Monday, October 06, 2008


Hi :)

Getting ready for a scrapbooking retreat always gets me focused on my photos and the process I use to scrapbook. Or in my case, not to scrapbook. I honestly haven't done much of it at all lately and that's not good. I needed some simplification, something attainable. I sat down a few weeks ago and wrote out some new scrapbooking goals for myself:

1. All albums matching (black) and spine-labeled - I'll be using the American Crafts D-ring albums. Right now only two of them match and I don't have them displayed nicely.

2. Reorganize albums into categories - Family Life, Christmas, Other Holidays, School, Scouts, Vacations, Special Events. Right now they are only in chronological order with no sorting.

3. Keep a running list /notebook of layouts I want to work on, choosing layouts based on Stories and Photos instead of what holiday is approaching or obligatory events. This includes keeping a list of funny stories or daily things that I want to remember.

4. Once in a while, dedicate a mini-album to a special event with lots of photos or to a story/memory I want to capture or make sure is passed on to Noah. These will be 8x8 or smaller. I have about 15 Maya Road and 7Gypsies blank chipboard albums, ready to go. Ideas for this - a special weekend trip, a cub scout campout, "What You Don't Know About Your Parents" silly facts album for Noah, etc. When I saw Ali's new book was about to come out, I immediately preordered it. (pictured above) A perfect motivator and idea source for me for this new goal. I'm really excited about this one. :)

I've never felt obligated to scrapbook every photo. Never had that "scrapbooker's guilt" and I'm glad. That's probably why I don't have that many albums and layouts. And that's ok. It sure will make this reorganizing of my process easier! And not scrapbooking every photo allows me that creative freedom that I love with lots of patterned papers, color, and texture. I don't want to leave tons of heavy albums. I want to leave some stories, memories, lessons, a few examples of my creativity expressed on pages, and a tangible expression of my love for my family.

Have you made any changes lately in your scrapbooking and/or creative process? I'd love to hear about them!

Simplifying some family dinners as well. :)
Tonight we are having Creamy Tomato Basil Soup and grilled ham/mozzarella/field green sandwiches. Sounds complicated but it's not. Here are the recipes:

Creamy Tomato Basil Soup (double the recipe and freeze some for another autumn night!)

4 c. crushed tomatoes (I like the brand Cento- yellow can)
2 1/2 c. tomato juice (I use an organic brand in a glass jar)
1/2 c. cream (I use half and half)
1/2 c. milk (your choice, but whole milk is creamier; You can use all milk and no cream if you prefer a lower fat version, just won't be creamy)
1 c. chicken stock
12 fresh basil leaves
1/4 lb. (1 stick) butter or margarine
salt and pepper to taste
fresh grated parmesan cheese

Simmer tomato juice and crushed tomatoes for 30 minutes in a large stockpot over medium low heat. Remove about 2 cups of the tomato liquid from the pot, pour into a blender, and add the 12 basil leaves, blending together until basil leaves are chopped. Add tomato mixture back to stockpot. (Alternative: If you have one of those hand mixers that you can stick right into the pot, use that to blend the basil leaves into the tomato mixture. Easier!) Add the cream, milk, stock, butter/margarine, and some salt and pepper to the pot and stir. Allow to simmer for 30 minutes. Serve with fresh grated parmesan sprinkled on top. Yum!

Grilled Ham/Mozzarella Sandwiches -
Shaved ham
mozzarella cheese
field greens or favorite lettuce
spicy mustard
multigrain bread (I bought a loaf of frozen multigrain bread and baked it earlier today; will slice it for the grilled sandwiches)
Oh, check out my Playlist on the right sidebar.
That was fun to make! Just a few favorites.
Have a wonderful evening!

"Lord, reform Thy world, beginning with me."
- Anonymous


Jennifer said...

Those recipes sound great...especially with the cold weather that's on it's way!

As far as scrapbooking goes...I've given myself permission to not feel guilty that I'm not "caught up". I just take it one layout or mini book at a time and that's it. When I'm done with one I congratulate myself and say "Great job". It's so much more gratifying when I do it that way.

Crafty P said...

OOO, that tomato soup sounds good. I've been making Martha's, very good and simple!

listening to your playlist as I read your post- I chose Alison Krauss- love her voice.

I've been taking bps classes to jumpstart my creative process and get scrapping. i fall into the too few hours in a day category. i end up not scrapping at all. working on the daily photo challenges lately and getting details down. it's a good thing.

ps. loved the george eliot quote from the other day. I need to get some favorite quotes matched up with some photos and make a mini album just like that!

Anonymous said...


I saw where you said you were using the American Crafts D-ring albums. Curious to know what is it you like about the D ring albums. I have considered switching next time I need to purchase an album, but not sure if I would like it as well. Would a two page layout look the same as it would in a post bound?


Sandra Collins said...

that soup sounds fantastic!! That book is on my wish list too!

Lily said...

great goals but don't be too hard on yourself. Baby steps, Baby!

Heidi said...

That soup sounds delish! I have a basil plant that needs to be used up before it freezes next week and this sounds like the perfect thing to use it for. Yum! Thanks for sharing!

RagsNehali said...

I am glad to have come across your blog through 2peas.. your work is beautifuL!!

courtney gregory said...

I still need to get out and get Ali's new book! I'm so excited for next weekend. I organized my supplies into the new baskets I bought at HL yesterday. :)

Garden Antqs Vintage said...

Those recipes look really good, will have to try out the tomato basil since that's my fav soup. Thanks for stopping by, Theresa

Pearl Maple said...

Great idea to keep a log of little things and special moments that you want to scrap, it is too easy too lose track of them and focus on the major holidays.

Diane said...

Hi Jennifer!
I love your idea of using all black albums so that you can display them nicely. I have always picked just whatever color my kids like or maybe the mood I'm in.
If I were to have them out, they would not match. I just might use your idea. :)
Thanks for sharing