Month by Month: December Long Branch NJ

This month's layout from my Month-by-Month Scrapbooking book is an example. These photos were taken one evening after a busy holiday season day. Instead of hiding away and trying to tackle my seemingly endless to-do list, I sat and watched my boys race toy dump trucks around the family room. I knew what I'd title this layout immediately!

RibbonBazaar
(732) 766-9353
Cottage Lace & Ribbon Co 21 TFH Plaza
Neptune City, NJ
 
Costume & Craft Cottage
(718) 356-7559
4256 Arthur Kill Rd
Staten Island, NY
 
Michael's Arts Crafts
(973) 299-8544
3053 Ushighway 46
Parsippany, NJ
 
Michael's Arts Crafts
(856) 853-7700
1800 Clements Bridge Road
Woodbury, NJ
 
Ecuawood Framing
(973) 485-1009
96 Lincoln Ave
Newark, NJ
 
WONDERS OF THE SEA, INC.
(888) 601-9988
200 RAMTOWN GREENVILLE RD.
HOWELL, NJ
Prices and/or Promotions
NAUTICAL DECOR/SEASHELLS/MARINE PRODUCTS

Michael's Arts Crafts
(201) 967-5534
365 North State Route 17
Paramus, NJ
 
Michael's Arts Crafts
(973) 887-3024
410 State Route 10
East Hanover, NJ
 
The Yellow Garage Antiques
(856) 478-0300
66 S. Main St.
Mullica Hill, NJ
Hours
Wed.-Sun. 11am-5pm

Art & Frame Express
(732) 777-0887
485 US 1
Edison, NJ
 

Month by Month: December

Month by Month December 2009

Girls Wouldn't Do That by Amanda Probst. Supplies Cardstock: Prism Papers; Patterned paper, foam letters and ribbon: American Crafts; Letter stickers: Heidi Swapp for Advantus; Font: Century Gothic; Adhesive: Scotch.

BE PRESENT. When I was growing up, winter was always a time for family. Given the seasonal nature of farm life, my dad was simply more available in the winter. When I married, I discovered that not all families have more time in December. In fact, it's often the other way around. Since I'm not ready to move back to farm life, these days I have to make more time in other ways. Often, I find that simply stepping back and appreciating the moment works the best. Rather than worry about the time I'm missing, I focus on what's in front of me.

This month's layout from my Month-by-Month Scrapbooking book is an example. These photos were taken one evening after a busy holiday season day. Instead of hiding away and trying to tackle my seemingly endless to-do list, I sat and watched my boys race toy dump trucks around the family room. I knew what I'd title this layout immediately! It's something I find myself telling my husband time and time again. I'm glad I took the time to capture this.

More Ideas for the Month

Here are three more ideas to consider this December:

1. Make hot cocoa. I'm not sure what it is, but making hot cocoa always seems to put everyone in a better mood. While you're at it, remember that some hot cocoa mix, packaged nicely with some peppermint stirrers, marshmallows and maybe a cool mug, makes a great little teacher/neighbor/hostess gift.

2. Document your nighttime routine. With the winter solstice just before Christmas, take advantage of the shortest day of the year to celebrate the longest night. If you don't have big plans, take a moment simply to record your "normal" nighttime routine.

3. Nix the excess packaging. Lately, I've had it with the unnecessary packaging manufacturers insist upon, especially for children's toys. Last year, I spent more time removing a single toy from its box than it took my boys to open all the rest of their packages. Since December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month, I intend to remove toys from their packaging before I wrap them. Not only will it make Christmas morning run smoother, but just think of how much better the photos will be.

Take the Challenge

Here's one last challenge: for December, I challenge you to take some time away from the holiday hustle and bustle to scrapbook a layout about something non-holiday related. I find that switching gears like that actually helps my holiday spirit. Join in the fun, and you'll have the opportunity to win a copy of my book, Month-by-Month Scrapbooking ! Find out more at the Month-by-Month Scrapbooking group .

Free Sketches

Use these five sketches based on the layout above to help jump-start your creativity:

Appeared in: December 2009

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