A Project to Recap your Summer

August 18, 2011

Summer is a special time of year for me because I teach as my profession. Even though I still teach during the summer, it is at a reduced load and I am able to work from home. The pace of my life and my family’s life is much different during the summer.

For this reason, I try to do as many non-work related tasks as I can during these few short summer months, like completing household projects and trying new recipes. I know I am not alone in finding the season of summer an inspiring time to scrapbook.

My RSS feed regularly contains posts about scrapbooking about summer. Here are a few of my favorites:

Big Picture Classes is even offering a class called Picture Summer. Summer seems to be the season to scrapbook.

I decided to do my own summertime scrapbook a few months ago having been inspired by things like Project Life or December Daily, but have been unwilling to commit to year-long Project Life style project at the point in my life. I’ve thought that summer, however, provides a perfect opportunity to do something like this. Well, it is now the middle of July and my summer vacation will be over in about a month. I have not been taking daily photos or collecting memorabilia from my daily life for a summertime scrapbook project.

At first I thought I would just do 30 days of summer and just do a daily scrapbook over 30 days. I just did not find this too inspiring and still did not want to make this type of daily commitment. Clearly, I have commitment issues.

Instead of a daily scrapbook or even attempting to memorialize the summer of 2011 in a scrapbook, I’ve decided to keep things simple and just focus on Summer Stories. So what does this look like?

Step One: List of Topics

I started by brainstorming a list of the stories that remind me of summer. I want to record the things that remind me of summer, not just things that happen this summer. Here’s my list:

I’ve included things like summer projects, eating outside, and reading. I’m not going to list all the items here, because I want you to come up with your own list that is special to you.

I’m not sure all of the stories on my list will end up in this particular scrapbook, but now I have some focus on which stories I want to think about.

Step Two: Decide on Your Scrapbook’s Format

After taking Scrapbook On the Road, I realized that I want to do my summer album in the same type of style. I want something that I can easily add to and change up at the same time. I want something where I can use my supplies on hand rather than buying a bunch of new stuff for the project as I am working on practicing minimalist scrapbooking.

Step Three: Decide How You Want to Tell Your Stories

Some of the stories I want to tell are conducive to list-writing (summer projects, reading, new TV series, and food). I began by writing some of the stories:

I already have photos for some of the stories, so I pulled these photos for inclusion in this album. I don’t have photos for some of the other stories, so I am keeping a mental checklist of the stories that need photographs.

My project is not complete, but it is definitely on its way. The beauty of this project is that if I don’ finish it this summer, I can work on it again next summer because the Summer Stories are just about the season and not year-specific.

Summer Stories is a book about the things that remind me of summer. These are things that I think of whenever I think about summer.

Do you scrapbook about summer? How do you scrapbook your summer stories?

Stephanie Medley-Rath is a scrapbooker and sociologist. She studied scrapbookers for her dissertation research and blogs about her study at Scrapworthy Lives. She is writing her first e-book about market research for the scrapbook industry and hopes to make it available in September. She also teaches sociology at her local community college and blogs about sociology at a still unnamed site. You can find her on facebook, twitter, and pinterest.

 

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22 Comments

    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      Very nice! I love building the base and then filling it. I think it is my new favorite way to scrapbook. 🙂

      Reply
  1. grannymike

    I really enjoyed reading about how and why you scrap your summer. I, too, liked your categories — great for triggering memories and keeping one on track. As retired teacher, I understand your take on summertime activities. However, I never scrapped at all while I was teaching, so that was never a part of my summer. I digi scrap only, but summer to me is an opportunity for more fun things to scrap as there is more family time, more time with the grandkids, etc. Thanks so much for sharing your perspective.

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      Thank you! I like that I decide not to make it about one year and instead about the season in general. My semester officially starts tomorrow and I have not finished the album. I’ll probably take some time for it in a month or so and then leave the rest for next summer when I can add more summer stories.

      Reply
  2. LeAnn

    I like this approach to covering large periods of time, as opposed to events. It is easy to get overwhelmed with the “projects” I put on my list. This seems to take the pressure off a bit, yet still capture memories.

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      Thanks. It definitely feels less pressured than an “event-based” approach.

      Reply
  3. jules p

    This is such a neat idea. I would have never thought to write about certain seasons-each year. Thanks for sharing that idea. I had thought about making one for this summer. Now I can!

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      Thanks for the comment. You should do it! Now that I’ve done summer, I think I might eventually do the other seasons, too.

      Reply
  4. Cindy

    I was a chronological scrapper but found that I was getting really behind timewise – and like you, I found that smaller projects seemed more manageable and gave me a greater sense of accomplishment! I haven’t done a summer album (that will go on the list) but I do like doing mini albums of our summer vacations and I found that we capture a lot of our summer activities when I make mini books of our activities with summer visitors! Good luck in the upcoming school year – and with all the events in the fall like pumpkin patches, autumn leaves and thanksgiving, maybe your fall album won’t be far behind! 🙂

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      I only recently have got I to mini books. I am really glad I have Tried them out. Now the problem is too many ideas for mini books!

      Reply
  5. stephj

    Great ideas! I am planning to make a Shutterfly album for my summer memories. I find it a quick and easy way to document a lot of memories.

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      I like making shutter fly books for gifts. I get to frustrated by their limitations for my own use. Thanks for commenting!

      Reply
  6. Connie tacazon

    Summer is the hardest time for me to scrap. Even though the days are longer they seem to go by so much faster with the kids around. I like your list idea and just keeping it simple. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      Yes, summer is always surprisingly busy. I am really happy I opted for this approach.

      Reply
  7. Neda

    This is something I’ve been wanting to do since my son was born (he’s 2.5 now). I love this idea to cover the past few vacations we’ve been on or even for our next vacation. I think it’s great to break it down into little projects instead of trying to tackle one huge project. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      I think that would be awesome to do something like that to chronicle several vacations. Great idea!

      Reply
  8. KittenJen

    I usually scrapbook by the year, one book per year, events in chronological order. I did once make a mini scrapbook for a special trip we took one summer, and while my kids love looking at it, I always feel a void in that year’s scrapbook where those vacation photos could have been.

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      Thanks for commenting. My 12×12 scrapbooks are chronological. I usually still make a 12×12 layout or two of whatever the mini-book subject is so that I don’t have that void. I don’t always do this, but more often or not I do. I usually make those pages with my favorite photos from whatever it is or make it more of a summary of whatever it is.

      Reply
  9. Tamsin

    What a lovely idea to document the summer, a great idea for a summer project for kids too! When I was little both my parents were in education so we had long summer vacations camping in France. I did a scrapbook of one holiday and stuck in ice lolly sticks with jokes on, ticket stubs and pretty leaves etc. Looking back at it now it’s funny to see the things that I considered to be important and special as a child and brings back such wonderful memories.

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      That would be fun for kids in the summer. I’ve looked back at some of the random things I used to save and today, most of those random bits I end up throwing out. If I had scrapbooked them as a kid, then I might think about saving more of those random bits. Thanks for commenting.

      Reply
  10. connie tacazon

    Actually your summer stories is inspiring me to do a holiday or christmas stories album. That is the hardest time for me to scrap and focusing on the season instead of the year or the event would be great.

    Reply
    • Stephanie Medley-Rath

      Have you ever done Ali Edwards’ December Daily (http://aliedwards.com/projects/december-daily)? I think that would be a neat way to chronicle one Christmas. I did start a Christmas album a couple of years ago. I put all my Christmas layouts in this album. I store the album on a shelf, but place it under the Christmas tree each year for us to look at. Thanks for commenting.

      Reply

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