June 30, 2014

Some Time Off

But don't worry. It's only for a month!

Two days from today I'll be flying with my hubby and our two oldest girls to China to bring my son home.

I think I should take some time off. Don't you? 

While I won't be designing or releasing any new products during July I will have some fun stuff going on on my blog thanks to some of my creative team members. Keep your eye out for freebies, challenges and prizes.

I'm still hoping to scrap my Daily Life Pages each week, and I'll be sharing those here on my blog along with the weekly Daily Life Journal Card Freebie. By the way, I can't wait to have Matthew in my Daily Life Scrapbook Pages! I'm also hoping to share some of our journey to China. You all have played a big roll in being able to bring our son home without going into debt, and I want to share the journey with you.

The next time you see me blogging I'll probably be on the other side of the world!

P.S. I'm so incredibly thankful for you guys. 

June 29, 2014

Daily Life Week 26: Around the House and Birthday Celebrations!

Daily Life Templates 7 by Scrapping with Liz
Document Everything by Bella Gypsy
Fall Splendor the Bonus Alpha by WMSquared
I don't think I could say this week was normal, but there were a lot of normal things that went on...coloring, hide and seek, reading, etc... We also celebrated a little girl's 7th birthday. Say it ain't so! I remember the day she was born like it was yesterday. We've also been spending a lot of time preparing for our trip to China to bring Matthew home. I didn't take any pictures of that (oops). Maybe I'm afraid to show you the room where I've thrown everything that needs to be packed.

Can you tell I used a lot of phone pictures in this first page? I love the ease of using my phone, but I love the quality of my dslr. But when it comes down to it, I just want to document our everyday...if it's a phone picture or a nicer dslr shot it doesn't really matter. So, that's my tip for you this week. Use what you have to document your life.

You can read more about our week below in the journaling.
Daily Life Templates 7 by Scrapping with Liz
Document Everything by Bella Gypsy
Fall Splendor the Bonus Alpha by WMSquared

Daily Life Templates 7 by Scrapping with Liz
Document Everything by Bella Gypsy
Fall Splendor the Bonus Alpha by WMSquared

Journaling: The photos on the left page show some things that happened around the house this week. Hiding in the dryer, coloring, story-time with Emmie and skyping with our friends in California. Then later in the week we celebrated Kyla’s 7th birthday. Joe’s birthday (her cousin) is just a day after her birthday. So we had a family gathering with cake, ice cream and presents. We also went for a bike ride with all the cousins on her birthday. On Saturday we let her choose a family outing and she chose roller skating. When we got to the rollerskating rink it was closed. She was happy to go to the Factory instead. There’s also a picture there with her new umbrella. On Saturday afternoon we went to a birthday party for a friend, and I snapped that picture of Ashlyn holding her two favorite nephews. She loves those boys!

Here's your journal card freebie for this week. I'm hoping you can use it for some July 4th pictures.

You might notice that I'm posting a little early this week. I'm heading out on Wednesday (more about that tomorrow), and since I got my page done last night I thought I would post it now. I hope to share my Daily Life pages and journal card freebies with you each week while in China, and I hope to post some updates for you all. Eeeek!!!


June 27, 2014

Week 25: Pool, Pool & More Pool!

Daily Life Templates 7 by Scrapping with Liz
Pool Rules by Dream Big Designs
Another week has flown by, and I've captured it in my Week 25 Daily Life page. It's like second nature scrapping these pages each week. I love looking at my finished Daily Life pages and knowing that I'm caught up with 2014. I'll let you read about our week below in the journaling.

No tips this week...just enjoy your scrapping time!

Daily Life Templates 7 by Scrapping with Liz
Pool Rules by Dream Big Designs
 Journaling: This week we spent some time at the pool. Sunday afternoon Daddy took a few of the girls up to swim. Emmie and I stayed home because Emmie had a bad cough. Her and I had some quality time watching a movie and making brownies.  I love that Shawn took a picture of Ashlyn and himself while they were there. Friday night we went to the pool with church friends and cousins. We waited for a quite a while because of the thunder. In the end the kids did get to swim for a little while. I took some pictures while we were waiting. I captured that goofy picture of Lydia. She’s become quite the show off.
Daily Life Templates 7 by Scrapping with Liz
Pool Rules by Dream Big Designs
 Journaling: Tuesday night my sweet friends held a little shower for Matthew. I didn’t get any pics of the shower so I took a picture after the fact with Ashlyn and the gifts! Joe came over one day to play. I was impressed with their fort. Out came the camera! Then I saw the three girls at the counter all doing melty beads together. So sweet! Lydia loves to help me make muffins. She also likes to lick the batter. :) 

Here's your Daily Life Journal Card for the week as well. You could put a photo in that spot or use it for some journaling. Just click the image to download.

June 23, 2014

Scrap-lift July 2014

Hi! - Tracy here, do you know the old saying about mice playing while the cat's away? Well, that's kind of what we'll be doing in July. If you've been following this blog, you know that the Albers are adopting a son from China and July is the big month. If you are new to this blog, welcome! Make sure to visit often because this blog is full of awesomeness. Back to the mice playing..... 

Starting July 4th, we'll be having a weekly scrap-lift challenge. Liz has chosen four of her favorite layouts. Each week your challenge will be to scrap-lift the selected layout using one of the options given. We'll have a random weekly winner drawn from all qualifying layouts for a prize of $5 to Liz's store. At the end of the four weeks of challenges, for those participants that had a qualifying layout in each of the four weeks, they will be entered into a grand prize competition where Liz will select the participant whom she feels best met the weekly challenges. The lucky winner will receive $25 to Liz's Store - that's $45 in prizes overall!! 

 Come back on July 4th for the first challenge - see you there!

June 20, 2014

Daily Life Week 24: Popsicles, School and Camping!

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz
Life's a Beautiful Ride by Tickled Pink Studio
It was another summer filled week here with homemade popsicles, outdoor play, a little bit of school work and a camping trip! What says summer more than a camping trip? You can read all about it below.

This week's tip is to remember to take pics of all your kids, especially the older ones. I tend to take more pictures of the littles just because they are easier to photograph and just so cute! When they get older they tend to shy away from the camera more. I realized after putting this page together that I definitely included more pictures of the 2 littlest. I did include a picture of Ashlyn's cookies. At least that tells a little bit of what she's been up to. My goal for next week is to try and include more of the older girls....if they'll let me!

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz
Life's a Beautiful Ride by Tickled Pink Studio
Journaling: Another week of a lot of summer fun. I did take a picture of Kyla doing her math just to prove that we are doing some school work. We made homemade popsicles. Ashlyn made us some
yummy  cookies. Kyla put on her chef hat and helped me scramble eggs for breakfast.

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz
Life's a Beautiful Ride by Tickled Pink Studio
Journaling:    We went on our 2nd annual church camping trip. We had a lot of fun tubing, swimming, hiking and just sitting around the fire. There were a lot more pictures taken, but I think I might have to make another page for them!    Earlier in the week we did more sidewalk chalk. It seems like we’ve been doing that a lot lately. The neighbor kid and cousin joined us for that. Ashlyn made some roads with tape and the little girls had a lot of fun pushing their trains and cars around the “city”. We also had fun doing some blindfold coloring.

And here's your Daily Life Journal Card freebie for this week. Just click the image to download.

June 13, 2014

Daily Life Week 23: Summer Fun

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz#soselfie by mle Card Designs#soselfie by Kristin Aagard#soselfie by Meredith Cardall#soselfie Papers by Meredith Cardall
Week 23 of 2014. We are almost half way done. I can't believe it. In some ways this year has just flown by and in others, it has gone at a snail's pace. One thing for sure is that I'm loving summer. We've been taking it a little easier around here. We are just doing a tiny bit of school work (although my kids might make you think it's a bunch), and we are doing lots of summer things. You can read all about it below.

I have no extra tips for you this week, except to make sure you scroll through the rest of my Daily Life posts. You'll get lots of tips, inspiration and the Daily Life Journal Card Freebies. I'm hoping these templates, journal cards, and posts are helping you scrap your photos.

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz#soselfie by mle Card Designs#soselfie by Kristin Aagard#soselfie by Meredith Cardall#soselfie Papers by Meredith Cardall
Journaling: Monday we went to Cherokee to celebrate Zach’s 10th birthday by playing in the creek and having a picnic. Apparently Kyla was excited about the cupcakes. Tuesday night we went for a walk on the Greenway. Lydia thought we were racing and said, “Ready, Set, Go!” So we all lined up for a little race. I think Kyla won. Friends came over on Wednesday, and there was lots of playing outside, including some sidewalk chalk.

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz
#soselfie by mle Card Designs#soselfie by Kristin Aagard#soselfie by Meredith Cardall#soselfie Papers by Meredith Cardall
 Journaling: Thursday night we built a “city” out of Legos, Lincoln Logs and Tinker Toys. It took over our whole living room. We also had ice cream Sundaes with cousins. We went for a bike ride on the Greenway on Friday night. Lydia can finally pedal the little tricycle! We are all very happy about that. The girls and I also went to Camp Living Water for a homeschool day. Lydia enjoyed swinging while the older girls went off to do all the fun camp stuff. It was a summer filled week!

Here's your Daily Life Journal Card 23. I think this can make a really fun journal card. You can add a photo in the speech bubble, or use it for journaling. Take all the layers and add it to an already made template and see what you come up with. Click on the image to download, and make sure you haven't missed any from the previous weeks. They are all still available.


June 11, 2014

Birthday Scrapbook Inspiration

I released these Number Templates a while back. I saw Brandy post the project she's working on with these in my SwL Facebook Group (you should join if you haven't - there are freebies and lots of inspiration). I loved her project so much that I thought I would share it with you.

She's making Birthday Albums for her kids. Each number page will showcase pictures of her children when they were that age. Below are pages from her son's album.  She told me that she's already shared the pages with her kids and they love them. She plans on going as high as her kids will let her take pictures of them. The numbers could be easily combined to go as high as you like. 

I just love seeing how the child changes and grows through the ages. 

She's going to use my Alphabet Templates for the front cover, using their first initial. I just love it!

I'm totally adding this to my scrapping to do list for my kids.

June 7, 2014

Travel Approval & Coming Home!

I have news! We received our travel approval earlier this week, and we leave in 25 days to bring our son home. 30 days until we meet him. 40 days until we are home together.

During our last adoption I had this feeling. I couldn't really pinpoint it. It was kind of an anxious/depressed/nervous/excited feeling. I could feel it building every day…since the first day we saw our daughter's face. 7 months. This time is no exception, except that I think it's worse. It's been over 10 months since we've seen our son's face. He's older. He's been in an orphanage longer. More of his story is unknown. He's been asking when we are going to come bring him home. He's a boy! What am I going to do with a boy?

I also remember the feeling I had when we were finally home with Lydia. When we pulled into the driveway with all four of our kids in tow. Safe and sound…and home together. It was like an immediate burden was lifted from my shoulders. I didn't realize what I was carrying around with me for 7 months. No wonder I was sort of grumpy. I've tried to be better this time, understanding a little more of what is going on. Clinging to the Lord and his promises a little more. But let me tell you, I can't wait for that moment when we pull into our driveway, and we are home together.

This is the page I scrapped about the moment we were home with her. I can't wait to scrap about the moment we are home with our son.

Artsy Journal Templates 4 by Scrapping with Liz
Tracie Stroud Kit - no longer available

June 6, 2014

Week 22: Hiking, Co-op, Gym and More!

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz
Everyday Snippets Issue #3 by Creatwings Designs
What a crazy fun week. We finished up a lot of things like co-op and gymnastics. I am officially done with all outside commitments. I'm going to try and relax a little bit before we bring our little boy home. Of course, I have a lot of catching up to do around the house after having extra kids the last couple of weeks, and then there's the packing for China, shopping for our little boy....and, oh yeah, finishing up some templates and blog posts for you wonderful people.

Scrapping Tip (actually, I think this can apply in all areas of your life): I just have a little tip for you this week. Take a break if you need it! At the end of last week, I was tired, waiting, anxious, etc and I just couldn't focus on anything. I usually work several hours each night after my kids go to bed, and I just couldn't do it. So I spent 3 nights just sitting on the couch next to my hubby....wondering if I would ever have the desire to scrap or template design again (okay, maybe that's a little overdramatic). I think I was just tired of waiting. I was hoping to hear some adoption news last week, and I think it just wore me out. Can waiting really wear you out? Now it's Sunday night (I blog ahead of time - you never know what's going to happen around my crazy house), and I'm back at it, focused, and ready to get things marked off my to-do list. It's okay to take a little break. You'll come back focused, energized, inspired, and ready to get stuff done!

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz
Everyday Snippets Issue #3 by Creatwings Designs
 Journaling: This week started out with a hike on Sunday after church. We went down to Tallulah Falls, had a picnic lunch, and then went for a short hike. Our hike was cut short because of thunder and lightning. We made the best of it and did a little shopping instead! We needed to get a few things for our trip to China anyway. We celebrated Memorial Day at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. All the cousins love playing together. VBS at church started this week. The songs, games, and Bible Study were a lot of fun....just look at Lydia’s nose! Ashlyn has been baking up a storm lately. She has a bit more free time during the summer, and I’m totally okay with her spending some of it long as she cleans up the kitchen afterward.

Daily Life Templates 6 by Scrapping with Liz
Everyday Snippets Issue #3 by Creatwings Designs

Journaling:  We also had an extra little girl with us this week. We did lots of fun (and messy) activities....painting, chalk, etc... On Friday night we had our homeschool co-op program. All the kids got to share something they learned throughout the year. It was a fabulous turnout and the kids did a great job. 78 students this year! We are so blessed to a part of this group. God is good! I wonder what next year will bring?

On Saturday Kyla had her gymnastics show. She had been practicing hard, and she did a great job. See that smile on her face? That was the moment Daddy brought her a rose. That is my Kyla smile!

And as usual, here's your Daily Life Journal Card. Just click the image to download.


June 4, 2014

2012 - Digital Scrapbook Album

It's here! My 2012 Blurb album. It's been a long time coming. I finished up my pages a few weeks ago and then weighed my options for printing. I had scrapped 130 pages where I had not planned for bleed and gutter (meaning that with certain printing options important stuff was going to get cut off the edges of my pages or be in the gutter of my book). I could print my pages individually through Persnickety Prints (whom I love - you don't have to worry about the bleed with them), or I could go with a Blurb book and choose to have white borders around the edges of my pages to protect the edges of my pages and not have to worry about bleed or gutter. The latter was cheaper and would end up taking up less space on my stuffed bookshelf, so that's what I ended up going with. Plus, I've printed my last couple of family albums through Blurb and I've really liked them. The quality is there, the color of the pages is vibrant, and they have great customer service (read more about my last book here).

When my book arrived the first thing I noticed was that the spine and back were blue. I'm pretty sure I didn't pick blue for my spine or back cover. Knowing Blurb they would have sent me a new book ASAP, but it didn't bother me too much. I'm just going to go with it.

This was the largest Blurb book I've printed. My last two were around 100 pages. You can see how thick it is.

Since my first pages were a double spread I decided to go with a blank white page for my first page.  I guess I could have made a page to put in the cover....but once I started uploading I just wanted to get it done!

Here are some of my pages:

Like in my other Blurb books, I chose to use the white border around each page. I did this to ensure that I would not lose anything important on the edges of my pages.

Apparently, I was liking the double-page spreads!

Here are a couple of pages that weren't double-page spreads. I think they look great next to each other.

These next two pages are my favorites.

So many great memories.

Then, just to show you some of the quality I took this close upshot. I love the colors and look at those shadows...I think I could reach out and touch them.

I plan on doing a blog post sharing a few tips on making a Blurb book with your digital scrapbook pages. If you have any questions let me know, and I'll try to answer them.


P.S. My album is a 12x12! Should have mentioned that above.
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