ktware

sharing my creativity, one project at a time


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Project Life – weeks 28-29

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And with that, I take you back to the first week (or so) of July. Looking at this layout, I am again reminded how much I love the Honey core kit and bright colors (although, I did use a card from the Seafoam kit, too).

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left side

right side

right side

I wanted to keep the title card for this week simple, so that it didn’t take away from the pretty clouds, but I didn’t want it “plain”. I ended up lightly painting on some Stickles (yes, I use a paintbrush when it’s a larger area). In keeping with the soft feel, I pulled out my Amy Tangerine letter stickers (the set with multiple colors). I was so happy to find something I could use these on – Natalie keeps taking them for her school scrapbook and I’m afraid she’s going to use up all of the vowels before I get a chance to use them myself!

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One of my favorite “things” to photograph are hands. Hands are one of those things that as a kid you take for granted, but as an adult, you realize how important they are. When I was little, I used to take my father’s hand and turn it palm up and then lay my face down on it when I was tired. It was something I just did, without even thinking about it. Now I would give anything to have a good photo of his hands … Anyway, I’m getting off point. I also think kid hands can be really cute, so instead of getting Sydney’s whole face/body, I focused on her little hands.

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We went to a birthday/pool party this week. I am glad I got one good shot of the two girls together since the friend doesn’t go to the same school with my girls anymore. This was also a good chance to have Natalie journal.

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This was also the week I got my last mail order from Two Peas. I think my journaling about sums it up. Even my girls were sad to hear they were closing.

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And now, on to …

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The full spread:

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This was the first week in a long time that the colors on each half of the layout didn’t all “go” together. On the left side, that purple was the dominant color.

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I pulled the purple from Sydney’s shirt in that bottom left photo (at her birthday dinner). I also pulled the colors for the right side from her shirt – this time from the bottom right photo.

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In case it wasn’t obvious, this was the week of Sydney’s birthday.

I used Heidi Swapp Gold color shine on the 8

I used Heidi Swapp Gold color shine on the 8

I’ve mentioned in previous posts how we are working on Sydney’s self esteem. I really think that she has come a long way over this summer and (to me) it was easy to see when I was taking her yearly portraits. This was my favorite one from the day.

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Well, that wraps up weeks 28-29. I’ve had these photographed for a while and just needed to sit down and finally share them. Now that school has started and we’re finally figuring out our routine, I’ve had a bit more time to work on catching up. I’m excited to get back to the point where I am working on the week previous and not the month previous. There are classes and projects that I am hoping to do over the next few months, so this is the first step towards doing that.

Thank you for stopping by!


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Project Life – week 27

 

 

 

 

This week I am just keeping it simple with one layout. I finally finished my girls’ school albums for the previous year and then school started, so this past weekend is the first chance I’ve had to sit down and work on PL. While this is my only complete layout, every layout from this one up to current has photos and journaling cards in the page protectors. I just need the time to sit and journal about it all and put the finishing touches on.IMG_8143

 

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We saw a lot of movies over the summer. We took advantage of Cinemark’s Summer Kids movies, so we were at the theater once a week. This week we also happened to go see a movie as a family on the weekend. I’ve been adding the ticket stubs right on to the journaling card. As someone that used to work at a movie theater for several years, it’s pretty cool when I find my stubbs for movies like “Forrest Gump” or “Twister” and remember what it was like seeing those movies on the big screen.

Project Life

My husband found an online game that he can play with both of our girls. It’s funny to walk around the house with them all in their favorite spots playing the same game. That “Plugged In” card from Take 10 was perfect for that spot!

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I put off starting work on the girls’ school albums thru the entire month of June – when July rolled around I told myself that I couldn’t blow it off any more. I was having a hard time getting started. I found this card that was a cut apart and thought it was perfect – it was the “advice” that I needed to get started.

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I am handling their school albums much differently this year, but that’s for another day :) Thank you for stopping by to read. I will be linking up with The Mom Creative for her monthly Project Life link up. Now that we’ve made it thru the first week of school and I am starting to get back into a routine, I hope to have more content here on my blog. If you have been reading along I want to thank you for sticking with me!


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Project Life Catch Up- weeks 21 thru 25

I’m going to jump right in. Here is week 21:

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It was getting toward the of May and I realized that I needed to use this card before it was too late. It is so pretty, but I’ll admit that it doesn’t “flow” with the look of the rest of the layout as well as I’d like. This was one of those weeks where I just wanted to get it done – I wasn’t worried about “perfect”.

 

 

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The Sunday that started this week, my husband and one of my daughters competed in a Spartan Race (the other daughter competed the day before). I wasn’t able to make it that second day, so I put Natalie in charge of taking pictures and she did a great job. More importantly, she was so excited about the fact that she could “tell a story by taking pictures the right way” – that made me smile big time!

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Sydney had to do a timeline project for class. Trying to get her to figure out what things to put on the timeline was getting to be a little bit difficult, so I finally pulled out our family scrapbooks (starting with the year she was born) and had her flip thru them. That helped the decision process out quite a bit.

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WEEK 22:

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It had been a while since I had my girls journal for the album, but this week was perfect for having them each contribute something.

Sydney

Sydney

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WEEK 23:

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This week felt like it came together much better than some of the others I’ve done recently. I was able to find aquas/blues/greens in the journaling cards that looked like they belong together.

 

WEEK24:

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For this week, I used mostly the Midnight kit and stuck with a monochromatic palette.

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This was our first official week of summer vacation. We are going to see older kid’s movies once a week at the theater closest to our house. I’ve been adding the stubs to each week’s layout.

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WEEK 25:

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I was excited about how this layout came together – I love all of the bright colors, it really says summer!

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I love the “June” wood veneer piece from Studio Calico. I covered it with HA Neon Blue ink and it looked much better than leaving it plain.

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… and THAT is as far as I’ve gotten in completed layouts. I should getting Natalie and Sydney’s school albums finished within the week and then I will back to keeping up with my weekly layouts. Thank you for reading along!


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I’m Still Here, I Swear!

I just realized that I haven’t posted since the end of May – eeek! What is especially funny/ironic is that “posting to my blog regularly” was on my summer bucket list. Guess I won’t be checking that item off, huh?

In an attempt to catch up, I’m going to do a quick overview of some of my layouts. I am still about 5-6 weeks behind in doing them, but I haven’t posted any since week sixteen, so here goes:

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I had a lot of fun doing the 4×12 pocket across the top of the left side of the layout. I used my Cameo for the grass and some older stamps for the eggs. The sun clip was from the dollar bins at Joann’s and it is also there to help that bit stay in the pocket. The grass is pop dotted and just doesn’t want to stay in the pocket. On the right side is a photograph from a small wedding I shot for a teacher at my girls’ school. She and her husband chose this tiny deck out in the middle of some hiking path because they had seen silhouette wedding photos online from this exact place. They both told me that they really wanted the same photo taken of them and were very happy when they saw that photo.

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left side/week17

left side/week 17

right side/week17

right side/week 17

 

Week 18:

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This layout felt a little disjointed from one side to the other. I was hoping the green on either side would join them together better, but I think those orangey-red cards may have been a little too strong of a color to compete with.

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Week 19:

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For some reason, I forgot to photograph each side separately for week nineteen. My husband, my best friend and another one of our friends did a Tough Mudder race that Sunday. It’s like that journaling card was meant for that photo.

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I also added an insert this week. I got my very own credit card in my name – this is a big deal since I haven’t been able to work in 10+ years and we are working on our credit scores. I also realized that my nail polish obsession (that started when I was around nine) has never really been documented. I saved little insert cards from my Julep subscription box and my first month getting the Square Hue subscription box.

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Week 20:

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For this layout, I wanted to not use any core kits or pre-made cards – I wanted to do them myself using some 12×12 papers. I normally would feel bad cutting up a full sheet of paper, but since half the layout was 6×6 squares, it didn’t bother me so much :) See that last 3×4 section on the far right? It’s a flip open spot and opens to this:

WOO HOO!

WOO HOO!

Yeah, baby! I was really excited when I won, but wasn’t sure if I’d get something that I would actually use, so when I opened it up to all the brightly colored Simple Stories DIY stuff, I was ecstatic!

In the interest of not overwhelming anyone with tons of pictures, I’m going to finish up this post here and save the other four or five weeks for a separate post. If you made it this far – thank you! I have a question for you, do you get *more* done over the summer months or do you find yourself several weeks behind before you even notice?

I’ll be linking up with The Mom Creative. I missed it last month, so I made sure to make a little note in my calendar so as not to forget this one!

 


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The School Scrapbook Project

*** This is not a Project Life post, but it is related to Becky Higgins and another of her concepts***

(Natalie's title page)

(Natalie’s title page)

For as long as I’ve had my blog, I’ve made mention of “the school scrapbook project that I do”.  It may be more commonly know as Becky Higgin’s Personal Yearbook (not to be confused with Project Life).  HERE is a blog post where she talks about her newer, digital version of the Personal Yearbook, but also gives a little back story on how it began. I’m not a very naturally trusting person when it comes to who is around my children/who is responsible for them when I am not around. I spend a lot of time volunteering at school and have since my oldest started school(let me clarify, I completely trust my girls’ teachers, but in the beginning, they were all strangers). Around the end of her kinder year I read about Becky Higgins doing the personal yearbook with her son and thought it was a great idea for a few reasons. First of all, it gives me a “reason” to be at school and know what is going on with my child. Second of all, I was already planning to make my girls their own school scrapbooks and this project would make it easier for me to get photographs of her and her friends at school without looking like some sort of stalker :)  I spoke to her first grade teacher very early on and she was so excited about the project and couldn’t wait to start. I offered to help the other first grade teachers if they wanted to do it as well and the first year I worked with Natalie’s class and two other 1st grade classes. Just like anyone else that has done this with their child’s school, I learned quite a bit that first year of what to and what not to do. The following year, Natalie moved on to 2nd grade and Sydney started kinder. Even though I hadn’t done this project with Natalie in kinder, I approached Sydney’s teacher (who was also Natalie’s) about the project before the start of the year to get her thoughts. At first, she wasn’t sure, but after giving it some thought she decided we would have the student’s copy in the beginning (which is a skill they need to practice anyway) and towards the end of the year, they would write themselves. Okay, enough words, let’s get to the pictures :) Here is a sample of one of Natalie’s layouts for this current school year: IMG_5658

left side - photo and journaling

left side – photo and journaling

right side - art work

right side – art work

We do a layout every month (sometimes two) and the teacher chooses the topic (sometimes I suggest things as well). The paper strips are 8.5×2″ and are a great way to use up patterned paper you aren’t going to use … or can be picked up at Michaels/Joanns/Hobby Lobby cheaply using coupons or when on clearance. I also get donations from parents on occasion. IMG_5661Since her class is all fourth graders, I’m trying to encourage them to give a bit more detail in their journaling instead of “I liked it. It was fun.” Some of the kids are doing this, some are not. It took me a while to finally understand that even if there is not a lot of “deep” journaling on the page or if there’s not a whole lot of effort of any kind, it’s not a reflection on how hard I work, but of the student his/her self. IMG_5662 For the “art page”, I usually bring up stamps from my personal stash along with blocks and ink and let the kids stamp to help with their illustration. It started as a way for me to feel like I was getting some use out of some neglected stamps (and sometimes an excuse to buy a new one). The kids absolutely LOVE this part! Even the youngest ones learn the “rules” quickly about what is acceptable for using my stamps and what isn’t, so I don’t really worry about my stamps getting ruined. IMG_5665   Here are some examples from Sydney, my second grader. Here is her title page: IMG_5673   Some months, the topic isn’t something that a photograph of each student will work well with. This is one example – Sydney’s class grew some plants from seed in class and I took some progress photos. It made more sense to use the same collage-style photo for each student, instead of having them each pose with their plant. IMG_5675

her journaling/photo

her journaling/photo

IMG_5680Here is a closeup of her journaling: IMG_5682 The girls have two weeks of school left, so I am at my frantic “will I get everything done?” time, but this three day weekend helped a lot! I do try to file the pages into the page protectors as we go during the school year. The first year I waited until the end and ended up staying up until midnight for about 3 weeks trying to get it all done. The only thing I really save to the end of the year (last month and a half or so) is the cover page. Since these go into 3 brad folders, I wanted to make them look a little nicer. Also, the parents don’t always know about this project, so when they are going thru their kid’s backpack that last week of school, I didn’t want this to look like just another random folder. I stamp a generic cover page and have the teachers run off black and white copies. Then at night, while I watch tv, I use my favorite Lawn Fawn alpha stamp and stamp the students’ names in colored ink. This is extra work that is so not necessary, but I know it makes the kids feel even more special. IMG_5670

(haven't finished Sydney's class yet)

(haven’t finished Sydney’s class yet)

One one last note, I just did this layout a week or so ago and wanted to share it. Last year was my busiest/craziest year (and I don’t think I’ll ever do that much again), but seeing that many happy kids made it worth all the work! IMG_4104 Okay, I think that about wraps up everything. If anyone has questions about specifics on how I get this project to work, especially with multiple classes, just leave me a comment. I will be linking up with The Mom Creative (next week) and will be getting my PL layouts back up on a regular basis real soon … in about two weeks :)


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Throwback Thursday #3

Sydney a week after her first birthday

Sydney a week after her first birthday

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I took these photos of Sydney (my youngest) back in July of 2007, about a week after she turned one. I remember this was the first time I set up a staging area for my girls and really *tried* to get some nice portraits of them on my own. Even though I’ve loved photography for as long as I can remember, I relied on a photo studio for my girls portraits up until this point. These are still some of my favorite shots of her and her stunning blue eyes – I still have these hanging up in our house :)


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Project Life – weeks 14-16

For those of you following along, you may have noticed that I skipped weeks 12 and 13 and that’s because … well, because I just realized that I never photographed them and it’s too dark to do it now. Guess those will have to wait. Onto week fourteen -

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left side

right side

right side

I used mostly the Blush core kit for this week. I knew I wanted to use the colors from my girls’ clothes and Amy Tangerine’s neon colors just didn’t quite match, so Blush it was. I even used colored ink instead of my usual black for the title card.

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I have to share this picture:

IMG_3669Anyone that lives in Texas (or a few surrounding states) will recognize that this is the inside of James Avery (jewelry store).  I started “collecting” jewelry from them around 12 or 13 years old and did it until my early 20’s. I kept the jewelry, but didn’t wear it much as I got older and just pulled my charm bracelet out about 2 years ago. This past Christmas, I had the jewelry store take off some of the charms and put them on another (sterling silver) charm bracelet my sister in law gave me. I then got a letter “N” charm put on it and gave it to Natalie, telling her that when she has a daughter, that she could give her a charm or two off the bracelet to start her own. Okay, short story long, this day Natalie decided to take the money she had saved up and go buy herself a charm or two. She ended up getting a drill team boot (she’s on her elementary school’s dance team) and a sea turtle because we are all beach lovers. Here is the journaling:

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As a side note, James Avery had a sale that started the day after where you could get a charm bracelet for free with the purchase of two charms and they were nice enough to let me “return” the charms and repurchase them to get the bracelet. Now our younger daughter has her charm bracelet started – she just doesn’t know it :) Speaking of my younger daughter:

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Her best friend has become home-schooled due to some medical issues, so Sydney was even more lost than before.  I am proud of her though, since then she has been trying hard to be brave enough to ask other kids if she can sit with them. I know I’ve said it before, but I wish there was some way I could magically give her more confidence – so many of her classmates think she is awesome (teachers’ words, not mine), but she is too shy to ask friends to sit with her or play at recess. <sigh> One step at a time.

And speaking of steps … my husband took a big one recently. He decided to leave the job he’s been at for 4+ years and move to a large company. I knew I wouldn’t be there his last day, but I wanted a “final walk out” photo, so I made him do it a few days before. Being a small office, most of the people he works with know I scrapbook/photograph everything, so one of them was laughing at him as she drove by (knowing exactly what I was doing).

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Okay, now onto week fifteen.

IMG_3678Here is the full spread for this week.

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This was such a busy week! Sunday was the Austin Capital 10K race. This year we did it as a family. Monkey ran it last year while we cheered him on, but the girls wanted to participate this year. Since they can’t keep up with daddy while he’s running, that meant I was going along. My best friend and her daughters joined us, along with another friend. There were four adults and four kids and between us all, there was running, walking and a mixture of both. I’m so proud of my girls for making it. Hell, I’m proud of myself! With my medical issues, movement of any kind can be rough, so the fact I walked over 6 miles (in raining 50-something weather) AND still got out of bed next day was pretty amazing!

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The very next day, Monkey started his new job.

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That day, Sydney requested ponytails for school. This was a HUGE deal for her. She got a pixie cut when she was about four and some kids at school told her she looked like a boy (she also prefers to shop in the boys’ dept), so she has felt like she has to look like a boy so that no one will make fun of her (understanding her lack of confidence a little more now?) She decided a few months ago to let her hair grow out long again and just recently got it to the length she could wear ponytails. I had her journal about it and we made a fun little collage with the pictures.

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The dance team Natalie is on (at school) got to dance in the high school’s Spring Show. That Monday, she had practice at the high school to get used to the stage. She was so excited!

The girls are going thru this stage where they are constantly fighting and always assume the other is doing everything just to make them mad … well, in an effort to help them move out of this stage (even just a little) I suggested they practice talking to each other. Both are dealing with girls at school that are just being mean and since they are too young for “Mean Girls” and every other high school clique movie, I thought they should talk to each other about it.

( please excuse the mattresses and mess - leftover from crashing after the 10K)

( please excuse the mattresses and mess – leftover from crashing after the 10K)

They seemed to calm down a little, but I think this process is going to take A LOT of practice :) Friday and Saturday night, Natalie had her performances. Friday night Monkey had to work a hockey game and we had to take one of her friends to the show. Sydney and I got to go backstage with Natalie and watch the show from there (which was fun) and I took them out for frozen yogurt afterwards to celebrate.

IMG_3687With so much going on this week, I ended up making a 6×12 insert. Here is the front:

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… and the back

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Okay, one more week:

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Here is the full spread – I used mostly the Midnight Core kit (I bought a small portion of the kit from someone) and photo templates from Tracy Larsen.

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I see a lot of designers whose layouts are all white or full of open space. That is so not me at all (bring on bright colors and a lot of it!), but I thought it would be fun to do a spread like that, or as close as I can get to that. I purchased these templates from Tracy Larsen and have used one or two on previous layouts, but never used them for the whole layout. They really are so pretty.

IMG_3991Okay, you know how sometimes you make your kids wear certain clothes or do certain things just so you can use certain products? Yeah, this was one of those times. I purchased a dandelion stamp a while back for a particular layout because it would complete it perfectly AND because I could use the dandelion flower section as fireworks. Well, I wanted an excuse to use the stamp again and when I spotted two random dandelions in the yard, I called the girls over.

IMG_3990I know some people like to stick to using the same style of page protector every week (and when I’m tired, I consider doing the same) but I like using different styles to challenge myself to think outside my “normal”.  I’ve used this particular style once or twice before, but for this week I just couldn’t find a way to make it fit into my white space/graphic style. I finally just chose light gray cardstock and put some black and white washi tape on it. Not really all that original, I know, but it’s better than putting something else that that just didn’t fit. (I promise, the other side of this page protector looks much cooler).

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Fast forward to Friday – the girls had off school and we had family plans to go pick strawberries at the farm. Unfortunately I was not able to make it (sometimes it really sucks doing the “right thing” and taking it easy), but Monkey took the girls (and met my best friend/her girls like we do every year). He was sweet enough to take a few pictures for me and then I snapped a couple of the berries when they got home.

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In the last two weeks I had four different people request my photography skills. The first one was a Senior portrait session with Emary. I’ve done family portraits of her before and have photographed her mom quite a bit – she was both Natalie AND Sydney’s first grade teacher. I still work with her (mom) this year doing the school scrapbook with her current class. We went to an art museum where they also do art classes to do the portrait session. They have a beautiful spot by the lake where you can walk around and see different sculptures – it made for beautiful portraits!

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Okay, that wraps up those three weeks. If you read all of this, thanks for sticking with me! I’ve been working on so many other things lately that I keep putting off posting my Project Life spreads. Big Picture Classes #NSD10k challenge this past weekend motivated me to get these layouts done and photographed. How about you – did you participate in any scrap related challenges this past weekend?

As always, I will be linking up with The Mom Creative for Project Life Tuesday/monthly.

 

 

 

 

 

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