Fast forward to 2020. I now have 4 young kids, a full time job, a family travel blog, and continuous adventures. And to top it off I have an overwhelming, unending amount of photos on my iPhone, computer desktop, and memory cards.
Life gets full.
Life gets busy.
And even with all the busyness in my life, I am always looking for ways to save the memories in a more tangible way other than a digital photo forever trapped on my cell phone. There is nothing quite like picking up a photo album or scrapbook in your hands and flipping through the pages.
I love the idea of my kids being able to grab an album from our family room shelf and flip through the pages. How amazing for them to be able to remember the trips, the stories, and the memories we have shared together throughout the years as a family.
How to Get Started with your Vacation Scrapbook
In 2019 we went on a California
coast trip with Cruise America RV
. We traveled for 10 days down the coast of California with many stops and adventures throughout the trip. I knew that I wanted to capture each day as part of a vacation scrapbook. BUT, I knew that if I waited to get home it would never get done. I knew that it would be pushed aside day after day, until one day I decided I wasn't ever going to have time to do it. Eventually, I would just throw all of the receipts, tickets, and brochures in the recycle bin.
So I decided that I was going to bring the vacation scrapbook and all of the supplies with me. I was going to incorporate my children into creating the scrapbook alongside me. And I was going to have the vacation scrapbook complete by the time we got home from our trip.
Sounds ambitious? Maybe.
But I will promise you that we did indeed make it happen. I look forward to creating more vacation scrapbooks with the kids on upcoming adventures with Cruise America RV.
In this post I am going to share how you too can create a vacation scrapbook while you are on your Cruise America RV trip! Creating this vacation scrapbook won't just make you happy because it is done, but part of the fun will be creating it with your family.
Vacation Scrapbook Supplies
Depending on the length of your Cruise America RV trip, and how much time and energy you want to put into the vacation scrapbook will determine how many supplies you actually need to buy. I bought all of these supplies at our local craft store, but you could easily purchase all of these supplies online.
Complete List of Things needed to Create the Ultimate Vacation Scrapbook
You want to choose one that is an appropriate size for the length of your Cruise America RV trip. If you are anything like me, you also want to be able to slip extra photos (without having to scrapbook) into photo sleeves. Look for a scrapbook that is a combination of blank paper and sleeves for photos. Also consider if you are planning on putting this somewhere in your house. Make sure it matches your personal style if that is important to you.
You want to be able to pull this vacation scrapbook together fairly effortlessly, consider washi tape as opposed to glue, or even scrapbooking tape. It is decorative and functional. You don't need scissors to cut it (part of the fun is the imperfections of the scrapbook) which means one less supply you need to bring.
One of my favorite parts of these vacation scrapbooks for me is allowing my children to do the documenting. I try to keep it simple and only bring 4 different color fine point Sharpies, but you could get a pack of colorful pens to bring along.
Stickers & Embellishments-
This is where you can get as elaborate or simple as your heart desires. I am more on the elaborate side, whereas I know others would rather keep it simple. Consider your destination and try to grab a few packs of scrapbooking embellishments centered around that theme. Are you heading to a National Park with your Cruise America RV? Grab a few packs of stickers and embellishments that feature outdoors, nature, and United States landmarks. Heading on a California coastal RV trip? Grab stickers that feature the sea, sun, and California destinations.
This one is not necessary, but it sure does make the scrapbooking pages so much fun! How nice it is to have an all in one camera and printer to bring along with us on the trips. We brought along our instant camera, which has Bluetooth capability, and we were able to print our favorite photos each day.
Bring your Vacation Scrapbook Supplies
Yes, you read that correctly. You are going to bring the supplies with you on your trip., Creating our vacation scrapbooks every evening of our Cruise America RV trip was the "wrap up" of our day.
Plan ahead and have all of your supplies in one place. I prefer a small bin with a lid, but if you are packing minimally and/or via airplane, you could easily fit everything you need in one large gallon size Ziplock.
Find Time Throughout your Trip
One of the best parts of any trip is the amount of uninterrupted time I get to spend with my family. What better way to wrap up each day of our trip than with a 15 minute share of your favorite parts of the day and/or what you are most thankful for, from the day’s adventures.
On our last California coast RV trip we spent the last 15-30 minutes each night working on our album. After all the kids were bathed and in pajamas, we would create our memory page for our vacation scrapbook for the day. I would print our favorite photo(s) from the instant camera. Then we would grab all of the tickets, brochures and papers from that day (if we had any), and we would start putting things on our pages.
The kids would then share one of their favorite parts of the day and be responsible for writing it down. My oldest two (ages 7 & 9) would write a sentence or two right into the scrapbook. For my four year old, she would tell me her favorite part and I would write it down on a piece of scrap paper. She then would copy and transfer her sentence onto our vacation scrapbook album page. For my youngest (2), I would have him tell me his favorite part (usually one or two words) and then I would write it down for him.
Order the Rest of the Photos
How to complete this album before you get home? Take advantage of this travel time and order the rest of your prints directly from your phone. I prefer using various online companies for printing photos as it is inexpensive and quick and the photos will be shipped directly to your home.
I try to limit the amount of photos I order from each day based on the number of photo slots my scrapbook/memory album has. So for example, if it has 100 pages and we went on a 10 day trip, I would print out my favorite 10 photos from each day (give or take).
Forever Hold onto these Memories
The best part of any trip for me (besides the trip itself of course) is the memories that it creates. I get to spend uninterrupted time with my family. Together we are creating and capturing a lifetime of moments together. The fact that I now have vacation scrapbook albums sitting in our den that my kids helped me create makes my mama heart happy. My only regret is that I didn't start creating these vacation scrapbooks with my children sooner.
Letting go of the Perfection
These vacation scrapbooks aren't perfect. They surely are not what I used to create pre-kids, but the memories are still there. The little hand written words from my kids, the photos that are candid, silly, and untouched, and even the hand drawn pictured they created on the pages. These are the memories I want to remember. I hope you are able to create a vacation scrapbook for your next Cruise America RV
family trip. - Jessica
To see more of Jess' adventures or have any questions, visit her on Instagram @flyingwithfour
or on her blog www.flyingwithfour.com
We would love to see your scrapbook pages from your next trip, so make sure you tag us on Instagram with #BeThereNow for a chance to be featured on our social channels.