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Black Friday Starts Now

While I wholeheartedly believe in extra special sales that happen just once a year, I’m not a big fan of don’t-blink-or-you’ll-miss-it deals.

Shopping, like scrapbooking, shouldn’t be stressful.

That’s why my Black Friday deal here at Simple Scrapper lasts a whole week – and today it begins!

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So what’s the deal?

I’m excited to announce that annual memberships are back for the next seven days. And of course, joining me for the next year comes with an extra special price!

If you’ve been thinking about joining (or longing to return) this is the absolute lowest price of the entire calendar year and the only time all year that I offer the opportunity to pre-pay for 12 months.

Click here for the Black Friday details.

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Simple Tip Saturday with Lisa Corbin-Polak

As part of our Simple Tip Saturday series this year, I’m inviting fresh voices into the mix. Today we’re hearing from Simple Scrapper team member Lisa Corbin-Polak with her simple tip.

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What is one way you simplify scrapbooking?

I make sure that all of my photos are getting to my main photo library. I first shared this tip with Simple Scrapper readers back in 2013 on how I use dropbox to upload all of my phone photos. (Automating Camera Photo Uploads) Additionally, I’ve also implemented Jennifer’s tip to have Lightroom automatically pull those photos in for me too.

What problem does it solve for you?

It solves the problem of having all of my photos in one place when I have time to scrap. (This, to me, has been the biggest advantage of the digital era!)

Why do you think it works so well?

I’m probably snapping 98% (or more) of my photos with my phone these days, so it really helps to have them all ready at my fingertips. It automates the process so I don’t actually have to think about grabbing those pictures off of my phone. It is certainly tempting to investigate a newer DSLR with one of those wifi cards so that I could have them upload automatically as well.

How can others get started with it?

Just set up a cloud account that works with your phone and your computer and follow the app’s instructions to automatically upload all your photos. (I like Dropbox, but this is not the only option.)

Simple Tip Saturdays are for sharing easy ideas to grab and run.
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My Holiday Memory Keeping Approach for 2014

I thought about titling this post “How to Scrapbook When You’ve Just Moved and Half of Your House is Still in Boxes”, but that didn’t sound full of wonder and sparkle.

As soon as I knew we were moving before the end of the year, I made my final decision on how to scrapbook the holidays. I had been considering a photo book or even a traditional mini album like I had done in past years (2011, 2012, 2013).

With so much on my plate, the best solution for me had to be one of the most simple. For me, this means including a few extra pocket pages in my 2014 album and saying that’s good enough.

I love spending time honoring this special time of year through my hobby, but extra effort isn’t in the cards for me this year. I’m totally OK with that. My time will be spent preparing this house for years of holiday memories to come!

Fortunately, simple doesn’t mean boring.

Last month I ordered a few holiday-themed cards from Studio Calico to serve as a starting point. Earlier this week I decided I would prep my page protectors by inserting the cards. It would be a 10 minute task, in theory.

Little did I know that the magic of scrapbooking would help me make a little extra time. Once I had the cards in my hands and began to imagine my spreads, I had to do just a bit more.

This 6×12 title page (Project Life Design H) will introduce a small section of two 12×12 Design A pocket pages.

My 2014 Holiday Memory Keeping Approach

The inspiration began when I spotted the silver glitter triangles while unpacking my embellishments. I had always wondered how to use them and then it hit me: trees!

My 2014 Holiday Memory Keeping Approach

From there I grabbed items from my holiday stash – phrase stickers from Cosmo Cricket, a badge from October Afternoon, a Hambly transparency, and a red star from Michaels. Plus, I finally found a great use for that calendar card from a previous Studio Calico kit.

My 2014 Holiday Memory Keeping Approach

I’ll have the back of the 6×12 and three sides of the 12×12 pages to fill with stories. The section will end with a sheet of patterned paper from Stampin’ Up divided amongst the pockets.

My Holiday Memory Keeping Approach for 2014

The guts of my pages will be filled with photos and words. I will likely put it together in just one or two sittings.

The cover page took me 30 minutes to complete. (I shared a first draft on Instagram.) Putting this together and gathering my supplies was the perfect and simple creative start to my holiday scrapbooking.

The experience was also a solid first test of my new office space. I assembled the IKEA tables myself and am looking forward to really making this space my own over the next few months. First up: curtains!

My 2014 Holiday Memory Keeping Approach

If you would like support for your own holiday memory keeping, Holiday Focus is still open for registration. With your free enrollment, you’ll get a planning workbook, an idea book, and access to a community of more than 900 simple scrapbookers.

Click here to sign up for Holiday Focus.

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Simple Tip Saturday with Allie Trumpower

As part of our Simple Tip Saturday series this year, I’m inviting fresh voices into the mix. Today we’re hearing from Simple Scrapper team member Allie Trumpower with her simple tip.

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What is one way you simplify scrapbooking?

Using “kits” of products, either created by myself or someone else, has simplified scrapbooking for me– I went from taking 2+ hours to finish a simple page, to being able to create a complex and exciting page in under 30 minutes!

What problem does it solve for you?

I used to get paralyzed with ALL of the choices– I would spend more time picking out products than I would spend on design or putting it all together– and I would always change my mind in the middle of the page and get MORE product out– more decisions!  With a kit, the decisions are minimal, and it allows me to focus on the design of the page and the story I want to tell. I can still grab “additional” products to put on the page if it needs it, but those decisions are minimal when everything is picked out from the beginning!

Why do you think it works so well?

It minimizes the decisions I need to make– I tend to over-think and over analyze and kitting takes that away! Sometimes, I just want to move product around, and sometimes I want to SCRAP… making my own kits allows me to “play” with product when I feel like “just playing” and using those kits later when I want to “serious scrap” makes that time go faster and be more productive!

How can others get started with it?

I didn’t really ‘get’ how easy and effective scrapping with a kit was until I was on a digital creative team and could ONLY use elements from ONE kit. If you’re a digital scrapper, I challenge you to make a page from ONE designer’s ONE kit (or one color palette like the BYOC at the LilyPad, and keep practicing doing that – don’t get lost in your hard drive searching for the perfect element!

 If you’re a physical scrapper, try making your own kit with your “existing” products by picking a theme or a color palette that you love.  Be sure to mix brands! Or,  challenge yourself to use parts from only ONE collection of products. If you don’t want to make your own kit, try a kit club like Studio Calico, Freckled Fawn, or Gossamer Blue– they put together the kit for you, and all you have to do is scrap!

Simple Tip Saturdays are for sharing easy ideas to grab and run.

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What I Will Remember About The House on Maple Street

One week ago we became homeowners. We’ve wanted to move for so long, but had to be patient for things to fall into place.

We’ve been taking car loads over every day, but this weekend will be the official move into our new home on Buttercup Drive:

What I Will Remember About This House

Before we say goodbye to our 1950s rental, I wanted to celebrate the things I will remember most about the house on Maple Street.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember visiting my then-long-distance-boyfriend at this house for the first time and having so many mixed feelings. It felt both perfectly right and perfectly terrifying to consider moving from DC to Illinois.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember that this is the house where we first became a blended family of four – and where I would (eventually) learn how to take photos without a flash.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how I spent so many evenings during my first year in this house sitting in a chair in the corner of our bedroom, with the door closed. As a highly sensitive introvert, transitioning from living alone with a cat to living with a husband, two teenaged boys, and a large dog was a huge adjustment.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how in this house, despite all my attempts to the contrary, I fell in love with a dog even though she shed absolutely everywhere like crazy and left us heartbroken in early 2013.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember pretending like I knew anything about gardening for approximately two weeks a year during spring mulching.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember wearing an apron often in this house as I re-learned how to cook for tastebuds different from mine. I will remember slowly introducing my family to unfamiliar foods and dishes.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember painstakingly removing the icky shag carpet and scraping the padding off the wood floors beneath – throughout the entire house. I will remember my water breaking right on to those wood floors nearly three years later.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember that we agreed to alternate putting up my fake tree and getting a real one, but by the time we moved I was totally convinced I never wanted to put up a fake tree ever again.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how just once a year I was able to tolerate the terribly ugly poles separating the dining room from the kitchen and living room.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember that by my second Christmas in this house (about 16 months) it finally felt like home.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember re-discovering a love of photography and memory keeping in this house. I will remember taking my first mirror selfie – and how it would not be my last.

What I Will Remember About This House

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember realizing that these boys would not be in this house forever and that, despite their protests, I would be taking photos of them.

What I Will Remember About This House

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember getting my first DSLR camera and learning how to actually use it, inside and outside of this house.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how every year the squirrels would eat our pumpkins long before Halloween. (Can you guess which one was mine?)

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how my best friends would brave bad weather, flight days, and crazy layovers to visit me on the prairie.

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I will remember that I turned 30 in the house on Maple Street, but that I felt more anxious about turning 34.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how I spent a good portion of the first six months of my daughter’s life feeding her and snuggling with her in a blue recliner in the corner of the tiny living room.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how our parents were so helpful in easing the transition from a family of 4 to a family of 5.

What I Will Remember About This House

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember saying that I would never let my baby sit on the icky floors of this house, and doing it anyway.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember transitioning the third bedroom from a teen boy’s clothes hamper to a sorta-office to a baby girl’s nursery.

What I Will Remember About This House

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember that there was a park just down the street from this house and the first time we event went.

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I will remember how in this house my baby turned into a little girl – and that her entire life so far has been documented with Instagram.

What I Will Remember About This House

I will remember how the big maple tree in front of our little house on Maple Street was the perfect backdrop for six years of patience, gratitude, and life-long memories.

What I Will Remember About This House

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