Documenting December is a very important part of the Christmas season for me and my family. It’s a beautiful expression of the days leading up to Christmas and all the traditional as well as not so traditional elements of the month of December. But this requires a little bit of effort to make it come together.
Today’s post is not to share with you how intricate and detailed this year’s December album is going to be. Nope. Actually, this post is going to tell you about how boring my album will be. You may think I’m joking… but I’m not. When I recently looked through past books and realized there are some years that are not even complete, I was so discouraged. I determined right then that this year I needed to make a change. Simplicity was to be key.
The month can get away from a person. It used to be that I would take each day for what it was and document what actually occurred on that date. Not so much anymore. That became hard to keep up with. Some days are actual documenting of the day… but some days I use to add traditions that I hope to include each year. Let me show you what I mean.
For example, I always start my ‘Day 1” with our family photo from that year. But of course, that did not actually happen on December 1. This is why I like the name “Document December’. That is so much more encompassing to me than trying to document daily that ‘day in the life’ story. I really like looking back through the years and having that family photo front and center and all the emotions that come with that photo on Day 1.
Here is another example, “Day 2”. This is the story of our tree hunt. But it did not actually happen on December 2.
Our family’s schedule this year just did not allow for an early in the month of December tree find. We actually had to live this tradition at end of November. But here on ‘Day 2’ is where this story and tradition will be told.
At the writing of this post, December had not begun yet. Part of my simplification was to have a few foundation pages started. Because I knew this was the ‘tree hunt’, I just created space for a photo or two, and plenty of room for journaling.
And speaking of journaling, that is another focus this year. My hope is that if the album stays simple enough, that I will give more time to the story. I found when I reviewed past year’s albums, that this was not always the case. I would rather have pared down embellishment and make space for more words. It’s about focusing on the important here. The story to me is everything. While photos pack a lot of emotion, journaling give that emotion foundation and remembrance.
This year’s book is mostly composed of pocket page protectors. A space to indicate the day. Maybe a pocket with embellishment or photo. And then plenty of space for the story to be written.
To be clear, I don’t have every page completely planned out. I want to allow margin for whatever comes up. But I do think a plan and at least an idea is important.
Several of these square sized pocket pages are part of this year’s book too. One of the things I really like about pocket pages is that they are super easy to add little embellishments. But those embellies can slip right out if a photo needs to take that space too. Nothing is permanent here at all. That is important too.
I realize this post comes late in the month. Perhaps you have never dived into documenting your December as it may seem to overwhelming to you. I get that. Completely. And yay for you to know when to say no. But there is such a power of emotion to have a library of these books available for future years. So my encouragement to you: keep this simple. Don’t overload yourself. Tell your story. Maybe it’s even the 12 days of Christmas. This book can be created after the fact of Christmas and be a reflection rather than a “this right now” approach.
No matter how you plan to document your story, what I hope for you most of all, is that you and yours have a Merry Christmas.