My Million Dollar Secret

I have been thinking about today's blog post for a while and wanted to get a little personal. Hope you don't mind, I'll try not to share any deep, dark secrets or confessions. ;)

I wanted to talk about a topic that is brought up so much to me! The question is asked, "How do you keep up with your scrapbooking??" or "I am so behind so I am just not going to catch up." I wanted to share how I do things because in my world, I think it's a practical and easy way to do the hobby we love without feeling guilt! Sounds good, right??

I started scrapbooking when I was 12 years old and I have never stopped. Looking back, it is pretty amazing that I have kept up this passion for 20 years. WHAT?! 20 YEARS!? I am way too young to have a hobby for twenty. years. But it's true! I documented my childhood, high school and college days. My wedding album is one of my most prized possessions and I have turned my hobby into a rewarding task that I feel privileged to do for my family. 

Let me show you how I organize my books and then I will share my million dollar secret. ;)

Family Scrapbook- Our family scrapbook documents big moments for our family. Sometimes there are only a couple pages added to the book a year and that's ok with me. It's a snapshot of our entire world. Vacations get a 2 page layout in this book, if I have lots of photos I want to include I will do a separate mini album or photo book.

My Scrapbook- Yes. I have my own scrapbook about me! I think this is so important for the one who is documenting the memories. Because it's easy for us to be left out of the pages. Big moments and experiences for me are added to this book. Or if I just LOVE a photo of me and my kids/family, I will make a special page for my book. 

Colt's Scrapbook- Each of my boys have their own scrapbook. I try and keep a mixture of big moments and everyday moments. I always do a page on their teacher and pictures of just them on a vacation layout. 

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Troy's Scrapbook- This is laid out the same as his brothers. Always include your handwriting! To me the journaling is by FAR the most important part of a scrapbook page.

Halloween & Christmas Scrapbooks- I keep a separate Halloween album and also a Christmas album. Each year has a 2 year layout so you can flip through the pages and see the kids growing up year to year. I don't document Christmas or Halloween in any of the other scrapbooks, just here.

Special Occasions Mini Books- I love making mini albums for specific reasons. A great vacation, yup! Memories of a special friend, yes!!! I even have a little album documenting the places we go in our camp trailer. These are fun books that the kids always reach for to look at. I have a big basket on my shelf that I keep these in. 

So this probably looks like a lot to keep up with!!! The answer is, no not really. WHY? Because I learned early on that I do not have to document every, single photo and every single memory. And I am 100% ok with that! We love to take photos, lots of photos! You should see my phone with all of the photos that I take daily. I only pick my favorite moments from our life and document those. Here is out how it breaks down doing it my way.

In 1 calendar year I will make on average: 
4 pages for Troy's book
4 pages for Colt's book
2 pages for my book
2 pages for our family book
2 pages for Halloween book
2 pages for Christmas book
2 pages documenting vacations
TOTAL: 18 pages

Now making 18 pages over a 12 month period doesn't seem to hard right?? Doing it this way leaves me plenty of time to give my creative energy to special cards, holiday decorations, day planner, teacher gifts, thank you gifts...basically all the other things that I LOVE to do with my paper. 

I think it is so easy to walk by the scrapbook supplies at the craft store and think, "I love all of this stuff but I don't have time to scrapbook!" or "I will never catch up." I don't want anyone to think that!! If making 18 pages a YEAR could document your family and life, wouldn't you do it?? Even with my boys getting 4 pages in their book a year, they will still have several scrapbooks to look through of their childhood. Plenty of photos, plenty of memories. If you think there is no way to "catch up"...pick your ONE favorite memory from each year and put that in the book until you are caught up to present day. Getting anything into your books is better than thinking there is no way to do it. 

Ok, let me get down from my soap box. 

This is so important to me! I think that the love of scrapbooking is sometimes getting lost in this busy, crazy, digital world that we live in. But if it's something you love and something that you feel is important, I hope you take the time to make a plan how it can work for you. 

If you need any encouragement or have any questions, leave me a comment here or send me an email! ( erin@craftsmithco.com ) I would love to hear what is holding you back, what your concerns are and what YOUR scrapbook plan is. Us Craft Smith Crafters definitely stick together.

Have a great day and get those photos off your phones and digital cards and down on PAPER! Craft Smith Paper if we want to get specific. ;) Hee hee.