a 'rak' journal inspired by gratitude

Without a doubt, we can all agree that the HABIT of feeling and capturing gratitude is a key to a happy and full life. even when things are less that perfect in life…(that would be always, right?) DOCUMENTING the little blessings, and recognizing the good things around us is always a subject worthy of pretty paper and creative time! whether it’s the changing of the leaves, or just the transition from the lazy days of summer into the cooler autumn months, my heart is full…

Along with the contributions from my media team, I have created a digi kit of words, and quotes to inspire… and over the next few days, we will be sharing projects that we have created to capture and document gratitude… these amazing projects will make beautiful and meaningful gifts, and even just personal keepsakes. Now, one of the special features in each of these projects is the use of a Silhouette digital cutter. (I think that we would each agree how THANKFUL we are for our Cameo cutters! ) WE LOVE our Silhouettes….

Stay tuned, my special gratitude kit will be available later this week!

Kicking things off is Maggie Massey… and I just LOVE her concept for this project! What a great idea…I’ll her fill you in!

maggie’s gratitude-inspired RAK journal …

Gratitude turns what we have into enough.

Every so often (OK, more than that, actually), I need a reminder to be grateful for what I have. Sometimes I fall into the “I want that,” or “I need that,” or “I wish my kids were…,” or “I wish I looked like…” blah, blah, blah… and I need a little push back into reality. I need to be reminded of the above quote…one of my favorites.

It occurred to me…what better way to SHOW how grateful I am for what I have than to share with and do for others?

I’ve been reading on a number of different blogs about people spending their birthday day completing RAOK, random acts of kindness…they complete the same number of acts as the age they are turning. I’ve decided I want to do the same thing…

So for my Gratitude project for the Heidi Swapp Media Team, I created a little journal/book to document my 40 Random Acts of Kindness (40 acts because I’m turning 40 this year…smile).

I was heavily inspired in this project by my fellow Media Team members…so I must say thank you to each of them for being so awesome…and talented…and creative. Thank you, girls…

Here is my project…

I created a “portfolio” similar to the one fellow team member Lindsay Bateman created for her “Memory File of Me” because I thought it was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen…(I cut and folded a fruit snacks box and adhered paper from the Sugar Chic line to it).

I titled my journal “it’s the little things” as a reminder that the little things are sometimes the most important…and we should be thankful for all of the wonderful little things that happen.
Heidi’s digital store has a HUGE variety of words and images that can all be cut on the Silhouette (or by hand!)…that’s why the word “little” in my title looks so cool.
I also outlined the word in black because I really wanted it to “pop” against the similarly colored background.
When you open my journal, you see another little “title page” – 40 ROAK…

I absolutely adore Heidi’s banners, ready-made, digital, whatever…all of them. And I add them to every single one of my projects. I love layering them…and I love that you can just grab any design and it will work.

***I have a little secret on this title area, too…see all my different layers under the actual title? Each layer represents the cover-up of a mistake…a place where what I wanted to do really just did NOT work. But I love the way it looks now.

Here’s a little tip…don’t be afraid to make mistakes! Heidi and Jamie Pate (another Media Team member) have a little phrase they love to use…”Glue it down!” Just do it! Don’t be afraid, a mistake (at least in paper-crafting) can always be covered up. Why do you think you always see tons of washi tape in my projects? It’s the perfect way to cover up yucky handwriting, a messed-up sticker, or crooked embellishment… some of my favorite projects looks NOTHING like what I had envisioned them to be.***

When you open the bottom flap of the journal, this is what you see…

I used the back-to-back bookbinding technique on this middle section.

More banners and another of Heidi’s digi-files…aren’t they awesome???

When you open this top flap, you see this…

 “remember…do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”

And when you pull down the bottom flap, you will first see this little pocket…right now it’s got a few Prima flowers in it, but it can be used to hold more journaling tags or special mementos.

Flip that pocket up and you see what will eventually become the whole point of this project…

My list of kindness acts…

I measured the length of my paper, divided by the number in my list and then found paper scraps that fit into those measurements. I designed a number line in Silhouette and used the negative as my journaling space. You will see that I counted to only 39 in this list…that’s because I want my 40th act of kindness to be something really big and awesome…that will get it’s own page.

And at the bottom of this flap…

…definitely an important thing for all of us to remember to do…
I’m so looking forward to completing my list and seeing everything all in one spot. I hope that every time I write something down in it that I remember why I made it in the first place…so that I will remember to be grateful for all that I have.
Maggie, I feel totally inspired to share the love! thanks for your inspiration!


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