A Word About Photography

Well, we can’t exactly put together a baby scrapbook without talking about photography! Having worked as a professional photographer, I will say that a good camera does NOT make you a good photographer. It helps, yes, but case in point on the photo below.

I handed my very expensive camera to a guy who was also holding a very expensive camera…and, well, you can see what happened:

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Yep, I think he missed the point of the photograph here.

If you are intentional about the photos you take, your album will be that much more meaningful and give context to the stories you tell.

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(This post is from my 31 days to a baby album series. For more information, head over here.)

Baby Mementos

Sometimes I get really sentimental and want to hold on to everything. Other times, I get flooded with the feeling that there is just too much stuff and then I go on a massive decluttering session.

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I struggle a lot with my children’s stuff. Yes, everything they touch is precious, but if I don’t take the time to select some things to keep while getting rid of the rest, none of it will be special and it’ll all be clutter because it’s too much. They already have a well-documented childhood…waaaaaay more photos in a year than I have in total of my own!

This is what I’ve decided to keep in their baby books/memorabilia box:

  • Bunny’s first pair of shoes that she picked out herself
  • A couple of clothing items my mom crocheted
  • Coming home from the hospital outfits
  • Bangles that Nagini wore until recently
  • Paper decorations that we made from Bunny’s 1st birthday

Other things I will probably add later on:

  • A small lock of hair when they get their first haircuts
  • Their favorite outfits that they always want to wear
  • A couple of clothing items that I’ve made
  • Special Christmas ornaments
  • Their lovey/stuffed animal (Yea, that’s not happening for a while, if ever!)

I don’t want to have a huge box of stuff, but I will definitely reserve the space to keep a couple of special boxes. We’ll see how it goes….

What are you keeping for your kids?

baby31series(This post is from my 31 days to a baby album series. For more information, head over here.)

Organizing Your Photos and Memorabilia

Coming up with a system to track all the photos, cards, and all things baby is not a really difficult task. The hardest part is maintenance.

You have to make the effort to stay on top of everything or you will just randomly throw things onto a pile to deal with later, kind of like what I have going on this shelf in our office:

DSC_9506 If that works for you, go for it. But, I would suggest at least a semi-organized approach.

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I used a gift box and put cards, paperwork, and random things and stored it all in there to go through all at once.

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A better option would be to set up a binder and divide it into months or depending on the number of envelopes you have, into sections (like pregnancy, baby, month 1, etc.)

Photographs
Create a folder on your computer and label it Baby Album. Begin by creating folders for how you will document baby. This is important to make sure that it becomes a habit. You have a bit more leeway if you’re doing this monthly, but if you are planning on documenting your baby album weekly, you need to make a habit of doing this.

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I created monthly folders and scheduled time at the end of the month to copy my favorite photos taken of the month into each folder. When there was a print sale (I use Shutterfly for my everyday printing), I would have large batches of photos.

I stayed more organized by re-naming the files, so it would read something like, BABYNAMEMonth07.jpg and made sure the back of the print would be labeled with the file name. That way, when my order arrived, I easily slipped my prints into envelopes sorted by month.

This saved me from not having to search through my computer to figure out when the photo was taken. Buy/make/use little labeled envelopes, like this:

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You don’t have to be organized in everything, but you should be organized just enough with what works for you.

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(This post is from my 31 days to a baby album series. For more information, head over here.)

Organizing Your Space and Supplies

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Create a designated space for you to scrapbook. Of course, if you’re a digital scrapbooker, you’ll be wherever your computer is located.

For paper scrapbooking, I’ve worked inside our bedroom closet, on our office desk, the dining table, and yes, our bedroom floor. I was able to move around with relative ease because I was pretty organized about keeping all the things together.

This is my current space right now, on the kitchen table, being put to good use with a project or two that I’m working on.

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Scrapbook Supplies
Usually my supplies start out really organized, in specific containers, but I’ve come to accept that I am just a really messy crafter. I make random piles and stuff gets moved around (see photo above).

Do you have space to do crafts or do you move around like me?

baby31series(This post is from my 31 days to a baby album series. For more information, head over here.)

Including Other Perspectives

When I made my children’s baby albums, I wanted to include some notes or thoughts from my husband. Although he flips through albums I’ve made and is supportive of my hobby, I wouldn’t count on him to spend an evening scrapbooking with me!

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Instead, I came up with a couple different solutions to include him in the album. I took screenshots of his Facebook status posts for our first child.

I also found a variety of prompts on Pinterest, printed it out on cardstock, and then gave it to him to fill out, which helped his “non-creative” (as he puts it) brain. I asked him list some of his hobbies and interests on a journaling card.

You can also include other family members too if you wanted. If this album is for another child, have his/her siblings share their own thoughts and feelings.

A few other ideas to get others involved:

  • What name would you choose for baby? Why?
  • Guess the baby’s birth date and/or stats.
  • Write down three personality traits you want the baby to have.
  • What do you think baby will be when s/he grows up?

baby31series(This post is from my 31 days to a baby album series. For more information, head over here.)