Project Life 2014 Summer Stories- May 30 Part Two

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It’s been awhile since I’ve posted about our summer in PL. Here is the second part of May 30th.

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Some of the pages from North Dakota will have privacy blurs for C’s home, school, etc.

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Around Fargo, and our first 3×100 photo of the year.

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Check-in at the hotel and yummy dinner.

That first day was a beast to scrap. It was a long day and we took over 200 pictures. It has taken me over two months to finish up the pages for one day, which is a little discouraging. Hopefully the rest of the summer won’t be as challenging! Still very glad that I have Momento to refer back to though. It’s been a huge help.

*Project Life was invented by Becky Higgins. You can learn more about it here. My Project Life pages can be found here.

Project Life 2014 Summer Stories- May 30

Welcome to the first part of my Project Life Summer Stories! Now that summer is over and life is a bit less hectic, I’m excited to share some of our adventures. It is always incredibly overwhelming to try and document this jam-packed season each year. I’m hoping that by keeping things super simple, I’ll be able to at least hit the highlights.

These three pages are from our trip to go pick up Little Man in May.
0531a webThe journaling from the first page was taken from notes in my Momento app. I’m glad that I was able to get the details down because even a couple months later, they’re already fuzzy.
0531b web I also used captions from Instagram to trigger my memory. 0531c web

I’ll be using lots of photo collage templates for these pages. We take thousands of photos during the summer and there’s no way I’ll ever be able to scrap them all. But I do like to cram as many as I can without it looking too cluttered, and collages are great for that.

*Project Life was invented by Becky Higgins. You can learn more about it here. My Project Life pages can be found here.

Thanksgiving in July, part one

Last week (July 2), we decided to do Thanksgiving in July. Little Man had mentioned a few weeks ago that he couldn’t remember ever having a turkey for Thanksgiving. We will use any excuse to brine a turkey, so challenge accepted! (Because of course you want to use the oven when it’s 95 degrees outside, right?)

But first, we had to do Thanksgiving Eve.

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LM and I made our tradition summer drink, basil lemonade. He is an excellent lemon squeezer. We reminisced about that one year when he had to squeeze all the lemons by hand before we got the lemon squeezer contraption thingy. Which I guess is still squeezing the lemons by hand actually. But whatever…


While the lemonade cooled, I made sausage balls.


We took a quick swim break, and I started prepping the panzanella. When Jason got home, he helped me finish that up and cooked the brine mixture.

IMG_1899 We were all pretty wiped at that point, so we put ice in the brine to cool it down enough to put the turkey in. It was a late night, but so worth it the next day!

A letter to myself, to be reread in May of 2015


Dear Jen,

You are about to embark on Summer of Awesome 2015. Are you ready? Of course you’re not. But that’s okay. Here are a few things that Jen in 2014 would like you to remember.

You did a lot of awesome things last year. You guys had a great summer! It was nice to actually have a summer at home for a change. You and Jason got to show LM all your favorite places in town, and discovered a few new ones. There were lots of hugs, and lots of pictures taken. You went outside every day at least once (usually more). You rediscovered your love of swings. You were brave and went to the pool, just the two of you, and nobody drowned. You were firm when you had to be, limiting sodas and screen time. Making a list of LM’s food preferences was one of your more brilliant ideas. You taught him a few cooking things, and he taught you the benefits of the Monkey Apprentice. You and Jason were very supportive of his MTG obsession, and you went way out of your comfort zone and into the Great Outdoors. You ate all. the. burgers. You knocked lots of things off the bucket list, and still had room for lots of spontaneity.

Some things you might want to remember for this summer. Help Jason make plans if you guys are traveling. You rely on him too much for that and he has enough stress. (Though you’re better at making plans for everyday activities). Speaking of planning activities, put things on the family calendar, and for goodness sakes, go shopping before summer rolls around! Make sure you have plenty of popsicle sticks and LIGHT corn syrup. Go to the beach early in the summer. You always procrastinate on that for some reason. Hug more. You need to scrapbook. It’s not good for your mental health to put that aside for a month. It’s more than a hobby, it keeps you happy and positive. And we both know you’ll need that. Give yourself a break. You’re going to rage and cry for the first week or two. It will be terrible, but you’ll get through it. You always do. Get through it as quickly and quietly as you can, then get on with the fun stuff. Talk to Jason. Don’t hold things in. Well maybe hold things in for that first week. Write out your feelings. It will make you feel better. Did I mention talk to Jason? This doesn’t have to be a lonely time. You have a partner, let him be there for you. Even when you’re a B.O.B. He already knows you’re nuts, he’ll still love you.

You’ll do great. The important thing is to make the most of your time together. Because we’re the Awesome Family. And we do things awesomely.

Love, Jen
July 5, 2014

Double Rainbows and Kayaking

I usually don’t scrap much during the time Little Man’s here. We’re too busy making scrap worthy memories and I’d rather be hanging out with him during the day (or mindlessly reading blogs).

I think not scrapping for a month is not good for my mental health, which I might go into more deeply in another post. In the meantime, here are the two pages I’ve made so far this summer.

July 2014 Storyteller by Just JaimeeInspired by Sketch 47 by ShimelleBoth were based off challenges from Shimelle’s Inspiration Party weekend in June. Whenever I want to knock out a page really quickly, I turn to a challenge or sketch to warm myself up.

The first was a simple summer page about rainbows.

Journaling reads- Summer around here means thunderstorms almost every afternoon, which lead to the most gorgeous double rainbows! We shot these pictures on one of our evening walks. May 15, 2014

Credits: July 2014 Storyteller by Just Jaimee
Inspired by Sketch 47 by Shimelle

June 2014 Storyteller by Just Jaimee Inspired by Sketch 46 by Shimelle

These are some of my favorite pictures from our camping trip.

Journaling reads- Jason and [Little Man] had an awesome time kayaking at Quiet Waters Park. It was C’s first time. It meant a lot to Jason to be able to share his love of the water with his son.

Credits: June 2014 Storyteller by Just Jaimee
Inspired by Sketch 46 by Shimelle

Camping in Instagram photos

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Last weekend Team Awesome went camping (or really, it was more “glamping” than real camping) I have a few hundred pictures to sort through, so that’s going to take a bit of time. Meanwhile, here are a few pictures that Jason Instagrammed from our camping adventure. Clearly, he fell in love with the fire pit.

And see Melissa, I wear your sunglasses all. the. time.

One photo + Twenty Words


Hot summer day. Breathing in wildfire smoke. Feeling the wind on our faces. Talking about friends, travel, & his roots.

Y’all know I’m super wordy. I know some people have problems with journaling, my problem is too much journaling. So when I saw the 1 photo, 20 words post by Abi Beach, I knew this would be a fun challenge to take on. A much needed exercise in brevity.

Minnesota and North Dakota in Instagram photos

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Sorry, if you follow me on Instagram, these will be repeats. We took a ton of photos on our trip to pick up the Little Man (of course we did!) I’m still sorting through those. But until I get that done, here’s a peek at our adventures. And by “peek”, I mean more pictures than most people care to look at, ever.

The trends throughout most of these are- rain, open spaces, and general excitement to see each other. And also burgers, but that’s for a different post.

Around here

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We’ve been at home together for nearly a week and it’s been really great.

So awesome having Little Man here.

We’re adjusting to being three again, and working out new routines.

Bags are unpacked and video games are being dusted off.

We are playing soccer and football together.

We are reveling in snugs.

My plants are making a comeback after several days of neglect.

We had our first swim and it was lovely (but cold!)

Apparently this is the year where I speak up for myself and my family. A lot.

I think the older I get, the less patience I have.

Looking forward to a fun weekend!

June goals (our Summer bucket list)


Last month’s goals went really well. Yay accountability!

  1. Morning walks. This did not happen. We’re shooting for this in June or July.
  2. Get library cards. Done.
  3. Catch up with PL. I’m still four weeks behind, but I’m calling this one a partial success because I worked my booty off on PL last month, completing 29 pages!
  4. Participate in NSD. Done, here and here.
  5. Finish prepping for the summer. rent car, program GPS, Summer Daily template, gather craft supplies, Summer 2014 bucket list- All done, except getting crafty stuff
  6. Daily writing. Done, which explains my freakishly regular posting schedule this month 🙂
  7. Have a bookstore coffee date. We attempted this, but sadly our B&N isn’t very conducive to coffee dates. But we did go to the bookstore and had coffee on the same evening so I’m calling this one done.
  8. Hang pictures. Done

Now on to our summer bucket list! I’ve been doing one of these every summer for a couple of years. (2012 and 2013) It’s fun to go back and look at the things we wanted to do each year. They reflect the pattern of our summers and the near frantic pace of our time with the Little Man. We always take a trip. We try to get outside as much as the blazing south Florida weather will allow. We always have a couple of parties. This year is no different.

Things to do this summer-

  • North Dakota and Minnesota
  • camping
  • geocaching
  • swimming
  • explore lots of parks
  • Tampa
  • picnics
  • build an epic sand castle
  • work on a puzzle together
  • play games
  • teach LM how to change a tire and how to cook three meals
  • make lemonade and pizza
  • take 100 family photos
  • daily documentation
  • soccer and football
  • comic book store
  • beach
  • Father’s Day
  • LM’s birthday
  • 4th of July
  • eat on the balcony
  • watch super hero movies

Lots of fun stuff to do. I can’t wait to get started!