Getting Organized for 2011 -- How *I* Do It

Sorry I haven't posted for a while. I'm in a bit of a slump. I usually am after I publish my new yearbook. I'm a little burned out, need a break. And the idea of starting ALL OVER AGAIN is a little daunting. Last year I don't think I actually started my 2010 book until about May. But, I LOVE that I am completely caught up on my scrapbooking and I don't want to lose that! My world is paper scrapped from when I was about 16 to when I met my husband. Then everything is scrapped by the year since then. I love that organized feeling. It makes me happy. And seeing as I have THREE books to work on this year, I'd better get cracking or I will not be able to stay this way! So far I've only done one layout for my 2011 yearbook. Not so good. But not so bad--at least I've started! I also need to eventually start my 1-year baby book for each of my twins when they arrive. I thought about doing one book and making two copies, but I just can't bear to do that to them. They are both individuals and deserve their own books. If some of the pages are exactly the same, or only different in color, kit, or wording, then that's just fine. I'll probably do a lot of that.

So, here's what I do to start a new year and my new books:

1. Organizing Photos: Move all my 2010 photos in to a new 2010 folder. Move my 2009 photos into my external hard drive. I always keep the previous year handy becuase I still use them occasionally. Create new folders in my Pictures for January, February, and so forth. I usually create the files as I go, not all at once. Put all uploaded photos into their appropriate month. Again--I do this as I go. I make sure that when I upload photos, they are saved by date.

2. Organizing Book Files: Next I delete all the .psd files for my 2010 book. My book is saved as "Year Five" in my "Works in Progress" folder. I now move the .jpg's to my "Finished Books" folder. I create three new folders: "Year Six", "Ripley's Book" and "Scarlett's Book." I probably won't do much more on the twins' books until they are born, though I am on the lookout for some good kits to use. But all the more reason to make sure I'm all caught up with 2011 before they arrive!

3. Organizing Next Year's Book: Now I open my Excel file and delete out all the old stuff, re-saving it in my new Year Six folder. If I already have some ideas planned, I put them in. I can always move or change them later. This is just the way I do it personally--I like to be organized and I LOVE Excel, so this sheet helps me plan a lot. I know some digi-scrappers just do whatever they want in whatever order, but I just can't live that way!

4. Layout Design Plans: Ok, next I think about how I'm going to organize this year's book--do I want to do it the same way as last year? Do I want to change it up? Last year I did a month page for each month--just a dual layout for each month with pictures from that month's events, and also those pictures that are cute but I don't want to do an entire layout about. I think I'm going to do that again this year, I liked it. But I've been toying with the idea of using the SAME kit for an entire month. Only use 12 kits, and all the events of that month are in that kit. My sister did a book where the whole book was just one kit. It was very cute, very uniform, and easy to read through. Not as shocking to the senses. But...I think I'd get bored. So I don't think I'll do that. But I MAY do that for the twins' books.

I also want to think about how I'm going to document my pregnancy. With my first pregnancy, in that book, I did a dual layout every once in a while documenting my growth. So I had a "4 weeks" page next to an "8 weeks" page. Then there'd be a few other pages, and then a "10 Weeks" page with a "14 Weeks" page, and so forth. They all used the same background, had the same velum background, tag, and notepad, as shown above.

I don't want to use that many pages this time, though. So now every few weeks I write a short paragraph about my progress, and I'll probably do a four-page layout for the whole thing. I'm also making sure to take progress pictures every few weeks!

So that's how I get started. But here's the thing:

I'VE DONE MOST OF THAT NOW.  You know what that means? I need to actually START SCRAPBOOKING. No more procrastination!!

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