keeping up with Project Life®

A new year means a fresh new start for Project Life®! We asked our Project Life® Creative Team to share some of their favorite tips for staying on top of this wonderful year long project. Be sure to follow them so you won't miss their PL updates in our gallery!

Barbara Picinich :

  • The number one thing that has kept be caught up with Project Life the past two years was to set to the goal to blog my completed spreads every Wednesday. That meant that I had to schedule my week so that I could have a few hours on either Monday or Tuesday to make sure I got it done for the week. It totally helped keep me on track. Obviously there were weeks when we traveled or other things came up but I would always make sure to stay on track and make up the week right away when I could. I think I’ve only missed my Wednesday blog posts a handful of times in the past two years which is awesome. It never once felt like a chore and having a dedicated day or two each week to play and create something that I love really made me happy. I totally looked forward to this time for myself each week.

Deb Duty :

  • For me the fun part is putting the spreads together. The hard part is getting the photos printed. To make it easier I create a separate folder each month for my favorite photos. I add photos to the folder as I finish editing them. That way I have less to look through when I'm deciding which photos to print each week. This year my goal is to keep up with editing and printing so that I'll be ready when my kits arrive!

Lisa Truesdell :

  • After three years of Project Life, I've become an expert at not worrying when I get behind. Rather than force myself to get "caught up," I simply start back in with either a current week, or whichever missing week I feel most drawn to. I may end the year with missing weeks, but I enjoy putting each spread together and end up with a good mix of weeks from throughout the year.

Loredana Bucaria :

  • I write everything in a diary because I love to write and because in this way I can caught up with my missed weeks very quick and without missing facts or photos. I take note of things that happen and photos. Even the littlest thing that happens is in my diary.

Marcy Penner :

  • Print those photos and put them in pockets. Even if you don't get to that spread/week right away… just having the pictures there and waiting for you is a huge timesaver!!

Nicole Reaves :

  • My tip for staying caught up on Project Life would be to plan your pages. Look through your notes and memorabilia and figure out the stories you want to document for that time period. I've found that even if I can't work on the current week right away, if I can edit and print my photos according to my plan ASAP, then the creating part is a lot faster and easier because I have a rough idea of what I want to go where.

Stephanie Baxter :

  • I love the Day One app for recording my journaling ahead of time since it's the least favourite part of putting my spread together. One of the best features is that you can pair photos with journaling with this app and it even records when and where the photo was taken - so handy when it comes to working on that week's spread! I use it during the day to record funny moments or things that family or friends have said that I might forget if I don't note it down straight away. Otherwise, I just spend 5 minutes at the end of each evening documenting a little recap of what I've done that day. When I eventually come to write my journaling on the cards, I've already got everything put down into words for me, so it's just a case of deciding which stories are going to get a spot in the spread.

Suzy Plantamura :

  • Document the details of your week as the week progresses. That way if you do get behind (which I often do), it's not hard to make up past weeks.
  • Set aside a time each week to work on PL - I like to do it in front if the tv on a tray while we are hanging out as a family. I make sure my supplies are portable.
  • Do work ahead so putting your spread together is quick. Print your pics at the end of each week. Have a group of products you are going to work with. Grabbing your notes, your pictures, and your products ready ahead if time makes assembly go smooth and fast.

What are your best tips for keeping up? We'd love to hear them!

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  1. jendcnguyen says…

    A few things I do are:

    - Upload my pictures from my iphone or dSLR often each week and sort them through folders by Week then in that week by Day. Helps me when I go back to play catch up.
    - Use a lot of digital elements/Photoshop to add text/graphic to a photo. Especially when i'm behind it's the quickest way to get it done. It keeps it easy & simple.
    - Have the same format each week including a spot for my "week in review".
    - At the end of the week i'll scroll through each day of the week and have a photo i'd like to print so I have a general feel of how many photos and fillers i'll need.
    - use my Awesome Note app to document little things for the journalling part

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  2. supertoni says…

    My tips are very similar; keep up with photo edits and journaling, if you don't have time to put it together at least get the photos printed…that's always the hardest part. I also have a weekly time to work on my PL pages (every Monday while the kids are at school) then I blog it on Tuesday. Having that weekly commitment has really kept me on track.

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  3. curvedfeather says…

    I create separate photostreams for each week and place photos I want to include in there as I take them. I edit them in snapseed on my ipad during my daily subway commute and then print from my desktop which is synced with my mobile devices.

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  4. Amante_del_Papel says…

    wow is an amazing composition!

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  5. heathergw says…

    this was wonderful!!! I do many of the things listed... the only thing I can think of is using Dropbox to get all the mobile photos off everyones' phones and transfer them to my pictures folder so I can import them to LR and use the metadata to find all the photos taken that week... LR has been a major time saver for me in gathering, editing and preparing to print...

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  6. agrynolgibbs says…

    I love all the great ideas on staying caught up! Thanks, guys!

    One thing I do is use the "Notes" feature on my iPhone to keep a running document of our day-to-day life. For each day, I write 1-2 significant events or conversations that I want to remember.

    For example:

    Fri 12-13

    Sat 12-14
    Stranger paid for our dinner at Cracker Barrel

    Sun 12-15

    The entries aren't long, but they're enough to remind me of what was happening when.

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  7. artist_ju says…

    great tips. I started PL last year and fell behind. I tried to quickly "catch up" before the end of the year. Although I did get a lot done, I only made it to June before I became completely overwhelmed by the amount of photos I had to edit and how the layouts were looking too quickly done and not at all how I wanted.

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  8. princesske says…

    I have found that journalling and laying out are completely different activities for my brain. I created a weekly template in Word that I keep up to date on my computer - just a few minutes each night to stay up to date on the daily happenings; but then I print photos from my Epson personal printer in different sizes based on the "weight" of the story I want to tell and use the pocket pages fully to embellish and illustrate the week. I just print off the Word template each Sunday and I'm done! That way, my journalling is one flow and my layout is another flow. I've been "up to date" for over a year with this approach, and I LOVE it!

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  9. mugsie says…

    Great idea :) @princesske

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  10. pinkynepomuceno says…

    For journaling - I use Momento app to pull together my Twitter, instagram, and Facebok posts! And I 'jot down' little notes that i don't want other people to see :) This has really helped me keep on track with my PL.

    For photos - Cathy Zielske gave a great tip on using smart folders in iPhoto so I use this to choose my photos for the week!

    After this, it's just a matter of playing with cards and stamps and embellishments to put together a layout :)

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  11. stephybot says…

    I usually pick a Friday or Sunday to work on my week. All of my supplies are portable so I can sit in the living room and work.

    The only thing I haven't mastered is my photos, do I have to many, do I have enough!

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  12. Heather30 says…

    Hi everyone, just wanted to say all of your tips and tricks are a lot of help. This is my first year with PL. I love the idea of saving my family's day to day life. I went a little crazy buying stuff for my PL and now i'm having a hard time getting started. I think im thinking to much about it not coming out right. Anyone have more good tips for this problem. I really need the help.

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