Tutorial Tuesday | Documenting the Passage of Time

Welcome to another edition of our Tutorial Tuesday series here on The Digital Press blog! Today, I thought it would be helpful if I shared a few ideas for documenting the passage of time within our scrapbooks! This is my favorite way to scrapbook. I love seeing, at a quick glance, how life has changed throughout the years… and how my boys have grown up before my eyes.

There are many different ways to achieve the goal of documenting time, and I hope this tutorial inspires you to dig through all those years’ worth of photos and start creating!

Document the Passage of Time by Day

Documenting a day in the life — or even a week in the life — is a simple and effective way to pull together a photo summary of a certain period of time. You can document your day by taking a photo on the hour, every hour… or by taking a photo of each new activity throughout the day… or by simply taking photos of most everything, all day long! Once you have all the photos, go through them and pick your favorites (or the ones that will help tell the story of your subject); multi-photo templates are a great tool to help showcase multiple photos on a single layout!

For this layout I documented a simple day in our family’s life…

And here, I documented two days (a.k.a. a weekend)…

Document the Passage of Time by Month

Month-in-Review layouts are a great way to wrap up a time period in your life. I have noticed that many scrapbookers seem to be gravitating to this form of memory keeping (choosing it over the “daily” style of pocket scrapbooking, etc.)! Documenting each and every day can start to be overwhelming, and some days are just not the best to document. So why not showcase the highlights of an entire month?

You could even focus on the 4 seasons, if 12 individual months seems like too much to document… as I’ve done here…

You could even document an entire sports season, or the passage of time within a given event in a persons life, as shown here…

Document the Passage of Time by Year

At the end of every year, I try to compile a single layout (which can be either single or double page in format) that showcases the highlights of our year and/or favorite photos from that year. These are some of my most treasured layouts, and the ones that deserve a place in everyone’s scrapbook! There is just something awe-inspiring about seeing a whole year of photos together in one place.

Here’s an example of one of my two-page spreads…

You can also document a year by subject. To complete a project like this, you have to start off with the end in mind. Yearly photo projects are time consuming but so worth it in the end! For the next layout, shown below, I pulled together all my photos from my Instagram feed. I started the year randomly documenting my feet and where they took me throughout the year… and hashtagged the photos #whereistand. I’ve found that Instagram and other social media sites are super helpful when pulling together a year long photo project (especially because you can search by hashtag; you can create your own hashtag and use it to help sort through all of the photos later!)…

Another method is to document a year “by person.” I try to do this for each of my boys, to wrap up their yearly albums. I like to pull together photos from each month and all the highlights in between; the big things and the little things that made a year in that person’s life special. A simple photo-filled layout with dates and simple blurbs make for a wonderful year-in-review page for a child’s scrapbook album!

Check out this example…

Document the passage of time by years.

This is a fun way to literally see the passage of long stretches of time on one page! To achieve this look, you will have to spend some time going through all of your photos & pull out a favorite (or two, etc.) from each year. This can be done easily if you have your photos organized; I organize my photos by month & year, so it is somewhat easy to find what I am searching for — but this can still be a long process. I don’t mind it, though. Going through older photos always brings back memories and I enjoy the process of finding photos I have yet to scrapbook! Additionally, you can always plan ahead and take the same photo each and every year at the same time. Back to school, birthdays, holidays… these are all times when photo-taking happens at similar times / in similar places / etc. Use these photos together on a layout to showcase just how quickly your subject has grown!

For instance, here’s an example of documenting a child’s growth with a timeline of many years, and simple tidbits (in text format) about who they were at a certain age…

You can even showcase the same person over a period of years, with a similar theme to the photos. Whether it be a certain place, a certain toy, or a specific sport/activity… the similarities within life exist, and it is fun as memory-keepers to bring those moments together on our scrapbook pages…

Holidays are also a simple way to showcase the passage of time. You can compile all of the photos from many years into a simple grid, and marvel at just how fast time does fly…


Another idea… you can document relationships using a photo from each year together…

There you have it! Whether you document the passage of time by day, by week, by month, or by year… it is always fun and interesting to record the passage of time on one page, where it’s possible to see the subtle (or not-so-subtle) differences throughout those treasured memories of life. Creating pages like this will bring you joy when you see them in your scrapbooks for years to come!

JenniferHigniteJennifer Hignite is a mom of three boys and new homeowner with her fiance in the mitten state of Michigan. When she is not scrapbooking, she enjoys photography, watching her boys play sports, decorating, and shopping at Target.

Feature Friday | Meagan’s Creations

Happy Friday, everyone! It’s time for another edition of our Feature Friday series here on The Digital Press blog… and this week, I’m thrilled to put the spotlight on Meagan of Meagan’s Creations! This is Meagan’s fourth feature at TDP (you can find her first feature from January 2017 HERE, another from June 2017 HERE, and her Foodie Friday post from November 2017 HERE).

In order to learn a little bit more about Meagan, so I asked her to share 5 things we might not already know about her. I loved reading her responses!

    1. While I love music, I can’t play any instruments. I took some piano lessons in middle school but unfortunately didn’t keep up with it. Still, if I’m listening to music while I’m typing on my keyboard, I often like to pretend I’m playing the piano as I type on the keys!
    2. I’m a bargain hunter. I’m not an extreme couponer by any means, but I do often stack coupons with sales, find ways to get a few freebies, and like to make the dollars stretch. My favorite tool? Giftcard Granny. It searches through “used” gift cards and finds the best deals. I’m currently eye-balling the 30% discounted AMC gift cards to go on a movie date with my husband here soon.
    3. I’m a mom of 4, with my 4th child being born just this past February! All four were born via c-section, and I am done! This last recovery was definitely the hardest!
    4. I am not athletically inclined but I did love taking Karate as a teenager. I held my own pretty well when grappling (or wrestling)… even against the boys.
    5. I’m a math nerd and my kids are turning into math nerds, too. My 7 year-old came home excitedly the other day because he found a calculator on the sidewalk. My 9-year old loves to ask me huge math problems and now the 3-year is asking me (simpler) math problems. He claps after I give my answer, even if it’s not right. So glad my kids think I’m some superhuman computer! I do love Sudoku though.

See what I mean? She’s real and simply amazing! Check out Meagan’s designs in her store here at TDP, and you will notice that her products are perfect for scrapping everyday moments. I love that Meagan is the queen of using bright and bold colors, and that she’s also super talented at making word art and templates too! She makes my scrapping life so much easier.

Here is a small sampling of the products you’ll find in Meagan’s shop, so you can see what I mean…

And here you can see some lovely layouts made using her products…

I hope that you’ve enjoyed learning a little more about Meagan of Meagan’s Creations today! To celebrate her week as our Featured Designer at The Digital Press, her entire shop will be 30% OFF all week long (the sale will end at 11:59pm ET on Thursday 5/17).

Additionally, Meagan has a special Free-with-Purchase offer for everyone this week! Don’t miss out on this opportunity to stock up on your favorite products from Meagan’s Creations …and you can also snag this gorgeous brand-new kit — Countryside — for FREE with any $10+ purchase in her shop! (again, the offer is valid through 11:59pm ET on Thurs 5/17).


About the author  Robin is a member of the creative team here at The Digital Press. A wife of 25 years and a mom of 4 crazy children (3 in college and 1 still at home), she says that her life occurs mostly in the car as she transports said crazy kids to their many, many homeschool activities. When not driving, Robin loves to make her family cringe by pulling out her camera again (and again, and again…).

Tutorial Tuesday | Digital Mini Albums (Part 3)

It’s time for another edition of our Tutorial Tuesday series here on The Digital Press blog! Today’s post is Part 3 in a series on creating a digital mini album (you can find Part 1, from March 2018, HERE and Part 2, from April 2018 HERE on the blog).

In that first part of the series, I shared that mini albums are handy for…

  • Scrapping a family vacation
  • Creating a special gift for someone
  • Marking a special holiday
  • Documenting a specific family tradition
  • Capturing a sports season
  • Life Events such as adoption, graduation, birthday, wedding, birth, or death

I also shared that I have found there to be four main steps in the process of creating a mini album…

  1. Planning
  2. Organizing
  3. Filling & Finishing
  4. Printing

  In Part 1 we looked at the first step: PLANNING. Part 2 I shared with you 4 different areas you could ORGANIZE to make the creation portion more streamlined.  And TODAY we get to do the fun part  . . .

Step 3: Filling and Finishing

Filling and Finishing is where all the magic happens.  This is where you get to see your pages take shape and fill in all the little details you have been wanting to add.  IT can be daunting, especially if you have a LOT of pictures to use and pages to make (can you say Baby Album??!!)

However, if you have taken care of all the prep-work in Steps 1 & 2 that we talked about, you should have everything right at hand and ready to go.

In reality, there is NO wrong way to do Step 3, as most of it comes down to your own personal scrapping style.  Some people like to completely finish on page, from photo to shadow treatment, before going on to the next.  However, if you are feeling a little overwhelmed, or the project looks daunting, having a plan and batching your work can help break things up for you and make the process go smoother.

In batching, you do a series of activities or jobs that are all similar at the same time.  This creates a work flow that actually saves you time in the end because you are not having to transition from one task to the next, which (in my case) wastes valuable brain activity.  So when I batch the tasks for my mini album, I do a single task all at once for every page in my album.  This is the method I use.

Start with your PHOTOS

You have already organized your photos into folders so why not start there.

In step 2 we created some BASE PAGES, or templates that we will use over and over for our mini album.  Open up some of these and pull your photos onto pages or templates and save them as Page 1, Page 2, etc.  (Or if you would rather, you can give them actual names.)  This will allow you to make sure you have all the pages you need and also show you if you need to condense some pages, “fix” or create a few additional pages to complete your book, or if there are any other problems you did not expect.  Some people like to do this page by page in the same order the mini album will be in once finished, but that is not necessary.

Here is what one of my pages looked like after filling the photos for the page.

Decide on Two Page Spreads

Since you are already working on your photos and numbering pages, go ahead and figure out your page spreads.

Sometimes this will be easy, for example, when you have a number of photos for one event, you will need both pages.  However, other times you only have one photo, and you will need to decide if you want to pair it with another topic/event or perhaps create a journaling or decorative page to go with it instead.  Make sure you keep in mind how many total pages you planned for during this stage.  You don’t want your mini album growing into a novel!

Also, consider diversifying your pages a bit to create interest.  Here I have combined a full page photo with a journaling page, because there is quite a story behind all the events leading up to this photo, and I wanted my sister to have room to tell it.

Paper and Backgrounds

After I have all my photos in and all my pages made up and ready to go, I start adding my background papers.

I wait to add papers because I often end up switching some pages around during the above two steps.  Adding the papers now makes sure that my double page spreads still compliment each other, and I don’t have to waste time switching out papers that no longer work well together because of page moves.


Once the backgrounds are settled I go to town adding my elements.

As mentioned in Step 2, I try to stick to a certain set of elements that I have already chosen as this creates cohesion and balance in my mini album.  Also, I don’t want to add too many elements, as this will be a smaller than normal book and can easlily get cluttered, but I do want enough to highlght my photos and rerally tell my story.

If you like to tweak your shadows you can also go ahead do that here, or you can wait to the very end if you prefer.


Don’t forget to add your journaling.

It can be as simple as names and dates, or as detailed as whole page stories.  If you have already written and compiled your journaling you can simply copy and paste it in.  If you still need to write your journaling, let your own journaling style shine through here.  If you run out of ideas – look through the blog.  There have been some amazing inspiration and tutorial posts about journaling that can give you some ideas.

Finishing Touches

And finally add your finishing touches.

Maybe you like to tweak your shadows, or create a cover or dedication.  Any of those little things that really FINISH off your mini album should be done now.  Take time to flip through your pages in order and make sure they flow.  Look for events, or pages that got left out, or maybe pages that don’t fit.  See if there are certain elements you should repeat in a few more places to really bring everything together.

Once you have done all that, you are almost finished.  All that is left if to make sure it is print ready and have those pages printed out.  We will talk about that next month.

In the meantime, happy scrapping, and keep an eye out for our final installment – PRINTING!!

See you next time!

ErinErin is an artsy crafty kind of girl who is currently dabbling in far too many things, but is working hard to enjoy every moment of it, while avoiding the rain, which is difficult due to living in the land of many rains. She is slowly learning to use her smart phone to capture all the fun little bits of life that would otherwise go unremembered in the busy craziness that is raising a family!

Hybrid How-To | Gifts For Mom

Hello everyone! It’s Tanya here, and I’m excited to share another edition of our Hybrid How-To series with you here on The Digital Press blog! With Mother’s Day just around the corner, I thought I’d show you how to use your digital papers and/or elements to create a couple of cute (but simple!) gifts for Mom.

I made these gifts for my husband’s Mom for Mother’s Day, but you can change up the tag to suit any occasion.


  1. Your favorite digital scrapbook products
  2. White cardstock
  3. Glossy photo paper (not a must, but it works best)
  4. Circle &  scallop shaped punches
  5. Hole punch
  6. Wooden skewer or popsicle stick
  7. Ribbon
  8. Pop dots
  9. Tape
  10. Scissors

For my sample project, shown below, I used the following digital products: the Lean On Me kit by Anita Designs and Kim B Designs, and Simply Mom Word Art by Kim B Designs. Here’s a look at each of those…

For this project, I used my Silhouette Studio Business Edition software. You can use any photo editing software, however.  The first step is to draw out a 8 1/2 x 11 triangle.  To do this, I used the draw tools to the right of the work space…

Next, I filled the shape with a digital paper I choose by opening the fill pattern on the right…

The next step is to print it out. I have a HP Office Jet and it prints really nicely… but I’ve found that to get the best print possible, you need to make sure when you change between different types of paper that you go into your printer preferences and change the ‘paper type’ there, as well. I also turned ‘borderless’ to ON…

Now, the fun part — creating the little gift bag! Fold as pictured below. I used a flat card (like a credit card) to get good creases. When making your second fold, overlap just a little and use double-sided tape to hold it together. Then fold the bottom up, as shown…

Now, we’ll open the bottom of the bag as shown… and flatten it down… and then fold the top down…

We will do the same to the opposite side by folding the bottom up (I taped with scotch tape). Now, we’ll stick our hand into the bag to open it up. At this point, we’ll want to fold a small portion over and punch holes for the ribbon. Of course we’ll be filling the gift bag with Mom’s favorite treats before closing with the ribbon…

Here is a look at the finished gift bag… isn’t it cute?! Instructions for the tag can be found below, as well. 😉

Next, the cute matching tag!

For the tag, I used my Silhouette Studio software again… but just as with the bag, you can use any photo editing software and a couple of punches… no cutting machine necessary. I created several choices, including the tag that you saw on my gift bag, above… and also, a cute plant flag…

Like I mentioned, above… even though I used my Silhouette to cut out my tags, it’s not a must. You can see below how I also used a couple of hand-held punches…

Next, we will take the bamboo skewer and a couple of the printed pieces… and make a plant flag with all of it. The bamboo skewer will likely be too long, so we will need to trim it with a pair of scissors. We’ll also add a couple of pop dots to the back of the top layer of the flag (I also used a small piece of tape to secure the skewer down). Now we attach to the scalloped circle to create a pretty plant flag for Mom…

Here is a look at the finished project. Just a little touch to let Mom know we went the extra mile to make her feel special…

Aren’t they so adorable?

I hope that you have enjoyed this edition of Hybrid How-To. Don’t forget to visit the CROSSWORD SECTION in The Digital Press forum, and jump into this month’s Hybrid Challenge if you are thinking of trying this project. You can earn points toward discounts & FREEBIES! I hope that you will join in!


About the Author  Tanya is a part of the hybrid team here at The Digital Press. She has been hybrid crafting for at least 16 years now, and loves creating and sharing those creations with others. Her all-time favorite tool is her Silhouette Cameo. She has been married for 29 years to her high school sweetheart, Richard and has two sons: Chris, 26 and Chance, 22. She also enjoys crocheting, photography and woodworking.

Tutorial Tuesday | Custom Journal Strips

Hello everyone, and welcome to another edition of our Tutorial Tuesday series here on The Digital Press blog! I’m here today to share a really quick & easy tip with you — a fun way to add journaling to your pages — creating custom journal strips!

It’s possible that I love journaling cards more than most people do… but… sometimes a journaling card just doesn’t work (it might not fit the space on the page… or doesn’t contain enough space for the amount of journaling I have in mind… etc.). I’ve noticed one of our scrappy designers here at The Digital Press (the fabulous Dawn Farias of Dawn by Design fame) has a fun trick she uses to solve this issue — she creates custom journal strips that fit her layouts! Here are just a few examples of Dawn’s fabulousness…

Aren’t her layouts fun?

Now, I’ve noticed that many designers will include a journal strip or two in their kits, but sometimes they don’t fit! As seen in Dawn’s examples, though, creating your own custom strips ensures that your journaling will fit (and it also ends up being a really fun design element on the page)… and so today I’m here to show you how to quickly & easily do this.

For my example, below, you’ll see that I created my page and then needed a place to fit the journaling. I’m a sucker for plaid, and simply had to use that paper… and then none of the journal cards in this cute kit really worked for that space. Custom journal strips to the rescue!

First, you’ll see that I typed my journaling where I wanted it. A little here, a little there — loosey goosey, as this page’s topic was a fun ride at California Adventure — no left justification for journaling allowed here! 😉 

Then, I chose my foreground color by sampling the off white/cream color from the papers in the kit, using the color picker in Photoshop…

Next, I selected my “rectangle shape tool” and began creating my strips…

I drew my rectangles slightly larger than my journaling. You’ll see in my example, below, I was drawing my rectangles over the journaling, to ensure that I was covering it up (i.e. that it would fit onto the strips) — but — I could have just as easily made the rectangles under the journaling in the layers panel. The point is that either way works, and it’s just a matter of personal preference in terms of the process!

After my strips were all created, I dragged those layers down underneath my text layers, & added a shadow…

Voila! Custom journal strips that fit my text perfectly!

Another fun way to make strips is with the polygonal lasso tool. With this tool, you can make more realistic/not perfectly straight strips. I can’t cut a straight line with scissors to save my life… so this method mimics my real life perfectly!

To do this… first, you’ll need to add a new layer (not pictured here, because I forgot to screenshot that step, but you get the idea!) Then select your “polygonal lasso” tool…

Click & draw lines to make an irregular rectangle shape around your journaling. As soon as you click on the starting point to end your shape, you will get a selection…

While your shape selection (the “marching ants” in Photoshop) is active, select the “paint bucket” tool. Occasionally this will be hidden under the gradient tool; right-click to find the paint bucket nested inside. With the paint bucket tool, you will click inside your selection to fill with the foreground color. Repeat this process for all remaining strips…

My final results are shown here (with some warping added, and shadowing… as well as my text clipped to the custom journal strips)…

And then finally… here’s a look at my final layout…

[ sample layout made with: Midway by The Digital Press Designers ]

AmieAbout the Author  Amie is a craft-loving dental hygienist who lives in Washington state. She loves her husband, her two crazy kids, and her English Bulldog… as well as coffee, baking cupcakes, daffodils, glitter & sprinkles, reading a good book, and lip gloss — not necessarily in that order.

Feature Friday | MEG Designs

Happy Friday, everyone! It’s time for another edition of our Feature Friday series here on The Digital Press blog… and this week, I’m thrilled to put the spotlight on Marie Eve Goudeseune of MEG Designs! This is Marie Eve’s fourth feature at TDP (you can find her first feature from November 2016 HERE, another from May 2017 HERE, and her Foodie Friday post from November 2017 HERE).

In order to learn even more about Marie Eve this time around, I asked her to share 5 things we might not already know about her…

  1. I love staying at home during the weekend and enjoying my house and my garden. It’s the place where I feel the best.
  2. I am a very cautious person and I am always cold everywhere. I don’t like winter much, except for my birthday. I prefer the summer even if in my country, the temperatures generally reach only 22-25 C in the summer.
  3. I am left-handed …but many things are not made for left-handed people in everyday life, such as scissors (I know, it makes everybody smile). But it’s a real problem to use right-handed scissors. Imagine that you should use scissors with the inverted blades. Fortunately, now we have left-handed scissors. 😉
  4. I don’t like horror movies. It’s still as scary as it was when I was a little girl. So, I never watch this kind of movie.
  5. I am bilingual (French/Dutch) and have been for a long time. I went to a Dutch-language school until I was 15 years old. My Mother tongue is French.

As for Marie Eve’s digital designs, she had the following to say about her creations… “all of my products are inspired by my private life, whether it’s my children, the holidays, the things we do, or even something that one of my children said. Usually, I have a theme in mind and then I observe what is around me and I find a color palette that fits my theme.” I really love her color combinations. Her templates are perfect for making cleanly-designed digital pages, and her journal cards are the final touch on every pocket-style layout. Whatever crafty style suits you, you will find the perfect item in her shop.

Here is just a small sampling of the products you’ll find in the MEG Designs shop here at The Digital Press…

And just to provide a little bit more inspiration for what can be done with her products… here are a handful of really fun projects that were created using items from the MEG Designs shop here at TDP…

I hope that you’ve enjoyed learning a little more about Marie Eve of MEG Design today! To celebrate her week as our Featured Designer at The Digital Press, the entire MEG Design store will be 30% OFF all week long (the sale will end at 11:59pm ET on Thursday 5/3).

blogfotoAbout the author  Astrid is a member of the creative team here at The Digital Press. She lives with her husband and her 2 teenage/adult kids in Germany. As a mini-jobber with only 10 hours/week, she has plenty of time for her digital scrapbooking hobby. She has Netflix and Amazon Prime, and is addicted to nearly all series. Vampires, zombies, vikings… it doesn’t matter; she likes everything. She loves the ocean and the summer heat, but lives in the opposite: mountains. Therefore, she loves visiting her family in Algeria or the south of France.