Thursday, August 31, 2006

Scrapbook Ideas from Everyday, Ordinary Life

By Christina VanGinkel

After you have scrapped a while, you might find yourself running out of ideas to scrap. Never, you might say. It does happen though, especially if you are a prolific scrapper. One day you find yourself nearing the bottom of the photos you had picked out to scrap, no holidays are approaching, no birthdays, Bar Mitzvahs, weddings, not even a new pet in the family. Do not sink into depression; you just have not thought it through enough. There are always ideas waiting to be scrapped, you just have to be resourceful when it comes to recognizing what some of them are. Surprisingly, you can often find some fantastic ideas to scrap from your everyday life. Things we often take for granted, are some of the very things that define us, that make us who we are. Try to capture some of these, the more mundane moments of your lives, and when some future generation sits down with our scrapbooks filled with memories, they will be better able to glimpse whom the real we were!

With that in mind, think of what makes you, you, what you like to do, what you do not like to do, people you meet in an ordinary day, etc. I have jotted down a few ideas also to get you stared. Happy Scrapping!

Walk outside your door with your camera and take a picture. Maybe of the walkway, or your mailbox, how about the street that runs in front of your house, or even your neighbor or their house, which you have lived next to for ten years but other than an occasional wave, you do not know because they are a homebody. Create a layout of what it is that you first notice each day when you go out. Journal with the pictures that you capture where you go each morning, to a job, to bring your kids to school, just to open the door and pick up the paper and close it again because you work from home.(That last one would be me!) When you consider just how much this simple part of the day helps define who we are, it can be quite surprising.

If you or someone in your family eats the same thing every single day, such as a bowl of oatmeal or a half a bagel, with no variation, scrap it. Take a photo of the person and food and either create some typical journaling, or maybe do a question and answer with them, much the same, as you would find in an interview.

If you go to a gym each week, or belong to an exercise group, create a layout about why you joined and what you have accomplished so far, and what you hope to accomplish in the future.

If you are a gardener, scrap your garden in both the highlight of the season and the off-season. A garden is often a very personal reflection of the gardener, so combining the two into a scrapbook layout only makes sense.

Piles of laundry to be washed or folded, dishes to be washed, a lawn desperately in need of mowing, what is your least favorite household task to do? Catalogue it for posterity through an eye opening scrapbook layout.

Our elderly relatives have a lot to say about who we are, in the same way that someday our kids will be a reflection of us. If you would love to create a scrapbook about an elderly relative, but do not have many, if any, photographs, take some of items that in some way bring forth memories of that relative. My youngest son recalls his great grandmother as his Cookie Grandma, for the fact that when he was little, she always had a cookie for him when he came to visit. While we do have photos of her, I created a scrapbook layout for his book that I have been working on, focused around a photograph of a plate of cookies. The plate is the same one she always had on her counter, the same one she often used to stack cookies on fresh from the oven for company.

Life is what makes each scrapbook the very personal entity that each one becomes when completed. Capturing some of the most basic pieces of it is only fitting. Scrapbook something that makes each day a slice of life and you will never run out of ideas to scrap.

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