Note This

Happy Thursday, friends!  

It's been so dark and dreary, wet and rainy, and cold and windy around here lately that I had to do something involving warm thoughts and memories so I grabbed a random pic from a restaurant we ate at on our trip to Destin this past August.

I broke out my Mister Huey's and used a mask from a past Studio Calico kit to add some color to this layout.  I loved using the vellum speech bubbles and I really like how they look layered over the mist.  

I hid two journaling tags inside of the orange stitched pocket and layered around my photo with lots of random bits and pieces from recent SC kits.

I took this shot at the Mellow Mushroom restaurant in Destin, FL...the kids were totally posing for this one!

I hope you have a great day...TFL!


Project Life - Week 8

Happy Monday, friends!  

I have my Project Life Week 8 spread to share with you today and a bit about the process I use put my spreads together.  

I actually attempted Project Life last year in mid-March.  I made it all the way to August, but then I totally lost interest.  I was spending too much time putting the weeks together, I didn't always have a lot of great pictures or stories to tell, and I struggled with the overall design of my spreads.  I know, I know, you're not supposed to stress over all those "little things" and just get it done, right?  For me, that wasn't going to happen...I'm way to OCD when it comes to my creations and if something is going to stick, I've got to have some sort of routine or process that works and that I enjoy doing.  In the back of my mind, I knew I was going to give it another go in January...clean slate, fresh start, and it was actually one of my New Year's resolutions!

When I started PL this year, I knew I needed some sort of "game plan".  I needed a better way to keep track of my thoughts, our daily life activities, and I needed some sort of system for putting it all together in a timely manner.  I found these great planner pages (above photo) from www.marcypenner.com and they are super helpful in tracking my thoughts and activities throughout the week.  I journal the major highlights of each day and add in anything extra that I want to remember when I'm putting my weekly spreads together.  They're free and I highly recommend using them to streamline the PL process!

Another part of my PL "game plan" is having a few reoccurring elements in my spreads each week.  This helps me keep things a bit more cohesive.  I like to have a screenshot of the weekly weather forecast in our area, a "date card", and a filler card that has the week number on it (see photo below).  With these elements already in place, I can spend a little free time before the week is even over setting up my spread.  I typically use the Design A page protectors from Becky Higgins and I start my weeks on Mondays, not Sundays, which is just a personal preference :)

I also find it helpful to gather supplies and embellishments that I want to use before I choose my photos.  I don't always have a color scheme in mind at the beginning of the week, but once I start sorting through my stash, one becomes evident pretty quickly.  Last year, I tried to choose my photos first and it was a HUGE mistake, at least for me, anyway.  I'm much more inspired when I have the color scheme already chosen and I can add or take away certain elements when I'm putting the spread together at the end of the week.  I find it's easier to take something away then to spend too much time searching for just the right filler card or embellishment at the last minute :)

Another timesaver I came up with are these "photo fillers" I made out of some scrap card stock.  I'm a mover.  I like to move things around (a lot!) before I glue them down.  I've always been a girl who likes to have a lot of options and who likes to exhaust every last idea or arrangement before I commit to a final design, ha!  So before I waste time and photo paper, I place these "photo fillers" on my pages to give me an idea how my spread is going to look without all that commitment.  This has helped me out tremendously!  I just cut out some scrap card stock in the sizes that I use most in my PL and labeled each card so I know what size to print when it's time.  Such a simple, but effective idea :)

At the end of the week (usually on Saturday or Sunday), I start sorting through my photos.  I've found that if I make time to do this on a certain day each week, it helps me keep up my PL routine.  I use my iPhone 4s as my main photo-taking device for Project Life...it's just too handy not to.  I also post to Instagram (username @adriennealvis) daily, which helps me remember key moments from my week, as well.  Some weeks I have tons of pics and some weeks I don't.  On the weeks where there aren't a lot of photos to choose from, I decorate and embellish more "filler" cards or try to add journaling cards about things that are currently happening, things that I'm into (see photo below), pop culture events, etc.  There is always something that can be recorded, sometimes you just have to think outside of the box or think, "what would someone fifty years from now want to know about our daily lives?".

Sometimes, I like to mix things up a bit and make a few of my elements "interactive".  I also don't love my handwriting so sometimes I hide it...

I hid my journaling about my son losing his second tooth behind the manila tag.  Just add a little washi to both sides of where you want it to open and voila, you have an instant interactive hidden journaling spot!

I even added a little clear pouch with the glitter that the tooth fairy had left behind in his room in one of the 4x6 pockets!

And here's what page 1 of my spread looks like...

And page 2...

And here's a look at the full spread...

Ok, so let's recap and break it down in a few simple steps...

1.  Keep notes throughout the week.
2.  Choose your color scheme before you print your photos.
3.  Set aside a specific time each week to work on completing your spread.
4.  Don't stress too much...if you miss a week, try condensing it and making a spread into two weeks.
5.  Have fun and try different approaches to see what works best for you!

So there you have it...a peek at how I attack this amazing project!

Here's a list of some of the tools that I use in each weekly spread...

1.  Date stamper.  I have several made by different companies.  I really like my Dear Lizzy one.
2.  Wood veneers.  I buy mine from Studio Calico and Freckled Fawn.
3.  Tiny scissor snips and spray ink.  I like Color Shine by Heidi Swapp and Mister Huey's from SC.
4.  A good journaling pen.  I prefer a felt tip Sharpie or a Smash one from K&Company.
5.  Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher.  I literally can't do any kind of paper project without this!
6.  StazOn ink.  This is the only ink I use on anything.  And it smells like a cherry limeade, which is a bonus!

I also want to say that I am all about using printables for this project.  I don't have enough time to make my own journaling and filler cards so I prefer to print them out from my home printer once I've downloaded them from the Internet and then embellish them (or not) to my liking.  My favorite printables come from Studio Calico, HelloForever, Life.Love.Paper, and Blinks of Life.  I also use the digital Project Life Seafoam Edition Core Kit which is also fabulous.  You can find it at AC Digitals.  There are also a ton of free printables that you could use that you can find online, try Googling "project life free printables".  I am patiently waiting for my Studio Calico Project Life kit...been on the waiting list since January, so I'm pretty excited about that!

Ok, I think I told you all I can about the way I compile my spreads for Project Life, but I'm sure there's something that I've forgotten and will remember when I go to bed tonight :)  I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on this project and I hope you'll give it a try...it really is worth it!  I promise!!!

Have a great day and TFL!


My Shadow

Happy Wednesday!  

I have a layout to share with you today...

My little girl (who's about to turn 4, yikes!) is my shadow in EVERY sense of the word.  And I love it. Well, most of the time :)  But sometimes mommies need a short break and she's starting to learn that a little bit better as she gets older.  I found this photo that I took of the two of us waiting to go into school one day and I was inspired by our silhouettes/shadows.  She looks so tiny next to me now, but they grow up so quickly that I know when I look back at this one day I'll get all teary eyed and weepy, but in a good way :)

Once again I used a few pieces from the February SC kits and random bits I had lying around.  I honestly can't get enough of those BG letters and have used them on everything recently!

I hid my journaling tag inside of the grey chevron envelope and it reads..."We've been inseparable since you were born and now you are doing everything that I do and even saying some of the same phrases that I say.  Sometimes it's frustrating having a "shadow", but at least I know the sun is shining when you're around and I'm in a happier place!"

Well, that's it for today...I hope you're having a great week!  TFL!


Project Life - Week 7

Week 7 already!  I still can't believe how fast time is flying!  

Honestly, this week wasn't too great...but that's how it goes, right?  Some are good, some are bad...you win some and you lose some, yada, yada, yada....

Anyhow, here's a look at my Project Life spread for Week 7...

I went with the tradish Valentine color scheme for this week...red, white, and black with a few pops of turquoise.  

I didn't take as many photos as I had hoped to at the beginning of the week due to half of us getting sick again.  To remedy this, I added in some of the kids' Valentines they received at school and I even stuck a few vintage Valentines in a couple of pockets that I found earlier in the week when I went junking with a good friend.  How funny is that "Valentine Dinner" card?

I used some Valentine inspired printables from HelloForever and bits and pieces from some of my old Studio Calico kits.

The lighting has been horrible in my house lately because of rain and the dreary days that this month seems to bring...so I apologize for the not so great pics :(

My Valentine's day was not special in any way and that's ok...the kids had a great time at their school parties and that's all that mattered to me this year.  

I didn't do all of this "love theme" stuff for just Valentine's Day...my husband and I celebrated our 7 year anniversary on the 17th.  I also thought it was pretty cool that we had 7 years on the 17th day of the month on the 7th week of the year :)  I'm all sentimental like that when it comes to numerology, lol!

How did you spend your Valentine's Day?  

Have a good one and TFL!  


Love Life

Happy Saturday, friends!  

A weekend post is rare for me, but I wanted to share a layout with you that I recently completed.  I haven't posted much this week and it's been bothering me :(  I've been busy working on different projects that I can't share quite yet, so that's mainly the reason for the slow bloggy week :)  

I used some new goodies from my February SC kits, my favorite are the wood veneer arrows...love me some arrows :)

I've needed a lot of reminders about staying positive lately and that's where the inspiration for this layout came from.  The self-portrait is from my Instagram feed earlier in the week.  The comment I posted said, "I'm smiling even though I've been up since 3, my son's sick again, and I'm just downright grouchy...#gottakeepsmiling...now add a sick hubby, daughter, and cancelled Valentine/anniversary plans to that and you have my week, lol!  It's all good though ;)  I'm determined next week WILL be better!

How do you stay positive?

Have a great weekend and TFL!


Project Life - Week 6

Happy Wednesday!  Wow, could this week go by any faster?!?!  So much going on and so much to do! 

I have Week 6 of my PL completed, so here we go...

Week 6 was another "normal" week around our home.  I got hooked on "swapping" (online yardsaling), the weather warmed up for a few days and made me long for spring, and we celebrated my youngest son's 6th birthday.

I had a few more photos then I originally thought so I had to pare them down and will eventually add a sleeve with more birthday photos...eventually...

I used some very narrow washi on top of the yellow chevron filler card and I love the "watercolor" effect it gave it.

I used lots of printables from HelloForever and a few bits and pieces from random SC kits for this week's spread.

And here's the full spread...

I hope you have a wonderful day and TFL!


All Girl & Lovely

Hello friends!  I hope everyone had a great weekend :)

I have a layout to share with you today...

My daughter is always dressing up in her Tinkerbell costume (left over from Halloween, of course!)  She is so girly and into everything pink, fluffy, and soft, right now.  I was so inspired by the colors in my photo that I couldn't resist making a whole layout using those colors!

I also used some Freckled Fawn star bits and I must say that they are AWESOME!

The "love" heart cut is from the Bright Ideas class at Studio Calico.

I also used a few Dear Lizzy products and some leftover paper from one of my December SC kits.

There ya have it...short and sweet today as I am trying to clean house, do laundry, and work on Week 6 of my PL!  Have a good one and TFL!


Anything You Want

Happy Friday!

I have a layout to share with you today that I made using some of the awesome printables from the Bright Ideas class and one of my favorite photos of my daughter, Avery...

I also used paper and embellishments from my January Studio Calico kit +Add-ons for this layout.  I layered the large printed vellum sheet over another sheet of patterned paper.  I really like this look :)

That adorable turquoise stitched pocket was perfect for the sentiment that I stuck inside of it that reads...

This layout will probably end up in a frame on the wall of my daughter's room...I want her to remember  how important it is for her to grow up having big dreams and never letting anything or anyone get in her way...I want her to remember that she can do anything she puts her mind to and that her father and I will always be there to help support her and her brothers reach their goals.  Always.

Have a wonderful weekend...TFL!!!


Project Life - Week 5

Hello friends!

I've got my Project Life Week 5 spread to share with you today...

Week 5 was pretty normal around our household...finally, a normal week...ha!  

I used some of my Seafoam Kit and some Darling Dear printables, as well as bits from my January SC kit for this week's spread.

In a nutshell, Week 5 was spent making preparations for my youngest son's birthday party (he'll be six this Sunday!), wearing jeans for the first time in weeks (seriously, it's been weeks), lots of wild and wacky So. Illinois weather, receiving lots of happy mail, and spending time with the hubs who's been hanging around the house a lot more lately due to a lull at work.

And here's the full spread...

So there it is!  How did you spend your Week 5?
I wish you a wonderful Wednesday!  TFL!