Thursday, November 15, 2012

Project Life Series | How do you keep up?



After starting this post I soon realized I had lots to say about Project Life! So I have decided to divide it into two separate posts.

A few weeks ago when we returned from our vacation to Alaska, I had a look at my Project Life album and realized I was 5 weeks behind with my weekly layout spreads. Reality is, this will happen given how busy our lives are, but what I hope to achieve in this post is to help decrease the stress you may experience. With just a little bit of planning you can rest easy and know you are in a good spot. I have based my tips on my experience this year and on the process that works for me. There are many different ways of playing along with PL and most of you who are already doing it will have your own method, these are some ideas I have found helped me.

Today I want to focus on the photos and reflection (notes).

Photos
I find if I have my photos organized into files then it takes a lot of the pressure off what I am printing and placing in my album. You might choose to do your photo editing at this stage if you like, but I usually wait until I am ready to print.
 ·         Each new month I create photo files labeled PL


·         Within those files I create new weekly files with the dates for the week (I start my week on Mondays, some people like a Sunday start). You could also add the week number if you prefer. Most Project Lifers post the week number on their blog, I might consider adding this to my files next year – only because I can never remember what week I am posting and always have to look it up from my previous blog post.
·         At least once a week I upload all photos from my camera and cell phone.
·         Once I have the photos uploaded I use this time to go through them and pick which ones I will utilize in my PL spread. I add them to the weekly file.
·         If I am several weeks behind I typically will not do extensive photo editing. Unless you feel strongly about having perfect photos, this will save you lots of time.
·         I have a photo printer at home and find this convenient, but that doesn’t mean you need one. Recently, I ran out of printer cartridges and used the same system above for the photo-lab I access.You can use Picasa to edit your photos or make collages and then upload to the photo-lab if you like.

Reflection/Keeping Notes

I will admit reflecting on what has transpired each week is not something I keep up with on a weekly basis. This is actually my weakness, but I am here to tell you I make it work and I don’t let it bother me. Here is how I plan around this:

·         Windows has “sticky notes” I post on my desktop. I will use a new color sticky note for each week and start tracking what I think I want to include in my weekly spread. These are quick notes and mine are not very detailed. They are what I refer back to when I do my journaling on my spreads.
 ·         At times if I have more detailed information I want to track I will create a word document. This was helpful while on vacation where there was lots happening.

·         There are organizational apps out there like Evernote and Cathy Zielske shared the Day One app for iPhone users which is like a journaling app.
·        Typically I refer back to my uploaded photos for the week. This in itself will help to remind me what has transpired each week. Other things that assist are reviewing emails, referring back to my work schedule and looking at the calendar.


·         I print off emails, save screenshots of conversations from textiing, online classes, pinterest etc. I save ticket stubs and any other memorabilia I want to add.  
At first you might think it is too time consuming but once you get into it you will find a rhythm that works for you.

Next week I will share my process of creating a layout spread.

What do you use to organize your photos and notes with your Project Life? Do you have any great apps you utilize for Project Life? I would love to hear.

Thanks for stopping by! 

23 comments:

  1. Although I don't use Project Life in this format, I am always interested to learn ways of keeping things moving scrapbooking-wise. Like the tips about the onscreen notes ...

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    1. Yes - this helps and because I typically am on my netbook in the evening, it helps keep track of those bits and I find if I keep it in just one place (sticky notes),as opposed to using more than one method (apps + sticky notes) I feel even more organized!

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  2. Alexa I also thought the onscreen notes were a great idea, thank you Ginger. These are great tips Ginger, I organise photos very similarly and it really helps, especially during an online class or something like WITL, DD and JYC.

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    1. Your welcome:) You are so right Amy, these are very transferable to other projects!

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  3. I'b never heard of on screen notes....that's really useful info....thanks.

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  4. Thank you so much for all the useful PL info you're sharing! I'm taking it all on board as I prepare to start in January :) The Sticky Notes is a great idea, my kids use them all the time on their laptop but I never have - ideal for this though! And I have a note-taking app on my smartphone so I shall make use of that while I'm out and about, too :)

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    1. I'm so happy you find the information useful Mel! Next year I plan to try an app to see how it works for me.

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  5. I download my photo/s and print the ones I want on a daily basis. I try to write notes as I go, but then to end up with a catch-up session. The camera's date stamp helps with reminding me what happened on any given day.

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    1. Yes Ruth, I find the date stamp useful too! Thank you for sharing your method :)

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  6. Great notes on your system Ginger, and it is working so well for you this year. I especially like the idea of keeping the sticky notes on your desktop for a quick note to help you remember when you have time to sit & do your journaling.

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  7. Going to have to find that sticky note thing on my computer! Thanks for the tips!

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    1. Your welcome Cheri :) Just enter it in the start up menu of your PC and it should pop up :)

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  8. Those are all great ideas! I keep a large notebook on my DR table where I write my notes of what was happening during the week. I also record which Instagram photos I took, and star the ones I know I want to print. There is also enough space on each page to do up a little sketch of my page layouts so I know how much space I need/will have when I start doing them. This has been my saving grace, and is the only way I can keep up with all the STUFF for PL!

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    1. thank you Lisa! I am going to be trying instagram soon! I'm curious, do you print your photos at home? I noticed London Drugs has instragram in their photo lab and that made me VERY happy! I plan to talk about sketches on the next post :)

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  9. You know how sometimes it's the simple things that make you wonder WHY you never thought of that yourself? Like your computer folders for each week for Project Life. So smart! As I read through your post I realized this is the main thing that's bogging me down. I create a new folder in My Pictures at the beginning of each month, and when I upload my photos they all get dumped into one folder - for the whole month. By the end of any given month I have a very large folder of photos. I will definitely start breaking them down, and I think that in itself will help me to stay better organized.

    I haven't been following the standard Project Life One Week At A Time method. Well, I kind of have, but mostly I'm doing spreads of events - my mom's passing, my nephew's wedding, a weekend getaway. It's a nice collection of this past year, but I really love the weekly format and will most likely follow that format next year.

    I do the same thing with my journaling - let the photos remind me what I did and where I went.

    Thanks for all the great tips here, Ginger! Looking forward to part two. :)

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    1. Deb! You don't know how happy it makes me to hear your thoughts on the photo files! When I wrote up this post, I thought - boy some of this just seems like no-brainer stuff, so I am so happy to hear many of you finding something in here that is useful :)

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  10. This is a great read Ginger - it demystifies the whole process for a non-PLer like me

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  11. I don't do PL but I find Oh Life very useful for recording bits I need to remember. They send me an email every day asking how my day went and 'heres what you did a month ago....' I would normally forget after a month of starting these type of things up but 2 months down the line, so far so good. I may even take the next step in the new year and have a go at PL (I have been thinking about it for a couple of years now).
    I like how you organise your photos and may have to add that to my system that I am trying to update. thanks for the tips :-)

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  12. Lots of great tips in there Ginger. Thanks for sharing them. I don't do PL but think a lot of what you say would work well for December Daily or JYC, one of which I'll be attempting again next month

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  13. Thanks Ginger! I am giving this Project Life a whirl in 2013 and am really nervous to get started, so this is VERY helpful advise! Can't wait to hear what you have to say in your next post :)
    --Chantel Mernickle

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    1. Thank you Chantel! I think you will really enjoy it! I'm happy you are going to give it a go!! I know you are going to be very busy soon (not that you are not already :), but when you look back at the album, you will see lots of things you may not necessarily have recorded and that's the fun part!

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  14. After having created a December Daily in the style of PL albums I have a renewed respect for all Project Lifers out there and I don't think I could do it for a full year. You shared some great tips that I would revisit if I changed my mind ;)

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  15. Great post Ginger and thanks for that tip about "sticky notes". I had no idea there was that feature. Guess what I'm now going to go check out. :)

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