It's been a few days since my last entry. I've been taking a little time off to recuperate from my Virtual Book Tour. Time to regroup, reassess, and re-boot the laundry (as FlyLady says). I'm at the perfect place to figure out what's working for me, and what's not, and where I want to be.
Part of that involves getting back to what I love about scrapbooking. Contrary to what I'm sure many people believe, being involved in the scrapbooking industry does NOT mean you get to scrap all day. Quite the opposite. I haven't scrapped regularly since about 2000, when I started teaching in a LSS (local scrapbooking store). That's when I started working on class outlines and projects. Then I started working on Book of Me, so I was scrapping then, but it was for the book. Then I started teaching classes at LSS's around the country, and all my scrapping was for class samples and projects. Scrapping with a "mission" or on a deadline isn't nearly as satisfying as scrapping because you have a story to tell, or photos of your precious children. I've missed that. And frankly, it's hard to get back to it. Not to mention the sense of overwhelm I feel when picking through the years of backlog photos that haven't been scrapped while I've been working. So many photos, just sitting in boxes. I feel like the biggest hypocrite sometimes, offering tips in my classes on how to organize and manage your scrapbooking hobby, with all this backlog waiting for me in my office.
So I've decided to super-simplify. Inspired by the Friends Photo Album article on the Simple Scrapbooks magazine website, I went out and bought a regular slip-in-the-pocket photo album, pulled out my paper scraps, and set to work. I can't tell you how freeing it was. I was practically giggling at how fabulous it was to whip my way through three years' of Christmas photos in two hours. I felt like I was getting away with something, and I LOVED it!
Basically you use the pockets for photos as intended, but you can also use the pockets for journaling boxes, or small embellishments. It's a lot less intimidating that trying to figure out how to design/decorate a whole 12x12. My MIL (mother-in-law) loved the idea for her lake pictures -- she's made one scrapbook of her trip to Norway, but isn't really interested in taking sb'ing up as a hobby. This pocket album she could imagine and handle.
Here are some scans to help illustrate what I've done.
This last picture shows journaling on a tag, which I slipped behind that top left photo.
I have hestitated to share this idea, or the fact that I've been working on an album like this, for fear of what other people might think. How sad is that?? I'm worried that my friends might think that I've "forsaken the good hobby of scrapbooking", or that I'm doing it "wrong", or that it looks stupid, or whatever. But honestly, I'm just so happy to have started attacking those boxes of photos! I was able to take this to my in-law's this weekend, and share what I've done, and they smiled to see the pics of the kids so young. It's just such a relief not to have the "ballast of backlog" weighing on my conscience. It's working for me, and I'm going to keep working like this until it doesn't.
Not that I'm completely giving up the more traditional embellished full size layouts. I'll just use them more judiciously -- when I have a longer story to tell, or when the occassion warrants that much attention. For these years' worth of Christmas pictures, with not much story to tell, this simple approach is perfect. And such a relief.