Scrapbooking a Year of Self-Reflection

Time Capsule: Weekly Challenge #49… Extended

When I first came across this challenge, I thought I’d write a holiday letter to update my friends and family on my life. I realized that my year wasn’t so much about events that could be easily shared with others. It was a year of self-reflection and deciding where to steer my life… not the sort of thing written in festive holiday letters.

I thought about making a month-by-month list of happenings and minor accomplishments but I hadn’t kept track of enough dates from an entire year ago. I let the challenge topic brew in my mind for a bit.

When I’m folding laundry, stirring soup, bathing the kids, attempting to fall asleep, I brainstorm ideas and hope that a theme pops into my head. If that doesn’t work, I take a peek through my photos to see what events relate to the challenge, or just to get inspiration that I might not have even considered.

In the end, I focused on myself and the main goals I’ve set this past year. I’ll add my layout to my ever growing “Book of Me” album.

After I choose my theme for a challenge, I usually browse through my template collection. I am a big fan of templates. I don’t always use them but they can be a wonderful time saver.

I usually personalize my layouts quite a bit but the template gives me a basic composition to start the process. Sometimes I have photos to use already in mind; sometimes I prefer to choose photos that work with the template. Then I write my journaling.

I try not to fuss too much and just write what I’m thinking. Then I go back and tweak my writing. For some reason, journaling can be intimidating. My advice is to just be yourself and write down the first thing that comes to your mind. Write down the facts but personalize with your feelings. Keep it simple! You can always edit. Finally, I add some coordinating embellishments that relate to the photos and the journaling.


Melanie Ritchie

Melanie Ritchie is an avid digital scrapbooker and digital designer inspired by her family, her life, and everyday moments. Her blog is and her designs can be found at


Additional 2012 Design Team sample layouts for Weekly Challenge #49 may be found in this week’s Challenge Galleryif you complete this challenge yourself, please consider posting your project in the gallery as well so others may be inspired by YOU!

Speak Your Mind