When I was pregnant with Kira, I knew I wanted to create a baby album that would be special and full of beautiful details for her to learn about her earliest days. Printed photos are so valuable but they have a tendency to overwhelm us.
Deciding what to print, how to print it, where to print it, and then…what do you DO with them once they’re printed? (This is the very reason I started offering this service as part of the Firefly experience — i KNOW how much of a burden it can be!)
With Kira’s baby book, I knew I wanted something that would provide 4 main functions:
- a way for me to add photos and work on it throughout the year whenever I had time
- an element of creativity and customization
- simple enough that I would neglect to keep up with it
- a way to include keepsakes and photos all in one place
I first discovered Project Life a few years ago from some fellow military spouses when I was in Hawaii. Then, one of my best friends and I each got kits to work on and commemorate our lives post-grad school, even though we were oceans apart.
I was H.O.O.K.E.D.
I loved the way it felt like scrapbooking but without the mess, expensive extras, extensive time commitment, and overwhelming decisions.
Pretty great, right?
Well, that same wonderful and thoughtful friend gifted this kit to me at my baby shower and I was SO excited to start capturing all the moments of her first year in one place.
For those who have never heard of it before, Project Life is a scrapbooking alternative created by Becky Higgins that provides a stylish and customizable solution to showcase printed photos.
What you need to get started:
- Core Kit
- A set of pocket pages
For each page of the album you simply need to select the photos and cards you want to combine, then slip them into the pockets to complete. Many cards have space to write captions or short journaling prompts. And that’s it!
I started Kira’s book with pictures from throughout my pregnancy. Since the layouts are predesigned, sometimes it’s hard to get exactly the photos you want to fit exactly where you want them (my only complaint), which means that it’s not precisely chronological— but I get as close as I can.
I print all the photos through my professional lab once a month so the color is precise and the prints will hold up over time. Some great consumer-facing labs you can try are
- Artifact Uprising
- Nations Photo Lab
It's assuring to know that they will withstand the test of time and when she wants to show this book to her grandkids someday, the pictures will look as fresh as they do today— no yellowing or tearing like we often see in the phot
It’s so grounding to have that nostalgia as she grows and to be able to work with the beautiful prints in my hands.
Tangibility tugs at the heart in a way that looking at and working on a screen simply can not.
I love just carving out an hour here and there, often as a relaxing weekend activity, and spending it with these memories that are already so dear. I flip through the pages I've already completed with a happy heart, just savoring how precious our family is in this unique season of life.
Any other Project Life-er’s out there? What have you done with your kits?! I'd love to hear some ideas for how you're preserving your heritage!
I can't recommend it enough as a great place for photos and keepsakes throughout baby's first year, and whatever other season you're in.
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