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Done By December Kick-Off | Special Guest Jess Forster

Raise your hand if you have an unfinished December Daily® album? Keep that hand up if you’d like some company and motivation to help you wrap it up! Today, we're excited to welcome Creative Team alum and community member Jess Forster to kick off this year's Done By December community challenge. In the weeks ahead we'll have several of our Brand Ambassadors feature here and on our December Daily® Instagram account sharing their strategy and progress towards a completed album. Also, join us tomorrow, Friday September 22nd at 1:30pm ET for a live chat with Jess, Ali, and Lisa all about the project, their tips and tricks for getting it done, and what they've learned over the years. Can’t join us live? Don’t worry! Our conversation will be recorded and available over at @decemberdaily. 

Let's welcome Jess! 

Hi crafty friends, it’s Jess Forster here and I am so pleased to welcome you to Done by December, 2022 edition! This paper crafting challenge is a community run initiative is designed to encourage others to work on our previous incomplete December Daily® albums leading up the first of December or the beginning of the new DD documenting period. All are invited to work on their projects, no matter how much you have completed. Set a goal to finish your album or to finish a couple of pages - the choice is yours. Feel free to play along and cheer each other along the way!

Why you participate in December Daily®?

To me, December Daily is not only a fun crafty project, but an invitation to establish and document personal joys and magic in holiday celebrations. It has encouraged me to establish holiday traditions for my family and serves as a reminder to be present in the season. It’s also super fun to play with pretty holiday products! I also love seeing how crafty our community gets during this time of year; I marvel at all the ideas and inspiration. It’s also the time I drink my morning coffee and read Ali’s blog consistently each day. 

Where you are in your documenting? 

For this year, I am working on my 2018 December Daily album. This is the year, my family and I spent the first week of December at Disney world, Florida and the last part of the month in Toronto. As such my album is divided into two different sections: 

1. A 3x8 travel’s notebook highlighting our Disney trip   2. 6x8 pocket page album, with one double page spread per day

As you can see from the photos, I have many incomplete spreads. Some days I have only words but no photos or embellishments. Other days, it’s the opposite: have the photos, cards and embellishments but no words. This album includes stories of travel, everyday life as well as Christmas moments. It’s a little bit of everything with nothing really completed! Ha!

What is your strategy/plan is for completion?

Great question! I like to keep track of how much time I have to dedicate to the project and  break the project down into manageable tasks. Fun fact: there are 11 Thursdays before December 1st. 

I made a list of each day in my album. On that list I have included whether the project is complete or incomplete and what I need to do finish the page. From there I will start with the easiest task to complete. For me, it’s selecting photos + printing. Since the story will inform my photo choice, I will give myself approximately, 4-6 weeks to finish this task. 

From there I like to keep my goals and options open. In November I always like to work on the upcoming December Daily project, setting up my album and thinking about my goals or focus. This year, if I print all my photos for my 2018 album, I will be happy. The key for me, is not to shame or blame myself in the process, but to try to keep my expectations realistic and enjoy reliving the moments and memories along the way. If finish my album, I will be ecstatic! If I move the DD project forward, closer to be finishing, I will also be happy and proud of myself. This scrappy challenge is really around fitting it into my life, right now and I would encourage others to make their goals fit where they are at currently. 

Again, all are welcome! Please consider yourself invite and let's work on some December stories, together!

Find more inspiration from Jess here: 

Instagram: @jess_forster

Youtube: jessforster

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12 thoughts

  1. carrieW says…
    09/22/2022

    I like your list of to-do's; might take a bit of time, but actually seems that the list will make it easier to pick a task & complete. I'll try this & see how far I get. Thanks, I always love to see your pages.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. jessfo says…
      09/23/2022

      Thanks so much Carrie! The to do list didn't take as long as I thought it would. Maybe 20 minutes? I feel so much better, knowing what I need to complete : )

  2. jlutherdesigns says…
    09/22/2022

    This is great Jess! I always love following along with you as you work on getting done by December. Your process is inspiring and I'll be working right along with you as I attempt to finish my 2021 album.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. jessfo says…
      09/23/2022

      Thanks so much :) Good luck with your 2021 album! I can't wait to see you make!!

  3. paulahrankowski says…
    09/22/2022

    I’m curious to see how this turns out. This is my first DD and I’m in Mexico for 9 days in December. So I didn’t want to lug the whole kit. So maybe a traveller's notebook might work for the trip.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. jessfo says…
      09/23/2022

      I am curious to see how it turns out too! Haha! Have a wonderful time in Mexico :)

  4. ScrappinMyHeartOut says…
    09/22/2022

    This will be so much fun! I just finished organizing all of my 2018 photos and picking out what I'd like to use from my DD + other product stash!

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. jessfo says…
      09/23/2022

      Amazing!! Organizing photos is a big part of the process! Good luck :)

  5. Yiann says…
    09/23/2022

    Hi Jess,
    Thank you so much for this very helpful advice. I never thought of doing a To Do’s spreadsheet for the project and of course it makes sense. I’ll be dedicating a day a week to finish off my DD from last year, which was my first. I also think this will be a good starting point for a Xmas past album.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. jessfo says…
      09/23/2022

      My pleasure Yiann! Good luck with your 2021 album :)

  6. kylemiller3 says…
    09/24/2022

    Love it! I'm joining in a different way! I want my Week In the Life album #donebyDecember so I can focus on my December Daily in December! Thanks for the inspiration and invitation to create.

    Reply 0 Replies
  7. mamapudge63 says…
    09/27/2022

    I have done my album but have December project life I need to catch up on so this is my motivation.

    Reply 0 Replies

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