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Challenge, Scrapbooking

One Little Word

The last time I picked a One Little Word for the year was in 2013. My word was present. I wasn’t really scrapbooking back then, so I didn’t participate in the community surrounding One Little Word, but I did manage to focus on that word throughout the year, and it actually ended up changing the way I see the world.

Focusing on the present allowed me to fully notice and appreciate all those little beautiful moments that happen throughout the day and that make up a good life. The afternoon sun filtered through the trees. The smell of onions caramelizing in the pan. Sitting down to drink a perfect cup of coffee. Having a laughing fit with JK over something silly. Finding happiness in all those little instagramish moments made me feel happier overall than I had in…forever.

I used to think that happiness was a constant state of being and that it was probably unattainable for me, but I’ve learned that no one is happy all the damn time. But happy people are generally content in their lives, focus on the positive, and find happiness in the little things. I tend to have a black or white, either/or view of the world in general (I’m totally working on that), assuming that a person is either happy or not happy. That is so, so wrong, and 2013 was the perfect time for me to learn that lesson. I was going through fertility treatments, getting the double blow of sad, hopeless feelings and out-of-whack hormones, but I still think of 2013 as one of the happiest years of my life. There were just so many good moments throughout that year, and for the first time I was able to really live in those moments instead of dwelling on the past (there was obviously still some worrying about the future, given the whole infertility treatment thing, but still).

Fast-forward to 2016, and I’m ready for another word. The one that immediately came to mind is grow. I feel like I have grown a lot since becoming a mother – I’m learning how to be less self-centered (this is an ongoing education, especially on these 30-minute nap days *insert frustrated emoji here*), and how to put things into perspective, which makes some of the things that used to seem huge and scary to me look a little less intimidating. But there’s a lot of room to grow, a lot of potential that remains untapped. I feel like I’m ready to step outside of my comfort zone a little bit. I’m going to be doing some things that are really hard for me, but if there’s anything I’ve learned over the last couple of years, it’s that YES I can do hard things.

First on that list of hard things? I, a massive introvert who is terrified by anything resembling public speaking and even loathes talking on the phone, said yes to be on a podcast! My natural inclination was to run screaming from that proposition, but I couldn’t say no to my favorite Scrap Gals. You can listen to the episode here (or in your podcast app) – I haven’t listened to it myself, because that would be horrifying, but JK listened to it and claims I didn’t embarrass myself too much (he probably just loved the comments that were made about him).

The second thing? Putting myself out there and applying for a spot on Ali Edwards‘ Creative Team – and I got it! I’m still amazed. Ali has been my scrapbooking guru for so long, so this is a huge honor for me.

There are much bigger challenges ahead though, and I’ll be documenting my progress and my successes (and very likely some failures) in my One Little Word album as the year goes on. There are some things I am really, really looking forward to, and some things that terrify me so much that my stomach is in knots just thinking about them. But that’s how you grow, right?


Project of the Year: Finishing Albums

Catching up on December Daily

I really hoped I would finish December Daily while it was still December, but it’s not quite done – instead, it’ll have to be the first installment of my big scrapbooking project o’2016: Ingunn Actually Finishes Albums for Once!

In addition to December Daily, I’m also going to finish my Week in the Life album, get my vacation album up to date, finally finish this mini album from the Southwest (which is my favorite project yet and I have no idea why I never finished it), and possibly maybe even finish the album about our honeymoon in India? Feel free to come here and nag med about my progress. Hopefully my resolve will last longer than most of my New Year’s resolutions usually do.

Albums, December Daily, Scrapbooking

Decemberish Dailyish

I’m always excited about Christmas, but this year my cheer level is off the charts – it’ll be Nora’s first Christmas as a somewhat functional human being, and I can’t wait to share all our traditions with her (and make some new ones, too).

I want those memories documented in an album we can pull out every year around this time, so for the first time ever, I’ll be participating in December Daily. Except I started it in November. And I’m focusing on the highlights, which might not necessarily happen every day. So… Decemberish Dailyish it is!

Decemberish Dailyish

I’m using a gold 6×8 album with divided page protecters from Seven Paper, and I’ll be using a mix of new products and stuff I’ve been hoarding for years. Looking at what I’ve made so far, I’ll just assume that some recurring themes will be gold, stars, and oh so many deer heads and antlers.

Decemberish Dailyish

I was planning on starting my album with Thanksgiving, but then we went on a really fun hike in the snow the weekend before. We sang Christmas carols as we walked through the woods and Nora played in the snow, and I just couldn’t not include it.

Decemberish Dailyish

Found this old Studio Calico card with gold and stars. Score.

Decemberish Dailyish

Decemberish Dailyish

This little conversation I had with two friends who have kids about the same age as Nora made me crack up on one of those kind of long tiring, nap-refusal days, so I printed a screen capture of it. It’ll be cool to look back on in 15 years – will we still be using our phones for everything? Sending text messages? Using emojis?

Decemberish Dailyish

I found this star transparency in my stash and added it in between pages for some breathing room. I tend to use too many photos in projects like this, so I’m trying to add some white space and breathing room here and there.

Decemberish Dailyish

Nora is in love with the star we got at IKEA. We had one when I was growing up and I’ve been looking for one for years, but never found one in the U.S. until now. It hangs in the window and she’s obsessed with it.

Decemberish Dailyish

The next page covers Thanksgiving. We’ve really embraced this holiday even though it’s not celebrated in Norway and we don’t have family here. It’s just a really good excuse to get together with our fellow geographically orphaned friends and eat pie.

Decemberish Dailyish

Something very special happened the day after Thanksgiving, but it’s not my story to share, so I wrote it down on a tag and hid it behind the gold arrow paper.

Decemberish Dailyish

Black Friday was #optoutside day! We went for a short hike in a local park, and Nora got to play on the freezing beach. I added the #happy button to go with the whole hashtag thing. I also had to mention Dansgiving, which this introvert sees as the highlight of Thanksgiving – every year on Black Friday, JK and I snuggle up on the couch, watch Dan in Real Life, and eat leftovers. It never gets old. This page wasn’t very Christmasy. Maybe the #happy button needs antlers?

Decemberish Dailyish

The next page was supposed to be about the first Sunday of Advent, but then something really awesome happened that I had to write about instead. Once again it is not my story to share, but this is turning into one amazingly joyful album already – and December hasn’t even started yet!

Layouts, Scrapbooking

Autumn scrapbooking

Thanksgiving is tomorrow which means Christmas is pretty much here already, so I should share my autumny scrapbook pages while they still feel relevant.

Given how much I love autumn, it’s kind of bizarre that I haven’t scrapbooked more of it (the same goes for Christmas, actually), but I did find this page from back in 2009. Look! Young, dark-snouted Wellie! Aaw.

Leave it, Wellie!

This one is new, but the photos are from my favorite hike of 2012. I’ll never have time to scrapbook all of our hikes (nor would I want to), but I do want to document my favorite ones from the years when I wasn’t scrapbooking. (I took a photo of the layout in the shade on our deck and the colors look bizarre – the iPhone photo in the header of this post is more accurate; apparently I just don’t know how to use an SLR. It’s much cuter in person. And Basil was there!)


I made this one for the Black & White Story Kit workshop by Ali Edwards. She prompted so many page ideas for me, and one of them was this – about finding that grey area between the black and white thinking, finding the silver lining. Or in this case the golden lining, since this cathartic hike happened on a trail full of golden larch trees.

Golden Lining

Happily, luckily, amazingly, I can move on from scrapbooking about infertility and instead make insipid pages like this one that has no meaning beyond “look how cute my baby is next to these pumpkins!” – and that is what I am truly thankful for this year. (I was thankful for that last year as well, but I spent that Thanksgiving on a beanbag in a dark room in our friends house while said baby screamed on my chest for hours and my friends were eating pie and watching football in the other room, so it’s even easier to be thankful this year.) But seriously, how cute is she with those pumpkins??


Albums, Layouts, Scrapbooking

Vacation Album Progress

JK and I have been lucky enough to go on lots of amazing vacations together (and some apart!), so I’m highlighting all of those big trips in one album – one two-page spread per trip. Some of these have also been documented in their own separate albums, but it’s really cool to have an overview of all our travels in one album. I want the photos and journaling to really bring back my favorite memories from each trip.

St. John

This one from St. John in 2013 was the first one I made. I made sure to mention Lana Del Rey in the journaling, because I was obsessed with her on this trip. The weird thing is that Art Deco, a song from her 2015 album, came on while I was writing this blog post, and even that took me back to the island. I guess her voice alone has the power to transport me to the Virgin Islands, even though this song came out years after the trip.

This was my all-time favorite vacation, so I’ve also made a photo book about it. I might actually make an entire I Love St. John album too, because I really do. Maybe after we return with Nora in tow?


This one is from our trip to Nevada, Utah, and Arizona with JK’s sister in 2008. It’s a scraplift of this page by Ali Edwards. Ali has slanted templates available for sale, they make it really easy to get the photos right! I also have an almost-finished 8.5×11 album from that trip that I made back in the day.

Southwest '09

The spread from our 2009 trip looks a little unbalanced; I made the left side before I had decided that every trip would be a two-pager, so then I just added on the right side this morning with these photos I found in my drawer. This trip is also documented in an 8×8 album. I love love love the simple design of that album, but sadly it is also unfinished. I sense a theme here – maybe I should host an album-finishing challenge in 2016? I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one out there with poor, neglected, unfinished mini albums.

You had me at aloha

This last one is from our first trip to Hawaii in 2010. That wavy swoop was supposed to look much…swoopier, but I messed it up when I was cutting it. My x-acto knife skills are rusty. Oh well. Not only has this trip never been documented anywhere, but I never even finished processing the photos from it. That will have to be a project for a rainy day way off in the future. Until that day comes, this page will do.