I had the pleasure to spend the summer home with my almost 2-year-old daughter. It was great, and anyone with this opportunity I'm sure will agree that the time goes by far too quickly. Between visits to the beach, splashing in the pool, and mornings at the park - it was a summer all about her. But I have to admit, I had a blast too!

Then this idea struck - to create a mini photo book of my favourite memories/pictures. Of course, seeing as I took every picture on my iPhone, there wasn't one image that included me! But that's OK. I wanted to capture her shining moments at play - laughing, smiling, and having fun.

To get started, I found this adorable paper pad at HomeSense. I like it when I walk into a store in search of something else, but come out with gems like this. You may never think to look there, but they do carry a small section of craft papers and supplies, and restock with new items weekly!

From the paper pad, I chose my favourite designs, which included 7 patterns, one to make the cover, and six to hold the pictures. So you see it's not a big album, but you can always add more to it afterwards because it's only bound with a piece of twine (more on that below).

Do you use iCloud? It's an amazing thing. It makes photo transfers to your computer so effortless. I picked my favourite 6 photos of my daughter and iClouded them to my computer. Then, I opened PicMonkey. It's a free online photo editing tool. To each photograph, I added a time machine effect. Now when I look at them, I am reminded of some of the old photos of myself and my siblings that my parents took of us growing up in the 70s and 80s. That's the effect I wanted for these pictures.

I sent the photos to print at Loblaws. I got 4 x 6 mattes. Then I picked the order to display them in my album. I thought chronologically was the best way. That's how my brain functions. It remembers events in the order they happened, so that was the best way for me.

Now to create the album, you'll need the following:



The paper pad is only 6 x 6 inches, so I trimmed all of the photos down to fit. They are not all equal in size. Being that I printed them as 4 x 6, I could only use one photo per page.

The best way to adhere photographs to paper is with double sided tape.

Then, I used washi tape for decoration, taping only two corners of every photo. I cut the tape with craft scissors for some interest.

I also added some cut-out hearts to the pages using paper from the same paper pad. I glued them using a glue stick.

I made the cover last because I had absolutely no clue what to do for it. I knew what I wanted it to say, but when I looked over my scrapbook letters, none seemed to fit the bill. I decided to "take the chance" the write it out with a Sharpie. I am so critical of my own writing, but I think it worked.

OK, now the last step is to bind the album. Using a hole punch, I punched a hole at the top left corner of each paper, precisely in the same location. Then, I cut a length of jute twine, fed it through, and tied a double knot. Easy peasy.

The cost for this project was just over $5. The photos cost me about $1.50, and the paper pad was $4.00. I had all the other supplies on hand.

We live in a digital world, and I'm no stranger to that. But I miss developing photographs, and I'm glad I did this project. It was truly one of my favourite summers, bonding with my toddler at a critical age where the relationship between parent and child is utmost important. Now, I will always have this album as a keepsake, and it's a heck of a lot more fun than flipping through photos on my phone!

#Kids #Paper #Punches