A History Project Exercise

December 31st, 2015|everyday life|

Many of you may be wondering what The History Project is all about. Wondering if it’s the right project for you. I thought that today we could go through a little exercise with a sampling of the style of the class. 

It goes beyond just the ordinary Where did you work? and What schools did you attend? kinds of questions. The questions asked are designed to get you thinking beyond a typical answer. Beyond the simple answer. So that your readers will know more about who you really are.

Let’s use this photo as a starting point to remembering snippets of life.


me and jon st george 1979

I do not remember this moment. But does that matter? The question I would pose to myself is, what else do I remember about that time or about that kind of scene? Or maybe even the clothes I was wearing. Was it a favorite outfit? What were other favorite outfits? You don’t have to remember ‘the moment’, but rather, use it as a springboard to help you remember other parts of your life.

For example:

I remember going on walks in the desserts near St. George and into Arizona, with my grandpa, who worked for the U.S. Forest Service and BLM. He also discovered a brand new plant and it was named after him.

I remember him telling me the names of all the plants that we’d see, and searching for some endangered species as well. I miss that terribly about my grandpa…and his quiet little laugh.

I remember visiting my grandparents when they lived in apartments across from the St. George Temple when Dan and I were first married. She made a browned roast and gravy in her old square electric skillet. She made the best roast+gravy!

I remember going to St. George with my mother and maybe Jon and/or David because she needed to get away from the winter weather. Listening to John Denver on cassette tape. This was a time when my grandparents weren’t there during the winter. We didn’t have much money, so we’d sleep in the car. She’d park by the St. George Temple and move it intermittently around during the night. We’d then go hike around the red rocks of Snow Canyon. A family favorite as children and something I still do with my children today.

I remember having Christmas down there at my grandparent’s house they were renting one year (maybe I was 9 or 10?) when I got my first Kodak Instamatic camera, with flash bulbs and everything.

I could probably go on and on. When I start recalling one memory, it makes me think of another. And before you know it, you have this long list of memories…stories…about your life. I could go back and embellish those stories even more with more ‘sensory’ details (we cover creative writing in class), but this is just more of an example.

The beauty of journaling like this is that you don’t have to remember stories and place them in chronological order. I don’t remember how old I was on some of those moments and that’s okay. When you remove that restriction of remembering year by year, your mind is much more free to let those memories flow. Our brain isn’t wired to remember chronologically, right? One thought spurs another. Go with that flow! Of course, if you’re typing it up before making a final copy, then you could always make it a little more chronological by moving stories. 

But that one photo stirred up so many random memories!

Whether or not it’s a part of that particular moment, remember to include additional facts to not only help your reader understand more about the moment, but also to sneak in other facts that might not otherwise be shared. For example, I shared that my grandpa worked for the Forest Service and BLM, which wasn’t necessarily a part of the moment, but will be interesting to know for those who are reading it.

Also, if there is a connection between then and now, include that too!

I know I’m pretty much a broken record on this, but sharing your stories is so important. I can never express enough how important this is. I will never have those stories from my mother. And you never realize just how much you want to hear the stories until they are gone. 

I will never know them. That makes me incredibly sad.

I did not want that for my children. They will know who I am and what childhood was for me. My childhood was very unique in that my parents divorced when I was nine. A single mother with five children in the 70s was not an easy task. I lived not only with my mother, but would also live with various aunts+uncles during the school year to ease her burden and the challenges she faced. (I was the easiest-going child. ;) ) I lived in many places, but by doing that it helped me remember better because I associated places with my age and things that I did or received. My youth provided a great perspective and memory for me to help you now to recall your memories. (There’s a reason for everything.)

Do I regret the childhood I had? No. It’s made me who I am and I like who I am. I had so many wonderful opportunities that I might not otherwise have had. That being said, I love that my children have grown up in the same home with life-long friends. That was important to me. Additionally, living in many different places, combined with my mother’s spontaneous road-tripping, created an enormous wanderlust spirit in me and has now transferred to my children. We were just talking about how we travel more than a lot of people. Seeing ‘the world’ and experiencing all that it has to offer and appreciating it has always been a part of who I am and how I grew up.  And you don’t have to go far or spend a lot of money for that either. You can find it in your backyard, up the canyon, to the beach, a three-hour drive…it can be anywhere. 

So hopefully this exercise has given you a little glimpse into The History Project. Take a few minutes now and look at a photo or maybe an item from your childhood or even just that thought that entered your head right now and write about it.

Let the thoughts flow and see what stories appear!

You will be surprised!

A Burst of Hipster

December 30th, 2015|digital shapes|

You know how you start on a project a few months ago, get maybe two-thirds or even three-quarers done and then it kind of gets pushed aside? Yeah, this is like that.

So glad to finally have this fun little grouping of hand-drawn ‘bursts’ done!

It’s funny, because according to what I like, my kids would refer to me as hipster. Just because you like the vintage style of lettering, and have liked it for many, many years–before ‘hipster’ was even a thing–does not label you a hipster. It’s all these young pups putting a label on liking vintage things…when some of us were liking it long before they were–and most likely before they were even born.

so there.

That being said, it only seemed fitting to call this kit Burst of Hipster. ;)

I love the idea of using the whole burst to outline a word or two in the center, or using just pieces of it to accentuate another piece of a title. Use the image as a base and then move the pieces as needed to fit your art.

This has so much potential!

And just for fun, I even included an already-made title within the kit.


You can also take a Radial image from the Radial Neutrals or Radial Sunshine kits to give it a sun flare look. I overlaid two on top of each other to make this look.



As you can tell, there is some fun to be had with these bursts!

In case you were wondering…

December 29th, 2015|classes|

….yes, I’m still here.

Are you guys having  a hard time working or doing the things you should be doing? Boy…all I want to do is play! And play we have. Family parties, ‘friendly’ games of Sorry (ha ha), Star Wars…so many fun memories this holiday season. And maybe a few extra pounds too. ;)

So sadly I really do have to start thinking about work…that four letter word that nobody really cares for, right?

I’m trying.


Come on.

I did want to let you all know that there are only a couple more days left of this amazing sale!


If you got a new Silhouette, this would be an awesome time to pick up some classes! Or maybe you do have one and you just want to learn more.

And stamps? Yeah, you don’t see them on sale very much, so now is the perfect time to pick up the ones you’ve been wanting…uhhhh…needing. :)


Also, we’re extending the sale for The History Project through the end of the year as well. Class starts on Monday. I cannot express enough just how important it is to get your childhood stories down on paper. This is first and foremost a journaling class. No scrapbooking skills needed. And the class will help you remember things you never knew were still in your head. I promise. I have heard that from so many people who have taken the class…it’s not just me.:)

It’s all self-paced now, so the content is all available to you starting January 4. You can jump around as you feel inspired to work on a given subject. Come and go as you have time for.

There’s never been any ‘behind’ in this project.

The important thing is to just do it. No matter when you can.
So now the question is….do I work or play today? ;)
What are you going to do?

The History Project. It’s here to stay!

December 18th, 2015|classes|

It’s that time of year again. The time when we see January off in the short future and we start thinking about setting new goals. Goals to be better about documenting our lives…including documenting our early years!

After a few years of offering this class in various configurations, starting January 4 it will be available to anyone at any time as a self-paced class.

What does this mean?

Over 50 prompts and their corresponding shapes will be available on January 4 when the new class starts. Now you can write about the memories that you are feeling when you want to.


Additionally, the brand new stamp set, Yesterday, has been designed specifically for this class, but of course can be used for so much more! It uses many of the words and phrases that we use in the class, so it’s the perfect complement to your journal entries.


And the best part is, when you purchase The History Project, you will receive a one-time use coupon code to save $3 for this stamp set.

Pretty awesome!

Please note: This stamp set is available now for preorder for the January stamp release. All previous History Project students will receive their own coupon via email, so please be sure to watch for that. 

And in case you wanted a bit more savings–because we like doing that ’round these parts, purchase the class by December 25 and save $5!

And did I mention what an awesome Christmas gift this would be??? If that’s something you’re interested in doing, email me and we’ll get that set up for your loved one.

So why do The History Project?

This class is so much more than the journaling books you pick up at a bookstore. The prompts are in-depth, with many questions to get your brain working on recalling those memories. Plus there are writing tips to help you tell your stories in creative ways.

And if that wasn’t enough, there are over fifty printable designs and cuttable shapes to help accentuate your journal.

But even with all that extra stuff, the real reason why you want to do The History Project is to get your stories out of your head and down onto paper.

Don’t leave your posterity wondering about your life.

Not too long ago (while working on The History Project, mind you), I heard this quote on The Da Vinci code:

“A picture says a thousand words, but which words? … Understanding our past determines actively the ability to understand the present. … How do we write our own histories, personally or culturally, and thereby define ourselves?”


We need to write our stories…our histories.

The stories–and who we are–should be remembered.
They need to be remembered. They tell us who we are.

I can tell you, without out a doubt, that your life is interesting.

Your life is gold.

Your posterity will want to know all your stories growing up.

You may think you’ve forgotten, but The History Project can help you recall and write those memories. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard that from past students.

Your story is important.

Your story is you.

There’s no time like the present to write about your past.

And here’s a little video to help you feel even more motivated to write your stories. :)






And the winner is…

December 13th, 2015|everyday life|



And the winner of the stamp set of her choice is:

JOAN – DECEMBER 12, 2015 – 4:59 AM

Congratulations Joan!
Email me at kerri@kerribradford.com and we’ll get you all taken care of!


Comments Off on And the winner is…

12 Days of Christmas: Day 12

December 12th, 2015|planners|

Day 12. Man. Every time I come to the end of a big event, it’s like coming off a big high or something. It often leaves me feeling like I’m twiddling my thumbs. It’s just so sad. We have seen many amazing ideas and we’ve just been so thrilled to have you all here to enjoy this time with us! And a big shout out to all our designers that shared their incredible talents with us!

mwah! mwah!

But alas, our 12-day event has finally come to an end and today you get to hear from me.

I have taken on the goal of documenting just tiny thoughts every day using Hello Forever’s (Marcy Penner) 2016 Planner. I type them on my computer–which is just a rectangular silver appendage to my body, really–and have the daily thoughts ready for when I put it into my traveler’s notebook.

This is the week I documented the beginning of the holiday season…the week of Thanksgiving. My goal is to keep the process fairly simple because I just want to get it done and not spend a lot of time. That’s where my struggle has always been…too much thinking and trying to be too creative. Once I got down to the basics of little life notes and a photo or two…or three of four, it just broke that wall for me. It’s something I can do.

I loved the idea stacking lines of text from Thankful and A Big Day stamp sets. Any time I can use words as my creative element…you know it’s my fave!

TN Thanksgiving 1 web

I also broke out my Fuse tool for the first time to quickly whip up the perfect size page protector. I’ve had that thing a few months now and it was still in its packaging. It felt good to finally get it out! I thought I would have used it so much sooner…but…ya know…

With the little flip photo I was able to add just a smidgen more and still keep the main family page all on its own. It’s where I wanted the focus to be on the week.

TN Thanksgiving 2 web

I used a Simon Says Fossil stamp ink on white cardstock and adhered it to the paper of the planner page. The ink just bled too much on paper and I wanted a crisper look.

And then…I’ve been all about gold of late! As you know, right? I thought it would be fun to take the primary word of Thanksgiving and gold emboss it.


It’s my favorite.

Love the Fossil color with the gold!

TN Thanksgiving 3 web

Even though my goal is to stay simple, tiny little touches like embossing one word or adding flip page adhered by washi tape can make all the difference. Not to mention it gives me a little sense of creative accomplishment. ;)

I love having a taste of what has happened every week. Some day I hope to document more photos, because I have many great photos. But when you can’t seem to manage even a Project Life style, a planner style will do just fine.

And I’m happy with that.

Maybe next year I’ll be more in the habit of documenting and graduate up to pocket page scrapbooking. :)

baby steps.


Today’s little freebie is just a sweet addition to any page or project. But not only that, it would be so fun to tie around a container of hot chocolate to give as a neighbor gift!


This is no longer available as a freebie, but you can get it in the store.


And now for our last Posts of Christmas Past. Hmm. I think I want to go with one of my all-time favorites from our design team. It is something from our Christmas in July this year, but in the spirit of all things classically simple and beautiful–and gold and white, which is my motto these days, here are the gorgeous tags from Nichol Magouirk. That teeny gold tree from Believe is one of my very favorite stamps. To see the entire assortment of tags, click HERE.


Thanks again to all of you for an incredible twelve days of merriment! You give me so much all year long–with your words and your support–that I love when December comes around and I can reciprocate the kindness.

You are all a part of my amazing journey in this little world of ours and I thank you for it.

Love to you all!

12 Days of Christmas: Day 11 + Another Giveaway!

December 11th, 2015|cards|


Another Friday has arrived during our little 12 Days event and that means another giveaway is afoot!

Today we are giving away a stamp set of your choice in three social media places:
here on the blog, Instagram and Facebook!

To enter here on the blog, just leave a comment with a favoritist (yeah, it’s a word) Christmas gift from your childhood, like this post on FB below, and we’ll draw a winner Sunday morning.

Now go check out the other two places for more chances to win!

And we still have this going on for today only.


This is the last day of our Golden Deer giveaway to purchase stamps and possibly merrily see a golden deer head come your way. If a golden deer arrives in your package, you win another stamp set!

I didn’t necessarily set out to overlap these two contests, but that’s what you get when you spontaneously think of an extra giveaway.  It’s all about partying around here, ya know? :)

In the immortal words of Garth from Wayne’s World after he’s done with his spontaneous drum solo, ‘I like to play.’


Today’s freebie is just a fun little card to use in your December Daily, Project Life or any other pocket scrapbooking setup you have going on this month.

It comes in three PNG card colors as well as a black transparent image so you can change color as needed.


This is no longer available as a freebie, but you can get it in the store.



I think I just might get Christmas cards out this year. Last year I asked my kids to get me their favorite selfie or photo of them since we couldn’t manage a family photo.  Didn’t happen. But this year, so far I think I have four out of five. Fifth one will be coming soon, I hope.

But if you want to send out a handmade card, check out these cards from Nichol’s Posts of Christmas Past. Love these! For more about them, click HERE.


12 Days of Christmas: Day 10

December 10th, 2015|pages|



It’s Day 10.

‘Day 10,’ she says in a long, hushed voice.

I can’t believe we’re almost to the end. These things go so fast!

Today our cute little friend Laura is here to share with us another of her quest to get all her Christmas photos scrapped. Three cheers to her for getting them all caught up! Let’s take a look at how she was able to take on such a task and get ‘er done.


[ Design | Christmas Countdown (joy) / December Twenty-Five (Christmas), Storyboard #6 / Border Fancy (freebie) ]

From Laura:

In my quest to get 6 years of Christmases scrapped, documented, and in the albums, I finally reached the last of the 9 layouts I set out to make over the last year. Kerri’s storyboard templates played a huge part in these layouts coming together easily and without much fuss, and I love that! Every layout I created involved photo collages, and die cut titles, and minimal embellishments. By simplifying my process, it helped me tackle a holiday that I don’t necessarily enjoy scrapping.

For this layout (above), I used a template from Kerri’s Storyboard #6 kit and sized it so that I would have a little room on both sides of the collage for some patterned paper and a little room above for my title. I combined two designs for my title, pulling the word “joy” from the Christmas Countdown kit and the word “Christmas” from the December Twenty-Five kit. I also used one of Kerri’s fabulous freebies, and cut the Border Fancy to go along both sides of the collage.

LauraVegas_TacklingChristmasIt felt so good to get all of those Christmases finished and in the albums. Now I just need to take care of Christmas 2014, since Christmas 2015 is right around the corner!


What’s so amazing is how many photos Laura was able to get onto the one or two-page spreads. Same basic concept for all the pages, yet each one looks so unique! Photo templates can simplify the photo process greatly.

I said it before and I’ll say it again, she’s my hero! I hope she has inspired you to tackle a big project the same way she’s inspired me!


Today’s one-day freebie has dual meaning. I designed this–in addition to the new Hanukkah title in the store–with my Jewish friends in mind. But since I believe a lot of ‘Christmas’ peeps also enjoy a different type of Festival of Lights in many communities,  I thought this freebie could work for both December holidays. Not to mention you could always break it apart and use festival or lights on their own.


This is no longer available as a freebie, but you can get it in the store.


Last year we had the pleasure of having Miss Stephanie Bryan join our 12 Days of Christmas. As I was perusing the Posts of Christmas Past I loved the idea of sharing another beautiful simple page layout using the same title as Laura. I love being able to see the same design used two ways at the same time. So take a look…and for more of a look, check it all out HERE.


12 Days of Christmas: Day 9

December 9th, 2015|cards|



I think our wheels are spinnin’…thinkin’ of all those gift-giving ideas right about now, wouldn’t ya say? Just about two weeks until Christmas! What are you getting everyone on your list?

Well, for just that little somethin’-somethin’, especially gift cards, jewelry or chocolate, check out all the awesomeness that Layle whipped up for the dudes on her list! So stinkin’ cute!

I have 2 teenage boys.  Their cousins are teenagers.  Their friends are teenagers.  Let’s face it, gone are the days of wrapping up a box of Legos or a Barbie for Christmas.  Teenagers want cash.  Cold hard cash!  That or a gift card.  Sure, it’s easy to slap a check, some cash or a gift card in a Hallmark card and call it good, but what fun is that when you can have fun making little bags to slide it in?  


Kerri’s new Paper Bag cut files are perfect for having a little fun with your cash or gift card giving!  I’ve used the 4 different rounded top styles – square, rectangle, gift card & skinny mini – and scrapbook paper to create 4 pint sized paper bags, ready for cash, gift cards, even small gifts like jewelry!

On this first paper bag, I used the Square template.  Wrapping it up like a present with some tinsel twine gives it a little bit of sparkle… ok, more like A LOT of sparkle!  I finished it off by stamping a tag with the dot stamp from the Tagged stamp set and then HO HO HO from the Believe stamp set.  A little washi and a few stickers & I called it good.  Now who wouldn’t want a nice little gift tucked inside this little gem?  :)

paper bag 1

For my 2nd bag I used the Rectangle template.  With all of the templates you can size as needed, so you can really customize the size of the bag for what you’re going to put in it.  I cut the deer from the Oh Deer cut file out of American Crafts paper.  I just love that shiny deer! To shine it up a bit more – because if you can’t load on the sparkle & shine at Christmas, when CAN you?! – I sprayed the bag with gold glitter spray from Thermo Web.  A quick strip of red patterned paper, a self adhesive brad and another sticker and voila – a fun & functional bag, just waiting for a little something to be added!

paper bag 2

For this bag I used the Gift Card template.  You guys, I know I’m going to be using this one over and over and over again.  In fact, I should just go pull out a bunch of different scrapbook paper and prepare a bunch of these so I have on hand anytime I need to give a gift card!  They’re sooooo much cuter than the plain ugly envelopes you get them in from the store!  A quick wrap of red baker’s twine and a key tag stamped in gold with the snowflake stamp from the Believe stamp set and the ‘twinkle’ stamp from the Holiday Magic stamp set and BAM! another bag, ready for giving!

paper bag 3

For my last bag I used the Skinny Minny template.  This size is perfect for giving chocolate bars.  And you know teenagers – cash AND chocolate?!  You betcha!  I wrapped 2 different widths of jute around the bag & tied it up like a present.  A few jingle balls added to the festiveness.  To wrap it up, another tag, this time stamped with the stars from the Holiday Magic stamp set and the mini tree from the Believe stamp set.

paper bag 4

And there you have it.  Little gift bags, all wrapped up and ready to go. Now I’m off to cross those off my ‘to do’ list!


So seriously? Love them all! I’m with Layle..I just wanna go cut out a few and have on hand. And the grand part about that is that you can store them flat until you’re ready to use it…if you want to, that is. Cut them out in different colors and put them in a file folder to whip out when you need it. For all year long even! I find that I’m much more inclined to use something when it’s even half-way prepared than if I have to run go cut it out quickly because some kid forgot they needed some present right before a party. But even then, cutting it doesn’t take that much time.

These are just so awesome Layle! Thanks for sharing these wonderful ideas! Needed that! :)

Today’s one-day freebie is a fun little ‘Santa’ card. Comes in print form as well as ‘disassembled’ in the way of cut files. Print or cut…or print and cut. What ever tickles your fancy and makes you laugh like a bowl full of jelly.


This is no longer available as a freebie, but you can get it in the store.

Need a gift wrapping idea with a little more space? Try Laura’s idea of wrapping a tin with stitched-together stars. Love this idea! For more about this, click HERE.


12 Days of Christmas: Day 8 + The Golden Deer Stamp Giveaway

December 8th, 2015|pocket page scrapbooking|


Today we have part two from Miss Jamie Pate…because really, you can never have enough of her creative genius, right? I know a lot of you do some kind of December Daily and Jamie has sone wonderful pages that might help you get yours done too!


[ Designs | Today Is a Good Day (today) / December Additions: The Pages (modern garland) / Envelopes / Snowflake / Label It (half fancy) ]


There are those snowflakes again! So awesome in so many ways, right? The pages are just amazing.

Thanks for coming by our house this holiday season, Miss Jamie!





This is no longer available as a freebie, but you can get it in the store.

And you just knew I had to cut it out in gold!

tree gold sm


In case you’re looking for more December-themed pocket page ideas, here’s a little look at my December album from last year. I find that if I document the month, it’s much easier for me to capture the magic than worrying about doing something every day. I think it’s one of my most favorite projects I’ve ever done. For the whole ball of snow, click HERE.



+ + + + + + +


Sometimes things come together in a funny little way. Yesterday, as I was stamping some bags for packaging, the golden deer that I’d previously cut were sitting there next to it all and caught my eye.

Put two and two together…and before you know it…

…we’re doing a Golden Deer Giveaway!

Any stamp sets purchased December 7-11 may or may not have one of five golden deer heads in it. If you happen to get one, then you win a stamp set of your choice!

To verify your win, simply take a picture and send it to kerri@kerribradford.com.

So don’t delay because we are getting really low on some sets and there won’t be any reorders before the end of the year (and end of the sale). You don’t want to miss out on getting one of your favorite stamps….and maybe an extra favorite if’n ya win. :)