Documenting 2012 Through Photography: Project Life by Becky Higgins & Photo-a-Day Challenge

We all know that I'm obsessed with beautiful photos... no surprise. But in this new year I have put a challenge on myself to really try and capture those special daily moments through photography. My talented, cute friend Becky Higgins lit a fire to this little spark-of-an-idea when I had a chat with her at the Creative Connection Event.
Becky is the creator of a little something you may have heard of called... The Project Life kit.
A hands on and/or digital experience that gives you all the tools you need to archive your photos into an easy, back-to-basics approach that solely focuses on the pictures and stories of your everyday life.
Literally EVERYTHING is provided for you to create something amazing. You can go as simple or as 'bananas' as you want with project life, and that's what I love about it.

I'm not sure about how all of you other creative women feel, but having an easy, think-free way to journal my stories/memories is something that I honestly feel so grateful to Becky for... especially after a long day.
A lot of the time I would find myself getting completely overwhelmed by scrapbooking... wondering which pretty paper to choose, how to layer it, what to cut it with, should I add a brad, a button, a flower, some glitter.... AHHH!
It was all too much, so I would quit.
The Project Life kit gives me a no excuse, sure-fire way to make certain that no matter HOW I assemble my albums pages, it will turn out stunning every time. Literally an answer to my prayers. And because Becky is a trend-setting designer, blogger, Mother and entrepreneur, you can bet your bottom dollar that all of the products included are high quality, timeless in style... but right on trend.
You can view and purchase all of Becky's products on the Project Life site, get inspired through daily posts on Becky's Blog and even follower her on Facebook and twitter, to receive inspirational quotes and photo ideas for unique ways to capture all of those special moments you won't want to miss.

The reason I wanted to share this with you is (mainly because I love it, and knew you would too) but also, because I've had a bunch of readers wondering what is going on with all of my Instagram feed and Facebook updates lately. More specifically, the "photo-a-day" challenge images.

So here's the low-down...
I know that not everyone has phones compatible to take part in this little venture, but nonetheless, I wanted to share with you what I've been up to and how I've been documenting MY daily photos "on-the-go", so far. Just recently I did a post on the Instagram and Picframe apps so you can check that out as a resource, as to how I get the specific look to my images.
However, I've only touched on this a bit... but you can now print your Instagram'd photos into magnets,

canvases, cards, posters, and even mini books.

Perfect for sliding right into some of those Project Life pocket pages!

I've also recently discovered a great new app (to me) called 'My365'.
An easy way for me to keep all of my daily phone photos in order, so I know what days and months I took them. Genius!

So are you overwhelmed yet? ha! Don't be... because here's the thing, once you have everything downloaded and ready to go on your phone, you're basically done. All you need to do now is take pictures of those cute kids, love-able pets, amazing projects and funny moments. Stylize them to your liking... and then post them for friends, creepy stalker bloggers like me and family to see!

I got started by playing along in a little Instagram photo-a-day in January challenge made by Chantelle from Fat Mum Slim. Here is the list I've been using that she created...

Currently I'm on day 3!...and a little worried about tomorrows day 4 topic.
Is 'letterbox' a fancy-shamncy way to say mail box???

Basically it's just a fun way to have some direction, photograph things you maybe hadn't thought of and really... just a great way to GET STARTED!
You can follow our 365 photo-a-day journey on Instagram at username 'houseofsmiths'.
I will also be updating images on the House of Smiths Facebook page as well.

Again, you don't have to have a phone to play along, you can use ANY camera to document daily life, and then just post it to your Facebook page, blog or twitter feed to share! Or if 'sharing' isn't your thing... then just simply start a folder on your desktop and drop your "photo-a-day" picture in there every night.

All this being said, I do still VERY STRONGLY believe in the amazing-once-in-a-while-beautifully-staged photograph. Whether it's with a professional or just with your own SLR camera. There's just a magic that happens within those types of high-quality stunning images, during the really memorable moments in life that make my heart sing.

Even if it feels impossible, make it a goal to remember the BEST parts of your life this year, cherishing the sweet and simple moments, through photography... however you can. I promise that if you do, you will be blown away by the happiness that comes from reflecting upon those precious images in the future.


  1. LOVE Project Life and Becky Higgins! I'm doing a blog for my everyday, plus a weekly LO with Becky's pages. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on them both! I appreciate and enjoyed your post!

  2. I was just writing up a post about project life the other night too! I am very determined to try it this year and do just what you said, and capture more "everyday" moments. This was an awesome post! I really LOVE the quote you shared too. Sooo true!

  3. Thanks for all the awesome tips and tricks! I'm off to grab the Pic Frame app now. And yeah, a letterbox is what we Aussies call a mailbox...I took a pic of mine today :)

  4. You are so right about doing a scrapbook! I always so I need to print my digital pics out, then I don't, my computer crashes & sometimes I loose them! UGH. I will check her out! I will admit, I see you all over twitter using instagram and you pics are so cool! I do have the iphone so I will look at that to! Thanks for the reminder about the good "old fashioned" way of storing photo's. I'm thinking of a bookshelf I am building that would look great with cute photo books on it :)

  5. So cute! I don't have a smart phone *sad face* but if I did I would so be in :) Love that 365 day app!

  6. I am so glad u didn't know what a letterbox was either. Ha. I love the photo a day challenge. Are u going to continue it and make new challenges each month the rest of the year? That would be awesome! Will just wanted to say u rock and you are with out a doubt my fav blog:)

  7. Memoty keeping that sounds as the magic of The Project Life. So interesting.

  8. Hi Sherry! I too am a scrapbooker and wanna be photographer (or as my friends call me "Mammarazzi"). I have gotten so overwhelmed with the amount of photos, products, trends that I haven't touched a thing in over a year (not that moving and remodeling an entire house helped in that area).

    I love Project Life and I'm hoping I can start that in 2012. Thank you so much for this post, you have given me the inspiration (a/k/a kick in the hiney) to get me started;)

    Happy New Year!

  9. Love this challenge. I have the 365 ap and loving it! I figured I would post it by month on my blog rather than day by day. I'm not as dedicated as you and am still playing catch up on the old blog- posting thanksgiving in January is okay right?
    Glad I have this challenge to look at the little things each day!

  10. This will be my 4th year taking on P365/Project Life. While it is definitely a challenge to take a picture a day, these albums are by far my favorite that I've done.

    There is just something about looking through the pictures and the memories year after year. I also post online so that grandparents and friends can also watch our lives unfold and they love it too.

    Good luck with your Project Life!

  11. I love this!!! I scrapbook, instagram, 365 app, all of it!!! and still I want more!!! thanks for the inspiration!

  12. Ok I'm going to do the my365 you recommended. I did one last year and posted on FB. I'm going to follow Fat Mum Slim because I always had a fare time figuring what to photograph.
    I'm following you.

  13. I love instagram! I'm also excited to check out the other APPs you listed! Thanks for ALWAYS sharing your amazing tips and tools :) Signed, Probably your secret blogger stalker

  14. Love your blog. Question about your day 2 and 3 pictures. You grouped 3 photos together on one day. Did you do that in Photoshop or is there another way to do that on your phone/iPad, etc.?

  15. Love your blog. Question about your day 2 and 3 photos. It is a group of three pics for one day. How did you do that, Photoshop, or is there another way? I like it!

  16. How funny Shelley. I wrote a post Saturday that's scheduled to go live tomorrow talking about the SAME thing!

  17. Thanks for all the great tips! I'm now starting the PhotoaDay challenge...I take photos every day with my phone anyway, so why not?! I also downloaded the my365 app and love it. But how do you get it to not post on your Facebook wall every time you "post" on my365?

  18. "Is 'letterbox' a fancy-shamncy way to say mail box???" lol That would be a "YES", they are one in the same :)

    Love your blog!

  19. How fun! I started a 30 day photography challenge as well. I'll probably be doing this one in the spring because I like the different photos on your list as well :)

    Here's the link to my photography challenge:

  20. I love this project and think it is a great way to document your life in year.

  21. I'm so glad you said "Currently I'm on day 3!...and a little worried about tomorrows day 4 topic.Is 'letterbox' a fancy-shamncy way to say mail box???" haha :) I said the same thing yesterday! ;) We just have plain ol' mailboxes here! Beth

  22. I love Becky, and and I love printing pictures, so YAY for this post!

  23. I just found your blog (thanks to Young House Love) and I can't believe all the beauty I've been missing. I love your blog - and home - everything about it. You've inspired me to take my dining room shelf to new levels! Oh, and your pantry. And the girls bedrooms. You have amazing talent. I'm a fan for sure!

  24. I absolutly LOVE your blog!! I love your style and you have the cutest ideas. I found your blog from my friend Emilie of Photo by Emilie. I just wnated to thank you for the cuteness of your blog and for introducing me to Becky Higgins Project Life. The other day I was looking through an old Creating Keepsakes magazine and it was the one that advertised Project 365. I was always curious why she didn't make more of the kits since it was such a big sell. I was absolutly thrilled to discover that she did but with a different name!! thanks so much and keep the cuteness coming!!

  25. Funny - I call it a letterbox (I'm aussie), but I 'get' that it's a mail box...

  26. Not fancy just British! Royal mail boxeshere you post you letters in the street or the hole in your front door (we don't have those driveway letterboxes (unless you live on a farm)).


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