app, although I have it and it’s dang awesome (and I do use it for part of my process for keeping organized for Project Life). This control freak just needs a little more control over fonts, etc. and I can add my fun digi supplies with a lot less finagling and moving files around if I just use Photoshop on my laptop.

After doing that for a few months and liking it, I decided that I’d continue doing digi layouts in 2015, but I’d order them in a 12″ x 12″ photo book. I love photo books and how little space they take up on the shelf compared to two huge three-ring albums per year. And the look is so clean and pretty. So that’s what I’ve been doing and I was chugging along, just a few weeks behind, for most of the year. Until Week in the Life in August. I switched over to working on that project instead of Project Life and with just 30 minutes to an hour on my lunch break at work and an hour or less some evenings, progress is pretty slow on my scrapbooking projects. I finally wrapped up my Week in the Life album and started working on Project Life pages again in November, just in time to get into December Daily which took priority over Project Life too. Other than waiting for one last batch of photo prints and wrapping up some last journaling and embellishing once they come, December Daily is pretty much done now too. That last week of the year I was really itching to get started on Project Life this year with the new Project 52 2016 kit I downloaded, but I’ve got 16 weeks of 2015 to catch up on before I’ll let myself get into the new year.


But have no fear. I’m determined, I have a goal (three weeks, which I’m really not sure is possible), and I’ve got a pretty good system in place. I’ll share a little peek into that system in the next few days or so. It may just help you stay organized for your own Project Life.

So without further ado, here is the page I finished yesterday. Week 37, complete with a Labor Day breakfast date and swimming, workouts, a healthy food grocery haul (solo! With Starbucks!!), and a full day of meal prep.

Project Life Week 37
Here’s a larger view of the left side.
Project Life Week 37
And the right side.
Project Life Week 37
Check back in the next few days for a peek into my Project Life organizational system!

The 20 Books of 2015

1. The Longest Ride
This was a Nicholas Sparks book that I’d somehow missed until I saw it mentioned at the end of 2014 because of the movie coming out. I loved the book.

01 The Longest Ride

2. The Happiness of Pursuit 
I heard Chris Guillebeau interviewed on a podcast and HAD to read his book. The man visited every country in the world. Awesome, inspiring book (and a good read for the beginning of the new year!).

02 The Happiness of Pursuit

3. The Fringe Hours
I posted about this book when I read it. An awesome read for any mama, or really probably anyone that’s not been making enough time for themselves.

03 The Fringe Hours

4. Happier at Home
I love, love Gretchen Rubin. Couldn’t pass this one up. Great read.

04 Happier at Home

5. The Irresistible Blueberry Bakeshop & Cafe
This book had been on my “Books to Read” Pinterest board for a while. I loved it.

05 The Irresistible Blueberry Bakeshop & Cafe

6. The Secrets of Happy Families
Another one from my Pinterest board. I knocked several of those out this year. This one was just…okay.

06 The Secrets of Happy Families

7. Me Before You
A much talked about book online and on Instagram this year, I had to check it out. It was okay, but I HATED the ending. Blech. I’m interested to read the sequel…it’s on my list. 🙂

07 Me Before You

8. The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry
Another book from my Pinterest board. It was a light easy read. A nice change after Me Before You.

08 The Storied Life of AJ Fikry

9. The Girl on the Train
Another much talked about book. It was a page-turner for sure, but I didn’t love it.

09 The Girl on the Train

10. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
One of the most talked about books this year and I LOVED it. I want to Konmari EVERYTHING.

10 The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

11. Eleanor & Park
Another of 2015’s popular books it seemed. I loved it and didn’t want it to end. I need to read more of Rainbow Rowell’s books.

11 Eleanor & Park

12. We Are Called to Rise
Yet another popular book, at least in the blog/Instagram circle I’m in (mostly scrapbookers/creatives). This one was just ‘eh’ for me.

12 We Are Called to Rise

13. Grey
A new 50 Shades book…how could I not? Love them.

13 Grey

14. All the Light We Cannot See
A Pulitzer Prize winner on my list. I liked it and read it pretty quickly.

14 All the Light We Cannot See

15. Yes Please
Amy Poehler…I mean, you can’t go wrong.

15 Yes Please

16. Anchored
I heard about this book during an Amazon book sale. It was a tough, but very interesting look at what it’s like to have a very preemie baby and to come out on the other side. I wouldn’t recommend for a pregnant or new mama.

16 Anchored

17. Out of Line Series
I saw this one recommended by an Instagram friend and I loved it! Very easy read and it kept me up entirely too late at night.

17 Out of Line series

18. Finding Lily
I’ve followed Rachel del Grosso on Instagram for years so I had to check out her first self-published book.

18 Finding Lily

19. Captivated by You
I saw in a magazine that there was a new Crossfire book coming out in April 2016. When I went to pre-buy it for my Kindle, I saw there was a fourth book that I’d missed! This one kept me up too late at night and I flew through it.

19 Captivated by You

20. The Year of Pleasures
This book had been on my Pinterest board for years. I was itching to check out an actual physical book from the library and they had it, so on my bedside table it went. It was okay, but by the end I was just kind of ready to be done with it.

20 The Year of Pleasures

So those are the 20 books I managed to squeeze into 2015. I’ve got some awesome books stacked up on my bedside table, and several unread or barely started books in my Kindle app on my iPad. With my 10:00pm bedtime goal for 2016, I’m hoping to get back to more reading (and less scrolling)!

I’m also going to get back to blogging more as I crank through my 16 weeks (!!!) of Project Life that I’m behind on. I’ve got my photos organized and journaling for each week in the folder with them, so I’m ready to get rolling so I can get 2015’s book ordered! Check back soon!