What are you grateful for?
I’m thankful for many things, but unfortunately, having extra time to do all the projects I want to do isn’t one of them. Like most people, we’re busy getting ready for the holiday, cooking special meals, and enjoying our time with family. It doesn’t seem like a great time to make an “I Am Thankful for…” scrapbook page. Unless…
Yep. Why not make a scrapbook page that doubles as your holiday newsletter? You can even include ideas from How to Write about Gratitude: 6 Ideas and kill three birds with one stone. Besides being efficient, you’ll bring meaning to what can be a hectic time of year by calling attention to the fact that you really are thankful for your blessings.
Digital vs. Paper.
Because you’re going to want to reproduce it, it makes sense to begin digitally. There’s nothing wrong with cutting out parts of it later to place on your traditional paper scrapbook page.
“But I don’t have a program!” “Yes, you do.”
No, that’s not a conversation in my head. If you have access to the Internet, you do. There’s an open source software called GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) that you can download at http://www.gimp.org/ . “Open source” means that wonderful generous developers have made the program available to anyone. Apparently, you don’t have to know what “GNU” stands for to use it either.
“But life isn’t really a bed of roses right now.”
Sometimes life just doesn’t lend itself to writing an Ain’t-life-grand?-letter. In fact, if you did, your loved ones might worry. Instead, consider other routes.
- You can write what those things for which you are grateful for in light of what’s going on in your life, such as the love, support, and prayers of friends and family.
- Write something totally different. File the thankfulness idea away for another time.
For my layout, I used Photos Shop Element (PSE). You don’t need a template since you’re just creating text boxes and adding photos, but if you prefer to use one, Scrapgirls.com has a Family News template.
Tip: To save ink, you can eliminate your background and save a copy of your project as a pdf, then print it on stock holiday paper.
What to Write about in Your Newsletter
A word of caution: Make sure you’re not sending out a brag letter. If you’re not sure if you’re telling or bragging, let a trusted friend read it over before you send it out or read Writing—not Bragging—about your Kids for more details.
Thankful for Status Quo
To avoid reciting the same litany as you did last year, I suggest a status quo blurb. Because a drama free, unremarkable year is indeed a blessing, this works well within a “We’re Thankful for..” format.
Thankful for Family
This is a great place to re-cap reunions, family holidays and vacations, or new additions. You can also give tribute to a family member that has passed.
A Thankful Spin on your News
This is the big items. What’s new and exciting? It can also include the things about which you worry. For instance, our son’s decision about which college he wants to attend hinges on his decision about what kind of career he wants to pursue. That’s a lot at 17, but we’re grateful that he’s in this position.
Converting Your Newsletter to a 12 x 12 Thankful Scrapbook Layout
If you’re working with basic paper, it’s easy to place your newsletter on a 12 x 12 page and embellish it. For a digital layout, it’s also very simple. I simply increased my canvas size to 12 inches to 12 inches (Image > Resize > Canvas Size) and adjusted my background layer. To balance the page, I added a free Christmas tree embellishment download that I found at E.J. Scrapbooking Tutorials.