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June 2020

Family Yearbook : May Pages

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2020 is moving right along, although probably in not a way that we planned. Am I right? I mention in my journaling on the Monthly Journal Block for this month that as the days go by, they feel like Groundhog's Day. Not much changes from one day to the next during the week. Sometimes I find it a little difficult to take photos of the same old, same old. Especially since I don't have littles in the house. But this month I used several pics that my sister in Ohio had texted to me and some from my niece. I even got in some of the photos that my husband and son took of me while I wasn't looking! I love that they know I would appreciate them taking a few of me helping build the garden tower and filling it with herbs. 

There are four double-page spreads documenting May's photos and stories. The Monthly Journal Block is one I created and is available in my shop. Digital elements are from Ali Edwards. Apps used to create these pages include:

Project Life (the 3.0 update is AMAZING)

Adobe Spark Post

Affinity Photo App

Let's take a look:

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One of the things I LOVE about these pages this month are the filler cards I created using digital word art and stickers from my growing stash of Ali's products. The "These are my people" filler card was created in Affinity. How simple is that? And do any of you use a foam roller? It's my hip's best friend! Oh, and check out that red hair on my nephew Jonas!!! It's. so. red. My sister kept saying he's been wanting red hair for a while. Well he got it! I remember Ryley going through a colored hair phase at the same age. Except he had a bunch of colored gels I got from my hair stylist in Virginia. It would wash out daily. My boys hair wasn't something I got hung up on a lot when they were younger. I'd let them express their individuality. There were other battles to be won at that age. Hair wasn't one of them. BUT NOW? As seen in the photo right next to Jonas, that long hair drives me crazy!!!! Hahaha!!!

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Just look at that tower of happiness!!! This is my favorite story of the month. I've wanted a garden tower for several years. We first saw one while visiting The Food and Wine Festival at Epcot. I took photos of it and would mention to Chris how much I wanted one. It took awhile (like I said, several years) for him to make it, but it was so worth it! We found some plans online. The instructions weren't the best, but he got it done (I helped a little bit otherwise to help keep his sanity). Filler card was done in Affinity!

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Are you digging the filler cards? I really like how they turned out. Again they are so simple. By layering various digital word art and digital stamps, and playing around with the opacity, you can create something really fun! The food photos are ones I took for a friend who is in the process of opening a permanent pizza food truck. It's going to be amazing!!!! They hope to open by July 1st. Check out those sprouts in my garden!!! Those are Mesclun (mixed greens) and they popped up in a matter of days of me planting the seeds!

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I think this is my favorite spread this month. The "yes to" word art was actually part of word art that read "yes to this." In Affinity, I used the eraser tool and got rid of "this" so I can add my own text. 

Any questions or comments? Leave them down below! 

Wait...one more thing...I wanted to share a few pages from my customers who purchased a few of the Journal Block Party Kits!!! These kits include large, decorated journal cards that are meant to fit in the oversized placeholders in the Big Shot templates. I have 8 kits in the shop that are geared toward summertime holidays and activities! Check them out by clicking the link to the shop in the link at the top of the page!

This first one is from Jen Morrison. She used cards from the Lake Life kit. She actually gave me the idea for this themed kit! Thank you Jen!

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This second one is from Meagan Johnson (The Practical Scrapper). She used the Amusement Park kit. Notice how she used the journal block for both a photo and journaling. She said she did this in the Over app!

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Thank you both so much for sharing your pages! 

As a reminder, whenever you use my kits on your pages, be sure to tag me on my Instagram account @pixelstopages or @ mention me on Facebook!!!! I want to see your creations!!!

 


2020 Family Yearbook : April Pages

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Finally got around to documenting my April photos and stories! Let's just dive right in, shall we? And feel free to click on any of the spread for a larger view!

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I am continuing to use the 6x12 Monthly Journal Blocks I created back in January. You can purchase these Journal Blocks in my shop. I love being able to tell several stories in one space and save the rest of the placeholders in the templates for photos. This month, however, I seemed to have a lot to say! As large as these blocks are, I still ran out of room! You will see several 3x4 and 4x6 journal cards on my pages this month. I also did a lot of writing on the white space in the "Polaroid-like" photos I created in Adobe Spark Post. All of the journal cards and digital embellishments are by Ali Edwards. 

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It was not intentional, but the left side of the page turned out to be a few stories where the subject matter revolved around the words "make" or "made." And I had several digital goodies from Ali that would help to emphasize that. I just love her products. They really can make you look at your photos in a different way and dig deeper to tell the stories behind them. She has a digital product for everything you can think of! The "play" filler card on the right is originally a light green color. It was in one of the 2019 Story Kits I subscribed to through Ali's shop. When I placed it in my template I used the PicTapGo editor to change the color to black. I can't remember what filter I used, but changing the color just made the spread look a little more cohesive.

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The "Finding Beauty" filler card is one I created in Affinity Photo on my iPad Pro. The word art is from Ali's 2020 Week In The Life digitals. The flower stamps behind the words are from her as well, but I am not sure what collection. I've had them for quiet some time. I added the word phrase sticker to the 4x6 journal card on the right in Affinity and then dropped it into the template. That diagonal journal card is a good "base" for adding a variety of digital embellishments to! This is also my favorite story of this month. 

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The layout above is a style that I would not normally have in my Project Life albums. Even though I am creating my pages on a digital device, this is a style that I would consider a "true" digital scrapbook page. There are no "pockets," no Project Life template was used, and all of the elements can be moved around freely in Affinity Photo (where I created it) or in Photoshop. I made this page back in April and posted it on a few of my social media platforms. I don't think I shared it here on the blog. My youngest was diagnosed with Covid 19 and the majority of the text on this spread are her words from her Facebook post. This virus is so unpredictable and symptoms seem to vary from person to person. It was only about 3 weeks ago that she tested negative for it. HOWEVER, she has several lasting effects from it that the doctors are still trying to figure out. And after two months, she is STILL running a fever and has pain in her chest when breathing. Her energy levels seem to be returning back to normal. The health department (Ohio) will not release her to go back to work until she is given a different diagnosis. It's just a maddening situation. The digital word art in the spread is by Ali. The virus graphic I found as a freebie on the interwebs somewhere.

That's it for April. Now I have to get to work on May! Oh! But one more thing before I close out this post! Today (June 19, 2020) is the last day you can purchase the Journal Block Party Summer Collection as a bundle for $30. At 12:01am tomorrow, the bundle goes away, but you can still purchase the kits individually for $5.99. When you purchase the bundle, it's like getting one of the kits for practically free! Happy shopping! Click here go to the shop!

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Freebie : Bad Day Cards

So over the weekend I was reorganizing some files on my external hard drives and came across a bunch of kits I created when I had my other blog/shop September Blue. I thought these 3x4 Bad Day Filler Cards would be a fun freebie for a Monday! I hope you are not having a bad start to your week, but if you are, these may put a little smile on your face. They may not be for everyone, but I'm sure many can find a card they can relate to. For the free download, click on the photo below:

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Hope you have fun with these!

On another note...

...I just wanted to give a big hug to everyone for such all of you support on the release of my Journal Block Party kits! They are a HUGE hit! I have already started making lists of what future collections will hold for Fall, Winter, and Spring of 2021, thanks to a lot of suggestions from you! I will have a few kits released in between seasons, so keep watching for more information on those! Click the link to the shop in the nav bar at the top to view and/or purchase! Save a few buck and purchase all of the kits as a bundle (that deal goes away this Saturday morning at 12:01am EST!)

Have a great Monday!

 

 


New Product : Journal Block Parties!

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Journal Block Party summer collections are now available in the shop!!! Whoop! Whoop! So, so excited about these! Not sure what they are? Let me explain:

Those of you who are familiar with the Big Shot Templates in the Project Life App, or even the PSD version of the templates, know they feature an extra-large placeholder meant to draw attention to and show off an extra special photo. These are some of my favorite templates to use in our family yearbooks. But wouldn't it be nice to have an extra-large journal card to use in these extra-large placeholders in order to tell an extra-long story? I think so! This is where the Journal Block Party collections come in!

These collections have journal cards specifically designed to fit in the Big Shot templates with 6x8, 6x12, and 4x12 placeholders. Each kit includes 10 cards:

Two each 6x8, 6x12, and 4x12 cards in both horizontal and vertical orientation AND because your layout wouldn't be complete with out coordinating filler cards two each 3x4 and 4x6 filler cards in horizontal and vertical orientation are also included!

Today's release has 6 different collections, all designing around the summer season. Fall, Winter, and Spring collections will be released as each season approaches and I may throw in a few kits in between seasons as well. 

Each individual kit is $5.99. But for a limited time, you can also purchase the entire collection for $30. This bundled offer will end Saturday, June 20, and 12:01am.

The summer releases include the following:

Memorial Day

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Summertime

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Beach-double

Waterworks

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4th of July

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Camping

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Which is your favorite?

And check this out! You don't have to use them just for journaling! Look at the sample below! If you are familiar with Affinity Photo for iPad or Photoshop on your desktop, feel free to add photos to these cards as well as text! Super fun, right?

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Let me know if you have any questions! Thanks for reading and for all of your support! 

 

 

 


Week In The Life 2020

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This year I participated in Ali Edwards' 7-day documentary project, Week in the Life. While I try to capture details of everyday life in my Project Life family yearbooks, this Week in the Life project is more of a deeper dive. More photos, deeper, meaningful stories. Although Ali and many of her followers have been taking on this project each year since 2005, this is the first year I decided to participate. Today I am sharing the photos and stories of this year's Week In The Life project which took place May 11-17, 2020.

I created a 6x8 album using Affinity Photo on my iPad Pro. All digital products shown are by Ali Edwards.

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I went with a super simple cover–a piece of digital graph paper and label. I believe the paper is from one of Ali's December Daily Collection from a few years ago. The label is from the Week In The Life 2020 Digital Collection.

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Throughout the album you will notice that the day of the week will fall on the right hand side of the spread and will basically have the same layout. I wish I could say this layout was my idea, but I actually scrap lifted it from Instagrammer LindaLovesCreating. She had a photo of what she was doing but using physical product. I wanted to see how duplicating it in digital form would look and I am super happy with the results!

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Since this was my very first time participating in this project, I wanted to simplify things as much as I could. I used many of the WITL 2020 Digital templates, and added a few of my own personal touches. For instance, with the exception of Friday, you will see a collage page on the left and a page of text on the right for the first double-page spread for each day. I also used Ali's "lenses" (story prompts) for each day as well. This was super helpful in trying to tell my stories throughout the week. It's amazing how easily stories can unfold by simply using a word or a phrase. The journal page on the right is one that I created myself. I took color cues from the day of the week sticker on the graph paper "number" page and paired it with the color of the circle day of the week sticker you see below. I did this for each day. I thought it was a great way to organize each day. When flipping through the book, and you see a new color, you know you are on a new day!


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Again–the same color treatment for the journal card.


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The last page for each day is opposite the intro page to the next. I really wanted to use this circle template for each of day of the week, but I found I didn't have enough left over photos to do so. So, I was only able to use this template on Days 1 and 2. But no worries. Read on and you'll see what I used instead.


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New day, new color scheme. The 4x6 journal card was one I created myself. I used it a few times in the album and just changed out the colors and story lens. word art.

 

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Even though the Tuesday circle sticker isn't that peachy color I used in on the journal card, there was a little heart sticker in the WITL Digital sticker book that paired the yellow with the peach, so that is how I came up with the color scheme for Tuesday.


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I am LOVING my new range and microwave!!!


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Currently my tower herb garden is sooo out of control! 


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You can see here how there are less photos on the "pieces of life" below than there were in the Monday section. 

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Now even though I used a red and pink color scheme for Monday, I am using the same here (again following the cues of the "day of the the week" sticker in the spread above, and the "Wednesday" circle sticker on the second spread below). However, this time the colors are reversed on the journal cards. Subtle difference, I know, but I'm not going to overthink it (Yeah-famous last words. You'll see why come the Thursday section).


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I think some of my favorite spreads are those where one side has the photos bleed off the page and the other side has a white border around them, like you see below.


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I LOVE the photo below of Zoe blurred out in the background and the focus is on her squeaky toy.


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Lots of pics in on the left in the spread below. I like placing the word phrases to describe the photos a bit.


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So here is where I had to change things up a bit from the "pieces of life" template. I ended up using Ali's Transparency Phrases from the WITL 2020 Digital Collection as an end page to each day.


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Now I started to overthink my color-schemes in the album (hahaha)! Because there was so much blue and green in the various day of the week stickers towards the end of the week, I didn't want the end of my album totally bombarded with blue. So on Thursday I went with green (like the day of the week sticker in the photo above) and used a lighter shade of green as a compliment to it. 

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The "facts & feeling" story lens, I felt, was the most difficult to work with. It really challenged me to take a deeper look at the story behind my photos. 


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While I do like the 6x8 collage layouts, I think when I do this project again (and even December Daily), I will be adjusting the templates so there is a gutter between the photos. I feel like they need some air. 


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The photos in this spread aren't that great, but it is what it is. I do like to change pictures to black and white when the lighting was low or it's just a bad pic in general. The black and white seems to hide the flaws!


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So here's the thing. I only took one photo on Friday. Just one. I just didn't feel like snapping pictures. And that is okay. I thought my lack of photos was a perfect {short} story to tell with the story prompt for today–some days + most days. Oh, and just like I did on Thursday, I used two shade of blue this time for the color scheme for Friday.

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One photo. One journal page. One double-page spread for Friday. 
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Ahhhhh...the weekend! Loved the prompt for today! We were super busy so I made sure to take lots of photos to make up for not taking any on Friday!


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Changed up the color scheme to blue and peachy-pink for Saturday. Didn't like it at first, still not my fave, but it's growing on me.
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And how about that baby tomato! That pic was taken almost a month ago. I have many more tomatoes on the vine!


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Last day of this project! Finally getting away from the blue and green. Three cheers for pink and yellow!

 

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I really like the prompt for today–"I want to remember." I feel like it made me just want to write and write! And I did. I think this whole project made me want to reflect more on the stories that are hiding behind the photos.


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Who's husbands ended up with a "Covid Coif" during this pandemic! This is the longest Chris's hair has been in 30+years!!!


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It's seashell season!!!


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Nothing like curling up on the couch, after a day at the beach, and watching a Disney movie!


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The last page of the album is below. It's just a plain white page with a piece of word art and a cute little heart sticker placed below it. 

This project was so much fun to do. It is one I will definitely do year after year. Like I just mentioned above, all of these story lenses (story prompts) really made me take a deeper look at the details hiding behind each photo. I am so grateful for this project Ali had created and how she encourages those participating to take a more detailed look at our photos and stories!

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! Let me know if you have any questions!!!
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