documenting childhood: baby books

This year I’ve been devoting one week a month to a themed blog series, with daily blog posts.  I’ve talked all about project life, shared some ‘wish someone told me sooner’ parenting advice, written about ways to preserve your memories/photos, revealed our favorite things in West Seattle, taught a few easy photo editing tips & celebrated my third birthday.  This week, I’m sharing fun & easy ways to document childhood!


fun & easy ways to document childhood

If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, the content in today’s post may look a little familiar.  I shared Colin’s finished baby book back in 2013 & Jill’s last year.  I did create a little bit of new content for THIS post though so stay with me because there’s a fun freebie at the end!

It is easy to create a Project Life baby book to document your childs first year. Plus get a FREE notes sheet to stay organized (or help you procrastinate)!creating a project life baby book

I used digital Project Life to create both baby books.  Which means I designed them in Photoshop using the page templates I purchased from beckyhiggins.com.

[But, Casey!  You’re such an advocate for the Project Life App!  Why did you use Photoshop!?]  I opted for Photoshop because I created Colin’s baby book that way, before the app existed, and I was able to re-purpose a lot of content from his pages for Jill’s book.  Now that the app is available (and contains BOTH of the design kits you see in my photos), I absolutely recommend using that instead!  SO CONVENIENT!

It is easy to create a Project Life baby book to document your childs first year. Plus get a FREE notes sheet to stay organized (or help you procrastinate)!

My favorite thing about the Project Life baby book kits are the pre-designed prompt cards.  They contain fun things like ‘this months stats’ & ‘highlights & milestones this month’ (both are shown above).  I created a page spread for each month and included these cards to document everything.  Since it’s so open-ended you can get as specific as you like.

But here’s the best part:  if it’s years later and your memory is fuzzy about those baby days, then you don’t have to use that card!  Plop a photo in that space instead and NO ONE WILL KNOW that you couldn’t remember because there’s no BLANK card sitting there as a reminder!  [Did you just feel that heavy momma-guilt lift off your shoulders?  Project Life is the best.]

It is easy to create a Project Life baby book to document your childs first year. Plus get a FREE notes sheet to stay organized (or help you procrastinate)!

You can see in Colin’s pages above that I didn’t use many ‘filler’ design cards and opted to include more photos.  Switching over to Jill’s pages below, you’ll see I took advantage of a couple fillers… 1) because I LOVED these designs by Emily Ley and 2) because… well… second child.

It is easy to create a Project Life baby book to document your childs first year. Plus get a FREE notes sheet to stay organized (or help you procrastinate)!

Another thing I love about Project Life is how it allows your PHOTOS to tell the story.  If you are still shouldering some of that momma guilt about not really remembering the details of baby’s first year, let me say it again:  the photos will tell the story.  Using this system, there aren’t any blank entries or pages with memories that are ‘missing’… you dump in your photos, write down things you remember, and YOU’RE FINISHED.

It is easy to create a Project Life baby book to document your childs first year. Plus get a FREE notes sheet to stay organized (or help you procrastinate)!

page-by-page baby book layout

I’ll admit the number of prompt cards in the Project Life kits can feel overwhelming when you first sit down to start.  You can reference my layouts, page-by-page, to get ideas on how I used specific cards.  Click through both baby books here… and replicate them to save time!

 


 

free baby book notes sheet

If you’re in the thick of those early days, you may not have the time to create your pages as you go.  And that’s totally fine.  I created a quick baby book notes sheet to jot down the crucial memories throughout baby’s first year.  So when baby finally gives you a glorious 2-3 hour nap (a moment for yourself!), you can reference the notes and get to work on your book.  No need to rely on your potentially sleep-deprived memory to fill in the gaps!
It is easy to create a Project Life baby book to document your childs first year. Plus get a FREE notes sheet to stay organized (or help you procrastinate)!

Download your copy of the notes sheet–>  HERE!

final thoughts…

Alright, I can feel this post is getting a little long (I can’t help it!  I could go on & on about Project Life!) so I’ll simply direct you to some prior blog posts for more info:

  • I shared how I print my books in this post (though Becky said they’ll be releasing the ability to order photo books through the app SOON!)
  • You can download free cover templates for baby books in this post or this post!
  • Want to see more of my Project Life work?  You’re in luck… I’ve shared many posts over the years!
  • Other questions about Project Life?  Leave a comment below or shoot me an email!

2 comments
  • Jacqueline

    Casey – I have such a silly mental hurdle with the app. I like my 2-page spreads to be cohesive. So, I tend to swap out cards/pics between the pages until I am happy with the “balance”. So, I have a hard time designing one page at a time in the app. It really bugs me that I can’t “drag and drop” between the two pages. Do you have any tips on how to make that workflow easier?ReplyCancel

    • I totally get that, Jacqueline! I don’t really have a good solution… I use the Library section to see my page thumbnails side by side. Would be very cool to see a two page spread & drag/drop between them. ??ReplyCancel

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Miss Freddy is a modern photographer for fun-loving families based in Colorado while also serving clients in the Midwest & Pacific Northwest.  To learn more about my style, check out some of my work or contact me to book a session!

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