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  • shannanmanton

Scrapbooking Plans for 2021

Happy New Year folks! I hope 2020 treated you well (ha, joke, it sucked).

Time to take stock, make some plans and think about what I want to put on the scrapbooking to-do list. Back in September, I wrote this post on my blog - Making Plans for Making Stuff and I re-read it this morning because I have a tendency to feel invigorated in January and think I can take on all the projects (narrator: no she can't).

These were my 'yes's' from that post:

Yes to a clean slate and endless possibility every time I sit down to scrapbook.

Yes to asking myself "what do I want to make today"?

Yes to telling big stories, small stories, sublime stories, ridiculous stories, happy stories, sad stories, old stories, new stories and hard stories (and having fun doing it).

Yes to being an artist, a crafter and a documenter rather than a project manager with a hard hat.

Yes to scribbling a poem on the bottom of a photo and that being enough.

Yes to going back to basics.

Yes to simplifying.

Yes to trying new things and messing up.

Yes to worrying less about what the final product/album/book will be.

Yes to being ok with making pages just for pleasure even if they don’t have an obvious home.

Yes to all that.

Lately I've been thinking a lot about telling stories v documenting.

In my recent December Daily, I chose to focus more on deeper journaling than just reporting on what went on that day - telling stories over documenting. To me, a 'story' in my scrapbook is a longer, more detailed and richer exploration (what it's like shopping for gifts as your kids get older, how has it changed, what are my feelings on gift giving in general, how I choose gifts, where I shop) whereas 'documenting' would be something along the lines of "I finished my Christmas shopping today - thank god for Amazon Prime".

As scrapbookers we do both and of course story telling is also documenting. But I like having a distinction between the two when I'm thinking about projects and goals.

The other thing I'm thinking about is process v end product. Some projects are just fun to make even if they go nowhere, while some are hard work but the end product is so worth it (like Project Life). I want to find balance between the two.

With all that in mind, this is what I'm planning to work on this year.


My little 5x5 project (to eventually become a Blurb book). Daily Pages in digital form. A way to document the everyday in little squares. A place for quotes, journal cards, photos, silly stories, drawings, recipes, pop culture and any other bits and pieces. A place to play. (You can read about it HERE)


I enjoyed going back to 8.5x11 layouts last year so I'm planning to keep that going. Making mostly digital pages and printing them at home for an album. I'm also planning to keep adding to my Life Crafted albums because I just love the 4x8 size.

I don't have any rules about what kind of page or story goes in which album - I will be going with the flow this year. Whatever feels right at the time.


I also want to give some attention to this album project. A very simple 8x10 photo book that tells stories of my life from childhood up until I started scrapbooking (in my 30s). I am OK with having no time line for this - I'm assuming it will take a year or two. Besides dividing the book by ages (childhood, teens, 20s and 30s) I don't have any structure and don't even plan to be too strict with the chronology, just a place for old photos and stories to live. (You can read more about this project HERE).

I am not doing any kind of Project Life/year long project this year. I just finished up my planner pages for December and sent it all off to Blurb for printing. I will be so appreciative when I get that book back but I'm really happy to give weekly/monthly documenting a rest this year - I barely limped across the finish line on that one.

So in summary? I'm just going to make pages without a definite end-game this year. I might fill one little 5x5 Blurb book or I might fill ten. As for my 8.5x11 and 4x8 pages, I can just keep adding them to my albums as I make them. I have a new 8.5x11 binder on the way because last year's is almost full. I have two Life Crafted albums ready to go if I need them.

My One Little Word this year is DARE. (Oh, how I wanted it to be REST or RELAX or HYGGE, but DARE it is). I need a word that will challenge me this year, not a word I'm wishing for because I am tired and seeking comfort. This word is cheeky and will get me out of my own little box - I need that.

So in scrapbooking, I'm going to dare to try new things, make up new projects, do things my way and not feel like there are any rules. Feels pretty good already.

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